Children are often the pickiest eaters. This makes a getting a child to eat a healthy diet a true challenge. However, according to dietician Elaine Magee, when children prepare their own food they become much more likely to eat the food they prepare. Cooking together as a family also offers stronger family bonds through conversation. To introduce you children to the kitchen try these fun foods to cook with children.
One of the easiest foods to cook with children of any age is a simple pizza. Kids love picking out their own toppings and decorating a pizza crust just the way they like. For young children purchase a premade crust and lay out a display of toppings for the children to use. Older children can join you in cutting vegetables, creating the dough and making the sauce. While making a pizza, feel free to introduce new and adventurous foods by presenting new foods as pizza toppings. Consider using goat cheese, sun dried tomatoes, spinach, broccoli or any other fun toppings that a child may not be inclined to try otherwise.
Making any kind of cookies can be fun to do with children, however, sugar cookies are a favorite choice of all kids. Let the children measure and sift the dry ingredients together. After the mixture is prepared, let the children roll the dough and cut it with cookie cutters or a butter knife. When the cookies are finished baking, allow the children to decorate their cookies with frosting and edible adornments.
Fruit, shrimp and beef kebabs are all fun foods to cook with children. Let the kids choose their own kebab fillers and permit them to string their own kebabs. Older children can chop their own food and help prepare any marinade you want to use. Younger children will have the most fun stringing food onto the skewers. Model the proper way to create a kebab and leave them to their own devices. This will get your children to eat their fruits and vegetables while having a lot of fun along the way.
Kids love to make a mess and few things are messier to make than French toast. Allow the children to whisk together the egg and milk mix. Let them dip the bread into the mixture and toss it on the griddle. It may not be the cleanest way to make French toast but it is certainly a fun thing to cook with children. For an extra bit of entertainment, allow the children to get creative with the French toast. Provide spices and extracts to add to the French toast batter such as pumpkin pie spice or orange extract. You can also create fun toppings using fruits or nuts. This is a great way to slip a little added nutrition into your breakfast.
Other Fun Foods
All foods can be fun foods to cook with children. Any child who is interested in being in the kitchen with you should certainly not be discouraged. To cook effectively with children simply assign them a task that is appropriate to their age group. Teens can typically be trusted to use a knife, cook on the stove and work independently. Children between the ages of 5 and 12 can use measuring cups properly, roll dough and separate eggs. Younger children can add pre-measured ingredients to a recipe, decorate foods and use a butter knife to cut butter, soft cheese, fruits and vegetables.