Cooking is fun, creative, and, at times, incredibly messy, so it should be no surprise that most children absolutely love it. I love cooking with kids! Teaching them to cook is incredibly rewarding. It sets them up for an adult life of healthy and nutritious foods. It also teaches math, science, reading, and problem-solving skills. However, this isn’t always the easiest family activity, so if you want to get the most out of cooking with your children, then here are some helpful tips.
Set Aside Time
Cooking with kids tends to take a bit longer than cooking alone, so it’s important that you set aside enough time to get things done. It’s probably best that you try it on aweekend. You’ll have fewer time constraints and you won’t have to rush your kids or take over completely. Think of cooking with your children as a family project, and make sure that you choose a recipe and buy the ingredients together before getting started. And the more often you do it, the easier it gets – and the more fun you have!
Plan And Prepare
Cooking sometimes requires a fair bit of planning, and this is only ever increased when cooking with your children. If you don’t everything ready to get go when your kids join you in the kitchen, they’ll probably get bored before you’ve even start. Because of this, it’s important that you have all of the ingredients and equipment out and ready for them.
Know Their Ability
Cookbooks don’t know your kids, so instead of following the age suggestions for a recipe, look at your children and figure out what they can and can’t do. Regardless of age, there’s always something they can do, whether that’s washing vegetables, chopping carrots, or making mashed potatoes by themselves. And how about some homemade butter to with those potatoes? Always keep an eye on your kids, but once you’ve given them a task, try to let them do it on their own.
Expect Some Mess
Children love getting messy. Since cooking can get this way fairly quickly, it would be silly to expect your kitchen to stay sparkling clean. Make the clean up easier later on. Put down a tablecloth where your kids are working and maybe even some newspaper on the floor. But, even with these precautions, you’ll end up with mess in some pretty unexpected places. Have them help clean it up. That’s just part of the cooking process.
Teach Them Everything
If you want your kids to learn, then you need to teach. Don’t take over and do things for them. If your children is doing something that isn’t right, explain to them why it’s wrong, and how to do it correctly. This way they’ll remember and won’t do it again. You should also use this opportunity to tell your kids about food hygiene (like hand washing frequently), healthy eating, and anything else you can slip in.
Make It Fun!
Kids need to have their minds stimulated if they’re to stay switched on. Sure, some might be able to keep their eyes on the ball through all elements, but most need to have fun while they work. Make sure it’s not a boring journey for them because they’ll be put off immediately at the first sign of monotony. Do things like creating what they want and making little challenges. Perhaps you could buy things like the gozney dome or new equipment that’s personal to them! If they see it as a fun hobby or game, then they’re going to be more inclined to continue.
Cooking with your children is incredibly rewarding, but things can quickly descend into chaos if you don’t pay attention. These tips should help you make your family time go smoothly. You and your kids will have a great time!