Cooking with Kids

It's hard to believe that we are just a few weeks away from summer.  Presley and Irie get out of school on June 1st - crazy!  It will be nice to have them home, and a great change of pace to not have to wake them up early and get them to school.

Instead of doing summer camps we decided as a family to just enjoy the unscheduled, laid-back charm of summertime.  We are moving into our new house in just one month, and I'm excited to spend time with the girls playing in the new pool and getting to know the neighborhood. I plan on ordering some subscription boxes to keep them excited about learning, and we have a great new nanny to come help out a few times per week.

My summer dream is to get my girls passionate about cooking keto foods.  They are pretty good little eaters and will generally eat most of what I make, but the truth is, I'm a little too Type-A in the kitchen for them to really help out.  And I'm committed to changing that because I think that this is a good opportunity to teach them about food.

In Episode 1 of the Straight-Up Wellness podcast, Autumn Calabrese talked to me about how she approaches healthy eating with her 9-year old son Dominic.  Our conversation made me change the way that I talk to my kids about food.  

I had been talking about "good and bad" foods, instead of explaining food quality.  Foods really should not be labeled "good" or "bad", because at the end of the day, food is fuel for our bodies.  I explained this to Presley and Irie using the analogy of a car: a car needs gas to keep going.  Our bodies are the same way.  If we choose high-quality fuel, our car will run longer, and if we choose low-quality fuel, then it might burn out quickly and stop working.  This really helped my girls understand the concept of food quality, and it was a parenting win for the day!

We will continue to discuss food quality as I loosen up the reigns in the kitchen and give my girls some fun tasks to get involved in our family meals, and hopefully spark their interest in nutrition. Here are 13 things that my kids can help with in the kitchen:

  1. Creating menus
  2. Cracking eggs
  3. Measuring ingredients
  4. Mixing/stirring ingredients  
  5. Adding foods to a casserole dish
  6. Tossing salad greens
  7. Adding healthy fats (olive/avocado/macadamia nut/coconut oils)
  8. Helping to plate foods
  9. Setting the table
  10. Clearing the table 
  11. Washing dishes/adding plates to the dishwasher
  12. Pre-meal prayers
  13. Enjoying every bite! 

Are your kids in the kitchen?  What are some of the things you have them doing to be involved in meal prep?  I'd love to share ideas!

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Kate JaramilloComment