Kids Can Cook: Fun and Yummy Recipes for Budding Chefs (Esther Coombs)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Kids Can Cook: Fun and Yummy Recipes for Budding Chefs, illustrated by Esther Coombs, a delightful starter cookbook for the culinarily-inclined.

Cooking: it’s not just for grown-ups! After an introductory section that covers the do’s and don’t’s of kitchen safety, tools of the trade, and some basic techniques like using a box grater and beating an egg, young chefs can explore three types of recipes. A “Breakfast, snacks & breads” section features yummy morning treats like fruit smoothies and sausage rolls, plus grain-based creations like flatbread and quesadillas. “Main meals & sauces” dishes out pizza, sliders, fish cakes, and curry; “Sweet treats” serves up strawberry sundaes and gingerbread people. With 33 kid-favorite recipes in total, young chefs can start their craft with dishes that are easy to make and fun to eat.

Wonderful! This introductory cookbook welcomes kids into the world of culinary creation by breaking down a collection of simple recipes into easy-to-follow steps. Colorful, retro illustrations walk kids through the steps of each recipe, from ingredients to finished process, and several recipes include tips and substitution ideas, including vegetarian variations for dishes like skewers (kebabs) and curry. The kitchen safety and basic skills covered in the intro are welcome, though an explanation of kitchen measurements would have been a welcome addition. Otherwise, we loved this one: it was fun to look over together, and fun to use for Chef JJ. Overall, a great starter cookbook for beginner chefs of any age, and Baby Bookworm approved!

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)

Sesame Street: Let’s Cook! (Susan McQuillan, RD & Sesame Workshop)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Sesame Street: Let’s Cook! by Susan McQuillan, RD and the Sesame Workshop, a delightful cookbook for Sesame Street fans of all ages to share.

Join Elmo, Cookie Monster, Big Bird, and all the rest of the Sesame Street gang as they introduce fifty recipes that adults and children can prepare together. Featuring fun dishes like Grover’s Monstrously Delicious Chicken Nuggets, Abby Cadabby’s Magical Squish-Squash, Rosita’s Veggie-Cheese Quesadillas, and Bert and Ernie’s Best Buddies Banana Pancakes, grown-ups and little ones can prepare each meal together using guided instructions that feature icons denoting which steps can be done by little chefs (with adult supervision). Along the way, kids can learn fun facts about food, cooking, and their favorite Sesame Street characters.

There are some lovely cookbooks for kids out there, but this is absolutely one of my favorites. The entire book is geared toward nutritional meals and spending quality time in the kitchen, and there are so many awesome details that tie into this. In addition to having at least two steps per recipe that little ones can participate in, there are clever icons that inform them of the health benefits of each recipe, ones that indicate which meals are travel-ready, and substitution suggestions that can help picky eaters make the meal their own. There’s also a wealth of information for parents and guardians on how to get kids excited about food and how to stay safe in the kitchen. This is a really great cookbook to share with baby bookworms to begin with, and the fact that it features everyone’s favorite Sesame characters is an added bonus. A treasure trove for young chefs, and we highly recommend it. Baby Bookworm approved!

What’s On Your Plate?: Exploring The World Of Food (Whitney Stewart)

Hello, friends! Our book today is What’s On Your Plate?: Exploring The World Of Food, written by Whitney Stewart and illustrated by Christiane Engel, a cookbook/celebration of international cuisine for little readers.

There’s a world of food out there, and chances are that what’s on your plate is not the same as children in other countries! So follow along as readers are taken on a tour of 14 countries (such as Mexico, Thailand, Ethiopia, etc.) and given a crash course in their food culture, popular dishes, and even a recipe to try at home (with parents’ help, of course). By the end, readers will gain an appreciation for new and interesting dishes and cultures, and find that our love of food is both what makes us unique and brings us together.

Very cool! Each spread is informative, interesting, visually fun, and the recipes look delicious. It’s a great way to encourage little ones to be adventurous with their meals and to learn more about other countries and cultures. The illustrations are perfect fun, make the food look delectable (there are also photos of some dishes), and the maps of the countries and their native ingredients are awesome. This is not a storybook, and reading it in one sitting would definitely be for older bookworms, but JJ enjoyed the illustrations, and I imagine this will be a popular book for our adventurous eater in a few years. A great way to introduce little foodies to international cuisine, and it’s Baby Bookworm approved!

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)