My kids LOVE cooking! But to be honest, at times I've been somewhat reluctant about having them "help" me in the kitchen. Often, I'm in a hurry and just want to get the cooking done! It's hard to consider past the extra time and mess. If you relate to those feelings at all, I encourage you to join me as I try harder to let go of those temporal inconveniences and focus on the benefits.
1) First, and most obvious - these kids will eventually be adults, and they need to know how to get around a kitchen. So teach them. (The boys too!)
2) I'm always impressed with the math skills that make so much more sense to kids when they're cooking. Little ones who haven't even started learning fractions are figuring out how to convert recipes like pros!
3) If the mess is a problem, here is a great time to practice responsibility. Our mom used that phrase, "A good cook always cleans up his/her mess". If the kids are excited about cooking, they'll probably be motivated enough to agree to help clean up. (Hint: It's a good idea to clean as you go. Less daunting than a giant mess at the end. AND the excitement to go onto the next step will hopefully encourage them to go ahead and rinse off those used mixing bowls and utensils)
4) Now that some of my kids are getting older, ITS PAY OFF TIME!! If you patiently get through those years of spilt ingredients and extra dishes, EVENTUALLY those kids are going to be capable of cooking on their own. Yes (wink) those little sous chefs can start making some meals for the family while you finally put your feet up... or... maybe just get something else done on the "to-do" list.
5) And the best reason to let you kids get in the kitchen with you -The memories you make with your kids, by spending time cooking with them, will forever be cherished! Invite them to help you, take double the time and make double the mess. You won't ever regret it!
Here are some kids cookbooks with simple and delicious recipes
to get your kids off to a great start!
Raised in the Kitchen: Making Memories from Scratch One Recipe at a Time
By Carrian Cheney
The Forest Feast for Kids:
Colorful Vegetarian Recipes That Are
Simple to Make
By Erin Gleeson
The Healthy Junior Chef Cookbook:
70+ Fresh Recipes that Taste Great
By William Sonoma
The Vegan Cookbook for Kids:
Easy Plant-Based Recipes for Young Chefs
By Barb Musick
Junior Baker: Fun Recipes for Delicious Cakes, Cookies, Cupcakes & More
By Williams Sonoma Test Kitchen
The Toddler Cookbook
By Annabel Karmel
The Vegetarian Cookbook:
More than 50 Recipes for Young Cooks
The Complete Cookbook for Young Chefs:
100+ Recipes that You'll
Love to Cook and Eat
By America's Test Kitchen for Kids
Helpful Products For Cooking With Kids
Deluxe Large Cookbook Holder - Acrylic Shield With Cherry Wood Base
- Made in the USA
Protect those new cookbooks from spills and sticky fingers!
Curious Chef Children's 3-Piece
Nylon Knife Set
Keep those precious fingers safe!