Kids Cook Homemade Vanilla Pudding (HPC: E50)

What motivates kids to get in the kitchen?

Wanting something good to eat and realizing they can make it themselves!!

My daughter cuts up all sorts of lovely fruit (melons, apples, peaches) because SHE wants to eat them, and the whole family benefits.

She also decided she wanted to make something fun and chose homemade vanilla pudding from my Smart Sweets eBook and learned to make it herself!

Get Your Kids in the Kitchen with a Free Lesson

One of the other benefits we find when kids know how to cook is an opportunity for service. Because we rarely make food just for one person to eat, there’s a built in generosity in cooking, and it’s important to me and many families to raise children with a servant’s heart. My daughter Leah, age 10, is actually dairy sensitive, so she didn’t even get to taste this pudding. She made it for her brothers as a treat. 🙂

They loved it and I hope they realize how grateful they ought to be to have such an awesome sister! And I love watching the look on her face as we all taste her creation: this is a pride and a genuine self-esteem builder far beyond participation medals for soccer or a “good job” about a school project. When kids build authentic life skills like cooking, they know they’ve done something worthwhile that helps make the world a better place.

What have your kids done in the kitchen this summer? Have they learned some new skills?

Homemade Pudding Video Time Stamps

  • 0:25: Leah and I are making a pudding recipe from my Smart Sweets eBook. Leah has never made this recipe before, so this is a good demonstration of how to help a kid walk through a new recipe.
  • 0:42: First, I watch Leah read through the recipe to make sure she has a good understanding of the overall plan.
  • 2:39: Leah kicks me out of the kitchen so she can get to work!

Girl with bowls of pudding

  • 4:39: Leah moves over to the stove and shows some stove safety and stirring tips as she cooks the pudding.
  • 5:52: Leah tests the temperature of the pudding with her finger. Some bubbles are just starting to pop up around the edges of the pot!
  • 9:07: The pudding is ready to pour into bowls!
  • 9:27: Leah explains what scalding means.

Bowl of homemade vanilla pudding

Homemade Vanilla Pudding Recipe


  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 4 1/2 TBS arrowroot starch
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 cups milk
  • 1 TBS butter
  • 2 tsp vanilla


  1. Whisk sugar, starch and salt together in a heavy bottomed, medium sized saucepan.
  2. Stir in milk.
  3. Heat over medium heat, stirring occasionally until some bubbles appear at the sides. Don’t let it go to a boil! The mixture will begin to thicken and coat the back of a spoon or hang onto the whisk.
  4. Cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes after the bubble appear.
  5. Remove from heat and stir in the butter and vanilla.
  6. Pour into bowls and chill at least 2 hours before serving.
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Homemade Vanilla Pudding

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