Christmas cooking with kids can be a great way to introduce your
children to the joys of the kitchen, as well as allowing you to
spend some quality time with them over the holiday period. The
Christmas season is all about getting family and friends together to
celebrate and often children feel left out as adults enjoy spending
time with friends who they might not have seen for a while. The
Holidays also tends to be about food, so combining this with your
child’s need for your attention will make for an enjoyable activity
Planned Kids Cooking Curriculum
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Beyond the practical use of having another pair of hands around the
kitchen, Christmas cooking with kids can teach them a lot of useful
Empathy - By making food that other people will enjoy, your
child has to put themselves into someone else’s shoes for a
while, which will help them in their relationships with their
Math - Christmas cooking usually involves a lot of baking,
which requires a lot of careful measuring and weighing. This
attention to detail, ratios and numbers will help your child’s
Maturity - For years, your child will expect food to magically
appear on the table when they are hungry, so by cooking with
them, you are showing them the time and effort that people put
into their dinner. You can also use it as a springboard to get
them to cook a meal for the family.
Make sure that you keep the focus on fun, as these kinds of skills
will be picked up subconsciously by your child’s brain. Turning it
into a lesson may turn them off cooking.
What to Cook?
Christmastime offers its own set of unique recipes and holiday
specific foods. If you’ve never done Christmas cooking with kids
before, you’ll be better off getting their attention by making
things with which they are familiar. Once they show an interest in
the kitchen, you can begin to increase the complexities of the
dishes you’re making.
Christmas seems to be fueled by sugar, and there are dozens of
holiday-themed baked goods that are easy to make with children:
The smell of cookies through the house will be truly
festive, and if you allow them to dry out, they can double as
decorations for the tree.
Cinnamon rolls. They
are a staple of the Christmas breakfast throughout the states,
and your child will love having something that they have made on
the table for everyone to share. If you make them on the morning
itself, it will help use up some of your child’s energy! One
year we even laid the cinnamon rolls out on a cookie sheet in
the shape of a tree and frosted with green frosting.
For those looking for more of a challenge with their Christmas
cooking for kids, savory dishes require a lot more time and effort
to put together, but the end result of a fully-prepared meal is
incredibly satisfying. To get your child into non-dessert dishes
Turkey pie, pasta, salad or any other way of encouraging them
to use up leftover meat.
Mashed potato in the shape of snowmen
For those looking for the ultimate Christmas cooking challenge, try
enlisting your child as your chef’s assistant as you prepare the
full Christmas dinner. Jobs like peeling vegetables and mixing
sauces will make them feel important, like they’ve contributed to
Above all, if you do try Christmas cooking with kids, make sure that
you accept whatever comes out of the oven as being a work of love,
rather than a work of art. By introducing your child to the kitchen,
you can help give them a life-long love of cooking, which will soon
disappear if you’re worrying too much about taste and presentation.