Every since I can remember I just loved to cook. I never really new how to do too much, just the basics. And when I tried new things I often had some major fails. But for some reason that was the beauty of it to me. Once I started having the kids cooking with me I could see they had a major interest in it too. They are still pretty little so its more for just the experience. But they are getting down the ideas and I am already amazed at how much they have absorbed. There are so many good reasons for both of you to have your kids cooking with you.
Any mom has heard this one
You’ve probably heard this story before… everyone gets home from a long day and gets into the house. You immediately start working on your dinner plans or are just figuring it out. After about 5 minutes someone needs your help so you go assist and then back to working on dinner. Another 3 minutes later someone gets hurt so you tend to them and then get back to working on dinner. Another 2 minutes and someone realizes they are so hungry they cannot wait and start melting down about it immediately. I could continue on but I think you know where I’m going.
Once my oldest was big enough he became very inquisitive about what I was doing in the kitchen. I learned quickly it was best to include him in the process and just have my kids cooking with me. There are so many reasons as to why you should get them involved. One being the most obvious is that it actually lets you continue with what you are doing and avoiding the scenario above. Even though there are many times I still have to stop and fix something or redo it at least we are doing it together and it keeps them from whining at your feet asking how much longer…
Benefits for the kids
Then there’s the educational reasons why. I’m amazed by how much both of my kids have learned from being in the kitchen with us. Not only are they learning how to cook and what to use but we are using it to teach them ways to make meals healthier by cooking at home. It also gives them a better understanding of where things go in the kitchen and you can explain what each utensil is used for. It is also very important to give them an overview of safety and what things they can use and what needs supervision. That way you don’t have them just trying to mimic everything you are doing and potentially getting hurt.
I also love the time it gives me with them. Sometimes during the week our days can get so hectic you feel rushed to get everything done in the evening. Which can leave you little time for quality time with your kids. This is another great reason I love my kids cooking with me – we get to spend great time together and we get something accomplished.
Kids cooking and how we make it a little easier
When the kids were smaller we did it the simple way and just pushed a chair up to the counter. Nowadays they both have a little folding stool that they can easily move around to be near the action. Plus they fold up small and do not take up much space. The other things that has been immensely helpful is them having their own utensils and ingredients. Either use extra things around your kitchen or we use our play set of pots and utensils and I give them items to mix up. When they were smaller I would just throw some Cheerios or those baby puffs in their bowl or pot and they would have a blast. Now I give them some of their own ingredients of what I’m using so they can mix their own.
Family time is so important to us and its so hard to balance it all so this has been a great little tradition we have started. What are your favorite traditions to do with your family?
Now that you may be hungry check out our Healthy(ish) Apple Crumble Recipe