The Seasoned Kids
Lesson 9: Teaching Knife Skills
Knife skills. It’s the part of teaching kids cooking skills that make parents cringe. They always seem to go for the sharpest, biggest knife around. I’m hear to tell you that you can put all those sharp knives away because we have the perfect solution for you. Regardless of how you feel about your kid using a knife, it’s an integral part of teaching independence in the kitchen. Put your fears aside, read our tips, and get them chopping up everything.
How to Start
To start, put the sharp knives away. Butter knives are the way to start by cutting small things. Kids can cut their sandwiches, cut bananas, or soft (warm not hot) potatoes. Unfortunately for your sanity, they will quickly want to move away from using a butter knife and they will want to use those sharp knives. But wait! There are kid friendly options in between using a butter knife and those sharp knives (see tips below). When moving on from butter knives, keep cutting to single slices before you move onto chopping skills. Once you get more comfortable, there’s nothing you can’t let them do! Just continuously remind them of safety.
Tips for teaching your kids knife skills
- Use a learning tower to get them stable at the counter
- Standing on a stool or sitting on the counter, doesn’t stabilize kids as much as a tower will
- Ergonomically designed nylon knives, cutting gloves, and finger guards are options for in between the butter knife and sharp knife stages.
- Teach them how to hold the knife with one hand, hold object with other hand, and slowly move the holding hand as you as cutting
- You are more than likely to cut fingers with a dull knife rather than a sharp one so avoid giving them a dull knife
- If you want to start teaching knife skills but this makes you nervous, use the nylon knives to cut clay or play-doh before working with food!
These Banana Santa Snacks are perfect for after school snacks or snacks for holiday playdates. Watch the video, then grab the full recipe below!
- 1 banana
- 1 large marshmallow
- 2 mini marshmallows
- 2 fresh cranberries
- 2 fresh strawberries
- 4 chocolate chips
- 4 chocolate sprinkles
- coconut flakes
- optional: 2 pretzel sticks
- Peel banana.
- Cut it in half.
- Push cranberry into center of each banana piece.
- Add two chocolate chips for eyes and two sprinkles for eyebrows above the cranberry on each banana.
- Tear big marshmallow in half. Using a skewer or toothpick, push one half onto the top of the banana.
- Cut top of strawberries and add one strawberry, skinny side up, to the top of the marshmallow.
- Top with a mini marshmallow.
- Push on a small handful of coconut flakes for the beard.
- If desired, push a pretzel stick into the bottom of the bottom for a stick.
This post is a part of our “The Seasoned Kids”, kid’s cooking series. Learn more about The Seasoned Kids here.
- Week 1: Teaching Importance of Washing Fruits and Vegetables + Berry Parfait Recipe
- Week 2: Learning to Stir + Cranberry Coconut Energy Bites
- Week 3: 3 Ways to Mash + Overnight Oats Recipe 3 Ways
- Week 4: Spreading + Peanut Butter and Jelly Spider Sandwiches
- Week 5: Tearing + Bugs on a Log
- Week 6: Pouring + Chocolate Peanut Butter Yogurt Popsicles
- Week 7: Measuring & Weighing + Holiday Pudding Cups
- Week 8: Sifting + Snowball Bites