With the holidays coming up, baking season is upon us. We usually have so many events we need to bake for, so why not get the kids involved and make it a way to spend some quality time together? I know, baking with toddlers or kids can be messy and stressful but with a few simple tips, you can make baking with kids a fun experience that is great for bonding. Baking is one of the favorite things me and 3 year old daughter do together. We recently made this pumpkin chocolate chip bread together.
Tips for Baking with Young Kids
1. Have all the ingredients already out and measured.
I have found that things go a lot more smoothly and less messy if I have things already pre-measured for easy dumping.
2. Let them help with age appropriate tasks
Your child will be able to help do different things based on their age, if you want things to go smoothly. Young toddlers can do the pouring of dry ingredients and stirring without problems. Older toddlers or preschoolers can move on to things like pouring wet ingredients and cracking eggs.
3. Plan your baking session at the best time for your child
Do not plan on baking when your child is tired or hungry. If they are tired, they will not listen and will be grumpy. If they are hungry, they won’t listen because they will be too busy trying to eat the butter (my child can’t be the only one). Do everyone a favor and plan on baking when everyone is going to be in a good mood.
4. Give positive feedback and encouragement
It is easy to expect too much and constantly be telling them to “not do that” or “don’t touch this”, but I found when you try to be more positive and encouraging, they are more apt to listen to directions. I really praise my daughter when she is patient and listens to me and follow directions. Baking is a GREAT way to learn patience and delayed gratification for kids but it can be hard for them. So make sure you give plenty of praising and practice patience because it is a learning process.
5. Go with the flow and adjust expectations
I think kids can help with most cookies, cupcakes, and breads. If you are needing something perfect, then obviously that would not be the best time to have your toddler bake with you. But if not, try not to expect perfection. Try to relax and go with the flow and realize messes are going to happen and that is okay! They will get less messy the more baking you do together, it is all part of learning process. Just try to enjoy the experience and of course make you get to taste your creation!
Do you enjoy baking with your child?