Searching for a fun and interactive gift for the younger chef? Surprise a tiny foodie with a practical, kid-safe present that will have them buzzing around the kitchen. The excitement of receiving a cooking gift is just the tip of the iceberg—just wait until you see how proud they are to whip up their very own culinary creation.
Here are the best cooking gifts for kids.
Tovla Jr. Knives for Kids 3-Piece Set
When your children are ready to make the leap and actually start helping in the kitchen, this set of kid-safe knives is a good place to start. The FDA-grade, BPA-free kitchen tools are made of a premium nylon material with serrated edges that chop but are much more delicate than sharp metal counterparts. Though your child will relish in the newfound autonomy, you can let go of your breath.
Price at time of publish: $10
Material: Nylon | Blade Style: Serrated | Sizes: Large, medium, small
Little Tikes Backyard Barbecue Get Out 'n' Grill BBQ Toy Play Set
Another toy for younger kids to get them excited about cooking, this play grill set even includes a hot dog, hamburger, and some utensils to complete the setup. All the pieces fit inside the grill compartment for storage, and the toy isn't too bulky—it can be neatly tucked into a corner. Just a note: Some assembly is required.
Price at time of publish: $40
Dimensions (Assembled): 24 x 11 x 28 inches | Weight: 9.8 pounds
Williams Sonoma Dog & Cat Kid Aprons
Baking and cooking can get a little messy. Protect children’s clothing with these absolutely adorable dog- and cat-themed aprons, which feature two pockets on the front to hold utensils and other tools. Made of durable cotton, these aprons can handle any task in the kitchen and are even machine washable for easy cleanup. Tie the aprons up in the back using the two long straps and get right to baking. The neck strap is adjustable, as well, thanks to Velcro.
Price at time of publish: $25
Material: Cotton twill, Velcro | Dimensions: 20 x 24.5 inches
Baketivity Kids Baking Cinnamon Bun DIY Activity Kit
Take any guesswork out of the next family baking session with a kit that includes just what you need to make one special treat—nothing more. In each box, you’ll get all of the ingredients pre-measured for convenience, step-by-step educational instructions, plus a learning activity to dive into while dessert bakes. This particular kit makes tasty cinnamon buns, but there are other treats available, too, like chocolate chunk cookies or cake pops.
Price at time of publish: $36
Includes: Dry ingredients (flour, cinnamon mix, sugar, yeast, brown sugar, vanilla sugar), recipe instructions, game instructions
GWAWA Kids Cooking and Baking Set
For budding chefs who aren’t quite ready to handle real cooking tools, consider this comprehensive 25-piece cooking and baking playset. Not only does the set include handy tools like a whisk and a rolling pin, it also has an apron and chef's hat for the full kitchen look.
Price at time of publish: $24
Includes: Chef’s hat, apron, oven mitt, mat, wooden spoon, rolling pin, metal whisk, brush, 4 cookie cutters, 6 silicone cupcake molds, 5 measuring spoons, 2 cake cutters
Uncommon Goods Dinosaur Taco Holders
Kids love dinosaurs, kids love tacos; put them together and you get these handy gadgets. These T. rex- and triceratops-shaped taco holders are perfect for family dinners. Adorable and practical, they can hold two tacos each and keep all the ingredients upright and safely in the tortilla shell. Of course, they can also work with other foods, like doughnuts, sandwiches, waffles, and plenty more. Uncommon Goods also has a stegosaurus-shaped nachos and dip set where the chips form the dinosaur’s spikes. Make dinner whimsical and get kids excited to eat.
Price at time of publish: $20
Material: ABS plastic | Dimensions: 10.25 x 3 x 5 inches
Cookies by Design Majestic Mermaid Cookie Decorating Kit
Artistry and baking can go hand in hand. Encourage kids’ creativity with this Majestic Mermaid Cookie Decorating Kit from Cookies by Design. Depending on which size is ordered, there are 10 or 20 pre-baked sugar cookies in the shapes of mermaid tails, clam shells, and starfish. In terms of decorating, the kit includes sugar sprinkles and four bags of colored icing in purple, light purple, turquoise, and light turquoise. Cookies by Design also has a number of other themes available, including Magical Unicorns, Summer Vibes, and a Birthday Kit.
