Christmas is a time for spending time with the family and baking. What better way to combine both by baking cookies with your kids. I have a few tips for making the process go as smoothly as possible when bringing kids in the kitchen.
Wash hands first and frequently!
I always tell my kids that the number one rule in the kitchen is to make sure you wash your hands before you do anything. Kitchen safety is important and I’ve engrained in my kids that the sink is the first stop they must take before doing anything with food.
I sent my kids to the playroom while I pre-measured everything and put into little bowls. This ensured that they still got to pour and mix, but without the mess and confusion of measuring ingredients.
To lessen the chance of fighting and to make sure everyone is included, I assign jobs for mixing, pouring, rolling and cutting. Inevitablly my kisd will fight over who gets to add the flour or who gets to man the mixer, so I divvy up jobs in the beginning to ward off fights.
Set up stations
Their favorite part of making cookies is cutting out the shapes and decorating, but workstations can get crowded fast and fights can ensue over who got to use the cookie cutter last (notice a theme with fighting?) I give each kid a cutting board, rolling pin and set of cookie cutters so they can each roll out their own dough and cut out shapes.
Know your place
Make sure you stand nearby during the process and handle all use of the oven and appliances. Safety comes first in the kitchen and while your child may think he’s grown up enough to put the pan in the oven, it is best to leave the hot stuff to the parents.
Try out this recipe for light gingerbread cookies and let me know how they turn out. I’d love to hear what you think! As always, for more light sweet treats, check out my book Guilt-Free Cupcakes: Indulge without the Bulge now available on iBooks, Kindle, Nook and e-books.
Light Gingerbread Cookie Recipe
- ¾ cup light butter, softened
- ½ cup brown sugar Splenda
- 1 egg
- ¾ cup molasses
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 cups whole-wheat flour
- 2 tsp ginger
- 1 ½ tsp baking soda
- 1 ½ tsp cinnamon
- ¾ tsp ground cloves
- ¼ tsp salt
In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg and molasses stirring well. In a separate bowl, mix flours with spices and salt. Slowly add dry ingredients to the wet, being careful not to overmix. Roll dough out to ¼-inch thickness and use cookie cutters to cut out the dough. Bake at 350 for 8 minutes.