2-3 Year Olds

  • Wash vegetables in the sink
  • Tear lettuce and other greens into pieces
  • Pull herbs from stems
  • Stir with large spoon (avoid foods that are hot)
  • Brush oil onto foods with a basting brush
  • Sprinkle herbs/seasonings onto food
  • Hand items to an adult to put away
  • Throw items in the trash
  • Wipe tables

4-6 Year Olds

  • All tasks from younger age group
  • Squeeze lemons & limes
  • Measure ingredients with measuring spoons and cups
  • Begin to crack eggs
  • Knead dough
  • Cut softer foods with a butter knife or plastic knife
  • Set the table
  • Use child safe scissors to cut herbs
  • Mash bananas or potatoes

7-9 Year Olds

  • All tasks from younger age group
  • Form patties with ground meat
  • Load dishwasher
  • Grate cheese and vegetables with box grater
  • Peel produce with a hand peeler
  • Zest lemons and limes
  • Use manual can opener

10 Years Old and Above

At this age most children can do more advanced tasks in the kitchen. They can begin to use real knives, with supervision (after being taught proper knife safety). They can follow simple step by step recipes and use the stove. Make sure they have been taught proper kitchen safety prior to performing these tasks alone.

Remember, you know your child the best. Developmental milestones are achieved at different times for many children. Make sure you feel confident with your child’s ability before letting them perform a kitchen task. Always provide supervision until they have demonstrated they can perform the task safely.