I wrote this post for Residence Inn Family Travel Talk, I’m an ambassador for their Facebook page where we talk about travel and family.
With the arrival of the holiday season, let’s talk about getting the kids involved in cooking. Involving kids in the kitchen helps them actually want to eat the food, but where is their place in the process? Luckily, there are so many different things you can do to get kids interested and involved in cooking.
The first way is to let them discover where food comes from. Take your kids to a farm or farmer’s market. In our area, it’s a lot of fun to take the kids to a pumpkin patch. Last year we went to an organic pumpkin patch where we picked out baking pumpkins and gourds to decorate the house with. The kids saw the plants, learned where to cut them off at and how to cut them off the vine properly. My son was super excited to get to use the knife to cut the gourds and wanted to help out everyone. After picking the gourds we took a tour of the farm. We saw strawberries that were just about out of season, and so the farmer let us eat whatever we could pick. It was so much fun and my kids gained such an appreciation for where plants come from and the work behind it!
Another way to get your kids involved in cooking is to take them to the grocery store. Of course you can let your kids make the grocery list, but also let them look around the aisles and shelves. Take them to the vegetable aisle and let them pick out something interesting. Encourage them to pick out fruits and to find a food that is fun and random. You need to be willing to try new foods also, and there are plenty of different and interesting items that the kids can find. Along the way, it’s great to discuss fun facts about the fruits and vegetables, such as when and where each fruit or vegetable grows.
Once you have purchased the ingredients, let your little ones help in the kitchen. They can wash the veggies and fruit or mix things in a mixer, and help with so many different things! My son loves to crack eggs while my daughter loves to measure. And luckily, they both love to wash the dishes in the sink! We are fortunate enough to have a dishwasher but they can wash the pots and pans and it’s a great way to get in the kitchen all together.