These school holidays have fun cooking with the little ones. Here are three great ways to get kids helping with cooking. All hail the mini baker!

Cooking with the kids is a great way to inspire little ones to get creative and try new things. It’s also a wonderful way to spend quality time together – if you don’t mind making a bit of a mess, of course! What’s more, cooking with kids promotes screen-free time for little ones, which we all know is invaluable these days. Whether it’s a Saturday morning bake-off whipping up fairy cupcakes for a birthday party, or mixing up a batch of easy ice blocks to freeze down for an after-school snack, let these ideas inspire you.

Bake it: Fairy cupcakes

Fairy cupcakes, or butterfly cakes, are pretty and oh-so-easy to make with little ones. Simply preheat your oven to 180°C and line a 12-hole cupcake tin with colourful paper cases. In a large bowl, beat 125g unsalted butter and 3/4 cup caster sugar with an electric mixer (leave this job for Mum or Dad). Beat 2 eggs in a separate bowl then add to the mixture. Add 1 1/4 cup plain flour, 1 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp vanilla extract and 1/2 cup milk and stir well to combine. Let your little baker spoon the mixture evenly into the prepared cupcake cases, then get Mum or Dad to transfer the tray into the oven to bake for 20 minutes or until lightly golden. Leave to cool on a wire rack. Once cool, use a knife to cut the tops off each cake. Cut tops in half. Spoon a dollop of whipped cream and jam onto each cupcake and place the two halved pieces on top to create fairy wings. Voilà!


Cook it: Homemade pizzas

Pizzas are such a fun and easy meal to make with children. Making your own dough can be lots of fun for kids as they love to bash, knead and roll the dough – all the while getting messy with flour everywhere. If you’d prefer a tidier recipe to cook, you can buy ready-made bases and simply enjoy adding on your child’s favourite toppings. has loads of yummy pizza recipes to experiment with.


Make it: Ice blocks

In summer, there’s no better after-school snack than an ice-cold treat. Ice blocks are are easy to make and can be healthy, too. Try this recipe for pink grapefruit raspberry ices from Something for Everyone by Louise Fulton Keats, published by Hardie Grant, $39.95.

2½ cups freshly squeezed pink grapefruit juice
3 tablespoons maple syrup
24 raspberries, washed

1. Stir together grapefruit juice and maple syrup with ½ cup water.
2. Place half the raspberries into the bottom of six 125ml (½ cup) iceblock moulds or 12 x 60ml (¼ cup) moulds.
3. Pour half the grapefruit mixture into the moulds over the berries and freeze for 1–2 hours, or until partially frozen. Repeat with remaining raspberries and grapefruit mixture. Freeze overnight, or until frozen solid.

Tip: If you are using iceblock sticks, you will need to freeze the second round of mixture for 1-2 hours until partially frozen, insert the sticks, then return to the freezer overnight.


Stop in at Harris Farm Markets or Woolworths to pick up everything you need to create these yummy kid-friendly recipes.