12 Easy Recipes Kids Can Cook

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12 Recipes that Kids Can Cook
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I sometimes am asked how I “get it all done” with kids, and the answer is that I don’t. Or at least I don’t every day, or with a patient attitude all the time, or while still managing to get a shower and brush my hair.

How the Kids Help Out

The other answer is that I don’t do it all to begin with. My kids, who are experts at creating laundry, dishes, and messes, are also becoming experts at helping clean them up. In fact, my older children have become a tremendous help and regularly contribute to daily household tasks.

Though they’ve had chores since they were much younger, I’ve always been reluctant to hand over any of the kitchen or cooking duties. This was partly because I really enjoy these tasks and often am creating recipes while cooking dinner, but also because I wasn’t sure they were ready to handle these jobs.

Turns out, I was wrong and not only are they capable of kitchen tasks (including using sharp knives) but there are actually benefits to letting them do so. As we get ready for the arrival of our new addition, I’ve been letting the kids handle more and more of the kitchen duties.

Not only do they love it, but I’ve been quite impressed at how capable they are of prepping and cooking simple recipes (and cleaning up after themselves). Although they’re probably capable of more complicated recipes, I’ve been starting the kids out with more simple one-pan recipes, and these are their current favorites to cook.

Recipes Kids Can Cook

My kids have absolutely loved getting to help out in the kitchen. They now plan and cook Saturday morning breakfast all on their own and love waking us up to breakfast (and no complaints from me either!).

Once a week, we login to my meal plans and create a meal plan for the week. They do this with me and select recipes that they are able to cook for some of the meals each week. For some of the recipes, I definitely still help and supervise, but they love the feeling of accomplishment when they can prepare a meal without me!

These are their picks for 12 favorite recipes they can cook alone…

1. Pakistani Kima

This one-pan stir fry is one of our family favorite recipes and the kids are able to prepare it on their own. In fact, this is what the kids are making for dinner tonight!

The older kids peel and slice the vegetables and brown the meat in the pan. Our younger children get to help sprinkle on pre-measured spices and stir. Even though this stir-fry has somewhat strong flavors (like curry) that may not be common spices to use with children, I’d encourage giving this one a try! Not only is it easy to cook, but every child I’ve ever served it to has loved the flavor!

Here’s the recipe: Pakistani Kima

2. Apple Cinnamon Coconut Flour Muffins

I love baking with coconut flour because it is higher in protein and fiber. It is a much different flour than regular wheat flour and requires the addition of more liquid and more of a binder, like eggs. This also makes it more filling and nourishing.

I have a simple apple cinnamon coconut flour muffin recipe that our family has been baking for years. It makes an excellent breakfast on its own or topped with butter, almond butter or jam. Though coconut flour takes a little bit of getting used to, this recipe is simple enough for children to make. The younger kids help measure ingredients and the older ones help mix and spoon into muffin cups to bake.

Here’s the recipe: Apple Cinnamon Coconut Flour Muffins

3. Egg Drop Soup

One of our favorite simple soups. Rather than spending $30+ to get enough for our family at a decent restaurant, we love making this at home. The broth adds beneficial amino acids and minerals while the eggs give a protein boost. Since we usually have homemade broth on hand, this recipe can be made in minutes on a busy night!

The older kids heat the broth and crack the eggs and the younger kids get to add spices and carefully stir.

Here’s the recipe: Egg Drop Soup

4. Beef and Cabbage Stir Fry

Another simple stir fry that is easy to customize, so I let the kids get creative on this one. The older kids slice the cabbage and brown the meat while the younger kids pick and add the spices and help saute. The best part? This is a simple meal that kids can make and that can be on the table in under half an hour.

Here’s the recipe: Beef and Cabbage Stir Fry

5. Chia Seed Pudding

This is a make-ahead recipe that takes a few hours in the fridge to reach its full potential, but it doesn’t require any cooking or chopping, so it is great for even young children. We often make this recipe at night to have it ready as a high-protein breakfast.

Here’s the recipe: Chia Seed Pudding

6. Cashew Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Sweet and savory cashew chicken wrapped in lettuce leaves makes a great (and quick) meal that kids can prepare. Our older kids chop the chicken and vegetables while the younger kids add the maple syrup, spices and cashews. All the kids can help spoon into lettuce leaves to serve.

