Kid Cooks Are A Hot New Food Star!

Getting children involved in the cooking process for your family benefits everyone! Making meals at home is a healthier and cost-effective choice for families.

With the obesity and diabetes rates increasing at an alarming rate in the United States, many families are scrutinizing where they can make changes to avoid becoming a part of this statistic! Moving away from processed foods and cooking at home is a highly effective beginning step. When you make meals at home it allows you to manage the calories, fat, flavor, salt and sugar content of your food.

Making your meals at home will save you money in that the base of one meal, say roast chicken and brown rice with broccoli, can be the ingredients for other dinners throughout the week, as well as lunches. You can make a stir fry the next night and a wrap for lunch. You also save by not having to leave gratuity.

You may hesitate because your kids only want to eat mac n cheese and chicken fingers and you hate to waste food. One way to get your kids more interested in trying new foods, including vegetables, is to get them involved in the cooking process. It takes patience on your part, but you are teaching them a valuable skill that will serve them well as adults. By including their input in the planning and buying process, they get a better understanding for the cost of food and the effort you put in to making it! Have them watch shows like Chopped and Rachel and Guys Kids Cook-off on the Food Channel. Both shows are approachable and fun, and show cooking as a cool, even, competitive event.

If both you and your kids lack the confidence or skills to begin this process, try taking a cooking class together. There may be classes available at your community center, YMCA or at cooking stores such as Sur La Table. Go online for ideas.

Explain to your family at a meeting that by staying active and learning new cooking skills you will all have more energy and get to spend time together. If you ask for them to help you, they will be more engaged. If at first they refuse, don’t give up. Your whole family’s long-term health is important enough to keep trying!

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