Cooking with Kids: 10 Kitchen Safety Tips
Cooking can be such a fun way to bond with your kids while teaching them a new skill. The little hands at work trying to create something yummy is just adorable. However you have to ensure that you are being safe as well. There are some things that might not have occurred to you but can be big safety lapses. Read on to find out how to have fun but be safe in the kitchen while you go on your culinary adventure with your kids.
- Make sure that you tell your child that he/she can only get to cook when an adult is present. He/she is never allowed to go into the kitchen and cook something unattended. Children are curious and confident so one class might lead them to trying it by themselves when you’re not around and that could be dangerous.
- Keep reminding them about the basic rules such as washing hands. Also, if you’re child has long hair then its best to also remind them to always have it tied(knotted preferably) to prevent any hair in the food as well as hair catching fire or getting caught in the whirring mechanism of something. No running or playing with any kitchen utensils/food is another good rule to enforce.
- You don’t want to be pre-occupied with gathering ingredients once you start cooking. That’s the time when you should keep your eyes on your child. So make sure you get all the ingredients together before you start making your dish.
- Explain to your child about fire safety. This would include not turning or touching the knobs of the oven or stove, wearing loose, un-tucked clothing, playing with match sticks and placing anything flammable near the stove(even if the stove is off).
- To make sure your enthusiastic little one does not try to check how the food is cooking in the pots or pans, turn all the handles away from reach, towards the other side.
- When cooking with kids 4 years of age and below it is best to stick to recipes that mainly involve cooking in the microwave or the refrigerator. For recipes like that see here. There are tons of ‘no bake’ or ‘no heat’ recipes that you can find to ease your little one into cooking.
- Speaking of the microwave, teach your child about microwave rules such as no metal, no thin plastic and no cloth. Show them the microwave friendly utensils.
- Teach your child how to wash raw fruits and veggies properly. Also when working with raw foods such as meat or eggs, tell them how it carries germs and so they need to remember to wash their hands and be careful (kids being kids will just put their fingers in raw eggs to recover shell pieces and make a mess. Watch out!).
- Tell your child the importance of cleaning up a spill immediately. So many accidents can happen because someone slips and falls on something on the kitchen floor. Prevent the chance of those accidents happening by imbibing it early to clean, clean, clean!
- Talk about what kitchen-jobs an adult can do and what jobs a child should do. If you have more than one child then it might be a good idea to have more than one adult around. Make it a fun bonding activity with your spouse, aunt or uncle or grandparents!