The Best Kid-Friendly Meals & How To Get Your Children To Cook Them

By June 15, 2020 October 29th, 2020 No Comments
Cover image for blog post showing a child making cupcakes with her family

How often do you get to cook with your kids? Most parents will say that they’d like to include their children in their daily activities more often, but seem to struggle to get them excited about helping mum and dad around the house. If you happen to find yourself in this situation, cooking may be the solution to your problem.

Admittedly, you will very rarely come across a child who is eager to do chores around the house. However, cooking is a fun activity that can be made simple with the right mindset and tools. Knowing how to lure your children into the kitchen will not only give them something they’ll enjoy doing; it will also give you the opportunity to bond with them. So, how can you do it? 

To start off, make it a point to give the kids the easier tasks that don’t require the use of any appliances or tools that may be a threat to youngsters. Mashing up avocados or bananas, putting food for heating in the microwave, washing up used items and whisking are just some of the things kids can help out with in the kitchen whilst having fun. Giving your children these simpler activities to do is not only a great way to keep them occupied – it also puts your mind at ease when you know that they won’t be needing to use any sharp tools and devices. Normally, this can be especially appropriate for children under the age of seven years old, depending on the child. More often than not, children will get bored with tasks that are too easy. Assign cooking tasks to your kids that make sense with their age and capabilities to ensure that they are challenged and at a good learning point.

Indeed, when it comes to getting your kids excited about helping out in the kitchen, an effective trick is to make them feel important and needed. Children love to feel involved in grownup stuff at home, especially when mum and dad trust them with more complicated tasks. Ask your kids to read recipes aloud for you, to measure ingredients for you and to test the taste of the food in the making process. This provides you with the opportunity to teach your kids how to cook and what to avoid, while also leaving them to feel helpful and accomplished. 

Another way to get your children eager about cooking with you is simple: make their favourite meals! Children are intuitive and intelligent, making them quite likely to be interested in learning how to make their favourite meals. Enabling your children to pick their favourite dishes that can become family regulars will please them in many ways. 

The most important thing to remember is to make cooking fun for your kids. Relax and enjoy the ride with them because the more enthusiastic you are, the more enthusiastic they will be. Children’s mood swings aren’t something you can always predict, but getting them to enjoy cooking with their parents the first few times will easily have them coming back for more the next time. Now that you’re equipped with the right skills it takes to get your children interested in cooking with you, we’ll delve into some fantastic meals your kids will sprint to the table to eat. 

Maltese Bread Pizza 

If you’d like to give your children the satisfaction of eating a mouth-watering pizza but without the excessive oiliness and fat of a take-out one, this recipe is just for you. And it takes no time to make!

Cut up a slice or two of some fresh Maltese bread, which will be your pizza base. Add some jarred marinara sauce and some grated mozzarella for that classic pizza taste kids adore. To take your Maltese bread pizza to the next level, season with some dry oregano – as well as some salt and pepper to taste of course. Should you be running out of any of the ingredients mentioned above, you can definitely get away with using some common tomato paste or any regular cheese you probably already have in your fridge. 

The best thing about making Maltese bread pizza with your kids is to give them the option to add whatever they’d like on top! Prepare some small bowls with different vegetables, herbs and meat to let the kids have fun with the cooking and the personalisation of the dish. Once you’re done, drizzle some oil and pop in the oven for a few minutes. This quickly made home-cooked pizza is perfect for a mid-week meal that’s sure to spice up your family food routine. 

Fruit Salad with a Twist

For the younger children, an effective way of getting them to eat just anything you’d like them to is to cut out the food in creative shapes. Tempt your kids with a healthy fruit salad after a day of outdoor activities by shaping the fruit in stars, hearts, triangles and more. This isn’t only nutritious and beneficial; it also keeps the kids intrigued.

Preparing a fruit salad takes no longer than around five minutes. Let your kids cut out fruit like watermelon, mangos, pineapple and more in any shape they’d like. (This might even be the trick to getting them to build a stronger liking for fruit).

Mini Taco Cups

It’s not unknown that youngsters love a tasty taco. With the unavoidable mess that comes with eating this meal, it can be quite discouraging for parents to prepare this food seeing that some dropping and squishing will always be in store. Rid yourself of the hassle that comes after eating tacos with your kids by giving this recipe a try. 

You’ll want to start preparing your mini taco cups by taking out a cupcake tin and rubbing some oil on the wells you plan to use. Next, you’ll want to cut out some wraps, tortillas or wonton wrappers and press them into the wells. 

