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22 Easy Recipes for Kids to Make: Learn, Cook, and Have Fun!

Convenience often reigns supreme, so teaching kids to cook might seem like a lost art. However, the benefits are practically countless: it fosters a sense of accomplishment, teaches essential life skills, offers opportunities for them to learn math and basic nutrition, ensures that everyone gets to enjoy delicious meals together – and it’s fun! Here are 22 recipes that are not only easy for kids to make on their own, but also promote independence and culinary creativity. Of course, have an adult determine which recipes are age appropriate for the young’uns in question.

1. Nachos

Nachos on plate.
Image credit pilipphoto via Shutterstock.

Nachos are the perfect introductory dish for young chefs. All they need is a microwave-safe container, some corn chips, shredded cheese, and toppings of their choice. After loading up the chips with cheese, a quick zap in the microwave results in a gooey, satisfying snack. They can customize their nachos with jarred salsa, sour cream, or guacamole for added flavor. Here is a recipe idea.

2. Birthday Cake Bliss Balls

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Photo credit: Dédé Wilson from FODMAP Everyday®.

Bliss balls, also known as energy bites, are a delightful no-bake treat that kids can easily assemble. By following a simple recipe and rolling the mixture into bite-sized balls, they get to exercise their reading and measuring skills while having fun in the kitchen. Adding colorful rainbow sprinkles adds a touch of joy to these nutritious snacks. Get the recipe.

3. Tortilla Pizza

Tortilla pizza.
Image credit kdshutterman via Shutterstock.

For a quick and customizable meal, kids can try their hand at making tortilla pizza. With just a few basic ingredients like tortillas, pizza sauce, cheese (and pepperoni, if desired) they can create their personalized pizzas. This recipe allows them to practice spreading sauce, sprinkling cheese, and experimenting with different toppings like mushrooms or olives. If your family likes polenta, you can also use prepared polenta rolls to make mini pizzas.

4. Scrambled Eggs

scrambled eggs.
Image credit Marie C Fields via Shutterstock.

Scrambled eggs are a classic breakfast option that requires minimal ingredients and effort. Kids can crack eggs, whisk them, and cook them in a skillet over low heat until fluffy. They can also add cheese, veggies, or meats to customize their scramble. This dish not only provides a protein-packed meal but also teaches valuable cooking techniques. Eggs are high protein and great snack food. Teach kids to make Hard Boiled Eggs, too.

5. Crunchy Breakfast Tacos

Breakfast tacos.
Image credit Leigh Anne Meeks via Shutterstock.

Now that the kids have mastered scrambled eggs, buy some crisp taco shells and all they have to do is load them up with the eggs, add some optional chopped veggies, dollop with salsa and shredded cheese. 

6. Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Grilled cheese sandwich.
Image credit George Dolgikh via Shutterstock.

A grilled cheese sandwich is a comforting lunch option that children can easily master. By buttering bread, layering cheese slices, and grilling them in a skillet, they can achieve gooey perfection. Encourage experimentation by trying different bread types and fillings like tomatoes or bacon for added flavor and texture. Older kids can try making tomato soup, cutting grilled cheese into squares, and using them as grilled cheese croutons – in the soup!

7. Spaghetti & Meatballs

Spaghetti and meatballs.
Image credit Joshua Resnick via Shutterstock.

Spaghetti and meatballs is a beloved dinner choice that kids can prepare with minimal supervision. By boiling pasta, heating jarred sauce, and warming frozen meatballs, they can assemble a satisfying meal. For an extra challenge, they can try making homemade meatballs or enhancing the sauce with fresh herbs and cheese. Here is a recipe, if they want to try from-scratch.

8. Yogurt Parfait

Yogurt parfait.
Image credit JeniFoto via Shutterstock.

Yogurt parfait is a versatile snack or dessert that allows for endless creativity. Kids can layer yogurt, fruit, and granola in a glass or bowl to create visually appealing treats. Encourage them to experiment with different flavors and toppings like nuts, seeds, or honey for added crunch and sweetness.  Overnight oats is another way to go.

9. Healthy Chocolate Peanut Butter Smoothie

HealthyChocolatePeanutButterSmoothie.
Photo credit: Emily Dingmannn.

There are so many reasons to love this healthy chocolate peanut butter smoothie. The texture is thick and creamy (thanks to a secret ingredient); the flavor rich and chocolate-y; the prep easy; and the ingredients nutritious. One sip and you’ll find yourself making this chocolate banana smoothie morning after morning. Get the recipe.

10. Taco In A Bag

Taco pie in a bag.
Graphic via Canva.

