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The Best Homemade Devil’s Food Cupcake Recipe

The Best Homemade Devil's Food Cupcake Recipe

Devil’s food cupcakes are my very favorite. This recipe is so dark and rich, no other cupcakes can compare. This is my go-to recipe for special occasions. If you make this devil’s food cupcake recipe, you will NOT be disappointed. 

The Best Homemade Devil’s Food Cupcake Recipe

A few months ago, we had a daycare home tour in our childcare organization. I served these devil’s food cupcakes and some garden fresh pico de gallo for some fun even snacks. My friends were crazy for these cupcakes and were eager for the recipe, so here it is. Enjoy!

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7 Non-Alcoholic Drinks for your Kid-Friendly Party

7 Non-Alcoholic Drinks for your Kid-Friendly Party

I don’t know about you but I love a party! Would you love to have some fun, yummy non-alcoholic party drinks to serve that aren’t full of artificial colors and flavors? I don’t drink alcohol but I love having a fun party drink to serve. I have done a lot of different things over the years, but I love the idea of making fruit punch from real food ingredients. There are a thousand recipes for fruit punch but most of them have cool aid or soda or some other ingredient that I like to avoid in my diet and my kid’s diets.

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Cooking with Kids-Ice Cream in a Bag

Ice cream is a super fun treat for kids and adults and it couldn’t be easier to whip some up in a zip lock bag by hand. Kids can do the mixing all on their own and have a tasty treat to enjoy in just a few minutes. 

kids making ice cream in a bag

You need a gallon sized zip lock bag and a quart sized bag, some rock salt, ice and ice cream ingredients. I have made this with my kids several times and it’s always so much fun! It’s also good motor skill building since they have to put in the work to get the reward. The sensory experience of the cold ice, the smooth plastic, and the sweet, yummy smelling ice cream is awesome as well. And SCIENCE is involved in watching the reaction of the milk as it turns from liquid to solid as it freezes. 

Ice cream in a bag, Little Sprouts Learning

This activity has so much to offer kids, plus they get a yummy, chemical free snack from the deal in the end. Who doesn’t love a super fun dessert? I know I do. 

Ice cream in a bag, cooking with kids

Ice Cream in a Bag
Simple homemade ice cream made in a zip lock bag.
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Ingredients
  1. 1/2 C. Heavy cream
  2. 1/2 C. Whole milk
  3. 1/2 tsp. Vanilla
  4. 2 T. Raw Sugar
  5. Quart Size zip lock bag
  6. Gallon Size zip lock bag
  7. 6 C. Ice
  8. 1/4 C. Rock Salt
Instructions
  1. Wash hands and have kids wash theirs.
  2. Hold quart size bag open and let kids pour cream, milk, vanilla and sugar into bag.
  3. Zip bag tightly for each child.
  4. Let child place ice cream back into gallon sized bag.
  5. Let child add ice and rock salt to gallon bag.
  6. Zip gallon bag tightly for each child.
  7. Let them shake for 5 minutes vigorously until ice cream is firm.
  8. Remove quart bags from gallon bags carefully making sure not to spill salty liquid.
  9. Place quart bags in freezer until ready to eat.
  10. Snip bottom corner from bag with scissors and squeeze ice cream into dish.
  11. Eat and enjoy!
Little Sprouts Learning https://littlesproutslearning.co/
Whip up a batch of this super fun treat, or check out the blog for other great cooking with kids recipes and activities. Cooking is a wonderful way for kids to learn so many things including healthy eating, trying new foods, math, science, and reading skills and so much more. Get your kids in the kitchen today. Click here to see why it’s so important!

kids shaking ice cream in bags

Cooking with Kids-Spaghetti Pie

 

Using up leftovers can be boring sometimes. Having your leftovers a new way is a great way to make them seem appealing again. Leftover spaghetti makes an amazing spaghetti pie. I got this idea years ago from my friend Joyce and I don’t have her original recipe, but the idea is definitely hers. When I was a young cook, she helped me by sharing some of her tried and true favorite recipes with me and this was one thing she taught me to cook. All you need for a delicious new meal is some leftover spaghetti and some leftover noodles. Click here to check out how we make our own roasted tomato sauce from our garden tomatoes for our spaghetti sauce.

kids cooking spaghetti pie

The kids LOVE making and eating this because who doesn’t like pie? It’s a great way to serve them spaghetti that is not as messy as the loose noodles that fall all over the floor and everywhere. If you are a childcare provider or have a lot of kids, you know what I mean about how messy spaghetti is. We have spaghetti for dinner and then let the kids make it into spaghetti pie the next day for lunch so we can avoid a lot of that mess.