Here’s the recipe: Cashew Chicken Lettuce Wraps

7. Stuffed Zucchini Boats

A kid-favorite because it is so fun to serve! These zucchini “boats” are zucchini halves stuffed with meat, vegetables and spices. A quick recipe with several preparation steps, so the older kids can slice and boil zucchini and chop onions while the younger ones brown meat and add spices. The boats go into the oven for a final bake and my kids usually make “sails” for the boats with paper and wooden skewers before serving.

Here’s the recipe: Stuffed Zucchini Boats

8. Almond Flour Pancakes

One of the kids favorite breakfast recipes to make, and one of mine because the process (and cleanup) is so simple. All of our kids can help measure and mix ingredients and the older ones cook the pancakes on the cast iron griddle. Breakfast in ten minutes and the kids can make it while I get ready for our day.

Here’s the recipe: Almond Flour Pancakes

9. Spinach Artichoke Chicken (Slow Cooker)

This recipe requires a little more patience for the kids since it is a slow-cooker recipe but they like to help add the ingredients at lunch time to have this meal ready for dinner. They chop the chicken and add the spinach, cheeses and artichokes at the right time.

Here’s the recipe: Spinach Artichoke Chicken

10. Bean Free 20-Minute Chili

A fast chili that can be made in under half an hour. The little kids help open cans and add spices while the older kids brown meat and saute vegetables. This recipe is especially good for busy nights because it comes together so quickly.

Here’s the recipe: 20 Minute Chili

11. Healthy Marshmallows

This would have been first on the list if the kids had written this post, as it is one of their favorite recipes to make. They love it not only because it is marshmallows, but also because they get to use some fun kitchen tools like the mixer, a candy thermometer and the vanilla extract (their favorite). The older kids handle the melting of the honey (and I supervise this because it has to get so hot) and then they pour into the mixer with the gelatin to mix for about 15-minutes. The finished mixture is transferred to a lined dish to firm up.

Here’s the recipe: Healthy Marshmallows

12. Berry Cobbler

A super-simple dessert that I don’t mind the kids making often because of the nourishing berries, protein-rich almond flour and healthy fats. This one is a regular on our menu and the little kids love it because they can make the entire recipe themselves.

Here’s the recipe: Berry Cobbler

Bottom Line

Kids are often much more capable (and willing) to help in the kitchen than we give them credit for! While there has definitely been a learning curve (sped up quite a bit after they took this course), I’m very grateful that I let my kids start helping more in the kitchen and I’d encourage you to give it a try too! If you’re feeling brave, here’s some additional easy recipes that your kids can help out with.

Do your kids help out in the kitchen? Ready to let them go for it even more?

Katie Wells Avatar

About Katie Wells

Katie Wells, CTNC, MCHC, Founder of Wellness Mama and Co-founder of Wellnesse, has a background in research, journalism, and nutrition. As a mom of six, she turned to research and took health into her own hands to find answers to her health problems. WellnessMama.com is the culmination of her thousands of hours of research and all posts are medically reviewed and verified by the Wellness Mama research team. Katie is also the author of the bestselling books The Wellness Mama Cookbook and The Wellness Mama 5-Step Lifestyle Detox.


7 responses to “12 Easy Recipes Kids Can Cook”

  1. Janice K Avatar
    Janice K

    I believe a few months back you had a link to some online safety cooking classes for children. I have been searching for it recently as my granddaughter has expressed interest in it and I can’t seem to find it. Could you please help. Thank you!

  2. Nadia Redpath Avatar
    Nadia Redpath

    Hi Katie,, just curious to know how old your children are. That would help to know. Thank you 🙂

  3. William McKeen Avatar
    William McKeen

    Have taken an interest on the effect of using blueblocker sunglasses for the obvious benefits that it has to offer.. Why is orange the most popular color.lens. From what I have read, yellow lens are are known to produce more blue locking power. Is it because of cosmetic reasons or is there another explanation?

  4. Lauren Avatar

    Thanks for these suggestions!! My daughter(8) loves to bake and the apple cinnamon muffins will be next! I have your cookbook and my kids were surprised to like the Pakistani Kima so much… I actually doubled the spices and they still liked it!
    My daughter is learning to use the big knife now, as she is very comfortable with the paring knife. She loves to peel and chop whatever is going into the dinner. She only has a couple recipes that she makes completely independently, but I will use your suggestions to expand her repertoire. Thanks!

  5. Heather B Avatar
    Heather B

    Yes my 6, 5 and 4 yr olds add all vegetables and spices. My 6 yr old is now comfortable placing items in the stock or frying pot with supervision.
    I will start hand over hand cutting with my oldest this summer, she will be 7

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