Ashley Hutchings

I’m a mom to two little ladies and an avid cook, writer and crafter! I’ve raised my girls in London and New York City, but you’ll currently find me getting back to my country roots in a rural area of Connecticut!

Is it realistic to cook every meal with your kids? No. They will slow you down and mom life is busy! But, is cooking with your kids tons of fun, and does it foster healthy eating habits, food appreciation, and all types of education? YES! So, why not put on your matching aprons and get in the kitchen! Whether it’s for dinner prep, an afternoon baking project, or a festive fall or Halloween treat, your kids will appreciate being your little helpers!

The most efficient way to get your kids involved is with meal prep. It can keep them busy and close while you focus on getting dinner on the table. Give them a task like stirring, scooping out the seeds from a squash, or being the one to put the pre-measured ingredients into a bowl. My kids are 3 and 1, but older kids can be trusted with leveling the cups!

When I have more time, and am not on a dinner mission, I will get my girls involved in a baking activity. This is so great to explore the senses. Kids love the feeling of flour between their fingers, the smell of vanilla extract, the shapes dough can make, and seeing and eating a delicious treat at the end of the experience! Pies are a great dessert to bake with your kids and perfect for this time of year. I like to trace my daughter’s hand in dough for a personal touch to bake on the top of a pie! Try out this Apple-Cranberry Pie! I also love making personal pies in a muffin tin for adorable portion control. Check out these Mini Chocolate Pies! I also recommend going from an apple orchard to the kitchen to really show your kids a full scope on how food ends up on our tables. It’s a really special learning experience!

And with fall comes Halloween! This is a great time to get creative and use imaginations! Turn cupcakes into black cats or drizzle with red icing for a bit of gore. Turn white chocolate-covered skewered marshmallows into spooky ghosts. I love a cupcake decorating buffet setup where kids can really go wild (end inevitably overboard) on sprinkles, candy corn, marshmallows, gel icing, and more!

Those are just a few ways to get your kids involved. Whatever you manage to do with your kiddos will create memories they’ll never forget! I still remember licking that brownie batter-covered spatula and adding the shredded cheese to my grandmother’s mac’ & cheese recipe. Special moments, for sure. So, happy fall and happy cooking!!

 


1

Gear up for kitchen projects with your favorite young chef. You'll look and feel like true culinary pros with our classic striped aprons.

Williams Sonoma Bay Stripe Adult & Kid Aprons

Get excited to get in the kitchen with these matching aprons.

$49.90
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2

Pies are one of the best things to make with the kids! This Pastry Mat will guide and teach them sizing as they learn to work with dough! I use this even without my kids!

OXO Good Grips Pastry Mat

Who doesn't love Pie?

$19.99
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3

Mrs. Anderson's Baking Pie Crust Shield allows pies to rise, reduces spillage, and prevents pie crusts from burning or over browning.

Mrs. Anderson's Baking Pie Crust Shield

Another pie-making necessity

$5.99
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4

Pre-baked pie shells often bubble up, shrink and crack during baking. These pie weights can help prevent this from happening because they conduct heat evenly and they hold the pastry in place while it bakes.

Mrs. Anderson's Baking Pie Weights

Don't forget the weights!

$5.99
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5

One of the best ways to decorate a pie is one your kids will love! They’ll have fun with these Fall Pie Punches!

Williams Sonoma Fall Pie Punches

Punch it up with these Fall Pie Punches

$19.95
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6

It’s pumpkin season! Get yourself a good Carving Kit, and don’t forget to roast those pumpkins seeds after making your spooky jack-o-lantern!

William Sonoma Messermeister 3-Piece Pumpkin Carving Set

Carve it out!

$24.95
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7

Kids love Halloween! Get some festive serverwear like this Cauldron! Bonus points if you incorporate some dry ice magic! (But be careful!)

William Sonoma Cauldron Serving Bowl

Let's get witchy.

$69.95
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8

Add to your own homemade goodies or save even more time by decorating store-bought treats. Easy to use, just attach these edible ghost decorations with a dot of icing.

Wilton Ghost Candy Corn

Even the littlest kids can help top a cupcake with these!

4.99
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9

These mugs are perfect for Halloween fun.

Pottery Barn Ghost Shaped Stoneware Mug

Hot apple cider or cocoa out of these Ghost Mugs might be the perfect October treat!

12.50
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10

My favorite new food product! A nut-free, gluten-free chocolate spread that is perfect for drizzling over desserts, adding to the center of cupcakes, or just eating by the spoonful!

Pure Food by Estee Chocolate Sesame Butter with Cocoa

Enjoy the goodness of great-tasting snacks without all the allergy-inducing ingredients.

19.99
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