whole wheat burritos filled with egg and red and green pepper cut on a plate

Cooking – A Skill for Every Age

The age of your child will determine what they can do to help in the kitchen.  Matching their skill level with cooking duties will help instill a sense of pride and accomplishment.  It is also a great way to teach them about nutrition and food safety.  It also provides an opportunity to teach subjects, such as language, math, and science, jut to name a few.  Check out our last blog Family Fun in the Kitchen to find out more.

Here are how cooking skills are broken down by age.

Four-year-olds can:

  • Wash fruits and veggies
  • Stir ingredients in a bowl
  • Help you pour liquids
  • Tear lettuce
  • Grease pans
  • Open packages

Five to six-year-olds can:

  • Chop fresh herbs with child-friendly scissors
  • Cut soft foods with a dull knife
  • Toss salads
  • Measure ingredients
  • Set the table
  • Peel oranges and soft-boiled eggs
  • Open packages
  • Stir cake and muffin mixes

Seven- to eight-year-olds can:

  • Pour muffin and cake mix into pans
  • Spoon and shape cookies
  • Beat ingredients with a whisk
  • Mash potatoes or other vegetables
  • Make sandwiches
  • Find ingredients in the cabinet

Nine- to 12-year-olds can:

  • Open cans
  • Use the microwave
  • Prepare kid-friendly recipes
  • Shred cheese
  • Peel vegetables
  • Use an oven with supervision
  • Use a knife with supervision
  • Stir sauces
  • Help with clean up
  • Help with meal planning

Breakfast preparation is a great place to start teaching, as there a many simple yet healthy breakfast recipes to pick from.   Here is a breakfast burrito recipe my family enjoys making and eating, regularly.

Breakfast Burrito


2  Eggs

1 Tbsp Milk

2  Green onions, chopped

½  Red or green bell pepper, diced

Pinch each salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/4 cup Shredded cheddar cheese

2  Small whole wheat tortillas



  1. In a bowl, whisk together eggs and milk. Stir in onion, pepper, salt and pepper
  2. Spray a small non-stick skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium low heat. Pour egg mixture into skillet and as egg begins to set, use a spatula to gently push cooked portions to the centre. Tilt pan to allow uncooked eggs to flow into empty spaces.
  3. Sprinkle with cheese and cook for 1 minute or until eggs are set and cheese is melted.
  4. Divide egg in two and place each half onto a tortilla. Roll up to enjoy.

This recipe has been used with permission from Dietitians of Canada.  Get easy to understand information on food, healthy eating and disease prevention along with award-winning recipes at www.unlockfood.ca.

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