Thursday, March 24, 2011

Resource Thursday - Cooking With Your Toddler

Cooking with your child can be fun, educational (for both of you) and sometimes frustrating.  The togetherness of the shared activity outweighs any hassle there might be.  Preparing food and cooking together reinforces your child's language skills, teaches cooperation and prepares them for a skill that will serve them for a long time - how to feed themselves!  And if your child has turned his or her nose up at a certain "yucky" food, if he/she is the chef that dish might just be their new favorite food - because THEY made it.  Here are a few resources to help you turn your toddler into a miniature chef. 

Here are some things your toddler can do:  (source and
  • Scrub, dip, tear, break, and snap (for example, snapping the ends off green beans)
  • Spread peanut butter on bread
  • Shake, spread, and cut with a cookie or biscuit cutter
  • Peel (some items), roll, juice, and mash
  • Remove husks from corn
  • Wash vegetables in a colander
  • Measure and pour some ingredients
  • Hand mix
  • Cut banana slices with a plastic knife
  • Wash and scrub fruits and vegetables
  • Wipe off the countertop
  • Rip lettuce
  • Shake plastic bags of different ingredients
  • Pour ingredients from premeasured cups
  • Stir or mix ingredients
  • Roll cookie dough
  • Cut cookies from dough
  • Whisk ingredients
  • Frost cupcakes (use a plastic knife or a small spatula)
  • Crush crackers and cookies to make crumbs
  • Dip foods that require dipping
  • Place cookies and other food on baking sheets or trays
  • Shape meatballs
  • Peel bananas
Let your child do the measuring over a cookie sheet or jelly roll pan - that will help contain the mess. 

Here is an article on Squidoo that gives helpful suggestions for making cooking with your toddler easier.  It offers suggestions on equipment to use and other tips.  Scroll further down the page to find suggestions for Mashable Foods to make with your toddler.  Kids like to "mash and moosh" things - why not take advantage of it!

Next week we will share "Toddler Friendly" Recipes.  Bon appetit!

Hope Cottage is the oldest nonprofit, non sectarian adoption agency in Dallas. Since 1918 Hope Cottage has been building and nurturing strong families through counseling, education and adoption services.

If you have questions about adoption, please call Hope Cottage at 214.526.8721.

If you are a woman facing an unwanted pregnancy and would like to talk to someone about adoption, please call Hope Cottage at 1.800.944.4464 or 214.404.4546.

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