Kids cooking from the garden is one of the best ways to show them the garden to plate process. It’s all about teaching our kids where real food comes from and how nutrient-dense and tasty it is.
It’s a known fact that kids are more likely to try something new if they grow it themselves. If you haven’t started a food garden yet, then all these ingredients are in abundance at the moment so head to your farmers markets and pick yourself up some organic produce. Take the kids with you and get them to be involved in choosing the best ingredients.
We have 3 amazing recipes that the kids are going to love growing, cooking and eating.
Watermelon & strawberry popsicles
If you aren’t growing your own strawberries, this is definitely an easy fruit to try, and it grows well on a small scale. You can start with a pot or hanging basket and as your plant grows it will develop runners which you can replant. Kids love picking strawberries, and there is something really special about watching kids eat straight from a plant.
Watermelon & Strawberry Popsicles
- 2 cups of diced watermelon
- 1 cup of strawberries washed and halved (stems removed)
- Finely chopped mint (optional)
- Ice block moulds
- Paddle pop sticks
- In a blender place the watermelon and strawberries and blend until a liquid mix, reserve 2 strawberries.
- Slice 2 strawberries and place along the sides of the mould, then pour in the liquid mix.
- Freeze for 5-6 hours.
- Wet mould before removing to loosen the blocks.
Spinach & sweet potato mini pies
Spinach (or silverbeet, which is its official name), is really easy to grow and you’ll get a good crop most of the year. It’s a crop you can harvest over a couple of seasons, so very cost-effective. The kids love harvesting spinach because they are really easy to break or snip off. Perfect for little hands.
Spinach & Sweet Potato Mini Pies
- 1 bunch of fresh spinach (silverbeet), stems removed & roughly chopped
- 1 clove of garlic, crushed
- 1-2 spring onions, diced
- 1 tablespoon of coconut oil
- 2 sliced of bacon, trimmed and diced
- 1 sweet potato, peeled & grated (we used a blender)
- 12 free-range eggs
- 12 cup muffin tray (we use silicon as there is no need for prepping)
- Pre-heat oven to 160 degrees (fan forced).
- Evenly fill each cup compartment with grated sweet potato (approximately 1/3 of the space). Place in oven for 15min to part cook and soften, remove and keep aside.
- Place the bacon in a saucepan and cook on low until browned, pat dry on towelling paper and put aside.
- In a new saucepan heat the coconut oil on low and add the garlic and spring onions, cook until softened. Add the spinach and a splash of water and steam the spinach. Once wilted, start tossing so the garlic and spring onion flavour infuses with the spinach. Once cooked, drain in a colander.
- Beat the eggs in a bowl and set aside.
- Now it’s time to construct the pies. On top of the sweet potato, evenly distribute the cooked bacon, then the spinach. Next, fill each mould with the beaten egg.
- Back for 25-30min, or until the egg is cooked.
- Cool on wire rack before consuming.
Cucumber & tomato salad pots
Kids can eat cucumber and tomatoes from a young age and this helps them transition to salad pretty easily. Cucumbers and tomatoes are both easy to grow and can be grown in pots, which is great if you have a small space… Kids love picking cherry tomatoes, so we have used them in this recipe since they came from our garden.
Cucumber & Tomato Salad Pots
- 1 cup of cucumber, seeds removed and diced
- 1 cup of cherry toms, seeds removed and cut into quarters
- A small amount of parsley chopped finely
- 2 rings of thinly sliced & diced red onion (optional)
- ¼ cup of olive oil
- 2 tablespoons of red wine vinegar
- ½ teaspoon of sugar
- Salt & pepper to taste
- 2 small dessert pots to serve
- Combine the cucumber, tomato, onion and parsley in a bowl.
- Mix the remaining ingredient for the dressing, and season to taste.
- Add the dressing as desired.
The most important thing to remember when you are cooking with kids is to have fun. If kids enjoy it they are more likely to want to cook again. Growing and then being able to bring in fresh produce from your garden is a rewarding experience for both yourself and the kids. You are teaching them where real food comes from and that makes my heart sing.