5 Essential Tools to Start Cooking with your (Picky Eater) Kids
As most of you know, we spend a lot of time in the kitchen as a family. We like food - we like cooking it, looking at it, smelling it, talking about it…and of course - eating it!
Unfortunately one member of our family doesn’t share in our food-love - our gorgeous little boy is so picky that he won’t even eat chocolate!! Have you ever heard of a kid not eating chocolate?? Seriously! If its a candy bar, best it be made with milk chocolate; ice-cream HAS to be strawberry or vanilla - and don’t even get me started on how difficult it is choosing birthday cakes! While this is not really a bad food aversion - he also doesn’t eat veggies. Its meat and carbs for our little man…and practically nothing else.
One of the tactics we’ve used to get him to start developing a taste for ‘healthy’ food - besides offering small monthly rewards for trying something new everyday (can anyone say Forte Nite V-Bucks) - is getting him involved in actually preparing the meals we expect him to eat. And its working!! (Yaaaay for clean plates and no moaning about spinach!)
The idea is that if he becomes involved in choosing or preparing meals, he’ll be more interested in eating what he’s created. When starting this exercise, our primary concern was to keep him safe - no blood, no burns, and no helicopter parenting - we wanted to make him feel in control and in charge of his meal.
So if you are the mommy of a picky eater or just want teach your child how to handle themselves in the kitchen, we have some great tools for you to get started in the kitchen with your little one.
1. A Sturdy Step Stool
A step stool is the starting place for getting young kids cooking because it helps them reach the counter. We absolutely love this one from SouthernMerleCo - the sides are great for keeping fidgety cooks in place and it has sturdy feet to prevent tipping. You can even personalize these with your child’s first name and birthdate!
2. Personalized Mommy & Me Apron Set
Our kiddies want to do everything we do and wear everything we wear (my poor shoes!). Get your little chef excited to start cooking by getting matching personalized aprons for you and the little one. This way they can look and cook just like mommy.
3. Plastic Mixing Bowls
If you love your glass and ceramic mixing bowls, and you want them to last, you should buy your tiny chef a set of their own plastic mixing bowls. Bigger bowls are better, as young children tend to mix wildly, knocking ingredients out of the bowl and all over the kitchen, but it’s helpful to have a variety of sizes. We adore these mixing bowls from ProopsBros - each bowel has a pouring lip and three legs which results in a smaller chance of spills. They’re also sized so that its small enough for them to handle but big enough to get results.
4. A Kid Friendly Knife
Consider a knife a magic wand for young children learning to cook — as in, they are going to be in complete awe of having their own special tool and also wielding it with abandon. These knives are awesome, because not only will it not cut off any fingers (or even break your child’s skin) - it also develops their motor skills. A win-win.
5. Non-slip Cutting Boards
In partnership with their own knife, a non-slip cutting board is helpful for teaching tiny chefs knife skills. We have tried and failed to keep a wet paper towel or piece of drawer liner under standard cutting boards with our own tiny chefs, but since our little boy often wants to move his cutting board away from his sister’s wandering hands, we can’t guarantee the paper towel will move with him. Instead a board with a non-slip backing helps us both feel more confident and gives him the freedom to move his board as he needs. We love these from SixStoreGB - super cute colors and they’re large enough for our budding chefs.
We love cooking with our kids - besides teaching them habits for cooking and eating that will last a lifetime, it also allows us to spend quality time together away from electronics.
Now you have some super useful tips on how to start cooking with your kids (and hopefully get them more excited about eating the dreaded ‘green stuff’) - to get you started we’re giving you 10% off all the aprons in our shop (including the super cute set you saw in the blog above). Simply enter BLOG10 when you check-out to claim your discount.
We hope that it works as well for you as it has for us! Happy cooking!
Until next time,
Rend & Monique