Price at time of publish: $34 for 10 cookies, $42 for 20 cookies
Includes: 10 or 20 shaped sugar cookies, 4 bags of colored icing, sugar sprinkles
Uncommon Goods Kid's Global Adventure Cooking Kit
Teach your kids that there’s more to cooking than just putting a quick meal together. This cooking kit shows kids that food is one of the best ways to explore new cultures and new traditions. Choose from one of seven countries—Brazil, Ethiopia, Greece, India, Lebanon, Mexico, or Morocco—to send your family on a culinary expedition. Each kit comes with unique ingredients and spices that come together to yield three authentic, healthy, and—most importantly—kid-approved meals from each country.
Price at time of publish: $25
Includes: Various sauce and spice mixes, recipe cards, food passport, small tools
Williams Sonoma Bake and Create Cupcake Set
If you want to give a budding baker an all-in-one gift, try out this Bake and Create Cupcake Set. The kit comes with baking equipment (such as a whisk and muffin tins), decorating supplies (including icing bags and an off-set spatula), and even a vibrant machine-washable apron. Kids will have fun baking anything from chocolate peanut butter cupcakes to snickerdoodle cupcakes.
Price at time of publish: $100
Includes: Whisk, mini spatula, 1.5 quart mixing bowl with lid, 2 nonstick muffin tins (6 wells each), 12 silicone cupcake liners, offset icing spatula, 4 icing tips, 8 disposable icing bags, plastic coupler, kid-sized apron, storage box, confetti cupcake recipe
Easy Chef Moose Toys Chocolate Bar Maker
Why limit your favorite sweet lover to what the stores have to offer? This fun kit comes with a variety of BPA-free molds, a decorating pen, stamps, and wrappers to encourage them to use their imagination to create their ideal candy bar right in the microwave.
Price at time of publish: $23
Includes: 3 molds, decorating squeeze pen, 4 candy bar wrappers, recipe booklet
Flour Shop Rainbow Pop-Up Cake Kit
The only thing better than baking a cake is baking a layered rainbow cake that nestles into a push pop. That’s right—this special kit comes with everything an adventurous baker needs to whip up the rainbow-hued push pops the NYC-based Flour Shop is famous for. The set, which comes packaged in a tin ripe for gifting (no wrapping required), makes plenty for a small crowd of 12.
Price at time of publish: $60
Includes: Vanilla cake mix, vanilla frosting mix, 6 neon food coloring gels, rainbow sprinkle mix, 12 push pop molds, pastry bag, decorative tin
Presto Poplite Hot Air Popper
Popcorn is a classic treat for family movie night. Kids can help make the snack with the Presto Poplite Hot Air Popper. Not only is it simple to use, the Poplite also doesn't require any oil. It's able to pop up to 18 cups of popcorn in just 2.5 minutes. The built-in popcorn measuring cup also doubles as a convenient butter warmer. Thanks to the curved chute, the popcorn can fall directly into a serving bowl.
Our testers loved how the model was easy to clean since there wasn't any oily residue. They also praised the overall compact frame of the popper, which made it easy to store. However, the testers did note that the unit needed to cool down between uses.
Price at time of publish: $36
Power: 1,475 watts | Capacity: 18 cups | Dimensions: 5.81 x 9.25 x 13.12 inches
"There's no way the popcorn can oversteam with this maker, which was reflected in the popcorn's impressive flavor and texture: crispy, not chewy, and perfectly toasted."
Fotouzy Cutting Boards
Kids can help prepare meals in the kitchen by chopping fruits, veggies, and more. These vibrant cutting boards from Fotouzy are not only great surfaces to prep food on, but they also are color- and symbol-coded for various types of ingredients. For example, the red mat has a picture of a cow on it and can be used for preparing beef. The orange mat has some cheese, the green one has a banana, the yellow one has chicken, and so on.
Not only is this a nice way to introduce various types of food, but you can also use it as a teaching moment about food safety. For example, only using the yellow mat to cut poultry means kids won’t cross-contaminate raw meat bacteria onto fruits or vegetables. Place the mats on a fully dry surface to avoid slipping.
Price at time of publish: $29
Includes: 7 colored cutting mats | Material: Plastic | Dimensions: 15 x 12 x 0.28 inches
Disney Mickey Mouse Waffle Maker
Surprise a Disney fan with an appliance that marries two great loves. The mini waffle maker makes one 6-inch Mickey Mouse character waffle (try your hand at a grilled cheese, too!), plus features a few important safety features for young cooks, like non-skid feet and a power light that indicates when the appliance is on and hot.
