Cooking with Kids During the Holiday Season by Nina Colangelo | Veggiecation© a Culinary-Nutrition Education Program About Vegetables
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Thursday, 21 November 2013 13:51

Cooking with Kids During the Holiday Season by Nina Colangelo

The holiday season is a time to spend with the ones you love, sharing delicious foods and catching up with people you might only get to see once a year.  Personally, it’s one of my favorite times of the year!  Of course it’s stressful at times with shopping, cooking and traveling to visit family and friends when everyone else in the world seems to be doing the same thing.  But once you’re there, in the middle of a celebration and you feel the energy of people around you and you see the smiles – there is nothing better.

If you love the holidays as much as I do and are looking for special and new ways to make it better each year, I’ll recommend something that makes perfect sense coming from Veggiecation® team member.

Cook with kids! I know to some it might seem like a hassle to let your children help with preparing the holiday feast, but if the whole point of the holidays is to spend time with your family, what better way to do that than to cook with them!  Here are some reasons to get your kids in the kitchen this holiday season and some ways to make the experience fun and not stressful.

Reasons why cooking with kids this holiday season is a great idea:

  • Build tradition.  Every year in my family, it’s the same thing - same host, same food, same people.  It’s just our tradition.  Let your kids help with cooking this year and they’ll want to help again next year.
  • Build their palate. Because sweet potato mashed with melted marshmallows can’t be the only thing on their plate.  While the health benefits of sweet potatoes are huge, there are other food groups that are left out!  Cooking with kids is the best and one of the most effective ways of getting kids to try new foods.
  • Build pride.  Kids always want to help and by cooking with them, they can walk through the door to a holiday celebration with their head held high and point out the dish that they made.
  • Build excitement!  Whether the guests are coming to your home or you are preparing a dish to bring to a party – you’re cooking and extending the party by having fun in the kitchen together as a family.
  • Builds memories.  I have such fond memories of cooking with my mom when I was younger.  I know I’ll keep and cherish them with me forever.

Tips for cooking with kids this holiday season:

  • Remind kids how good they are doing.  This will make them want to stay in the kitchen with you.
  • Let little ones press all the buttons to the oven, mixer, microwave, and blender. They will love this!
  • Ask older kids to read the recipes to you – giving them a chance to practice and show-off their literacy skills.
  • Cutting vegetables for a young one might be hard and tedious if you’re cooking for a big group, but they can measure and pour for you!  Set up small bowls with the measured out ingredients to pour into pots and pans as you go along.
  • Play music for the moments when they don’t have anything to do.  Kids are used to be constantly stimulated. By playing music, you might prevent them from running off the iPad or TV.

If you like what you’re reading and have any questions about specific age groups, email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.!

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