Baking with a toddler...no I swear I am not crazy; I promise it can be fun!
This month I'm doing a 3-part series of recipes you can easily manage with your toddler (no box mixes either!)
First off, here are my top tips for baking with a toddler to make things run smoothly & so you don't want to pull your hair out by the end.
1) PREP. Read the recipe over yourself first (which, honestly you should do anyway...because some recipes are written funny & like to surprise you half way through). Once you've read it over, gather your ingredients, having them all ready to go speeds things up. Or, if you aren't into TOO much mess or don't want to test your patience, you can pre-measure the ingredients too. If I go this route, I like to have the sugars in measuring scoops or bowls, the butter pre-cut, etc.
2) Make your baking space kid-friendly, pull out a chair or stool for them to stand on so everything is at their height.
3) Prep the toddler. Sounds funny, but this is a perfect time to teach proper food safety! Wash your hands together, & long hair goes up in a bun/ponytail.
OK! So now you are ready to start!
Preheat that oven! 350 degrees.
Even though Holly can't technically read yet, I like to show here where we are in the recipe as we go so she understands that we are following a recipe.
First step, get your toddler to toss the chunk of butter into the bowl. At room temperature it should be soft, but still firm enough they can just pick it up without it getting everywhere.
Next, the sugars. I have mine in measuring cups so Holly just tipped each one into the bowl. I also let Holly turn on the mixer "one click". Here she learns to keep her hands away from the moving parts.
After the butter & sugars are creamed, we add the vanilla & egg. (Sometimes I pre-crack it into a bowl...sometimes I just do it.) Then she turns the mixer on again.
As far as the recipe goes, I've technically done the next step; I already have the flour, cornstarch, baking soda & salt mixed in a bowl. So next I let Holly scoop/pour the flour mixture into the butter/sugar mixture. Mix it until it's well combined.
Lastly, the best part, add the chocolate chips (& Smarties in this case)! Mix it up until it looks evenly distributed. (*if you want plain chocolate chip cookies, omit the Smarties & replace with equal amount of chocolate chips)
Now scoop! We have a fancy cookie measure, but it's still fun to smoosh into balls with your hands (sensory exploration I guess? haha)
Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until golden brown. (adult only part)
See? That wasn't too crazy right? Cookies are nice too because they don't take that long to bake, so they mix well with the toddler's patience haha!
Baking with your toddler can be so much fun! I feel it can teach them many important life skills, & it's the kind of activity that is so rewarding to complete! I mean, warm gooey cookies? Yes, please!