My toddlers love being in the kitchen with me. But mixing up bread or muffins while two sets of eager little hands grab at the bag of flour, and measuring spoons? It can be very stressful! That’s why I’ve developed a few tips and tricks for baking with toddlers.
I want to raise kiddos that enjoy spending time in the kitchen, and love to bake and cook. And while I do plenty of baking on my own (sometimes I let the babies spend time with their Dad while I get some work done in the kitchen) I do find that including them in the household work makes them so very happy, and helps them develop new skills of their own.
Tips and Tricks for Baking with Toddlers
1. Give them their own little mixing bowl and measuring spoons.
Sometimes I will let them measure the ingredients for what I am making, but other times I find that they are just as happy if I set them up at the table with their own bowl and measuring cups. Then as I carefully measure out my ingredients, I can be dictating to them how much of each ingredient to measure in their own bowl. Having two separate areas really helps me not to make big mistakes in my baking, but lets them practice measuring and dumping out ingredients.
2. Set them up at the counter on a Kitchen Helper Stool
One of the biggest anxieties I have, when my toddlers are trying to help out, is that they are always clambering up and down off of the kitchen chairs, in order to see what I’m doing. To solve this issue, I’ve been keeping an eye out for a Kitchen’s Helper Stool! This neat stool was created especially for toddlers, and keeps them safe while they are helping at the counter. I have friends who say they use these stools daily, and they are such a life saver! Here’s one on Amazon, or there are many DIY plans out there as well!
3. Give them a job
For toddlers who are a bit older, you can set them up with a job of their own! Have them peel the bananas for the banana bread, grease the muffin pan, or put away the ingredients when you are done using them. Toddlers love to help, and they really can make your life a bit easier while they practice doing chores!
4. Choose a day a week to make a recipe they want to eat
Got a picky eater? Kids are more inclined to try new foods that they helped prepare! Every week, let your toddler choose a new recipe from a cookbook, and help put it together! Our new print cookbook, High Five Recipes, is a great resource for this, since it only includes recipes with five ingredients or less! Let your kiddo choose a recipe or two to try and then spend part of an afternoon making it!
5. If all else fails, let them play with this toy sink
Some days, letting them help in the kitchen doesn’t work out. There’s flour everywhere, it’s the end of a long day, and I just need a few minutes of (relative) quiet to finish up a recipe. When this happens, I pull out their Christmas present–this play sink with a working faucet!! It runs on only two batteries, and keeps them busy for a long time! I set it on a few towels on the floor, and then carefully wash all their dishes while I finish up my kitchen tasks. It’s definitely been worth the money!