Guest Picks: Tools for Kids in the Kitchen
This is a collection of stuff little chefs might enjoy, some of which my daughter actually uses, but most of which are on her (and my) wish list. — Meaghan from The Decorated Cookie
I bought this tool set for my daughter when she was four. She often pulled up her stool to help me prepare dinner, and I let her chop the fruits and veggies with a butter knife. It didn't work. So I bought these safe tools for her. There's still a bit of struggle slicing through tough skins, but they are much better than the butter knife.
Hmmm, needs just a sprinkle of salt? Let the kids use their magic wands to add a big dose of flavor.
This book with a vintage feel is on my wish list. It has 50 simple recipes and covers the basics of cooking for kids.
One of my daughter's favorite things to do is draw with food coloring markers. I set her up at the table, throw down some freezer paper, markers and marshmallows, and she goes to town. The marker is a tool kids know how to use already, and it allows them to turn their food into art. For tips on what kind to buy, check out my blog post.
This mini ice cream sandwich press looks simple enough for kids to assist with. And I'm a big fan of desserts in miniature. They are easier for little hands to hold and contain less sugar. I mean, sure, not a lot less, but less.
Kids certainly need their own recipes. I like the idea of starting with recipe cards, then moving into cookbooks. Seems like baby — I mean, kid steps.
I have this book. I couldn't resist. It's filled with fun, interesting and healthy recipes for kids, like "Pita Boat Pizza," "Fla-mango Soup" and "Taco Towers."
Kids have to do the dishes too.
These crocodile tongs are just one of several animal-themed, kid-friendly kitchen products from this Swiss company. The KinderKitchen collection also includes a Cockatiel Whisk, Mouse Measuring Cups and a Bluebird Spatula.
Pie pops are the perfect treat for kids. They are little, the stick is easy to hold and kids can creatively fill the pies with whatever they want. This kit is for kids (though I'm guessing adult supervision is needed for the cooking part).
I find it so important for kids to know exactly where their food comes from, and growing it themselves is the best way. (I say this even though I'm a terrible gardener myself, sigh.) This company has several just-for-kids garden growing kits, including taco, stir-fry, pizza and herb kits. Plus, they have animated videos, and you can register your garden for interactive help with growing.
Etsy teems with homemade aprons for kids. Just plug in "children's apron," and you'll see.
My daughter has a number of Stephen Joseph items, including a backpack and purse. I didn't know they also made cooking sets. Cute, cute, cute.
So often those little baking pans in the toy section look so real you wonder if they are oven safe. These are. This is such an adorable set for a little baker.
Of course, kids will need a place to keep their favorite recipes.
I've been watching this trend for a couple years now, the "let's bake big stuff in little cups" thing. And I find myself bookmarking recipes for mac n' cheese in cupcake tins and other dinner-turned-cup-size delicacies. The trend makes sense: Individual servings are cute, easy and portion controlled. This kit is just for kids with both sweet and savory recipes, and it comes with six silicone baking cups. I kind of want it for me.
My daughter's most recent challenge is cracking eggs. She taps and taps until she gets a little crack, but hasn't yet mastered the splitting without crushing the entire egg and spilling it on the counter. I wonder if this bowl would help...
This site has an assortment of back-to-basics kits for kids in the kitchen.
For the kid who loves to cook and conduct scientific experiments, this uses solar energy to create a heating surface for melting chocolate, fondue, etc. Hmmm, I'd be interested to try this (though I predict my kid would use it once and be done).
Easy Bake Ovens still exist! I fondly remember my Holly Hobbie Easy Bake Oven, even if I can't remember actually baking anything in it successfully.Next: Add a Baking Station