Cooking with kids: October’s Family Foodies challenge

cooking with kids Collage

We’re already into October and I’m pleased to say it’s my turn to host the Family Foodies challenge. This month our theme is Cooking with Kids and we’re looking for your recipes and ideas to encourage little ones to get active in the kitchen.

Children are never too young to help out with the cooking – although I use the term ‘help out’ quite loosely here! Since my girls were little babies, I’ve been getting them to ‘help’ me prepare meals; from playing with pasta shapes or rolling dough sat in their high chairs to banging pots and pans on the kitchen floor as I did pretty much the same thing on the stove top. Even before they could walk, simply watching and playing alongside me has meant they were learning about where food comes from and how it is made.

PizzaCollageAs my daughters have got older, so they’ve grown more and more independent in the kitchen. When they were toddlers, their role was to put the toppings on the pizza. Next they’d be allowed to chop the ham and grate the cheese. And now, aged nine and six, they pretty much make the pizzas from scratch, from preparing the dough to popping their finished creations in the oven.

And as often as possible I encourage the girls to plan and cook their own meal for all the family. We start by leafing through children’s cookbooks to choose a main course and a pudding, before writing a shopping list and then helping me buy the ingredients. Spaghetti Bolognese and chocolate cake tend to be popular choices. I can just about let our oldest Jess get on with it alone now, although I tend to hang around in the kitchen in case she needs a hand, while I act as Mia’s ‘kitchen slave’ so that she’s in charge and I only do what she instructs me to do – within reason!


I can’t wait to hear how you involve your children or grandchildren or nieces and nephews in the kitchen. What are your favourite recipes to make with children? And do you have any tips for making sure the whole thing doesn’t turn into complete and utter mayhem? Post your recipes in the usual way and link up to this challenge by the end of the month or feel free to dig out posts from your blog archives and link those up too.

gingerbread houseWin a gingerbread house cutter set!

Our prize this month is this brilliant Lakeland cutter set to make your very own gingerbread house. With Christmas just around the corner, this could come in very handy.

The set includes a gingerbread recipe and 12 cutters to stamp out walls, roof, tree, a snowman and his gingerbread friends. You then simply mix some icing sugar to ‘cement’ the house together, before decorating with all your favourite sweeties and a dusting of icing sugar snow.

Family Foodie entry guidelines

  • You may submit any recipe on your blog that fits this month’s theme, new or from the archive, and there is a limit of three entries per blogger. You’re also welcome to submit the post to other challenges too. If the recipe is not your own, please give the appropriate credit.
  • Send your recipe URL to me at vanesther-at-reescommunications-dot-co-dot-uk, including your own email address and the title of your recipe or post. The closing date this month is Friday 31 October 2014.
  • Display the Family Foodies badge (above) on your recipe post, with a link back to both Eat Your Veg and Bangers & Mash, as well as details of this month’s challenge.
  • If you’re on Twitter, then please tweet your post to myself @BangerMashChat and Lou @Eat_Your_Veg and include the hashtag #FamilyFoodies. We’ll retweet all that we see.
  • You may enter from anywhere in the blogosphere, but prizes can only be posted to UK addresses.
  • At the end of the month a guest judge will choose a winning recipe. The winner will be announced in a monthly round-up of all the entries. Winners will get to display a Family Foodie Winner annotated badge on their blog if they wish and their recipe will go through to the Family Foodies Hall of Fame on each of our sites.
  • All entries will be added to the Family Foodies Pinterest Group Board.

Any questions, do drop me an email at the address above.

Thanks so much to everyone that entered the August/September challenge hosted by Louisa at Eat Your Veg, where the theme was The Under Twos. Louisa will be announcing the winner of the M&S Tiny Taste Buds goodies very soon.

For the low down on other foodie challenges, competitions and giveaways, head over to The Food Blog Diary.

October’s entries

  1. Chocolate Hummus from Recipes From A Pantry
  2. Holy Eggs! from The Hedge Combers
  3. Indian Rice pudding with Fluffy Indian Bread from Home Cook Food
  4. Chilli Cheese Sandwich with Chinese Tomato Soup from Home Cook Food
  5. One Minute Microwave Masala Omelette from Home Cook Food
  6. First Day at School Chocolate Cake from Tinned Tomatoes
  7. Oaty Ginger Chocolate Biscuits from Chocolate Log Blog
  8. Chocolate Popcorn Triangles from Farmersgirl Kitchen
  9. Green Goo Iced Buns for Halloween from Bangers & Mash
  10. Halloween Cake Pop Spiders from Gluten Free Alchemist
  11. Halloween Ghost Cake Pops from Bangers & Mash
  12. Nobbly-bobbly Spiced Chocolate Biscoff Fruit & Nut Crispy Cake Bites from Family-Friends-Food
  13. Bread Tarts from Eat Your Veg
  14. Pasta with Meatballs from Bangers & Mash

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