Baking with Kids: A Fun Family Activity

I walked in the house and the delicious scents from the kitchen wafted down the hallway towards me. The week before Thanksgiving, my mom went into baking mode while I was at school. Every day, there was a different scent.

Monday was chocolate chips from the cookies.

Tuesday was baking spices from the sweet potato pies.

Wednesday was vanilla and coconut from the cakes.

I would drop my bag and race to the kitchen, ready to mix and taste test all the goodies.

I knew when I became a mom, I wanted to bake with my children too. From the time my kids were big enough to hold a spoon and stand on a chair, they got into the baking action with me. They would pour in ingredients and mix things together. Their favorite part was probably taste testing.

As they’ve gotten older, they’ve been able to do more cooking tasks with me and they love it. They understand they have to take turns with one another, and they’ve gotten better at that as they’ve gotten older. And they continue to be willing taste testers.

Recently it was my sister-in-law’s birthday and my daughter got the idea to make her aunt cookies. We looked through one of my cookbooks to find the perfect recipe and found one for meringue chocolate chip cookies. She really wanted to try it, so I checked our pantry to see what we needed. We had everything but mini chocolate chips.

We took a quick trip to the store to get our missing ingredient. The only mini chocolate chips available at our store were vegan and nut free. I bought them, curious to see how they’d taste.

We got back home and started working on our cookies. They were mesmerized when I separated the yolk and wanted to try it themselves. I gave them an egg yolk I had already separated from the egg white and told them to practice moving the egg yolk back and forth between the shells without breaking it.

Kids separating egss baking with kids from Encourage Play

They helped pour in the first few ingredients and I began to beat the eggs. Every once in a while I’d stop to check the consistency of my egg whites, and to show the kids how the eggs changed. It was neat to watch the transformation and see the reactions on their faces of surprise and delight.

Once the egg whites were the right consistency, we had to fold in the chocolate chips, and, of course, we had to taste the chocolate chips at that time as well. They were delicious!

I scooped the batter onto the cookie sheets (we ended up with 27 cookies, even though the recipes says it makes 36 - this always happens to me!). Then we had to wait for the cookies to bake and cool. Waiting can be so hard! To pass the time, my son and I played soccer indoors while my daughter worked on setting up an awesome treasure hunt for me.

After what seemed like an eternity (but was approximately 10 minutes), the cookies were finally cool enough. Of course we had to taste them. Thumbs up and quiet mouths - they must be yummy. Vegan nut free chocolate chips have been approved!

We packed them up and took them over to my sister in law’s birthday dinner. After the trip over, the cookies were a bit crumbly but still super tasty. What a fun way to stay busy during a weekend afternoon, plus we got a chance to make something delicious to share with our family.


Looking for some great recipes to make with your children? 17 bloggers from around the world (including me) collaborated to make this awesome e-book full of delicious, family-tested recipes.  The result is YUM!

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