The fun of baking for kids
Baking can be super easy and a great activity for kids. It’s engaging, colourful and easy to keep them interested as there’s the promise of sweet treats at the end! Here, I’ll show you some fantastic, simple recipes for children of all abilities and ages. Kids can start ‘baking’ from any age making easy, no-bake recipes that will get them into the principles of baking and making. It’s a lovely activity for all the family to do together and can be wonderful for some real quality time.
It’s not all about the end product, but the fun of the process. Even if what comes out of the oven isn’t the most appetising, the best bit is covering it in sprinkles anyway. Get creative and see how many different cupcake decorations the kids can come up with. From unicorns to dinosaurs and everything in between, kids’ imaginations can go wild making baked creatures and works of art.
Learning while baking with kids
Baking with kids is a great way for them to learn without even realising they’re learning! First, they will start to understand how to weigh and measure ingredients. This can reinforce everything from basic counting and beyond. You can even make it more advanced by converting recipes between metric and imperial; how many grams are in an ounce?
Getting in the kitchen with the kids can even help with learning to tell the time as they monitor how long the bakes need to be in the oven for. What time is it when you put the cakes in the oven? What time do you need to take them out if they have 10 minutes to bake? Where are the hands on the clock at that time?
While the kids are baking with you, there’s no better time for them to learn where their food comes from. Do they know how flour is made? Where do eggs come from? What does “free range” mean on the egg box? You can even teach them about different types of diets and dietary requirements like allergies or vegan and vegetarianism. Healthy eating is also a great topic to tackle while you’re baking as a family. The sweet treats are lovely, but always in moderation (something I need reminding of too!).
Quick and easy kids’ recipes
Here I’ve pulled together some fun and simple recipes for easy baking with kids. Get started with some no-bake fun and work up to things that go in the oven. There are recipes suitable for all ages here (with adult supervision), so all of your little ones should be able to get involved.
Fruit Pizza – No Bake – Difficulty Level 1
Simple and fairly healthy (depending on how much Nutella you use, haha), fruit pizzas are great as a snack or dessert. They are also a brilliant way to get some of the kids’ 5 a day into their tummies.
You will need:
Selection of fruit
Nutella/ jam / your favourite spread
How to make fruit pizzas:
Grab a wrap, spoon on your favourite spread as a base and then go nuts with your fruit! You can make fruit faces, patterns, creatures, anything! Let your imagination run wild and then finish off with some sprinkles just for fun 🙂
Cookie Dough – No Bake – Difficulty Level 1
The temptation is real when baking cookies. It’s not just kids that long to lick the spoon or tuck into the cookie dough before it ever hits the oven! So here I’ve included an egg-free cookie dough recipe that’s delicious to eat raw. The kids (and the adults) can exercise patience another day…
You will need:
30g butter (room temperature)
25g soft brown sugar
2 drops vanilla extract
1 tbsp milk
20g chocolate chips
How to make cookie dough:
Mix your soft, room temperature butter with the brown sugar. Add a couple of drops of vanilla once it’s looking creamy and fluffy. Spoon in the flour and give it a good mix and if it’s a bit thick add the milk. Finally, fold through the choc chips and then grab a spoon and tuck in!
Marshmallow Pops – Microwave – Difficulty Level 2
Fun, colourful and a good way to introduce your little ones to heating ingredients. Making marshmallow pops involves the microwave; a great appliance for the kids to learn to use before they approach the oven.
You will need:
50g chocolate (white, milk, dark, any you like!)
1 bag of marshmallows
How to make marshmallow pops:
Break your chocolate into small chunks in a microwavable bowl. Heat on full power for 15 seconds at a time until melted (stir thoroughly in between each zap). Grab a marshmallow and pop it on a lollipop stick. Dip it into the chocolate and then into your sprinkles. Pop it into a tall glass to set, then enjoy!
Mug Cake – Microwave – Difficulty Level 2
Again, mug cakes are great easy baking for kids to introduce them to the microwave. Mug cakes are similar to making cookie dough, but with a quick zap at the end to bring it all together into a yummy cake. This is the first of the easy kids recipes that lets them see ingredients really transform into something new!
You will need:
30g self-raising flour
15g cocoa powder
40g caster sugar
50ml vegetable oil
How to make mug cake:
Pop all the dry ingredients into your biggest mug and add the egg. Give it a mix, but don’t worry too much about lumps. Add in the milk and oil and stir until it’s all smooth. Pop it in the microwave for 1.5 minutes and voila, mug cake!
Rainbow Cookies – Bake – Difficulty Level 3
You will need:
140g caster sugar
1 medium egg
½ tsp baking powder
100g Smarties/ M&Ms/ colourful chocolate sweets of your choice
How to make rainbow cookies:
Heat your oven to 180 degrees C. Cover a baking tray with a sheet of baking paper.
Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy and then add the egg and beat in well. Mix the baking powder into the flour in a separate bowl and then gradually stir this into the wet mix until combined. Be careful not to over-mix at this point.
Now for the fun, messy part! Pour in your colourful sweets and get your hands in there. Mash, squeeze and squidge them through the cookie dough until they’re evenly distributed. Then grab a handful of mixture, roll it into a ball and pop it on the baking tray with plenty of room around each one (2-3cm at least between them all).
Pop them in the oven for 12-14 minutes then let them cool on a rack for 15 mins and they’re ready to eat! Don’t worry that the middles are still soft when you take them out of the oven; they are cooked and will firm up as they cool. This just gives them a nice chewy middle.
Hi, I’m Marie and I love to make cakes! I started baking professionally after I was made redundant during lockdown and decided it was time to do what I love for a living. I’ve got many years of experience making cakes for family and friends and can’t wait to make them for you too! I also want to share tips and tricks from all I’ve learned over the years, so I can help you on your baking journey too.