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There was a period when my son Gabriel was very into cooking. This little chef would stand next to me whenever I was in the kitchen. He observed intently and always wanted to help. So when exploring party themes, we decided on a cooking birthday party. This party theme is really great for children of all ages. Decorating a cupcake can help the little ones with their motor skills while teaching the older children great life skills.
PIN FOR LATER!
Cooking Birthday Party at a Location
If you prefer to have the party at a location, research your local restaurants first. You might be surprised at what party packages they offer. You can also find some local businesses that offer cooking classes.
After some research, I found that California Pizza Kitchen hosted fun cooking parties. The junior chefs got to make their own pizza and have it cooked in an amazing pizza oven. One of the benefits of doing a cooking party at a restaurant or a class is that the location can provide different experiences.
At California Pizza Kitchen, they did a tour of the entire kitchen. The kids got to all see behind the scenes which they loved. They watched the chef make the dough, checked out all the cool kitchen gadgets that mashed tomatoes, and even tried them out themselves. They had so much fun at no additional cost.
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Pizza Party-Themed Decorations
As for decorations, we kept it pretty simple but the colors all tied back to the pizza theme. We decorated with green and red balloons, a super cute chef banner, cooking-making kit favors, and of course matching cupcakes.
These balloon centerpieces are really easy to make yourself. All you need is a jar, tissue paper, and helium-filled balloons. We also added large cooking utensils to match the theme.
DIY Chef Banner
Danny created this banner herself. Here’s what you need:
- Red and white striped paper
- White cardstock to print out mini chef hats
- Black letters
- Green Ribbon
First, cut out the red and striped scrapbook paper into triangles. Then print out however many chef hats you need for each letter (you will need this template to make the matching cupcake topper too). Make sure you get the size that fits your panel. Then add the letters to each panel. Adhere the letters slightly below the center so that you have space to fit the chef hat. Then add the hat right above the letter as if the letter was wearing the hat. Finally, cut a hole on each side of the panel and thread the green ribbon through.
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Here are really easy cupcakes we made ourselves! Add fun notes on the same mini chef hat from the banner. We wrote things like “Happy Birthday Gabriel”, “Gabriel’s 3rd Birthday”, “We Love Cooking”, and “Little Chefs”. You can add these using any digital program – we like canva.com. Then print out the hats and glue them onto a toothpick. We chose vanilla and chocolate cupcakes with red icing but you can use any color combo of red, green, white, and black. That’s it!
Party Favors Ideas
As guests walked into the party, we gave each of them a custom mini apron with their names on them along with a chef’s hat. They wore them for the party itself but then got to take them home. We got these items from Oriental Trading.
At the end of the party, we gave each guest a special party favor. It was a package of cookie mix and a spatula so they could make it at home. You can easily find these items at your local Dollar Tree.
You can also put together a little gift bag with cooking utensils, cookie cutters, icing, a rolling pin, a popcorn-making kit, or even a s’mores-making kit.
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Cooking Birthday Party at Home
If you have the space, you can also throw your child’s party at home. Here are the best tips and tricks for throwing a killer chef party at home:
1. Decide on a theme.
The major pro in hosting a cooking party at home is that you get to choose what you want to make with the kids. You can either make something savory like pizza, or you can bake something sweet. Ideally something the birthday child loves. You should also make sure that any of the little guests don’t have major food allergies. Here are some ideas to get you started!
The easiest thing to do for a pizza party is to buy store-bought dough, tomato sauce, and a ton of mozzarella. However, if you want to try a new spin on regular pizza, try one of these recipes:
Air fryer Pizza Roll
Kids will love rolling up the dough for a fabulous pizza you can make just using an air fryer.
This pizza pocket is a fun variation of regular pizza that kids will love because they can fill it with whatever they want.
Making pasta is also a great hands-on cooking experience. If you know how to make fresh pasta dough, it will keep the older kids really engaged. But you can also get store-made pasta and teach the kids how to make a delicious sauce. They can sharpen their knife skills by chopping up onions, garlic, and other veggies.
Baking Party Ideas
Baking sweets is a great option because the guests can also take some home. Just make sure to have either sandwich bags or treat bags available. Here’s a list of cakes, cookies, and treats the kids will love.
Cupcake making or just cupcake decorating can be really easy. You can simply pick up a few box mixes and icing that come with fun sprinkles or candies. If you are doing this with older kids, you can try more complex decorating. For the older kids, add a fun competitive element and turn it into the cupcake wars. Plus, you won’t need an expensive birthday cake.
Polar Bear Cupcakes
How cute are these polar bear cupcakes?! It uses coconut flakes to make it look like snow.
Baking bread is another great option. Here’s a vegan banana bread recipe that only requires five ingredients.
Chocolate Sugar Cookie
This delicious chocolate sugar cookie is great to make with kids because you can shape them into any shape.
Dino Track Cookies
If you have a dinosaur lover, here’s a cookie he or she would love to make with friends.
Red Velvet Cake Mix Brownies
This red velvet brownie recipe uses a box mix which makes it much easier when hosting a cooking party.
Fruity Pebble Treats
If you prefer not to use your oven, these fruity pebble treats are a great no-bake option.
Donut Hole Cake Pops
Another no-bake option is this cake pops from pre-made donut holes. All you have to do is melt the chocolate and let the kids decorate them.
Once you decide on a theme, plan your party start times according to the time needed to actually make your item.
2. Make a supply list.
Being prepared is key to a successful cooking party. You can’t make what you need if you are missing ingredients or tools. Make a list of all ingredients, cooking supplies, and decorations for the party. Do a test run with your child the week before the party and actually have your child make the item. This way you know for sure you are not missing anything.
3. Set up cooking stations.
We would highly suggest keeping the number of attendees at a minimum so the kitchen doesn’t get out of control. Create a station for every child and try to give them enough space to do what they have to do. Make sure to completely cover your table with a plastic tablecloth to help make clean-up easier.
4. Have a clean-up plan.
Cooking is fun but can be messy, especially with kids! The last thing you want is for your guests to leave you with a disaster in your home. That’s why you have to involve them in the clean-up. Make clean-up time fun. Play music or make it into a game – like if they can clean up in 5 minutes, they get an extra treat. Have extra garbage bags available.
Some of the best memories are made in the kitchen. We promise you the young chefs will have a wonderful time so try this cooking theme for your child’s next party.