How do you feel when you hear kids helping in the kitchen? Nervousness, anxiety? Feelings of dread at the anticipated mess?
Push those feelings aside! Cooking with kids can not only be enjoyable but will provide them (and you) with a lot of benefits!
For kids, helping in the cooking process can:
-teach culinary skills, making them more apt to cook as adults
-increase their self confidence
-connect them with their food (kids who helped make a meal are more likely to then eat said meal as they feel ownership – a great way to encourage picky eaters to try new things!)
-increase knowledge in nutrition –> lifelong healthy habits!
-enhance their education (math skills, problem solving, science can all be incorporated into cooking!)
For adults, cooking with children can:
-give you an opportunity to practice giving up control 😉
-create stronger relationships with the kid in your life
-help you! Even though you may think it is faster and easier to do it yourself, kids can actually be a great help! (and if they’re too young to be a real ‘help’ right now, when they’re older and love to cook you’ll be thankful you exposed them now!)
So how to get started? Well for starters, taking a child to the grocery store is a great way to introduce them to many foods. Asking their opinion on what food they want to try is a great way for picky eaters to be more open!
For other ideas, check out this guide for age appropriate tasks! If you already cook with kids, share your ideas in the comments below!