Kids love hanging around in the kitchen “helping”, and they also love crafting. So pairing the two together to keep little ones busy, and reaping the rewards of their crafting work is a match made in heaven. It’s nice when children can begin to learn the basics around cooking and baking, and some of these recipe activities do just that! Each of these ideas will stretch their creative minds, and allow them to eat it or serve it when they’re done. It’s truly a win-win! Especially in those busy summer months! Occupy and entertain kids with any one of these recipes and it’s sure to be a hit.

1. Animal Faces Toast

Kids love to have food that seems interactive. That’s why they love dippable items oh so much! These cute critters take a twist on mealtime allowing creativity to come into the presentation.

Simply line up some ramekins with toppings and spreads and allow each kid to design their own edible creation… before they munch it all down.

2. Rainbow Grilled Cheese

For a quick and easy idea, get 4 bowls of cheese ready with food coloring and have your kids magically transform the cheese into bold new colors.

Then, you make grilled cheese as normal! Well, rainbow-normal 😉

3. Mini Jell-O Aquariums

Kids can get creative with their favorite ocean-themed gummies inside of a Jell-O filled mason jar, complete with those aquarium “rocks” (aka Nerds).

Only 4 ingredients needed and a little bit of patience to make these with kids! They’ll love making them just as much as they’ll love eating them!

4. Caterpillar Fruit Kabobs

Perhaps a great thing to make after you finish storytime with Eric Carle’s “A Very Hungry Caterpillar”! These caterpillars are made of grapes, strawberries, and some edible eye candies – all your kid’s favorites!

Since those kabobs can be sharp, be sure to stay with them as they create their little critters!

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5. Squid Dogs
When I first made this with my kids, the delight in their eyes I couldn’t imagine. They loved poking the hot dog pieces (can sub for veggie dogs for vegan) with uncooked spaghetti noodles and watching as the boiling water cooked them into octopuses.

This is an easy weeknight dinner that can be served with ketchup or tomato sauce, or just as is! It’s a fun finger food for the whole family to enjoy!

6. Candy & Rice Krispie Sushi

When it comes time to create a special treat they’ll be just as excited to make as they will eat – it’s candy sushi!

Gummy worms and licorice rolled into Rice Krispies treats and wrapped with a fruit roll up, well…what’s not to get excited about?? Watch as the kids learn to roll their very own sushi before you take over with the final cuts!

7. Grape Sculptures

Toothpicks and grapes, that’s all you need. While we constantly remind our kids “don’t play with your food’ this is going to give you some “cool parent” cred when you tell them, they can!

From tall buildings to tiny homes, kids can get creative and learn as they go. Don’t forget, they get to eat the grapes as they go, too!

8. Homemade Rock Candy

Rock candies used to be my ultimate go-to at the candy shop as a kid, but they’re actually really easy and fascinating to make at home too! It’s like a science experiment!

It’s going to take 1-2 weeks for them to be ready, but that just makes it all the more satisfying when they’re done. The only real ingredients you need are water and sugar!

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9. Campfire Cookies

What I love about these is they’re both a little bit challenging and fun. Kids will be faced with the task of building a campfire from pretzels, gummies, tootsie rolls and marshmallows all in the name of these campfire cookies!

Kids will love these as a welcome home or a send-off before a week of summer camp. It’s a special way to share in those campfire memories, but with cookies. Because everybody loves cookies.

10. Mummy Pizzas

Using either fresh pizza dough (premade or homemade) or some mini pitas, you can create these Mummy pizzas with the spooky faces your kid’s design.

Perfect late morning “craft” so they’re served up just in time for lunch!

11. Dipped Apple Shark Fin Pops

Apples when sliced, then halved, just happen to make the perfect shark fin shape! Dip it in some melted white chocolate candy wafers, and you have yourself a jawsome treat!

With colored sugar crystals and some red colored candy wafers as well, you can drizzle, sprinkle and design these pops with your kids and set in the fridge before enjoying just minutes later, or hours later!

12. Edible Marshmallow Slime

If you’ve been anywhere near kids in the last few years you’ve probably have heard them talk about the latest and greatest (why won’t it go away?) trend, SLIME.

This slime is different because instead of using harsh chemicals and soaps, it’s completely edible. With clean hands, kids can create and color their slime and play with their food for once! If they eat it, no harm!

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13. Bowl Of Worms

Kids tend to be wildly entertained by the weird and wacky, and of course – gross and disgusting. So of course, some edible worms had to make the list.

Created with straws and jello (along with a few other ingredients), these worms are easy for kids to get involved with and have fun squeezing our their resulting “treats”. It’s ok to go and gag in the corner while they eat them.

14. Edible Gardens

Using some graham crackers, and chocolate for “glue”, you and your littles can create some garden beds together!

Filled with chocolate pudding and crushed chocolate cookies, they’re then topped with some candies and food gel to create a tiny carrot garden they can eat!

15. Window Sugar Cookies

The best part about sugar cookies is how simple they are to make, so kids can easily get involved every step of the way. From creating the dough, rolling it out and cutting it – it’s fun for them!

These cookies have a window effect by using candies in the centers that will melt when baked, creating a stained glass appearance!

16. No-Churn Mermaid Ice Cream
Mermaids, unicorns and rainbows alike are all having their moment in the spotlight with the younger generation, and of course – ice cream continues to be oh-so-popular. So this recipe combines the two in an activity that will entertain and please your littles.

Only 5 ingredients are needed to create this ice cream before the freezer does the rest of the work. Make this “craft” midday and you have yourself a pretty magical dessert.

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17. Flower Pot Cookies

These adorable little cookie cups are made easily with mini muffin tins, some chocolate chips, and crushed cookies. Each is topped off creatively with non-edible flowers you can find at your local craft store.

These give kids a chance to get really hands-on and creative. They’ll have to pay attention to detail filling each “pot” and planting the flowers as they please!

18. Easy Apple Fruit Donuts

Well if we are going to make treats, we better sprinkle in some healthy ones along the way as well! These apple slices take something extra indulgent, and makes it perfectly healthy…well, with sprinkles of course.

Slices of apples, and food dyed cream cheese, decorated by the little ones with sprinkles before enjoying as a perfect little treat.

19. Critter Crudités

Whether you’re going for a sweet or savory, fruity or veggie-filled snack, these little critters are the perfect creations to get kids excited about something…healthy.

With peanut butter (or soy spread for school) or cream cheese, each celery stalk is filled before being decorated with some various fruits and veggies to make critters that are definitely ready for the eating.

20. Rainbow Pasta

Pasta night is a bit of a fallback for many families. Especially on weeknights. This recipe concept revives the excitement around plain ol’ pasta, and magically transforms it into something much more fabulous.

Kids can help color the pasta and while they do, make little cheese crisps to serve alongside the dish for a meal that will certainly keep things colorful and bright!

Sarah Nicole

Since successfully losing 100lbs by changing her relationship with food and her body, Sarah has taken her passion for food and balanced it between cucumbers and cupcakes. When she's not bustling her way around a kitchen, you can find her working out or winding down at home with her 3 kids and pug. Follow Sarah's journey on Instagram @TheBirdsPapaya.

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