14 Cooking Gifts for Junior Chefs
Little hands are always welcome in the kitchen and they need tools to match their size and dreams.
Junior chefs can be encouraged with inspiring gifts that make cooking fun and encourage them to develop their cooking skills while being safe and easy to handle.
We have researched the best cooking gifts for junior chefs, starting with gifts for babies and toddlers, for whom eating vegetables can be so much fun, and with no utensils in sight. We go next to junior chefs aged 3 and older who get busy in the kitchen pretending to be awesome cooks.
For independent kids, we have selected real cooking tools together with really fun children’s cookbooks that include magic recipes from Harry Potter and board games that teach them through play what a balanced meal looks like. It’s never too early to teach your kids how to eat healthily!
We came up with the best 16 cooking gift ideas for junior chefs to save you the trouble of online research, leaving you to enjoy a cup of coffee, or maybe a glass a wine. These are perfect gifts for pretty much any special occasion, birthdays, or Christmas presents.
1. Personalized Baking Set and Apron
Any little aspiring chef will be delighted to get his personalized baking set and matching apron. Having a customized chef uniform to fit them can only make them proud and eager to get busy. The apron set is suitable from age 3 and includes wooden utensils such as rolling pin, chopping board, pastry brush, and spatula. The spatula, spoon, and board can be laser engraved with words of your choice and they come in a cotton drawstring bag, which also can carry the child’s name.
There are many styles of custom-able apron for girls and boys to choose from at Etsy. Check out a few below (click on image to see the products):
2. Kids Chef Knife
Practice makes perfect. Children can start practicing chopping ingredients on their own.
This nylon knife is the best way to learn how to manipulate a knife in a safe way while having fun helping in the kitchen. For age 4 and up, this 3-piece set encourages chopping and helps build confidence. The knifes have a serrated cutting edge, blunt tip, ergonomic handle, and soft touch button grip, and they are BPA free.
Older children already familiar with real knives can take their skills to the next level in complete safety. This set is for kids from 7 to 11 years and contains one stainless steel knife, a peeler, and a finger guard. The peeler and the knife come with a finger ring for a better grip and for safety. The handles are made from durable Beachwood and the knife has a rounded tip.
3. MasterChef Set
Any kid can become a MasterChef by unboxing this officially licensed 6-piece breakfast cooking set. Children aged 6+ can start a productive day by making their own meals while parents laze around, right? Real tools and recipes for all levels of experience are put at their disposal to make pancakes and squeeze fresh orange juice.
There are five MasterChef sets to choose from or to collect for little chefs in training: from a baking set and a pizza kit to a set of 9-piece cooking essentials. There is also a MasterChef Junior cook book to go with it.
4. Dry measuring cups
Good pastry means baking with your heart and your hands. But when precision is needed, we’ve found the perfect sets for little bakers.
One set of 6 dry measuring cups are in fact a hen, chick, and egg nesting together. The other set we found is of the well-known traditional Matroyshkas dolls.
Both sets are made from heavy duty, BPA-free, 100% food-safe plastic. Isn’t it the cutest thing to have the kid’s measuring cups stored besides mom’s?
Hen & Chick Measuring Cups
Traditional Matroyshkas Measuring Cups
5. Rolling Pins
All passionate home cooks have their own rolling pin, and no exceptions for any age.
Kids love to play with dough and luckily there are many rolling pin models that leave all kinds of imprints. Cookies will look awesome and dressed to fit any occasion or holiday. Pastry is easily imprinted with animals or vehicles, seasons or abstract patterns. Which one will be your little baker’s favorite?
6. Engraved Cutting Board
Side by side with mom helping her chop ingredients calls for a cutting board of their own. Engraved with a cute chef hat and rolling pin, this eco-friendly bamboo cutting board is just waiting for a child’s name to serve as the perfect present. Little One’s contribution in the kitchen will be more exciting with their own cutting board to work with.
7. Silicone Cupcake Mold
Nobody can resist cupcakes, and decorating them is part of the fun and helps develop creative skills. This silicone cupcake mold cup and saucer shape is flexible and non-sticky, thus, it is easy to use and makes a beautiful presentation for the dessert table. Bake and decorate your favorite cupcake recipe in one mold.
8. Dinosaur Mold
Home-made desserts are always best when you choose your own ingredients, and gummies are everyone’s favorite and very easy to make.
All you need is fruit juice and gelatin, or you can make them vegan by using agar-agar, and “Gummysaurus” will pop out in no time from this 2-pack dinosaur-shaped silicone mold! For an easy filling, little hands can use the candy dropper it comes with. Triceratops, T-Rex, Stegosaurus, and Brontosaurus can’t wait to come and play with toddlers or teens.
8. Cookie Cutters
The best toys in the kitchen are cookie cutters and the variety of shapes is infinite. Simple dough can be brought to life by numerous characters, shapes and holiday motifs. Good looking cookies will decorate the plates and be a feast for the eyes. Your little baker will have so much fun with cookie cutters and be so proud of the results.
Check out below some super-fun cookie cutters available on Etsy or browse Amazon for more options.
Personalized cookie cutters with names makes it more special:
And train lovers:
9. Aromatic Pot
Aromatic plants enchant the senses and elevate flavoring foods. Cooking is best when fresh aromatic herbs are used and with this present, your little chef can grow their own little indoor garden. Your chef will also explore new tastes and learn how important seasoning is. These animal pots are amusing and being self-watering, you can’t go wrong growing the plants.