We use whole wheat pasta for an even healthier dish.  

cooking spaghetti pie with kids

The first thing you need to do is mix your leftover spaghetti noodles with one beaten egg, 2 tablespoons of melted butter, and a fourth of a cup of parmesean cheese. Then press the mixture into a pie shell. Next add some cottage cheese and then top with your leftover spaghetti sauce. Top with some grated mozzarella and parmesean cheese and toss it in the oven.

spaghetti pie shell

Now get out your leftovers and get to creating. Making leftovers into something new is an art, what do you transform?

 

making spaghetti pie with kids

Joyce's Spaghetti Pie
Cheesy, savory leftover transformation.
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Ingredients
  1. Leftover spaghetti noodles
  2. 1 beaten egg
  3. 2 T. melted butter
  4. 1/4 C shredded parmesean cheese
  5. 2/3 C cottage cheese
  6. Leftover spaghetti sauce
  7. 1 C shredded mozzarella
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. Wash hands and have kids wash theirs
  3. Beat one egg
  4. Mix egg, butter, parmesean cheese and spaghetti noodles well.
  5. Press into 9 inch pie shell
  6. Top with cottage cheese
  7. Top with leftover spaghetti sauce
  8. Top with mozerella
  9. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until top is bubbly and slightly browned
  10. Cut into slices and serve
Adapted from Joyce McCroskey
Adapted from Joyce McCroskey
Little Sprouts Learning https://littlesproutslearning.co/

 

 

Cooking with Kids-Cat Eyes

Sometimes it’s hard to engage kids in activities and sometimes it’s even harder to encourage kids to eat healthy foods. I love how some recipes have healthy ingredients, like these cat eyes, but they are also irresistible to kids because they have a cool name. When I make smoothies for the kids, if I want them to drink a green one, I call it a Hulk smash smoothie. Well, who doesn’t want to be the Hulk? I know my kids do.

kid's cooking cat eyes

Cat eyes are fun, cute and irresistible with a name like cat eyes. Kids love animals, so any time you want them to eat something healthy, you just need to give it an animal name and it’s suddenly irresistible.

kids making cat eyes for snack

These cat eyes have several steps the kids can do on their own, and they are great for building fine motor skills. They even have ingredients kids love to eat, so it’s a win for everyone. These cat eyes are great for an after school snack, or any snack and the kids can do them on their own from start to finish. That’s the best kind of snack making to build self-esteem for the kids.

Cat eyes are also made with simple ingredients you probably already have around the house. Banana slicing is a great self-esteem builder and fine motor skill builder, so get out those butter knives and give your kids a delicious job to do. They will love it.

cat eyes for snack

Cat Eyes
Yummy snack for kids to make themselves.
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Ingredients
  1. Ritz Crackers
  2. Peanut Butter
  3. Bananas to slice
  4. Raisins
Instructions
  1. Wash hands and have kids wash theirs
  2. Spread peanut butter on crackers
  3. Place a banana slice on each cracker
  4. Top with a raisin
Notes
  1. If you have children with nut allergies, you could easily substitute sun butter for the peanut butter.
Little Sprouts Learning https://littlesproutslearning.co/
If you want to check out some great reasons to cook with your kids, click here. If you want to get a bunch of other great recipes to cook with kids, check out other recipes on the blog or this cool book from my favorite magazine, Chop Chop. Just click on the picture to view it on Amazon. This post contains affiliate links.

Cooking with Kids-Lotsa Pasta

Cooking with kids is fun and rewarding! This recipe for Lotsa Pasta was a huge hit here at Little Sprouts. The possibilities of what you could add to it are endless. Don’t you just LOVE a recipe that is versatile? I also love that you can use your leftovers up in this dish. Whatever you have lying around your fridge that’s boring and needs a new life could be perked up with this dish. Easy, inexpensive, and something that’s great fun to cook with the kidlets. What could be better?

Lotsa Pasta-Cooking with Kids

There are many great reasons to let your kids get their hands on the fun in the kitchen. I had kids as young as one helping dump stuff in the skillet on the stove for this dish. As long as you watch them closely, kids can do many of the steps. If you’re worried about them getting burned, you can let them stay at the table with the ingredients and just bring the skillet to them to dump in the ingredients. Then you can just carry the skillet back to the stove for cooking.

 

Kids cooking lotsa pasta

Click here to see some of the benefits of cooking with kids.

