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Cooking with kids

I am looking for book suggestions for recipes that are fun and easy to make with little kids. I've read a lot of cookbooks and have been unimpressed by many of them. I do not want anything that smacks of fast food fare. Also, I prefer something with a focus on regular food, rather than desserts.

Stirring things and measuring and adding ingredients is fascinating, so I do try to incorporate these. Other ideas of things to cook with small children, or how to work them into the kitchen, would be welcome.

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  1. Why do you need a special book for things to cook with kids? I've been cooking with my dad since I could walk, pretty much. We never did "kid" recipes--he taught me how to *really* cook. At 6, I was making my own scrambled eggs. By 10, I was poaching fruit and making cream sauces.

    If you're really worried the recipes will be too complicated, look for a cookbook for beginning cooks, and be prepared to explain the new vocabulary. With time and patience, you'll have some kids who can cook real food in a few years, and will be that much more prepared for real life.

    1 Reply
    1. re: AislingCatriona

      "Cause different kids learn in different ways. Some kids are naturally really interested in climbing up with mom or dad and watching learning; some kids like to read recipes and learn that way. I enjoyed both ways when I was a child. My 10 year old, though, has a really hard time reading and struggles with math, so good child focused cokbooks with lots of pictures are really helpful and motivating for her. Seeing an apple divided into fractions on the page makes sense to her in a way that reading about it doesn't (and she is really, really stubborn and so often doesn't like it if I try and teach-she wants to learn it herself).

      All of that said, I'm still trying to find the perfect kids' cookbook. We like the DK one quite a bit, though.

      http://familyslowfood.blogspot.com/

    2. check out Pretend Soup (molly katzen, i think). It has real recipes -- soups, muffins, etc, and they have a printed text recipe and an illustrated recipe so kids can follow along.

      It is really a fun book.

      1 Reply
      1. re: roxhills

        We also adore Salad People, which is also by Mollie Katzen.

      2. I totally agree about cooking real food. I'm not looking for "kid food." But some recipes are a little complicated. My kids are very young -- books with lots of pictures help.

        Pretend Soup is cute, I agree.

        1. Check out the Mom and Me Cookbook (Annabel Karmel?)- I'll admit, I haven't used it yet (my little one is a toddler and likes to help make things like pancakes) so I don't know how the recipes are, but I found the step by step color photos appealing- I thought it would be a good one to share even when we're not cooking because it can stimulate a lot of cooking discussion. It's not a long book- maybe a couple dozen recipes, if that, but it's a start.

          1 Reply
          1. re: sweet ginger

            I can't find it right now, I'll look again tomorrow. I had a book it had the word electric in the title, but it isn't in my bookcase.

            I'm not sure if it was by Amy Coleman or not. It was around the time she was on PBS and did many shows with kids.

            Actually just googled her, and lo and behold she returns Jan/08!

            It was about baking and making fun goods with dough.

            I gave copies to many people that had kids, and they all loved it. Maybe I gave away my copy too.

          2. Emeril has a couple cookbooks for kids. May be for kids that are a little older. He's not my favorite guy but these books look good. Thinking about them for a niece and nephew (with time with aunt K. to make the things of their choice.)