Involve Kids in the Shopping and Cooking Process

Written by: Colin Sobol

There is no reason to dread the weekly grocery trip with your kids, use the store as a great tool for educating your child on a healthier lifestyle. They may just pick up a new food to try! In addition, incorporating kids while shopping will jump-start motor skills from pushing the cart to unloading non-breakable items onto the checkout!

Eat a snack and take a nap FIRST!

This will prevent any cravings or the occasional tantrum that would put a halt to your weekly routine.

Prepare a list together so they know what to expect

If you go into your trip without a plan, they may be more willing to ask for the sugary items you didn’t budget for in your diet.


Allow plenty of time to shop so you can focus on the experience

Let them ask questions and use this as a time to learn about healthy foods throughout the store.


Be open to suggestions

If your child seems really interested in a new healthy food, offer to add it to a meal soon. Encourage new foods, they may love them!


Touching the food is okay

For the foods you have on your list, let them examine what it looks like and read the labels. They are more willing to try it, promise!


For the older bunch, give them the opportunity to search for the ingredient in the store

They may see something new, ask questions and stay engaged on the trip!


Okay, you got everything you needed on your list and returned home for dinner. Why should the fun stop here? While they are still interested in the new products you got together, have them participate in cooking as well. They will have a great sense of pride helping to make the meal and are sure to want seconds of their very own creation!

2 to 3 year olds

Work on basic motor skills and closely supervise them washing produce, picking herbs from the stem and even mixing in large bowls.


4 to 5 year olds

Try their growing skills by cracking an egg or purchasing a salad knife to start cutting softer foods and building their confidence in the kitchen.


6 to 7 year olds

Really involve them in the recipe and have them follow along. They are becoming more independent in the kitchen so value that and give small projects to make dinner a little easier for you. It’s a win-win!



Get your kids started in the kitchen this summer with our Nutrition Team at the Des Peres and Dardenne Prairie locations for Schnucks Kids Cooking Camp every day during the week this summer. Classes start May 31st and registration is open now!