5 tips for stress free baking with children

Some people seem to genuinely love baking with children. Unfortunately, I’m not one of them. But with two small people who love to be in the kitchen, I’ve had to find ways of coping. So here are my five top tips for stress free baking with children.

Some people seem to genuinely love baking with children. Unfortunately, I'm not one of them. But with two small people who love to be in the kitchen, I've had to find ways of coping. So here are my five top tips for stress free baking with children.

1. Say yes

For me, it’s all about saying yes. They want to bake? Just doing it is much easier than arguing about it for the next month. Because they’ll never change their mind. They want to crack the eggs themselves? That’s fine. What can possibly go wrong? If they crack an egg into a pot rather than straight into the mixture, not much. When a bit of shell goes in, you can fish it out. If the whole egg goes on the floor, get another one.

2. Prepare for mess

Because there will be mess. Before, during and after baking. But that’s fine, you can clean it up. In fact, my two rather like to help with the cleaning up. I also always insist that they wear an apron while they’re cooking. this will get filthy so make sure it’s washable.

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3. Don’t bake

Sometimes, you can say yes to baking without actually baking. You could try these healthy fruit nests – they look and taste like chocolate, and yet they’re healthy. And what’s more, you can make them from scratch within a few minutes, even with a toddler involved. They ‘cook’ in the fridge instead of the oven, so there’s no waiting around for them to cool down before you eat them. It’s always worth using a quick recipe. Children don’t envisage waiting around for things to bake and cool. Actually I’m not too keen on waiting either.

4. Let them choose

Within reason, I find it’s always easier to let the children decide what to bake. If they are totally engaged in what you’re doing, their attention span will be longer. This means less stress for all concerned. If all they can think about is biscuits, they’re not going to concentrate properly on baking a cake.

A review of BKD mini bakers box

5. Cheat

If in doubt, cheat. Using a packet mix or a baking kit might seem like the easy way out to you, but for a child it’s still proper baking and it’s still great fun. They’re also a good way to get children interested in baking. There’s nothing more rewarding than baking something that tastes amazing. Allowing them to cheat with a packet mix when they’re young might inspire them to be the great chefs or bakers of the future.

A review of BKD mini bakers box

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7 Comments

  1. May 14, 2017 / 7:19 am

    Great tips. I enjoy baking with O, although do go a bit ‘control freak’. Now he’s older, I’m trying to let him do more and take a step back – which is hard as I just see mess! X
    Steph at Mental Parentals recently posted…O: 5 Years and 9 Months UpdateMy Profile

  2. May 14, 2017 / 1:25 pm

    It used to be so hard for me to let my kids make a mess, knowing I’d be the one to tidy up. But it’s worth it to see the fun they’re having. I also think it’s good to have them make savoury dishes like salads (not too much knife work of course) so they also have fun making heathier snacks.

  3. May 14, 2017 / 11:35 pm

    I wholeheartedly agree 🙂 I do like cooking with the kids, but veer towards recipes where precision doesn’t matter. Anyway, a bit of extra eggshell in your pancakes is probably great added calcium huh?
    Maz Hopwood recently posted…Smallhythe Place in picturesMy Profile

  4. May 15, 2017 / 1:47 pm

    I actually enjoy cooking the the children, but there are some jobs I say to them, Mummy is going to do this part, but you can do this. I think that definitely helps. I wish we could use kits sometimes, but most of them contain dairy.

  5. May 16, 2017 / 10:38 pm

    Yes to all of these. I love the idea of baking with my children although I don’t always enjoy the reality! We had a baking-based photoshoot last year for a charity which involved lots of writing in flour and ended up with Jessica throwing flour everywhere. Having a photographer there encouraging it meant I couldn’t have a meltdown over it (as I almost certainly would have done otherwise) but it also made me realise that even a huge mess like that wasn’t actually as bad to clear up as I would have expected it to be. I’m a little more relaxed on the mess front now and I think that helps x

    • monsterid May 18, 2017 / 6:32 am

      Haha I totally agree about the idea being more appealing than the reality!
      Nat.x

  6. May 20, 2017 / 9:05 am

    Ha ha! It’s definitely messy! And saying yes is the right thing to do. 🙂 x

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