Taco in a bag is a fun and portable twist on traditional tacos that kids will love assembling. By cooking ground beef with taco seasoning and serving it in individual bags of tortilla chips, they can enjoy a mess-free meal. Encourage creativity by offering a variety of toppings like lettuce, cheese, and salsa. This is known as “Frito Pie In A Bag” if you use those chips. Get the recipe.

11. Caprese Skewers

Caprese skewers.
Image credit GreenArt via Shutterstock.

Mini mozzarella balls, cherry tomatoes and fresh basil threaded onto skewers are fancy, tasty and fun to make. Drizzle with homemade or bottled balsamic dressing.

12. Cream Cheese Veggie Pinwheels

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Photo credit: Emese Maczko.

These vegan cream cheese pinwheels are the perfect addition to any back to school lunch box or breakfast table. The cream cheese gives it a creamy, rich texture that perfectly complements the crunchy vegetables. Get the recipe.

13. Homemade Acai Bowl Recipe

AcaiBowl.
Photo credit: Emily Dingmannn.

If kids are old enough to use a blender, then can whip up Homemade Acai Bowls, which can be whipped up in 5 minutes! Get the recipe.

14. Snack Trays

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Photo credit: Tiffany McCauley.

Kids love to snack and nibble. Snack trays are infinitely variable! Get the guide.

15. Peanut Butter Dip

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Photo credit: Tiffany McCauley.

Peanut butter, Greek yogurt, honey, and flax seeds for an extra boost of nutrition combine for an easy, creamy dip for fruit – and even pretzels!  Get the recipe.

16. 3-Ingredient Banana Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies

banana-peanut-butter-oatmeal-cookies-3.
Photo credit: Emese Maczko.

These delicious 3-ingredient banana peanut butter oatmeal cookies are perfect for kids that are old enough to preheat and use the oven. They are a simple, healthy, and delicious alternative to traditional cookies, using only plant-based ingredients. Versatile too, so you can add your favorite mix-ins for the perfect quick snack or on-the-go breakfast! Get the recipe.

17. Easy Pink Limeade

pink-limeade.
Photo credit: Anna Chesley.

My kids have been making this on their own for several years. Cutting the lime is the one part that needs supervision when they’re little. Adults love this too; it is perfect on blistering hot days. Raspberries create the pink color! Get the recipe.

18. Microwave Lemon Blueberry Mug Cake

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Photo credit: Tiffany McCauley.

A microwave mug cake is a quick and indulgent dessert that kids can make with ease. This recipe uses stevia, but has options for other sweeteners. It combines egg, coconut milk, and almond meal along with lots of lemony flavor and fresh blueberries. Get the recipe.

19. Healthy Breakfast Banana Split with Berries

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Photo credit: xoxoBella.

Banana and fresh berries makes an easy no cook breakfast which is a nutritious alternative to a smoothie bowl. This bright and colorful dish is easy to assemble and no cooking is required! Get the recipe.

20. Easy Microwave Brownie in a Mug

Microwave-Brownie-in-a-Mug-recipe-square.
Photo credit: Tara Gerner.

This easy microwave brownie in a mug is a quick, easy, and delicious dessert that cooks up in just 1 minute with pantry staples. Even small kids can make it in one bowl without a mixer. It’s a rich, fudgy, decadent, vegan dessert for one person! Get the recipe.

21. 2 Minute Microwave Pizza In A Mug

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Photo credit: Tara Gerner.

Learn how to make my quick and easy individual pizza in a mug in just 2 minutes in the microwave. We add pepperoni and cheese but you can add any toppings you’d like. Kids can make this recipe without help – it’s that simple! Get the recipe.

22. Frozen Chocolate Covered Bananas

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Photo credit: Tara Gerner.

These healthy and easy chocolate covered frozen banana pops are the best summer treat with only 4 ingredients! Frozen bananas are a fun dessert to have on warm days because they’re simple & refreshing – the perfect cool and creamy treat. Kid-friendly and adult-approved! Get the recipe.

The Takeaway

Happy kid cooking.
Image credit Rawpixel.com via Shutterstock.

By empowering kids to cook with these 22 super easy recipes, we not only foster their independence and creativity but also instill a lifelong love of cooking and good food. Encourage them to explore new flavors, techniques, and ingredients, and watch as their culinary confidence grows with each delicious dish they create. Happy cooking!

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Author

  • Dede Wilson

    Dédé Wilson is a journalist with over 17 cookbooks to her name and is the co-founder and managing partner of the digital media partnership Shift Works Partners LLC, currently publishing through two online media brands, FODMAP Everyday® and The Queen Zone.

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