Price at time of publish: $40
Power: 800 watts | Warranty: 1 year | Dimensions: 9.5 x 7.25 x 3.75 inches
Uncommon Goods Construction Plate and Utensils
Even if your toddler is too young to really get into cooking, you can still foster a love of food from an early age. This fun dining set does more than turn mealtime into playtime. It encourages kids to explore and experiment with whatever you put on their plate.
Price at time of publish: $36
Includes: Plate, spoon, fork, pusher | Material: Plastic
Hasbro Easy Bake Ultimate Oven
There’s a reason the Easy Bake oven has been around for as long as it has—it’s a great and safe foray into the world of baking. The electric oven comes with everything your child needs to make frosted brownies—a baking pan, pan tool, chocolate brownie mix, vanilla frosting mix, rainbow sugar crystals, and, of course, step-by-step instructions.
Price at time of publish: $150
Includes: Oven, baking pan, pan tool, chocolate brownie mix, vanilla icing mix, rainbow sugar crystals, instructions
Real Cooking Chocolate Pen
Trade those trusty markers for a different kind of drawing tool—a pen that deposits real chocolate as your child writes. The kit comes with a melting tray that holds four colored chocolates and a pen that automatically loads to minimize mess, plus 40 mold designs to help guide the creative process.
Price at time of publish: $17
Includes: Chocolate pen, drawing tip, warming tray and lid, 4 colored chocolate packs, stirring stick, 40 mold designs (2 trays), charging cable, instructions
Chef'n Sweet Spot Ice Cream Maker
Sometimes the best treats are the ones you can whip up in just a few minutes flat—particularly if the task involves hungry kids. This cool insulated bowl is a great alternative to more cumbersome ice cream machines, as it preps ice cream, gelato, and other frozen desserts in just 120 seconds.
Price at time of publish: $55
Includes: Ice cream maker pan, scoop, spade, recipe book
Genuine Fred Shark Munchtime Chopsticks
There are many tricks to learning how to use chopsticks. For example, some people tie disposable chopsticks together with rubber bands. These training chopsticks by Genuine Fred make the task of learning how to use the utensils easy, fun, and child-friendly. Shaped like a shark, the mouth opens when the sticks are pressed together. Kids will have fun puppeting the shark while figuring out how to eat bigger pieces of food with the chopsticks. Genuine Fred has other animal shapes available, too, including a yellow frog, lobster claw, green t. Rex, and the pink and orange toucan.
Price at time of publish: $8
Material: ABS plastic | Dimensions: 2.75 x 0.87 x 8.86 inches
UncommonGoods Root Beer Science Kit
This fun science-based set teaches kids that not all cooking provides instant gratification, but that sometimes the best things are worth waiting for. The root beer making kit comes with all of the ingredients your little food scientist needs to whip up artisanal root beer—sassafras extract, yeast, and a funnel. It also comes with additional tools—labels and instructions—to extend the fun, as your child figures out how to brand their creation.
Price at time of publish: $18
Includes: Sassafras extract, yeast, a funnel, labels, instructions
Evridwear Kids Cut-Resistant Gloves
Knife skills and knife safety are incredibly important to learn, even from a young age. With these cut-resistant gloves, younger kids can protect themselves while confidently building knife skills. EvridWear’s gloves are made from durable polyethylene glass fibers, tightly woven together so blades can’t slip through. The gloves feature an elastic band around the wrist to keep them secure and comfortable. They’re great for chopping vegetables, grating cheese, carving pumpkins, shaving carrots, or cutting paper for crafts. The gloves come in multiple sizes, so you can find a pair that fits your child. There are also multiple colors to pick from: pink, gray, purple, and green.
Price at time of publish: $9
Material: Polyethylene (HPPE) glass fibers | Ages: 4-15
KidzWerkz Wood Step Stool for Kids
If kids want to help in the kitchen but can’t quite reach the countertops, you’re going to need a step stool. This sturdy wooden option from KidzWerks is ideal for any young chef. It’s made of birch plywood and has four anti-slip pads to avoid jostling and floor scratches. Have multiple kids or want to keep this step stool around as your child grows? No problem. It features an adjustable step with three different heights. There is also a removable safety bar to keep kids secure. The step stool comes in four different colors–gray, navy, white, and natural wood–so you can find one that matches your kitchen’s décor.
