Today, Michelle Stern of What’s Cooking offers a guide for involving kids in the kitchen:
“Since I teach cooking classes for children, people ask me all the time about what their kids can really do in the kitchen. They find it hard to believe that their toddler can actually help, without causing complete chaos. The following guide highlights some of the age-appropriate cooking skills that children typically can handle. Of course, use your discretion depending on how much experience your child has had experimenting in the kitchen.
Age-Appropriate Cooking Skills
2-3 year olds can:Rinse vegetables or fruits
Tear large pieces of lettuce
Pour with assistance
Select which ingredients they want to taste or use
Recognize changes to ingredients during the cooking process
Help identify ingredients in the grocery store
Group utensils when setting the table.
4-6 year olds can:Do tasks listed previously, and…
Count and do simple measurements
Cut with a plastic or butter knife
Start to follow recipe cards and symbols
Create their own recipes, and draw them on cards
Identify images or diagrams of ingredients on your grocery list
Set the table.
7-12 year olds can:Do tasks listed previously, and…
Write your shopping list and read it to you at the store.
Help select which recipes the family will share at mealtime.
Read and follow recipes
Work with a heat source (supervised)
Cut with a sharper knife (with instruction)
Create their own recipes and write the steps
Help to wash dishes
When you prepare meals for your family, involve your kids in the kitchen. Kids will enjoy the quality time they spend with you, and you will get a personal assistant!"
For more recipes and methods to involve kids in the kitchen, check out What’s Cooking Weekly.
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