How to actually enjoy holiday baking with your kids

If ever there was a time to get messy with your kids, it’s during the holidays. Tie on an apron, pull out your favourite recipes and get ready to bake up a storm.

How to actually enjoy holiday baking with your kids

Photo: Carmen Cheung

Holiday baking can sometimes feel like a chore—all that mixing, measuring and decorating. Bringing your kids into the mix can actually be fun and can take away some of the pressure to create perfect results. Here, we share our best tips for baking with kids without losing your cool.

Read the recipe together

If your little ones are just starting to read, recipes are an inspiring and exciting way to keep them learning and engaged. If your apprentice is a better listener, read instructions aloud so they feel part of the process.

Dress the part

Make or buy them their own mini aprons, chef hats and pint-sized baking tools like whisks and spatulas. They’ll be pleased to look the part.

Prep ahead

If baking with younger kids, pre-measure ingredients to help stick to the recipe.

Keep things fun

During the holidays, cookie cutters shaped like Santa, reindeer and menorahs make decorating extra festive.

Rock out!

Whether it’s Disney princess songs or your favourite holiday soundtrack, keep the tunes pumping as you mix. Dance parties while the oven preheats are highly encouraged.

Snack as you go


If you don’t want your little one dipping their finger into raw dough, try having a few safe treats on hand, like chocolate chips or small candies to keep their hunger at bay until the cookies have finished baking.

Keep calm

Baking with kids is messy and sometimes chaotic. Roll with the spills and slip-ups.

Accept imperfection

Sometimes baking is more about the process than the final product. Even if you don’t end up with Pinterest-worthy treats in the end, smudged snowflakes and single-antlered chocolate reindeer are sure to put a smile on your face throughout the holiday season

Here are five of our favourite yummy recipe ideas for the holidays:

1. Chocolate-mint candy cane thumbprint cookies

plate of chocolate cookies with candy cane kisses in the centre Photo: Carmen Cheung


Mwah! Are you ready for the holiday cookie swap? These mint-kissed treats are oh-so sweet. Get the recipe: Chocolate-mint candy cane thumbprint cookies

2. Christmas icebox cookies

star-shaped plate filled with holiday cookies Photo: Erik Putz

This make-ahead dough will be your holiday savour. Prepare the dough now and then freeze it until that holiday bake sale or unexpected guest pops up. Get the recipe: Christmas icebox cookies

3. Pink almond-coconut snowballs

pink plate of colourful pink cookies Photo: Erik Putz

Treat them to something extra sweet this holiday season with millennial pink snowball cookies. Not only are they tasty, but they make for great gifts. Get the recipe: Pink almond-coconut snowballs

4. Turtle fudge

plate of bars in holiday wrapping Photo: Erik Putz

Chocolate + caramel + pecans (with a dash of salt) = holiday baking perfection. Make a big batch, so you can wrap up the leftovers as gifts. Get the recipe: Turtle fudge

5. DIY holiday candy bar

Homemade candy bars with a christmas tree on them Photo: Erik Putz

Looking for something to do on a snowy Saturday? Grab some sprinkles and get the kids involved in decorating these festive candy bars. Get the recipe: DIY holiday candy bar

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Simone Olivero is a Toronto-based writer and editor specializing in lifestyle editorial including travel, home décor, beauty and food. Her work has also been published in print and online publications like Toronto LifeChatelaine, The Toronto Star, CBC Travel, Yahoo! Canada and more. She was previously a senior editor at Today’s Parent and is currently the managing editor at House & Home