With a bachelor’s degree in elementary education, 18 years of teaching experience, a passion for cooking, and three children of her own, Barbara Beery is the quintessential kids’ cooking instructor.
Barbara founded kids’ cooking school Batter Up Kids in 1991. In a warm, supportive atmosphere where adventure is key, kids are given the go-ahead to be hands-on in the kitchen – to smell, touch, taste and, most important, make mistakes.
In an age when parents are increasingly harried and kids are overscheduled, Barbara believes you don’t have to get in the car and drive to entertain your kids, nor do you have to give in to fast food. Barbara learned at a very young age that the kitchen is a wonderful culinary playground. Since then she has been creating menus and recipes, and passing on her own lessons from home, always reminding kids that they can try anything and they can definitely have fun with their food.
Barbara believes that cooking offers instant gratification with one major ingredient – imagination. Kids also get the added benefit of tapping into science, math and reading.
She recently created a few fun and tasty Rice Krispies Treats® recipes, just for RiceKrispies.com. Take your kids on a cooking adventure by making one of her recipes together.
Finally, no matter what delicious creations you whip up as a family, Barbara offers these great ideas for kid-friendly fun in the kitchen:
Create a "secret" recipe. Give your child specific ingredients (with a certain recipe already chosen by you). Encourage your child to guess what the recipe will make by looking at all the ingredients. It will be a fun surprise for kids to see what they make as the recipe progresses.
Let your child choose. Give your kids three or four recipe choices and let them pick their favorite one to make for the family. Have them decorate a menu featuring their chosen recipe.
Make a family recipe. Let your child make an age-appropriate recipe that you made as a child. Share what you did to help your mom make the same recipe, and explain what life was like when you were your child’s age.
Create recipe cards. Make a recipe card with the date you first made a recipe together, and each time you make that recipe, add the date on the card. Then create a recipe box for everything you make together.
Friday night sleepover. Treat your child to an evening in the kitchen. Make a fun snack together, watch a movie in a sleeping bag on the living room floor, and have your own private sleepover in your very own home.
Share with neighbors. Create a recipe and make a double batch to share. You and your child can hand-deliver the treats to a neighbor, with a homemade card.
Surprise breakfast. Parent’s or sibling’s birthday? Make a breakfast treat together and wake up the birthday person with balloons and the recipe you made.