By getting your kids to help with meal preparation, you can teach them valuable skills and give them a sense of responsibility at home. Furthermore, with help from your little ones, you can save time and get meals on the table faster.
It can sometimes be challenging to get kids interested in helping out with meal prep, though. But by utilising some of the following brilliant ideas, you can engage your children much more easily.
Get Hands-on With Kid-Friendly Tasks
First off, make sure you choose age-appropriate tasks in the kitchen for your kids. By considering what tasks your children can do and which ones they would enjoy doing the most, you can engage them more.
Small hands can do things like wash fruits and veggies, measure out ingredients, or knead dough.
By doing these small tasks, they will feel like they are making significant contributions to the meal.
Make It a Game
Children naturally love to play. So, why not turn meal preparation into a fun game? You could set timer challenges for washing vegetables or stirring ingredients, for example. Competitions will add fun to the tasks and keep your kids interested.
Involve Your Kids in the Menu Planning
It is a great idea to involve your kids in the menu planning process.
By letting them choose what they want for lunch or dinner once in a while, within healthy limits, of course, your children will be more enthusiastic about preparing meals and cooking.
Create Scrumptious Food Art
Creativity can motivate kids to help in meal prepping.
You could use their fascination for colours and shapes to your advantage, for instance.
Encourage your children to create edible art using nutritious fruits and vegetables. Show them how pepper slices can be train wheels, peas can play the role of tiny footballs, and a variety of foods can be used to make smiley faces.
Cook Themed Meals
Cooking meals based on themes is another brilliant way to make meal prep fun and engaging for your kids.
For instance, you could decide to cook meals that only contain red foods, such as tomatoes and bell peppers.
Establish a Routine
Consistency is key when it comes to instilling habits in children. So, make meal prepping part of your kids’ daily or weekly routine.
Over time, they will see prepping meals as a normal part of their activities and enjoy participating.
Appreciate Their Efforts
Never miss an opportunity to laud your child’s culinary efforts, no matter how small.
Praise them liberally each time they measure an ingredient correctly or chop a vegetable without hurting themselves.
Doing this will boost their confidence and make them eager to contribute more.
Make Use of Meal Delivery Services
Using meal delivery services, such as hellofresh.com, can be an excellent method for getting your kids involved in meal prep.
With a meal prep kit, you get all the ingredients needed for every recipe delivered right to your doorstep.
You can let your children help pick out meals from the different options available.
Once the box arrives, get them involved in unpacking it. You will find pre-portioned ingredients and step-by-step recipes inside, eliminating the need for any measuring or weighing and making the process fun and exciting for your kids.
Working together to create something delicious can be both rewarding and a great bonding experience.
Start a Kitchen Garden
It is a great idea to give your children a practical understanding of where their food comes from. So, try starting a small kitchen garden to grow herbs, fruits and veggies, or use window box plants if you do not have an outdoor area.
Kids will take immense pride in seeing the seeds they plant develop into vegetables that can be used in meals.
Host Mini Cook-Offs
A friendly family cook-off once in a while could be super exciting!
Assign a common ingredient to be prepared or a dish to be cooked and see who does it best. This will not only boost your children’s confidence. It will also make the kitchen feel like an adventurous and fun place.
Make Cleaning up Fun Too
In addition to focusing on meal prep, involve your children in the cleaning-up process too.
Assign small tasks like collecting dishes, wiping down tables, or loading the dishwasher properly. Convert these cleaning activities into fun games or challenges, so that they do not seem like boring chores.
By making cleaning up and preparing meals fun, you can enjoy many precious moments with your little sous chefs.