10. Decorative Spoons
Perfect for tea parties to level up the cutlery, your budding hosts will absolutely love this present and never get tired of using them. The delicate flower spoons stand out when sprinkling sugar in the favored beverage. They also make a stylish utensil to accompany a slice of cake.
11. Global Adventure Cooking Kit
Let the foodies enjoy flavors of the world without leaving the kitchen. These awesome country-specific kits take kids to a culinary mini-adventure of Africa, Europe, or the Middle East. They can make their own three authentic and healthy meals with the help of step-by-step instructions and the key spices and hard-to-find ingredients that are supplied. In addition to enriching their taste buds’ culinary experience, they can satiate their thirst for knowledge about the country’s food and culture with the interesting facts, puzzles, and activities. Every kit has a country flag pin, collectible utensil, and a foodie passport with stickers to help kids commemorate each culture your family has explored, as well as shopping lists, key ingredients, and recipes for three family-sized meals (with vegetarian options).
12. Cookbooks for Junior Chefs
Cooking Class: 57 Fun Recipes Kids Will Love to Make (and Eat!) has more than 50 recipes for children ages 6 to 12 that also explain basic cooking techniques in kid-friendly language.
It includes favorites like applesauce, French toast, popcorn chicken, pizza and more. Full of fresh, healthy ingredients and featuring imaginative presentations like egg mice, fruit flowers, and mashed potato clouds, it will keep their interest alive. They’ll not only develop their cooking skills but also their creativity and imagination.
Don’t know how to get your darlings to eat their vegetables in a fun way? Eat Your Greens, Reds, Yellows, and Purples takes a positive approach with this fun and delicious way of teaching them why colors are healthy. While baking a batch of carrot and orange muffins, your kids will learn about the benefits of carrots; while making a red pepper hummus, they’ll learn how peppers boosts their immune system.
The Ultimate Kids’ Cookbook: Fun One-Pot Recipes Your Whole Family Will Love! is for kids who want to take over the kitchen and put their parents on the helping bench. They will learn how grownups cook but with ingredients of their choosing. They can cater for their culinary needs such as quick snacks or sleepover treats.
Kid Chef Bakes: The Kids Cookbook for Aspiring Bakers has easy to follow recipes for those with a sweet tooth craving home-made goodies.
Everybody loves the smell of fresh-out-of-the-oven, bursting-with-flavor pastries. From old-fashioned spiced pumpkin shortbread to gingerbread men and oatmeal cream pies, the book explains some useful tips and tricks. They will learn baking basics, what to do with leftovers, and how to substitute for missing ingredients.
Especially designed for cooking fans and wannabe kitchen wizards, The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook will be very much appreciated! Who wants to make Harry’s favorite dessert? I’m sure you know someone. Movie-inspired themed dishes are featured among the 150 magical recipes contained in this cookbook. With a dash of magic and a drop of creativity, ordinary entrees, desserts, snacks, and drinks will be turned into culinary masterpieces that will make Mrs. Weasley very proud.
Science experiments you can eat makes science accessible using food for a range of tastes, from salad dressing to mayonnaise, celery to popcorn, and muffins to meringues. What can be more rewarding than eating the results of their theory testing and experiments? Chemical reactions we witness everyday can be observed in cooking and the book has the added bonus of providing information on healthy eating.
14. Best Cooking Games
Healthy Helpings teaches kids through play how to put together a balanced meal and to eat healthily.
With special placemats, it develops self-discipline and an understanding of portion control. The 50 self-checking cards illustrate real-life fruits, vegetables, grains, and proteins and will get your young’uns accustomed to identifying food and food groups. Children will learn to make nutritional choices when having a snack or cooking a meal. The MyPlate Game is suitable for 2 to 4 players aged 4 or more.
Educational Fruit and Vegetable Flash Cards teach kids the nutritional value of fruits and veggies. Each card showcases a unique fruit or vegetable with the top nutrients it contains and how those nutrients benefit the body. By acknowledging all this useful information, it will make them want to eat more fresh greens and the many other colors that nature has to offer.
Pretend Play for Children Age 3+
And for times when they aren’t helping in the actual kitchen, this play set equipped with all the utensils a chef would need will keep them entertained. They can practice with stainless steel pots and pans, pretending to boil and sear delicious foods just like a real chef. They can prepare an entire menu by actually cutting through play food. Two wooden utensils are at hand for stirring in the pots. The set comes with a canvas storage bag and it’s suitable for age 3 and up.
Unique Plate and Utensils for Children Age 2+
Get small kids to fall in love with healthy food in a unique way. How about collecting peas in a bulldozer and putting them into an excavator cup before popping them into the mouth? Small children are fascinated by construction sites, and the plate is the backdrop for all the heavy-duty vehicles they love.
For dinosaur fanatics, there are matching utensils and plate that impersonates these fantastic creatures, helping little eaters to clean their food scene. I sure want each of those sets for me…I mean my children.
Dinosaur plate and utensils:
Gifts for Grown-up Chefs
If you are also looking for gifts for grown-up chefs please check our extensive list of gift ideas for chefs and cook. We have also researched the best engraved gifts for chefs so make sure to check that one as well.