Cooking with Kids and for Families
Tips for cooking/baking with kids at home
We know that a lot of our families are using this time to indulge in a bit of family home cooking. Aside from being a fun activity and an essential life skill, learning to cook can also be a great tool for exercising fine motor, comprehension, maths and science skills. Scroll through this page to see some great resources that we've found to help you with your own family foodie projects. Of course, we recommend that children should be supervised at all times when cooking or preparing ingredients. Please note that we cannot be held responsible for the content of external websites.
If you have any tips/recipes that you would like to share then please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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Jump to 'Cooking with Ingredient Shortages'
One of the exciting things about cooking is the sense that you can never stop learning and that goes as much for adults as it does for children. An understanding of food hygiene is an important fundamental part of developing food safety knowledge and we have found these great free food hygiene worksheets that are quick and easy to work through with kids. Knife skills are also an important part of being able to prepare ingredients safely and exercise the type of fine motor skills that will be useful as children develop and we love this guide from Borough Market which gives fantastic tips on how to confidently and safely guide your children through this process.
When sourcing recipes for your kids our top recommended online resource is the BBC Good Food website which has an enormous collection of not just recipes, but informative articles to help you every step of the way regardless of your preferences and cooking level. If you are looking to use your cookery sessions with your children as a learning tool, there is a great article here that covers how it can be used across the curriculum.
Other great places to start with generalised advice about how to get kids cooking with appropriate recipes can be found here and here. as well as sections specifically with a family focus and ones specifically focussed on baking and bread-making for kids. Simple kids and family recipes for vegan and vegetarian diets are also catered for with great nutrition advice We also highly recommend the section on cooking with children with additional needs which has great advice and ideas . Moving away from the purely edible, the activities for kids page uses cookery principles to suggest methods for slime, salt dough, papier-mache making.
Elsewhere on the BBC website - CBeebies have some great online resources focussed on simple but inspiring ideas for younger children with their full selection of recipes and special sections on their shows I Can Cook and My World Kitchen. Older children/more confident young cooks will find plenty to enjoy with the Junior Bake Off and Matilda and the Ramsay Bunch CBBC mini-sites.
We recognise that this is a particularly tough time financially for many families right now and that with families spending more time indoors, grocery and energy bills are massively increasing. Therefore, we have sourced fantastic ideas for cheap family suppers from the BBC Good Food, Good to Know, and Tesco websites, the latter of which has over 700 ideas. We also recommend the ideas on the 'Cooking on a Bootstrap' website which gives indicative pricing for each recipe and uses a lot of non-perishable ingredients.
Reduce food waste
With the massive environmental and financial costs that come with food wastage, there is plenty of information online on how to keep this to a minimum within your household. Love Food Hate Waste is our top recommended site when it comes to this issue with comprehensive guidance on effective food storage, advice, and recipes. The BBC Good Food and Tesco websites also have fantastic ideas for using up your leftovers.
We are fully aware that cooking and the subsequent eating is not such an easy task if you have a child or family member with allergies. The AllergyUk website has fantastic general advice and recipes covering a number of different ingredient restrictions and is a great place to start. The aforementioned BBC Good Food website has a number of dairy-free recipes for kids as does the Good To Know site. The Coeliac UK website should be your first port of call for gluten-free recipes for the family and we also found these recipes that are family-friendly.
Cooking with Ingredient Shortages
At the time of writing, certain common ingredients such as flour and eggs are harder to source than normal but there are numerous clever and easy ways to work around these omissions. The BBC Good Food website has tips on how to make bread with plain flour and kid-friendly baking ideas without flour. The Guardian has also released a fantastic cake-baking guide with recipes to compensate if you are lacking flour, eggs or butter.
The NHS Change 4 Life website is a great resource for being able to understand childhood nutrition with specially designed recipes and is also available as a handy app. The BBC Good Food recipe also has a special section based around nutrition for primary aged children.