Get Your Kids to Gobble Up Books!

When it comes to teaching kids about food, you win some and you lose some. Even award-winning chefs have to contend with toddlers who eat nothing but white food and Goldfish. It’s all the more reason to infuse food lessons into story time.

Readers to Eaters is an independent retailer of current and classic food books, as well as publisher of food books for children. The founders, Philip and June Lee, started the company to promote food literacy and encourage families to participate in food culture not only by reading about it but growing, cooking and eating together. R2E is in the process of starting an online bookstore, but here are some recommendations from the Lees for good books to read with your kids:

BOARD BOOKS

Eating the Alphabet by Lois Ehlert
A fun alphabet tour of fruits and vegetables from around the world, including favorites like bananas, and less familiar such as radicchio.

AGES 2-5

Bee-bim Bop! by Linda Sue Park. Illustrated by Ho Baek Lee
Newbery Award winner Park captures the energy and anticipation of a girl eager for her favorite Korean rice dish. Recipe included.

Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey
In this classic tale, a little girl and her mother set off to forage for blueberries, as does momma bear and her cub. A heartwarming comedy of errors ensues. A Caldecott Honor book.

Growing Vegetable Soup by Lois Ehlert
Bold and vibrant graphics capture the process from seed to table. Full of digestible information and inspiration to nurture both vegetables and body. Recipe included. A Parents’ Choice Award Winner.

AGES 4-7

Pretend Soup and Other Real Recipes by Mollie Katzen & Ann Henderson
The best cookbook for preschoolers & up, by the author of Moosewood Cookbook. Tasty recipes in easy-to-follow diagrams designed for very young children to cook independently with just a little help from an adult “partner.”

Ugly Vegetables by Grace Lin
A Chinese American girl wishes her garden is filled with beautiful flowers like her neighbors’ until her mother makes soup from their own “ugly” vegetable garden, and neighbors come to enjoy. Recipe included.

—Hsiao-Ching Chou