Price at time of publish: $180
Material: Wood | Hold Weight: 150 pounds | Dimensions: 36 x 19.5 x 16.5 inches
Eshato Chef Hat for Kids
If you have a child who is already into cooking, you can really make them feel like a pro with a chef's hat. This affordable three-pack is great if things get a little messy and you need to plop one in the washer, or invite a couple of friends over and let everyone feel like a pro baker or chef. Each hat has an elastic band so it can be adjusted for comfort.
Price at time of publish: $7
Material: Cotton, polyester, elastic | Includes: 3 hats
Edible Science: Experiments You Can Eat
For elementary- and middle school-age children, this unique cookbook that focuses on the scientific side of cooking is entertaining and educational. In this National Geographic special, kids will work their way through dozens of thoroughly-tested, fun, edible experiments crafted by a former teacher who holds a Ph.D. in science education.
Price at time of publish: $13
Pages: 80 | Reading Age: 8-12 | Published: 2015
The Complete Baking Book for Young Chefs
Here’s a fresh idea: Help a budding chef hone their skills by giving them a cookbook they can work their way through from start to finish. This #1 New York Times Best Seller from America’s Test Kitchen is a great choice, since each recipe—breakfast, snacks, beverages, dinners, desserts, and more—is developed by expert chefs and thoroughly tested by more than 750 kids.
Price at time of publish: $20
Pages: 224 | Published: 2019 | Publisher: Sourcebooks Explore
Modern Chef Large Wooden Kids Kitchen Playset
You can get your child excited about cooking even before it's safe for them to do much in the real kitchen with a toy version. This modern toy replica is about as cute as it gets. There's an oven, stove, sink, cabinet for storing pots and pans (sold separately), and even a chalkboard for writing out today's specials.
Price at time of publish: $499
Dimensions: 32 x 15 x 34 inches | Materials: Engineered wood, iron, ABS plastic, and acrylic
Raddish Kids Cozy Classics Cooking Kit
Raddish Kids has a number of fantastic cooking sets that encourage kids to develop both their kitchen skills and their palates. The Cozy Classics kit contains recipe cards for three tasty favorites–broccoli cheddar soup, meatloaf, and crumb coffee cake. The kit even includes a decorative iron-on patch, a cake spatula, and fun table talk cards to encourage dinnertime conversation. Other kits include the Let’s Party kit–which features Caesar salad dip, stuffed crust pizza, and confetti cake recipe cards–and the Family Fun Night kit, which has corn muffins, baked potatoes, and domino shortbread cookie recipes.
Price at time of publish: $28
Includes: Recipe guides (broccoli cheddar soup, classic meatloaf, crumb coffee cake), cake server spatula, iron-on patch, table talk cards
Tovolo Dino Ice Pop Molds
Store-bought popsicles are fine, but they’re so much more fun when you make them yourself–especially when the molds are whimsical shapes. Tovolo has a four-piece set of ice pop molds in the shape of detailed dinosaurs. The silicone tray’s flexibility makes it easier to remove the ice pops from the freezer. The plastic tail-shaped sticks not only feature an ovular drip protector to keep hands clean, the sticks have fossil shapes that emerge as the popsicle is eaten. Tovolo also has ice pop molds shaped like penguins, monsters, and zombies.
Price at time of publish: $16
Material: Silicone and plastic | Number of Pops: 4 | Pop Size: 2.64 ounces each
PTC Ceramic Dragon Cookie Jar
If the kids in your life love baking cookies, they will need some place to store their treats. This dragon cookie jar will protect any goodies inside while delighting kids with its bright hand-painted design. One reviewer mentioned it’s a little small for a batch of big cookies, but it’s the perfect size for small cookies (Oreo size).
Price at time of publish: $50
Material: Ceramic | Weight: 2.3 pounds | Dimensions: 9.5 x 7 x 6.25 inches
FarmSteady Make Your Own Rainbow Bagels
Bagels are a breakfast staple. Kids can help create some truly vibrant bagels with this colorful kit from FarmSteady. On the ingredients side, the kit includes dry bagel mix and yeast, so the baker will need to provide the flour, sugar, and water. For decoration, the kit has three bottles of liquid gel food coloring–red, blue, and yellow–which can be mixed together to create additional hues. Following the provided directions, the bagels will be crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside, and absolutely rainbow bright.
