When starting out with to cook with kids and encouraging them to be interested in cooking, it is very important to choose easy, age appropriate, recipes. Ensure that whatever they are going to make is something that they are likely to enjoy making, without being too complicated and also that they are likely to eat or at least taste !
Explain basic cooking and preparation methods to them, simple but important things like :
– not touching hot pans or baking trays.
– using different chopping borads for raw and cooked foods.
– always having clean hands.
You’ll know yourself how detailed you’ll need to be in terms of safety when cooking as it depends on how much assistance your child may need from you.
You shuold get them to help prepare for cooking by:
– setting out the utensils and equipment you’ll need.
– bringing them shopping to buy the ingredients
– making a shopping list for all ingredients you’ll need
Having some “child size” utensils in bright colors is something that younger kids love, there is a huge array of kids cooking and baking cookware available both in supermarkets and online so you shoudn’t experience too much difficulty in picking up some bowls and spoons that suit the age of the child you’ll be cooking with.
If you don’t have anything other than your own regular cooking and baking equipment, don’t let that be excuse for not cooking with your kids, they will be thrilled that you are spending the time with them and helping them to create something wonderful and hopefully edible !!
Getting kids to try new foods and new flavors is so much easier when they help with the preparation of their food – dishes that they claim they don’t like the taste of might be simply because of how it is cooked, for example, many kids don’t like cooked peppers but they love eating them raw and particularly when there’s a variety of different colors for them to choose from ! Whatever you are cooking with them ensure that they like at least one of the main flavors or ingredients in your recipe or they may lose interest before they even get started.
You should strive to make cooking with your kids a fun and enjoy experience, it’s a learning zone for them and when they are encouraged and assisted to be creative and experiment a little then they’ll have mastered basic recipes and can then move onto more adventureous recipes.
So to sum it all up these are our top tips to get kids cooking:
– Be patient, patient – try not to get frustrated with any mess that is made, it will only take a few minutes to clean up.
– Encourage them to taste new foods as they’ve preparing to cook
– Use brightly colored, child size utensils and bake/cool wave.
– Buy the ingredients together.
– Prepare a shopping list together
– Get the kids to help choose the recipes
– Explain simple but important kitchen rules
– Choose easy to follow, age appropriate recipes.
That’s it, just have fun and enjoy this wonderful time together !