Cooking with Kids: Holiday Treats


Who doesn’t like to get in the kitchen during the holidays? It’s my favorite time of year to do some baking and making of food gifts and with sweets involved, my kids love to help too! These holiday treats are all pretty easy recipes that my kids, ages 3 and 6, can help me make!

Decorated Sugar Cookies

This one’s a bit longer of a process and mess to potentially clean up, but who doesn’t love a decorated sugar cookie during the holidays? I definitely take the short-cut and used store-bought cookie dough for this one. I roll out the dough and then have my kids use cookie cutters to cut out the shapes. After I bake and cool them, my tip is to use a divided tray, as shown below and give each kid their own tray of icing and sprinkles. This tends to cut down on a little bit of mess.

sugar cookies

Muddy Buddies

This is an easy one to make and the Chex website has so many options if chocolate and peanut butter aren’t your things. The original chocolate and peanut butter kind are our favorite. My kids can help add the cereal to the bowl and then stir in the melted chocolate and peanut butter mixture. I add the powdered sugar to a large ziplock bag and then pour in the cereal mixture. Make sure the bag’s seal is closed, and then let the kids shake it up! This is their favorite part!

Hot Cocoa Mix

Everyone likes hot cocoa during the winter; this is a straightforward one. You can easily make individual batches of this mix with 4 teaspoons of sugar and 1 tablespoon of cocoa, mixed with 1 cup of warmed milk. If you want to give as a gift with a couple of servings, easily multiply the amounts above times the number of servings you want to give. For a 4-serving gift, use 5 Tbs + 1 tsp sugar and 1/4 cup cocoa.

hot chocolate

Chocolate Dipped Pretzel Rods

This is easy and often still looks pretty nice, even with little ones helping! I take pretzel rods and break them in half. Then add chocolate melts (found somewhere like Hobby Lobby or JoAnn Fabrics) to a microwave-safe bowl and heat in 30-second intervals until melted. Then dip the broken end of the pretzel about 3/4 of the way into the chocolate. Lay them on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and sprinkle with nuts, sprinkles, crushed peppermints, etc. My kids can help with several parts of this process and enjoyed making them this year for the first time!

Rolo Pretzel Candies

This recipe is a favorite of mine and my kids! My kids love helping to unwrap all of the Rolo candies, laying the pretzels on the baking sheet and then pressing the M&M candy into the Rolo candies after baking! One safety item to note is that the baking sheet is very hot when you take it out of the oven so I cover the edge with a towel when they put the M&M’s on top at the end.

holiday Rolo pretzel candies

What do you think? Are you ready to get into the kitchen and do some holiday baking with your little ones? What types of items do you like to make with them during the wintertime?