Baking with a toddler – messy but brilliant! – 19 months

For quite a while now I have been thinking about doing some baking or cooking with Monkey but honestly have been too scared by the thought of him being in the kitchen around sharp knives, hot ovens, you get the idea. I may have mentioned once or twice that Monkey is a Fussy Eater, and in my extensive reading about ways to help with that I have read that getting them involved in the kitchen is a good way to go. For example, Supernanny’s Little Chef Technique, but, at risk of repeating myself, knives, hot ovens… aaaagh.

WP_20140115_15_50_45_ProThen one day I was getting dinner ready and he was so unhappy at me being in the kitchen that I let him come in with me. He played on the floor to start with with some cake tins and spoons, then he got interested in the sweet potato I was peeling, so I sat him on the step stool so he could see the worktop and he helped me put the chopped sweet potato into the steamer and the peelings in the bin. Simple things of course but it gave me confidence to try baking or something.

One afternoon after a short nap, I decided to go for it, put his lovely pinny on, and we made a very simple Victoria sponge cake. Unfortunately I am a bit of a control freak and didn’t want him to ruin the cake – no matter how much I told myself it didn’t matter how it turned out, I just couldn’t do it! So he helped me grease the tins etc. then I set him up with a mini bowl and all the ingredients (apart from the raw eggs) and he absolutely loved it.

 

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I let him stir the ingredients for the cake too and he loved licking the spoon and bowl once the cake was in the oven.

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He had so much fun and then helped me with the washing up.

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He’s been dying to do it again and keeps pulling the step stool up to the worktop. It went so well the first time that I thought we should do it again, this time with some yummy biscuits. I’d made them once before and you can see the recipe here.

Again I’m afraid I got a bit freaked when he was grabbing the ingredients as I measured them in so again he got a little bowl of his own, which he loved so I don’t feel too guilty about it! He helped me stir it all up though and again he loved eating the mixture off the spoon.

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The greatest thing about this baking experience was how much he enjoyed it!

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He carried on playing way after the cookies were in the oven. I love these pics as he looks like a proper little chef!

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He was still playing at the worktop once the cookies were baked and I had washed everything up and even cleaned up around him!He had a brief play at the sink then wanted to get back to ‘his’ square of worktop where he was then happy playing with bowls and spoons… and then had a hilarious moment where he realised he could see his reflection in the food processor. So cute as he was pulling lots of funny faces! haha

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It was so much fun and I think the first time ever that we have spent an hour and half on an activity! So I have now overcome my fear of having him in the kitchen (not completely of course, a healthy dose of fear for his safety is permanent I think) and am looking forward to making lots more things with him in the future. Whether it helps his fussy eating, only time will tell.

Oh and the baking resulted in this yummy cake

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And these yummy biscuits

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Do you like baking with your toddler?  What do you like to bake with them?

Ethans Escapades

 

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28 thoughts on “Baking with a toddler – messy but brilliant! – 19 months

  1. I love baking with the kids, when they were younger I used to weigh every thing into separate bowls before we started so they could do the tipping without worrying about amounts. Now that they’re older I get my son t help me with the numbers on the scales. I’m a control freak with decoration though! They almost never get to do the frosting on the cupcakes :)

    • Oh I like that idea… though I am pretty sure at the moment he will just grab everything out of those bowls and I’m not sure how much would get in the mixture…. Got to be worth a try though so thanks for the tip! Ha ha I can absolutely relate to that! :)

    • Aww bless him, I can imagine that, my Monkey doesn’t even like me going in the kitchen without him any more, he sees it as somewhere else to play now! WHich can make dinner times a bit more difficult and messy! :)

    • Ha ha you’re not a bad mummy! We all have our little foibles, I can cope with a bit of mess in the kitchen but get really cross about other things!! Thank you, I’m afraid I didn’t let him do any of the decorating :S naughty mummy. He very much enjoyed eating the cake though :)

  2. Looks like you both had a fab time! My girls love helping out in the kitchen, and pretending to cook in their toy kitchen. They fight over who gets to sit on the island and help mummy :) I really enjoy watching their knowledge of food grow – as well as their passion for eating. It’s good to start them young! #letkidsbekids

    • It was so much fun, thank you, sounds like you have a lot of fun with your girls too! It’s lovely isn’t it and you’re so right, great to get them excited about food and cooking from a young age :) xx

  3. I love those pictures, he looks like he’s having so much fun. I love cooking with my kids, though I do find it stressful. For our screen free day, we all made roast dinner together, it was lovely!
    Thanks for linking #LetKidsBeKids

    • Thank you! It was so much fun but yes there is definitely an element of stress when you are trying to achieve an edible meal at the end of it ha ha! Aww that sounds lovely and will look forward to doing that kind of thing when he’s a little older :) xx

  4. I bake with my 4yo all the time, he loves it, and is actually a help! The 7yo isn’t terribly interested anymore :) I have let the wee girl (22mo) join in and do a bit of stirring etc, but I tend to measure our first too!

  5. Great photographs! I love cooking with my son and it involves so many areas too, maths with all that measuring and weighing, reading with the recipe, sensory with the tasting and feeling, tool using, food awareness, a bit of science too now I think about it. Makes up for all that mess doesn’t it. Plus I’ve found the more my son is around hot and Sharpe items the greater his respect for their danger is. Hoping you have many more adventures in the kitchen to come :)

    • Thank you! It’s great isn’t it? You’re absolutely right, so many ways of learning. That’s good too if he respects them more, hmm that makes me feel more positive about my kitchen fears! Oh I am sure we will have lots more kitchen adventures, seems to be a favourite place for him at the moment! :)

  6. Pingback: Let kids be kids linky 4/2/14 | Let Kids Be Kids

  7. Try watching Cbeebies “I can cook” for ideas of safe ways to cook with them – things like using scissors to snip things up in cups rather than knives – I’ve picked up all sorts of tips from there!
    #SSAmazingAchievments

    • Ooh thanks for the tip I will definitely have a watch! I’ve seen it but not paid much attention to it I’ll admit – will do from now on though! :) xx

  8. I try to do a bit of baking with Ethan but I too am a control freak and have to measure everything out etc. I also have to stop myself from reacting to him doing something I think isn’t quite right so that he can get over his sensory issues. I’m so glad he is really enjoying his baking and you are having lots of fun together. Can’t wait to see what you bake next.

    Thanks for linking up with Small Steps Amazing Achievements :0)
    x

    • I’m glad I’m not the only control freak! :) Bless I bet that makes it trickier too. Thank you and thanks for hosting! xx

  9. Pingback: Monkey Ate Pasta!!!! (and how we made mealtimes happier) | Becoming a Stay at Home Mum

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