Price at time of publish: $30
Includes: Dry bagel mix, 3 bottles of liquid gel food coloring, yeast, directions
Oannao Multicolor Silicone Spatula Set
Spatulas are an invaluable tool in the kitchen. They’re great for scraping every last bit of batter to make chocolate brownies, or mixing ingredients together for a savory barbecue sauce. This set of silicone spatulas has a variety of colors, sizes, and styles–perfect for tackling any number of recipes. The offset spatula is great for smoothing out icing atop a cake. The spoon-shaped spatula can help with sampling soups. All in all, the set is handy and versatile. As a bonus, there is a silicone basting brush, a balloon whisk, and an egg separator included with the spatulas.
Price at time of publish: $15
Includes: Large spreader, large spatula, large spoon, medium spreader, medium spatula, medium spoon, medium basting brush, balloon egg whisk, egg separator
Playz Edible Candy Food Science STEM Chemistry Kit
Cooking and baking are incredible hobbies (and skills), but what about candy making? This incredible candy making kit from Playz not only teaches kids how to make a variety of candies, but it teaches important STEM concepts at the same time. For example, while making rock candy, kids can learn about the science of density and crystallization. The set includes 40 experiments, more than 20 tools, and recipes to make all sorts of candies. It’s a gift that is as sweet as it is smart.
Price at time of publish: $70
Includes: 2 educational books, cornflour, strawberry jelly, tutti-frutti jelly, citric acid, gelatine bags, sprinkles, thermometer, silicone mold, lollipop sticks, measuring spoon, small measuring cups, crepe paper sheets, satin ribbons, decorative stickers, straws
What to Look for in Cooking Gifts for Kids
Whether it’s apparel–like an apron and chef’s hat–or simply kitchen utensils, finding the right size gift is important for kids. Adult items can be too big, unwieldy, or heavy. Not only can this make cooking frustrating, but also potentially dangerous. It’s best to put in the effort and find a good size. Most items for children will have an age suggestion in the description.
When it comes to giving a kitchen-related gift, you’ll want the item to be useful in some way. For kids, that could mean tools that help them learn how to cook, develop fine motor skills, or excite them about cooking. It’s also best if the gift serves multiple purposes, so it’s not just taking up space in a drawer. A cooking spoon, for example, can mix batter, push eggs around, or even serve food out of a bowl.
Toddlers, kids, and pre-teens all have different skills and abilities. Getting them involved in the kitchen as soon as possible is great, but a toddler probably shouldn’t handle a chef’s knife. Make sure the gift you’re giving is age appropriate and comes with safety features. Most items will have some sort of age suggestion or age range available in the product description.
How can kids help in the kitchen?
There are many ways for kids to help prepare meals, snacks, and desserts. Kids can stir batters in mixing bowls, cut up soft bananas or strawberries, peel carrots, crack eggs, sprinkle cheese, and plenty more. Depending on their age, some tasks may be easier than others. Toddlers can help mix ingredients together while pre-teens can handle tasks like cutting up bell peppers.
What are some kid-friendly recipes?
One way to get kids excited about learning how to cook is to make kid-friendly meals or treats with them. After all, they might be a bit more eager to try it out if they’re making chocolate chip cookies they get to eat afterwards. If it’s breakfast time, try making some easy pancakes from scratch or a tasty omelet. For lunch, try chicken kebabs or tomato soup. There are so many fantastic desserts to try, like chocolate fudge, peanut butter cupcakes, or chocolate-covered bananas.
Can kids use adult kitchen tools?
While some kitchen tools, like wooden spoons or silicone spatulas, might work for kids, sometimes adult tools are just too big or hard to handle. Tools made specifically for kids tend to be smaller, have no-slip grips, and include softer edges to avoid injury.
Why Trust the Spruce Eats?
This roundup was written by Brigitt Earley, who has written and edited hundreds of gift guides for various publications over the course of the last 10 years. She also holds a culinary degree from the French Culinary Institute.
Allison Wignall was in the kitchen from a very young age. She started by helping crack eggs and mixing ingredients and eventually grew into a cooking enthusiast. Her work has been featured in publications, such as Food & Wine, Travel + Leisure, and Southern Living.