Kids Week: Kids in the Kitchen

I have had many comments on how do I get my kids to eat their dinner, veggies or when should kids start helping out in the kitchen? There are many different ways to get the kids involved in meal planning and making of the food the family will consume. As they get older they can help out a lot more and when they are a teen they should have a great feel for being in the kitchen.

I have been baking with my kids for the last few years. Baking I have found was an easy way to get my kids introduced to the kitchen and helping mom. I let them pour dry ingredients and help with stirring the ingredients. Now my daughter who is four can crack eggs, help with measuring the ingredients, chop foods, I have allowed her to cut softer foods that she can use a butter or plastic knife.

Getting the kids involved has a bunch of benefits from learning mathematics, self-pride to maybe even get your children to eat their dinner. Meal planning is another great way to have kids feel like they were a big help in the family meals and also enjoy the foods being served. Later this week I will be posting about meal planning with the whole family.

Ideas for your children to help with are listed below in an age range. You know your child best and know what they can and can’t do. Disclaimer: Always supervise your children in the kitchen around sharp and hot objects.

Ages 2-3:
  • Clean table and counter tops Sprinkle cheese, 
  • sprinkles for cupcakes 
  • Tear foods like lettuce into bite sized pieces 
  • Arrange food on a baking sheet 
  • Scrub fruits and veggies 
  • Pour ingredients 
  • Mix, stir or whisk ingredients 
  • Spread butter or peanut butter on bread/toast 
  • Cut soft foods with a butter or plastic knife 

Ages 4-5: (can do all the above, plus)
  • Shape foods cookies or meatballs 
  • Mash soft foods (my daughter loves to mash bananas with the potato masher) 
  • Set the table and clean up 
  • Crack an egg into a bowl 
  • Cut bread or cookie dough with cookie cutters 
  • Measure dry and wet ingredients 

Ages 6-9:
  • Peeling veggies and fruits
  • Dicing and mincing veggies and fruits
  • Using a can opener
  • Grating cheese 
  • Forming patties, balls the same size
  • Greasing pans 

Age 10-12+:
At this age you will be teaching them to work independently in the kitchen with minimal adult supervision.
  •  Using the microwave 
  • Using the stove top 
  • Using the oven 

Don’t want to start out making food in the kitchen with your two year old? How about making slim, silly putty or play dough? You can make tons of different crafts in the kitchen that will also to get your kids started on learning tons of kitchen techniques.

Homemade Slim – Source Disney’s Family Fun Magazine 

Two mixing bowls
Measuring cups and spoons
Green food coloring


1. Mix together 3/4 cup warm water, 1 cup glue and several drops of green food coloring in the first bowl. 2. In the second bowl, mix together 4 teaspoons borax and 1 1/3 cups warm water.
3. Pour the contents of the first bowl into the second, but don't stir. Let it sit for 1 minute, then lift the now-congealed slime out of the bowl.
4. Divide slime so that each child has a piece to play with. The glue in slime can make it stick to certain fabrics. To minimize accidents, give each little monster a zip-top bag to store it in.

Tips: SAFETY NOTE: Since borax is toxic in large doses, be sure to keep the slime away from kids younger than age three.

Silly Putty Recipe 

1 cup white Elmer's glue
2 1/2 cup Sta-Flo liquid starch

Food coloring In a medium bowl, mix glue with 1 cup starch. Add a few drops of food coloring.
Cover bowl and let it stand overnight.

The next day slowly stir in with a spoon 1 to 1 1/2 cups of starch until a big blob forms. Pour off extra starch. Store in air tight container. If it is too sticky add starch, if it is to stringy add glue. The more you work with it the better it jells.

Note: Do NOT substitute any other glue for Elmer's glue! If you use Elmer's School Glue instead of regular white it doesn't bounce or pick up pictures. Source

Play Dough

1 cup flour
1/4 cup salt
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 cup hot water
A few drops of food coloring

In a non-stick pan, mix the dry ingredients. Slowly add the water and mix.
Add food coloring. Mix. Cook over medium heat for about 3 minutes until it is in a clump; stirring constantly.

Place on wax paper, the counter, or cutting board. Knead for a couple of minutes (let it cool if it needs to). Store in covered container or a seal able plastic bag in the refrigerator.

~*Disclaimer: This post was written by Marvelous Mommy Meals, this is not a sponsored post. All opinions are honest and my own.*~


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