The Joy of Cooking With Kids: Notes and Resources from the Sandbox Discussion

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Thanks to everyone who contributed to our discussion about cooking with kids! This post has TONS of links to useful links about cooking with kids. Please feel free to add or request resources in the comment section. Check back to see what has been added to this post as moms share their ideas and resources.

Three types of Cooking With Kids:
1. To learn– Cooking can be used to teach lessons that have nothing to do with the food itself. For example, we used pizza ingredients to construct our own delicious leg bone. Example: Classroom in the Kitchen: Making Edible Legs

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2. To Nourish- Sometimes just having your kids watch you cook dinner and help in whatever way is meaningful. Many of the moms discussed giving their little ones tasks to keep them busy alongside the actual meal prep. This could be stirring noodles or vegetables or using a plastic knife to cut soft foods. Example: Green Grilled Cheese

3. For fun- Many of the ideas discussed involved baking or making special treats just for the fact that they’re fun to make.
Cinnamon Roll Turkeys

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All of them are a great and often tasty ways to learn about everything from counting and measuring to reading recipes and grocery lists.

Recipe and food ideas from the moms at the discussion:
No Cook:
Smoothies
Green Smoothy
Balls
Recipe for Apricot and Coconut Balls
Protein Balls
Guacamole
How to Make The Best Guacamole

Cooked:
Cookies– A wide range of cookies were recommended, from homemade to bagged sugar cookies.
Two-Ingredient Banana Oat Cookies
Gluten Free Breakfast Cookies
The Nestle Toll House Recipe

Pizza-Follow want pizza recipe.  Fancy or box mix the kids will have fun putting on toppings to their hearts content. TIP: Only give as much of an ingredient as you’re willing to have dumped onto the pizza – a small bowl of marinara, a cup of cheese, a handful of pepperoni, and so on.

Pancakes-breaking eggs (with help), stirring, and putting in toppings like blueberries and bananas. Use buckwheat if you want to go gluten free!

Stuffed crescent rolls– One of the most versatile ingredients. Fast, easy, and fun for kids.
29 Incredibly Easy Things You Can Make With Cresent Dough

Threaded Spaghetti Hot Dog Bites -you could change this one up by using meatballs, sausage, or mushrooms instead of hot dogs.

Supplies and Resources:
Child friendlier knives-3 Piece Nylon Knife Set
Silicon Baking Sheet
Sugar Googly Eyes

Cookbooks for kids-
Better Homes and Gardens New Junior Cookbook
Cookbooks for Cooking With Kids

Online resources:

Benefits of Cooking With Kids:
Fun activity for playdate activity
Encourages kids to try new foods whenever they helped make it.
Parents can monitor dietary restrictions like gluten free, paleo, dairy free, and preservative free more easily when you cook at home.

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