Teaching your kids to cook absolutely pays the family back immediately and it's a long term gift to our kids. -Katie Kimball

132: Top 3 Tips for Teaching Kids to Cook This Summer

Will this summer bring opportunities like no other?

You can choose to be intentional with this time and infuse both fun, quality family time, and practical skills that will last a lifetime.

I’m a big believer in goals for our families, even if we’ve felt we have missed goals in the past. Better to set them and give yourself a chance!

If a goal for your kids is for them to grow up to be healthy, independent adults, learning to cook is a must. But it’s not always easy to get started.

Here are my top 3 tips to actually implement those goals this summer! You got this, parents!

Join us for FREE Snacks Challenge Summer Camp starting June 21! 



Can’t see the video? Watch Top Tips for Teaching Kids to Cook here on YouTube!

No time for the video? Here are the notes!

Teaching Kids to Cook This Summer

  • 0:28: This is our last week of school so I’m really starting to think about summer and getting in those new routines! (If you need some help setting up summer routines with kids at home, check out my video on our quarantine routine.)

Summer always seems like a vast expanse of time full of lazy days, and it always goes by so fast! -Katie Kimball

  • 1:36: I want to encourage you to go into the summer with some intentional goals. Even if you’ve done this before and didn’t meet them, I think it’s always better to try and miss than not try at all. 

Go into the summer with the intention to connect with your kids. -Katie Kimball

  • 1:54: Really savor the moments you have with your kids this summer. Make the time to step back and be present with them
  • 2:24: If you want to raise healthy, independent adults you need to be intentional with the 18 years you have with your kids. I strongly encourage you to get your kids into the kitchen this summer
  • 3:44: Cooking together can be a great memory builder and it’s a valuable life skill your kids need to learn!

Paleovalley Meat Sticks

It can be hard to find healthy snacks that you can take with you on the go. When I want the convenience of a jerky stick, but want a healthy, protein-packed snack option, I grab Paleovalley meat sticks. Paleovalley ingredients have these high standards that you can feel good about:

100% grass fed beef sticks, pasture raised beef sticks

  • 100% Grass-Fed Beef & 100% Pasture-Raised Turkey
  • Never given antibiotics or hormones
  • Gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free
  • 0 grams of sugar*
  • Contains no artificial nitrates or nitrites
  • Non-GMO
  • Naturally fermented and contain gut-friendly probiotics!

*With the exception of Teriyaki, which contains 2 grams of sugar from Organic Honey.

These beef sticks and turkey sticks taste delicious! My favorite is the Jalapeño but my kids love Summer Sausage.

Use this link to get 15% off your order at Paleovalley. Read my Paleovalley Review to learn more!

  • 4:31: Tip #1: Start small. Figure out what will motivate your kids to be helpful. For my kids, preparing to go somewhere fun is a good motivator. For kids with no cooking experience, this doesn’t even need to be cooking, just being in the kitchen working together.
  • 6:15: If your kids are already comfortable in the kitchen, tip #2 is to begin with cooking a recipe together for someone else. This gives built-in positive feedback that will encourage and motivate your child.
  • 7:38: Tip 3 is to focus on and teach some skills. Think of some recipes your kids might like to make, but they don’t have the skills to do it yet. Perhaps make a list of summer recipes they would like to be able to make this year. (Chef Junior, my son’s cookbook has some good options!) Then break down the skills needed for each recipe. For example, dry measuring, pouring, using the stovetop, using a knife, using a small appliance like a blender are all skills.

“Mooooom, I’m hungry!!”

How many times do your kids ask for snacks each day? Wouldn’t it be a relief if they were empowered to prepared their own snacks, instead of coming to you and whining about how hungry they are?

Download and print:


  • 9:53: Yesterday Leah and I got to make fruit pizza with the executive chef of a local restaurant. I thought we’d be baking, but we cooked the crust in a pan on the stove. There are lots of summer treats you can make that are fun and don’t involve the oven! Here’s a fruit pizza recipe if you’re inspired. (It does use the oven though.)
  • 11:01: It’s also fun to teach kids to cook outside with a grill during the summer!
  • 11:31: I would love to help you teach your kids to cook this summer! Check out our ecourse here. If you just want to dip your toes in, join our free summer camp starting June 21!

Share your summer goals with me in the comments!


Resources I Mentioned to Teach Your Kids to Cook This Summer

Top tips: teaching your kids to cook this summer

What You Should Do Next:

1. Subscribe to The Healthy Parenting Connector

Katie Kimball

I interview experts about kids’ health every week – stay in the loop with a quick Saturday morning email:



2. Try a Free Preview of my Cooking Class for Kids

Our members’ favorite lesson is always our 10-minute knife skills and safety class, teaching techniques with unique & memorable phrases from butter knives to chef’s knives (ages 2-teen). Take a peek here and try it out with your kids.

3. Enroll in the Online Cooking Course for Kids:

Enroll now in the Wall Street Journal’s #1 recommended online cooking class for kids (also rated 5 stars on Facebook). See what fits your family best HERE.

About Katie Kimball

Katie Kimball, CSME, creator of Kids Cook Real Food and CEO of Kitchen Stewardship, LLC, is passionate about connecting families around healthy food. As a trusted educator and author of 8 real food cookbooks, she’s been featured on media outlets like ABC, NBC and First for Women magazine and contributes periodically on the FOX Network.

Since 2009, busy moms have looked to Katie as a trusted authority and advocate for children’s health, and she often partners with health experts and medical practitioners to stay on the cutting edge. In 2016 she created the Wall Street Journal recommended best online kids cooking course, Kids Cook Real Food, helping thousands of families around the world learn to cook. She is actively masterminding the Kids’ Meal Revolution, with a goal of every child learning to cook.

A mom of 4 kids from Michigan, she is also a Certified Stress Mastery Educator, member of the American Institute of Stress and trained speaker through Bo Eason’s Personal Story Power.

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