Cooking with Your Kids has Great Benefits!


As Guy Fieri once said, “Cooking with kids is not just about ingredients, recipes and cooking. It’s about harnessing imagination, empowerment and creativity.”

Benefits of Cooking with Your Kids:

•     Bonding experience
•     Creates opportunity to discuss the senses (taste, sight, smell, touch)
•     Boosts self-esteem by accomplishing tasks that contribute to the whole family
•     Teaches children life skills and food safety practices
•     Uses basic math skills
•     Allows scientific observation when foods change form
•     Promotes practicing how to follow directions
•     Provides opportunity to discuss how healthy foods create a healthy body
•     Encourages creativity
•     Can improve cultural awareness

African American Mother Mixed Race Daughter Frosting Icing Cakes
African American mother and mixed race daughter having fun frosting icing cup cakes


Cooking with kids can be fun if the tasks are age-appropriate!
It is never too soon to teach your kids about healthy eating. Kids LOVE getting attention, so cooking together is a great way to spend time bonding! Kids can start cooking as young as 2 years old. Cooking is a life-long skill that presents many teaching opportunities, like following directions, measuring, practicing cleanliness and having fun tasting healthful new foods that reduce cancer risk. Follow the age appropriate tasks below and give your kids a
practical skill that they will use for the rest of their lives.

Your 2-3 year-olds can help:

•     Select which ingredients they want to taste or use
•     Sort ingredients
•     Rinse vegetables or fruits
•     Tear large pieces of lettuce
•     Stir
•     Pour with assistance
•     Add ingredients into mixing bowl
•     Group utensils when setting the table

Your 4-6 year olds can help:

•     Start to read recipes
•     Count and do simple measurements
•     Cut with a plastic or butter knife
•     Cut herbs with kitchen shears
•     Crack eggs
•     Mix
•     Pour
•     Set the table
•     Create recipe cards for recipe Rolodex
•     Push the start and stop button on food processor or blender

Your 7-12 year olds can help:

•     Select which recipes the family will share at mealtimes
•     Create their own recipes
•     Find and gather ingredients
•     Read and follow recipes
•     Help create your shopping list
•     Cut with a small sharper knife (supervised)
•     Use zester, graters and peelers (supervised)
•     Work with a heated source (with instructions)
•     Help wash dishes

Ref: 2013 Super Kids Crew® and American Institute for Cancer Research®

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