Kids Cooking-Lotsa Pasta

Lotsa Pasta
Veggie pasta packed with flavor.
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Ingredients
  1. 1 lb. Whole Wheat Pasta
  2. 4 Slices Bacon
  3. 1/2 C. Chopped Onion
  4. 1/4 C. Water
  5. Assorted Chopped Veggies
  6. Salt and Pepper to Taste
  7. 1 Clove Crushed Garlic
  8. 1 tsp. Thyme
Instructions
  1. Wash hands and have kids wash theirs
  2. Cook pasta and drain
  3. Saute bacon and onion until bacon is crisp and onion is tender
  4. Add veggies and cook to desired doneness
  5. Add seasonings and water
  6. Add pasta and mix well
Notes
  1. Leftover meat could be cubed or shredded and added to this dish as well.
Little Sprouts Learning https://littlesproutslearning.co/

Cooking with Kids-Healthy Egg and Veggie Breakfast Casserole

Cooking with kids is great fun and there are so many things kids can learn. Math, science, motor skills, cooperation, taking turns, and so many other things about cooking are beneficial to kids. In addition, kids are 80% more likely to try new foods if they helped prepare them. Click here to see more reasons why you should cook with kids!

Remember to be patient with cooking with kids. They will make mistakes, but it’s okay, that’s how they learn. I have been cooking for over 30 years and I still make mistakes. Make sure you get all the ingredients prepared and out before you invite the kids to the activity to prevent disaster when they get bored. This casserole is teeming with great nutrition for kid’s growing bodies. My kids love egg casserole and so do I. Yum yum.

“Popping” eggs as my kids call it, or one boy always said “hatching” them, is a great motor skill for kids to learn. It’s hard to crack an egg successfully and early learning helps develop great skills for later in life. This egg casserole had a lot of eggs, so it was a great opportunity for each child to get to try more than once. Some of them didn’t want to after the first smashed egg flew all over the table, but that’s okay too. They don’t have to do it if they don’t want to.

kids cracking eggs

kids cracking eggs to make egg casseroleKids cooking egg casseroleDumping ingredients into bowls helps even one year olds learn to control their fine motor skills and helps them build their confidence.

cooking egg casserole with kidsThis breakfast casserole has several servings of vegetables in it as well as nutritious eggs, cheese, and tortillas. All of the ingredients are dumped into a bowl and mixed, then poured into a casserole dish, so most of the steps can be done by the children without much assistance, which helps build their confidence levels in cooking.

vegetable and egg casserole, cooking with kids

kids cooking egg and veggie casserole

Notice in this picture, you see my food mover. I used this tool to help scrape the whole eggs that fell on the table so they wouldn’t be wasted. Being prepared for the cooking disasters is 9/10 of the way to success with the kids.

Egg and Veggie Casserole

This casserole tasted amazing! I recommend you get in the kitchen with our kids and make this or some other recipe as soon as you can.

Healthy Breakfast Casserole
Breakfast casserole made with healthy ingredients.
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Ingredients
  1. Dozen Eggs
  2. 2 C. Milk
  3. Salt and Pepper to taste
  4. Minced veggies of your choice (we used broccoli and kale)
  5. 2 C. Shredded cheese of your choice (we used mozerella)
  6. 12 chopped corn tortillas
Instructions
  1. Wash hands and have kids wash theirs.
  2. Mix eggs and milk and beat well.
  3. Add seasoning, veggies and cheese.
  4. Mix well.
  5. Bake at 350 for about one hour or until egg is set in the center.
Notes
  1. Breakfast meats such as cooked bacon, cooked sausage or ham could be added as well.
Little Sprouts Learning https://littlesproutslearning.co/
What do your kids like to cook?

 

 

Old-Fashioned Apple Crisp Recipe

Old-Fashioned Apple Crisp Recipe

At Little Sprouts we’ve been exploring apples for the last few weeks.  Each family brought a couple of apples a while back and we used them for sorting, counting, color recognition, and all kinds of math activities.  We also did a taste comparison with the different kind of apples and charted our results.  As our apple discovery is winding down, we used the rest of our apples to make a Scrumptious Apple Crisp. 

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Pico de Gallo Recipe from Garden Fresh Ingredients

Pico de Gallo Recipe from Garden Fresh Ingredients

Garden fresh pico de gallo is bursting with such flavor, it’s hard to compare. It’s easy to make, tastes fresh, is full of health benefits, and is just plain delish. This pico de gallo recipe is a culmination of lots of delicious samplings. I think you’re really going to like it!

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