Get your kids cooking in the kitchen

By Julie Van Rosendaal on February 19, 2013
One of the biggest challenges for parents is getting dinner on the table and making sure kids will eat it. We want to encourage you to get your little ones to help out in the kitchen. Being able to help prepare their meals and, in turn, recognize how to eat well, children can start to take charge of their eating habits. Here are some resources to help get you started.

Book review: Everyday Kitchen for Kids

What’s the best way to encourage your kids to get into the kitchen and learn how to cook? By letting them take charge of their favourite dishes. In Everyday Kitchen for Kids, the follow-up to the award-winning, international bestseller Kitchen for Kids, author and mom Jennifer Low helps children do just that. Her recipes are written for kids to read and follow step-by-step themselves. Although it’s all real food – think real fish fillets, coconut curry chicken, banana bread and whoopie pies – none of the methods call for sharp knives, stovetop cooking or small motorized appliances.

In her previous career as a magazine food editor, Jennifer saw scores of cookbooks and noticed that something was missing. “In helping my kids learn to cook,” she says, “I came to realize that so-called ‘cookbooks for children’ were anything but.” She remembers the instructions in these books and the practical problems she saw in them: “chop the carrots carefully” (using a knife?!) and “stir the pot of simmering liquid” (by standing on a chair to reach the stovetop?!)

Jennifer envisioned a different kind of kids’ cookbook. With Everyday Kitchen for Kids, no longer will children have to ask, “please, can you make...?” Instead, adults will be saying to their children, “Wow! You made this yourself?!”

Online resources

Try Jennifer’s delicious Mac ‘n’ Cheddar Cheese recipe. Then check out the video of food editor Julie Van Rosendaal’s son Willem as he attempts to make his own culinary masterpiece.

Dairy Farmers of Canada’s new website, FamilyKitchen.ca, also aims to arm kids with the essential life skill of cooking. The website features simple tips, ideas and recipes to help parents create the family kitchen and get their kids cooking.

Originally published n ParentsCanada magazine, February/March 2013.

By Julie Van Rosendaal | February 19, 2013

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