Today, Ellen from Cutting Tiny Bites is sharing her Kids Kitchen Set-up, so I thought I would take the opportunity to give you a sneak peek at our top 40 favourite kids kitchen tools, along with a free printable shopping list!
Of course, starting with a cute chef’s hat and a set of their own towels or wipe cloths is a good first purchase. The chef hat is just plain cute, while personalized or child-friendly wipe cloths encourage children to help keep their work areas clean. I had a friend hem a few pieces of cute flannel fabric for our kids’ kitchen cloths.
Next, figure out where you will set up your kid’s kitchen cupboard or shelf. I went with a shallow set of shelves off of the main kitchen that were too small to really be of use for anything else.
Shallow shelves are a great option, as you don’t want the kids to have to empty out a bunch of stuff to get to what they want. If shallow shelves are not an option, maybe pick shelves that can store “rarely used” items towards the back, like a turkey pan or entertaining pieces.
I don’t keep food in her cupboard, but in the snack cupboards I keep bins of individually portioned snacks, a bin of “her special purchases” in the baking cupboard, and the bottom shelf of the fridge is hers (I started off by giving her a mini fridge set-up to learn on).
Most of her items are kept in the cupboard, but some things are just logically kept in the kitchen where they would be used — for example, we store the toast tongs with the toaster, which I keep unplugged on a shelf. I like using the toast tongs myself now, and there is no reason she would need the toast tongs other than for the toaster, which she is not able to access without permission and supervision.
Everyday Snack Items:
- Apple cutter
- Sandwich slicer – we use this Sesame Street one for fun
- Cut’n roll slicer – use it to cut everything from homemade pizza to kid-made pancakes!
- Vegetable scrubber
- Egg slicer – can be used on eggs or strawberries, like for our Nutella Strawberry Snack
- Strawberry huller – check out our practical life lesson on the strawberry huller here
- Silicone baking cups (as seen in our fizzy dough cupcakes experiment) – these cut down on waste when baking, and are also great for serving portioned snacks or holding yogurt or applesauce
- Measuring spoons – I like that these are colour-coordinated for cooking with younger kids
- Measuring cups
- Cherry or olive pitter – check out our practical life lesson on pitting olives here
- Melon baller – we used this to make our grape jell-o with melon balls
- Zoku Ice Pops maker (or regular ice pop molds)
- Cutting Boards
- Crinkle cutter
- Spreading knives
- Toast Tongs
- Teapot and tea cups – we usually use sweet, yet breakable, tea cups, but we also have these awesome enamel metal cups for the toddlers
- Orange Peeler
Kids Kitchen Items to Help with Making Supper:
- Mortar & Pestle – check out our practical life lesson on using the mortar and pestle
- Ravioli cutter
- Cheese grater – check out our practical life lesson on grating soap, which easily translates to grating cheese, vegetables, etc.
- Tongs – for most kitchen tools that are to be used on the stove, I prefer to give Ella a kitchen tool with an adult-sized handle to keep her hand as far away from the heat source as possible. These tongs would be for portioning out food or serving a salad, more so than cooking
- Juicer – can be used to make orange juice or to juice lemons or limes for including in recipes
- Mini-wok – a special purchase, it’s easier for a child to mix the vegetables properly with such a small surface space
- Ceramic frying pan – I love cooking with this myself, it requires no oil and is a safe alternative to other nonstick surfaces. I allow Ella to cook on the stove, and removing the possibility that oil or butter will spit out at her, or the food will become stuck and she’ll have to use force to move the food around, makes me feel better about that freedom
- Rice Cooker – the best “starter kitchen appliance” for kids – they simply scoop the ingredients into it and flip a switch
Kids Kitchen Baking Gear:
- Icing pen – great for practicing writing in a delicious way! We’ve also used Scribblers icing pens and enjoyed them, if you can’t find an icing pen
- Food writers (food colouring markers)
- Wooden Spoon – you can even buy a special personalized one!
- Decorating bottles – as used in our fizzy cupcakes sensory activity for kids
- Icing shapes
- Cookie cutters
- Her own special mixing bowl – it’s actually one that looks identical to my grandmother’s mixing bowl. It’s one of my favourite family stories, how my grandmother spotted the bowl in a shop and came by every week to pay a quarter towards the cost until it was hers.
- Mini-springfoam pans
- Donut cutter
- Ice cream Maker – super quick and easy, faster than our no-churn ice cream, but only really makes enough for one portion
- Slipmat – helps prevent waste from parchment paper and allows us to avoid the nasty “non-stick sprays”
- Baking tray
While Ella has an oven mitt, I’m not comfortable with her using the oven yet mostly due to her size. With the stove top, she can stand securely on a chair or kitchen helper, using the back burner with a long-handled spatula or spoon, so I feel more comfortable that she is further away from the heat source. With an older child, however, a properly fitting oven glove is an important tool, as too much extra fabric can make things a bit clumsy.
What are your essential kids kitchen materials for your kids’ kitchen cupboard?
Make sure to grab your free printable checklist for our Top 40 Kids Kitchen Tools.
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