This summer we focused on teaching the boys life skills like cooking. Here’s how we taught them the process of meal planning, ordering groceries and cooking.
This summer one of my big goals was to teach my boys some important life skills. I shared a whole blog post HERE with a list of ideas. One of the skill I’m working on with them is cooking. I want them to be confident in the kitchen, be able to use kitchen tools safely, know how to follow a recipe, how to make a menu, how to make a grocery list and buy groceries, how to set the table, and how to serve and present the meal nicely.
I’ve been ordering my groceries through Walmart with my Walmart+ membership for the last three years, and have taught my boys how to use the app and order groceries, so today I’m excited to partner with Walmart to share more about how I’ve been teaching them how to cook and what we’ve been cooking.
Teaching My Kids to Cook
My boys are currently 13, 10, and 7 years old, so they still need plenty of help and support in the kitchen. But letting them learn and make messes and make mistakes and try again helps them learn independence and confidence to do it on their own.
I want them to know that if you mess up part of dinner, or all of dinner, it’s not the end of the world! Just keep trying and don’t stress about small mistakes. You can always add more sauce or spices, or swap something out if you’re missing an ingredient, or throw something away if it gets ruined.
So the most important thing is for me to be patient with them!
How I’m helping them learn to like cooking
Let them choose the menu! Giving them freedom to choose whatever they want for dinner has helped them enjoy it so much more. I mean, if they chose to have ice cream for dinner that would get a veto, but as long as it’s reasonable, they get 100% control over the menu.
Teach them how to grocery shop. I think grocery shopping can be super tedious. Making a menu, making a grocery list, driving to the store, walking through the store and putting it all in your cart, taking it out to check out, putting it back in the cart, taking it out of the cart and into your car, driving home, unloading it all out of the car, then putting it all away. PHEW. That’s so much work just to get food! This is why I use my Walmart+ membership to order our groceries. I just order through the app and they’re delivered straight to my house! My boys actually like ordering the groceries too because it’s simple and quick, and they can find exactly what they want.
The Walmart+ membership has so many other perks (terms and conditions apply):
- 30 day free trial!
- Free delivery from the store (and when you order your groceries for pickup or delivery, prices are the same as in store!), $35 minimum, restrictions apply
- Free shipping on non-Marketplace items, with non minimum (excludes freight surcharges)
- Save $0.10 per gallon at Walmart gas stations
- A Paramount+ subscription included with your membership
- NEW! Walmart+ Travel – get up to 5% Walmart Cash on travel bookings, powered by Expedia
On Sunday, we make a menu for the week and the boys decide what they’re going to make for their assigned day that week, and then we order the groceries. Usually one boy will look at the recipes and call out ingredients needed, and another will type them into the Walmart and app and add to cart.
Step in when needed. I really want my boys to learn through this experience and become confident using kitchen tools or cooking things on their own, but sometimes they’ll feel frustrated when something is hard or outside their comfort or skill level, and I know it’s a good time to step in and help. I don’t want them to feel like I’m abandoning them in the kitchen! In the case of my 7 year old, he’s really good at mixing and measuring, and then I’ll do the cooking part while he sets the table. Or with my oldest, I can tell he’s getting frustrated about cooking, so I’ll take over for a while and let him have a break and he comes back when he’s ready. Again, I don’t want this to be a miserable experience, I just want them to have lots of experience cooking different things.
Make it fun! Turn on music, make food art, dance with them, talk with them, make a treat with your dinner..anything to make the experience memorable and enjoyable. Remember, they’re little kids and this should be a fun experience together, not a tedious one!
Recipes we’ve been cooking this summer that are appropriate for younger cooks:
- Spaghetti and Meatballs
- Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
- Breakfast Sandwiches
- Homemade Taquitos
- Homemade Chicken Tenders
- Corn Chowder
- Chicken Noodle Soup
- Chicken Pot Pie
- Ground Beef and cheese Sliders
- Chicken Roll Ups
- Meatball Subs
- Homemade pizza
My Weekly Menu Staples
Here is what I order almost weekly through Walmart+!
This has been such a great summer (despite moving and living in temporary housing!) and my boys have learned so much. They enjoy cooking with me, and have become really confident in the kitchen in lots of areas.
Basic cooking skills are so useful for the rest of their lives, so if you have young kids, don't be afraid to get cooking with them!
Don't forget you can sign-up for a Walmart+ Membership HERE (and take advantage of their 30 day free trial!)
this post was sponsored by Walmart
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