Once you’ve got you base sorted, it’s time to prepare your stuffing. This is where you can get creative and personalise your taco cups with any of your kids’ favourites. The classic taco filling includes some lean ground beef with charro beans and any mixed vegetables such as finely diced onions, lettuce, tomatoes and more. Add some cheddar cheese, cilantro and any sauce of your liking to take your mini tacos to the next level. Pop your tacos in the oven and you’re on your way to creating the ultimate snack for games or movie night. 

Cauliflower Mac and Cheese

Ideal for a warm winter school night and a healthy alternative for the beloved comfort food both children and adults love. Steer clear of the classic mac and cheese pasta base by including some vitamin and fibre packed cauliflower instead. This low in calorie meal can be made to taste very close to the original dish – with just the right seasoning and an added pinch of patience. 

Start off by cutting your cauliflower in chunks or shred them to smaller bits to your liking. Heat them up with some cut-out onions as well as a drizzle of oil in a saucepan. Once you’ve got your nutritious pasta alternative prepared, you’ll want to get started on the sauce. After all, is it really mac and cheese if it’s not smooth and creamy?

You’ll want to begin cooking your sauce with a creamy white sauce base. Add in a knob of butter and stir with some flour and milk for a thick result. To perfect your sauce base, make it a point to use real cheese. It is said that substituting both the pasta and the dairy products will leave you with a dish that’s not that close to the original, taste-wise. So opt for some White Cheddar, Parmigiano Reggiano, Monterey Jack or more for the richest flavour in your dish. To achieve the smoothest cream you can, go ahead and grate your cheese in the sauce instead of cutting in thin pieces. 

Once you’ve got your sauce and pasta base ready, stir together in a pan and season generously with garlic powder, onion powder, nutmeg, oregano as well as with salt and pepper. Don’t be intimidated by these pantry items! They’ll only make your food taste even more delicious for yourself and your family. 

Doughnut Skewers

Because food tastes that much better when you can eat them off a stick. Impress your children with doughnut and fruit skewers that serve as a sweet treat for breakfast or dessert. For this fun and simple-to-make recipe you’ll need mini doughnut holes, any fruit of your children’s liking and some sweet sauce choices for dipping. 

Warm your doughnut holes in the oven and once ready, glaze with sugar or honey for that extra flavour. Once you’ve got them sorted, cut up your favourite fruit in bite sizes and stick them all on a skewer stick. Hint: strawberries, bananas, blueberries and pineapple are some of the best fruits that make a fantastic combination when dipped in sweet sauces. 

Prepare your dipping sauces in small individual bowls to let your kids have fun with eating the skewers. Melted chocolate, caramel and strawberry sauce are just some of the tastiest options. In addition, crush some nuts or coconut shavings in separate bowls for that extra special element all the family will appreciate. 

Rainbow Jars

As we’ve clearly highlighted in this article, getting your children to be keen on eating fruit and vegetables can be a definite success with the right preparation and presentation. Make your children start asking for more green goods with this rainbow jar salad recipe that’s ideal for a classic summer’s day. 

Get yourself a small glass jar that’s ideal as a showcase of your layered ingredients. You’ll want to create three or four layers of different coloured vegetables on top of each other. You can start off by creating a base of leafy green vegetables such as baby spinach, shredded cabbage or fresh arugula. Go ahead and top your green layer with some bright yellow and orange goods. Corn, carrots, yellow and orange bell peppers and pumpkin will make up for a great combination. Keep in mind that it’s best to include as many vegetables as you can per layer, even if the colours don’t look precisely the same. 

You’ll want to add on more layers of vegetables as you go along, based on what you have in store. A great way of bringing your jar to life is by adding in some homemade salad dressing that can make for a fantastic sauce. Don’t worry, we’ve got your sorted for that too!

For an appetising sauce to impress loved ones and house guests, feast their eyes with some basil aioli. Finely chop a good handful of fresh basil as well as two or three cloves of garlic. Smash these all together and add some mayonnaise of your choice. Sprinkle some salt and pepper to taste and squeeze half a lemon to bring out all the flavours present. 

Concluding Remarks

All in all, inspiring your children to join you in the kitchen will enrich your relationship in various ways. Bonding with your children doesn’t always mean doing the most bombastic activities in the world. Sometimes all it takes is going back to basics and doing the simpler things in life together. What’s more, it’s a remarkable opportunity to pass on your knowledge and skills to your children. Cooking is vast and can enrich a child’s character supremely. 

If you’re interested in giving these kid-friendly recipes a try, the next step is to equip yourself with some of the best kitchen appliances for you and your family. Have a look at our tried and trusted kitchen appliances that customers keep wanting more of. We at V. Demajo take pride in providing a vast range of high-quality products for anyone at home. 

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