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Cooking with Kids – Sharing Family Recipes


We have a running conversation in our house about why the kids will come back to visit us once they’re grown — they tell me it’s for my lasagna and pizzelle cookies 😉

In fact, the whole family was all smiles this week when I told them I was making some pizzelles for our Discover & Explore Cooking with Kids linky this week! 

Really, they LOVE these cookies.


Do you have any family recipes that everyone goes ga-ga over?  I’ll admit, they are really yummy cookies but I think the main reason they are a family favorite is because they are part of a much loved tradition.


Sharing Family Recipes & Traditions

I first wrote about pizzelle cookies last year for the Christmas Around the World series.  They are one of the things that everyone in my family connects with the holidays each year.  My grandmother made them and always had them in her family.  And my mom, sister & I all make them each year.

Now my daughter is learning how to make them too. 

It’s not just the recipe (which has changed a little with each generation) but she’s also learning about the tradtions and family memories that go along with the cookies. 

And as we bake and talk, I remember to pull out old photos.  The recipe we use is in my mom’s handwriting and like many family recipes, these become special treasures.  I haven’t altered it with my notes because I know it’s something I want to pass on to my kids.

That’s one of the things I love most about family recipes — sharing where they started, tellings stories about who taught who to make them and of course, laughing at all the fun memories you have along the way.


Pizzelle Cookies

And I know some of you are asking “What’s a pizzelle?”  Think waffle cone but lighter with a wonderful vanilla butter flavor!

You need to have a special Pizzelle Baker to make the cookies (you can read more about those on the affiliate link included) and although there are traditional recipes, most families have their own secrets. 

For example, my mom & I don’t add anise to ours.  And I always use butter instead of margarine and whole wheat flour (so that when I eat my fourth cookie I can tell myself that at least there’s a little fiber in them 😉


What family recipes do you cherish?

One great discussion to have with the kids is how everyone has different food traditions.  This is very evident when you attend a friend’s house for dinner and especially during the holidays when cherished recipes and dishes are shared.  My kids always ask me why we eat lasagna more than tacos — honestly, lasagna is easier for me to make.  I’ve been doing it for years so it’s second nature. 

And I love learning about special family dishes.  My kids know some of the cultural traditions behind our family dishes and it’s also been a fun way to intoduce countries around the world.  When I first shared that pizzelles were a cookie that originated in Italy, we also located the country on a map.  And that lead to them asking their Dad if he had any foods in his family that came from other countries (yep, some of Dad’s family came from Poland). 

The holidays are a wonderful time to learn a family recipe (maybe grandma’s famous cake) and get the kids involved in the kitchen!


Cooking with Kids

Cooking with Kids

How do you get the kids engaged in cooking?  We’d love to see your ideas & cooking activities!