9 Simple Recipes Your Littlest Chef Can Help Prepare

| Diet & Nutrition

We know it was just yesterday that you were spoon-feeding your little one mushy baby food but let's face it: Their tastes have matured in the last couple years! We believe that it is never too early to start nurturing their culinary skills. Not only will it help them grow their tastebuds and develop an interest in new and exciting foods, but it will also give you the chance to enjoy a new hobby together! Take a look at the kid-friendly recipes below to learn more about cooking with your young ones.

>> Read more: Small Hands Welcome: Kid-Friendly Utensils and Kitchen Equipment

TODDLERS

1. Chocolate-Covered Peanut Butter Banana Bites: This after-school snack is a great way to get your little chef comfortable in the kitchen! You can have them sample the applesauce while you prep the ingredients, and then show them how to dip the banana slices into the chocolate. This mess will be super easy to clean up — just lick those fingers clean! Click here for our recipe.

chocolate covered banana bites

>> Let your toddler slice the bananas with this safe and simple Banana Slicer!

2. Skinny Creamsicle Smoothie: They'll think it's dessert, but you will know just how nutrient-packed this quick and easy recipe really is. All you've got to do is toss the ingredients into a blender and let your little one man the button! Just remember to slap the lid on before those blades start whirring! Check out our recipe here.

orange creamsicle smoothie

3. Apple Sandwiches with Almond Butter and Granola: In next to no time you and your toddler can prepare this crunchy, crisp snack! Your child should have no problem sprinkling the granola on top of the almond butter, and all that block-stacking should come in handy when it comes to putting these babies together! (via Garnish with Lemon)

apple sandwich with almond butter and granola
(Photo: Garnish with Lemon)

PRESCHOOLERS

4. Supreme Pizza Smiles: No kid is going to turn down the opportunity to make their own pizza! This healthy snack is packed full of nutritious, flavorful ingredients that your preschoolers won't be able to resist. Just lay out a create-your-own station and let them decorate their very own English muffin! Click here for our recipe.

pizza smiley faces_645

>> Can't shake those cravings? Check out these 15 Healthy Homemade Pizza Recipes!

5. PB&J Sushi: It's never too early to encourage your kids to make their own lunches. These rolls are packed full of essential proteins, wholesome carbs, and healthy fats for a creative recipe that your kids will enjoy making as much as eating! Just let them spread on the peanut butter and jelly and roll these babies together. Check out the full recipe here.

6. Oatmeal Raisin "Cookie" Bars: Talk about a high-powered snack for your little ones! Plus, these bars taste so good, your kids won't even realize just how many healthy ingredients they are packing away. This is a great recipe for children who are ready to put their new counting skills to use! Visit Bright Eyed Baker for the full recipe.

oatmeal raisin cookie bars
(Photo: Bright Eyed Baker)

KINDERGARTENERS

7. Skinny Chocolate Chip Banana Bread: This moist and rich bread is a great way to get your little chef acquainted with baking! Nothing makes children happier than making a mess, so let them mash away at those ripe bananas! Plus, this recipe gives you the opportunity to introduce them to the intricacies of whisking. Check out our recipe by clicking here.

Skinny Chocolate Chip Banana Bread Recipe

>> Read more: 50 Skinny Bread Recipes

8. Skinny Mozzarella Bites: Your kids won't be able to keep their hands off these cheesy delights! Let your little protege dip the mozzarella sticks in the egg whites and crumbs! You can even throw in a quick lesson about oven safety while these are baking. Click here for our recipe.

skinny mozzarella bites

9. Blueberry Smoothie Pops: Fight off the heat with this mouthwatering frozen treat! Your kindergarteners will have no problem throwing these super simple pops together. There are only three ingredients, and your kids will absolutely love the end result! If you've got some picky eaters, just let them choose their own fruit to add! (via Good Life Eats)

blueberry smoothie pops

Make your own traditions in the kitchen with your children this summer! Getting them off the couch and engaged in a new hobby is a great way to encourage creativity and learning. Click here for more tips on how to get your kids cooking!