Kids can cook up a storm - and here are the recipes to prove it

As shows like Junior MasterChef have shown us, age is no barrier to getting in the kitchen. With a little incentive, even young novices can cook up a storm.

24 Jun 2018

And so, upon launching our recipe challenge in April, we added in a little twist. One healthy meal, please – breakfast, lunch or dinner – devised by someone no older than 13.

With a little help from mum and dad, Britain’s budding cooks have come up with some cracking ideas for you to try at home. From frittatas to cod burritos and paneer paired with couscous, our friends at Hotpoint and the Jamie Oliver Cookery School have helped us pick the five juiciest. Share the recipes with your friends, your spouse, your colleagues – and get cooking!

Lola, 10

Lola has come up with a fun sharing dish for the whole family and wins bonus points for picking a sustainable fish. Her burritos contain rice and cod and are complemented by a salsa with plenty of chilli for a spicy kick.

You’ve got a dish with loads of colour, loads of vegetables and most of the food groups to boot. Plus, it’s an easy recipe to try at home. In short, what are you waiting for?

Neave, 4

Neave and her mum have devised a spinach, pepper and tomato frittata decorated with tomatoes and cheese.

You’ve only got a small list of ingredients to worry about and the prep work takes no time at all, making the frittata a quick and easy meal idea that’s not only versatile, but long-lasting too. Once baked, it can last for several days in the fridge.

Aryaa, 5

Paneer is an Indian cheese that’s packed with protein and is even said to aid weight-loss. You can buy it in supermarkets or health stores, and you’ll find it featured in trendy cookbooks, like those by Yotam Ottolenghi.

Aryaa and her mum Prerna have paired the paneer with couscous, plenty of veggies and a lime wedge for good measure.

This one’s a delicious wholesome meal that can be completed in just over 30 minutes. 

Jasmine, 13

Jasmine’s “Superfood Stack” is going to take a little bit of time to prepare, but the results – a bed of quinoa with vegetables and cod piled on top – are worth it.

Make sure you preheat the oven before you get started and pay special attention to the cod, spraying it with olive oil and baking for 16 minutes.

Edamame beans add extra crunch and a health boost as well; they’re a good source of vitamins and minerals, while grilled courgettes add that little zing to the finished dish.  

Daniel, 8

Who said pizza can’t be healthy? Make your own dough, choose healthy veggies and add lean chicken for a wholesome homemade treat that can be served with corn on the cob.

A homemade base is fiddly, but so much better than the store-bought alternative. So, take your time with the dough and be generous with the tomato base – no one likes a bald pizza! Add plenty of mozzarella, chicken and veggies on top.


Daniel, Jasmine, Aarya and Neave walk away with awesome Currys Vouchers as our runners-up contestants. Our grand prize winner, Lola, and her mum Emma, get a trip to the Harry Potter Studios and a Hotpoint oven. Not too shabby!

Cooking is a great life skill in any walk of life. You’re never too young (or too old) to start, and now that you’ve got some simple recipes at hand, why not forgo that takeaway meal and spend some quality time in the kitchen tonight?

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