Looking for easy ways to get your child into the kitchen more? Here are 6 apple recipes to cook with kids! Sweet, crunchy, and delicious, apples are a great ingredient to get kids excited about cooking and learning new skills in the kitchen. Below, I’ll highlight several ways kids can easily get involved in 6 of our favorite recipes featuring apples. Whether you are using up apples from an apple picking adventure or grabbing a few different kinds at the grocery store, cooking with apples is the perfect way celebrate the Fall season.
Can my kids help chop apples?
Yes! Starting as young as 2 or 3, children can use a child-safe knife to prep apples for recipes or just for a snack. However, whole apples aren’t safe for kids to help cut because they are so large and tough to get through. Here is how I cut apples into manageable-sized slices so that they are easy to get through with a child-safe knife: Stand an apple up and cut down around the core to get four large pieces. Place the cut side down and cut each of the large pieces into 1/4 to 1/2-inch slices. From there, children can work with one sliced at a time and chop across the apple slice to cut into a dice. Remind the child to keep the apple slice cut-side down on the cutting board to keep it stable.
Is your child getting tired or losing interest in chopping the apples? That’s ok! Have him help transfer the apples you chop to a bowl or other container or give him another easy job while you finish chopping.
My favorite kid knives and other products can be found in my Amazon store. (Affiliate link)
How can I teach my child to use a grater?
You might come across this task when searching for apple recipes to cook with kids. Grating apples is a great way to incorporate apple flavor into oatmeal, cookies, muffins, and many other recipes. To have your child help use a box grater, hold the apple with one hand and have the child place a hand on top of yours. With the other hand, have the child also hold the top of the grater with you. Explain that we want to keep our fingers aways from the “little teeth” on the grater. The child doesn’t have to help you shred up the whole apple but it is great for her to get the experience of doing some of it.
Easy Apple Recipes to Cook with Kids:
#1 Apple “Mess”
We call this apple “mess” because well, there’s not a better way to describe it..it’s a fun, delicious mess! No real rhyme or reason to it…just chopped apples, nut or seed butter, and whatever toppings you can dream up. Here we used peanut butter and sprinkled on mini chocolate chips, dye-free sprinkles, and hemp seeds. You could add shredded coconut or finely chopped nuts as well. This is a great snack or treat to make when you want to practice those knife skills. Eating the “mess” is fun too! Use food picks, chopsticks, or toothpicks to pick up each apple piece.
We love these adorable veggie pics by Nutridashe.
Want to keep chopping? Try making a fruit salad like this recipe for “The Hungry Caterpillar” Fruit Salad.
#2 Apple Pie Breakfast Cookies
Baking these wholesome cookies up for breakfast or snack time will make your house smell like heaven. Apples and cinnamon are just so good together, aren’t they? Kids love to bake to clear a little time in your schedule and make this recipe to have on hand for weekday snacks. My biggest tip for baking with kids: have everything ready to go before they even know you are going to cook together. Take out all the ingredients, tools, prepare the pan if using one, grab some water, a few towels, read through the WHOLE recipe, and take a deep breath. The more prepared you are, the better!
Apple Pie Breakfast Cookies
Makes 9 large cookies
- 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons oil (avocado oil, melted coconut oil, or melted butter)
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (or 1/4 tsp powder)
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons oat flour (or any flour)
- 2 tablespoons flax meal (optional)
- 2 tablespoons hemp seeds (optional)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 apple, diced small (plus another apple thinly sliced if using for top)
- 1 teaspoon coconut sugar mixed with a pinch of cinnamon, for topping
1. Preheat oven to 350 and line a sheet pan with parchment.
2. In a large bowl, mix wet ingredients. Add in remaining ingredients besides apples and topping. Mix until just combined then stir in chopped apples. (At this point you could also add in any addition mix-ins like chopped nuts, seeds, or dried fruit.)
3. Using an ice cream scoop or 1/4 cup measuring cup, scoop dough into the baking sheet. Top with apple slices (if using) and sprinkle with a pinch of the cinnamon-sugar.
4. Bake until set and golden brown around the edges, about 10-12 minutes.
#3 Homemade No-Added-Sugar Applesauce
Applesauce is such a great apple recipe to cook with kids. Don’t know what to do with all those apples after apple picking? Make applesauce! Kids can get in some great knife skills practice by chopping the apples or sometimes my kids really like using a crank-style apple peeler/slicer. The one we use is in my Amazon store here.
We love this recipe for Vanilla-Cinnamon Pear Applesauce that is in my ebook No Sugar Still Sweet. Along with 21 other recipes only sweetened with fruit, this applesauce recipe containers no added sugar and is literally made from all the ingredients you see in picture above. For more info on the ebook click here.
Another recipe we make all the time is the Easy-Peasy Veggie Loaded Applesauce by The Natural Nurturer. Not only is it super easy to make and delicious, but it is a great way to add extra veggies into your family’s day.
#4 Apple “Nachos” with Healthier Chocolate Sauce
This fun snack is similar to the “Mess” recipe above but easier to eat with your hands and share with a crowd. This is one of my favorite easy apple recipes to cook with kids because it takes seconds to put together. I also had to share this recipe for healthier chocolate sauce with you because it is delicious on apples and so many other things (a fruit dip, drizzled on pancakes and waffles, on top of yogurt…). It is made from 3 basic, wholesome ingredients and so easy to make!
Healthier Chocolate Sauce
- 2 tablespoons melted coconut butter* or coconut oil
- 2 tablespoons cacao powder or unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup (or to taste)
- Pinch of fine sea salt
- Stir all ingredients together until smooth. Don’t leave out the salt…it really brings out the chocolate flavor. Rewarm if starting to solidify.
- Can store in fridge and rewarm when you want to use it.
*coconut butter solidifies at room temp and is great for making your own chocolate.
#5 Autumn Harvest Soup
Apples add just the right about of sweetness to this cozy fall soup. I love that this recipe includes lots of seasonal veggies like carrots and squash as well. Here are some easy ways kids can help make this recipe: chopping the apple, adding ingredients to the pot, stirring (with careful supervision), and helping blend it up at the end. We love this soup packed up for lunch or anytime of day at home. Top with toasted pumpkin seeds for a yummy crunch!
Lunch box is by OmieLife and can be found here.
Autumn Harvest Soup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil or butter
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 teaspoons fresh thyme
- 2 large carrots, peeled and chopped
- 2 pounds butternut, kabocha, acorn, or combination of any seasonal squash, peeled and diced
- 1 apple, cored and diced
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- Pinch freshly ground nutmeg
- 3 to 5 cups water, vegetable broth, or chicken broth
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a medium stockpot on medium-high heat, add oil or butter and sauté garlic and onion for about 5 to 7 minutes.
- Add carrot, apple, and squash sauté until golden in some spots. Add thyme and spices and sauté for a minute.
- Add 3 cups of water or broth, bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Simmer on low until all the vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes. (I usually make this in an instant pot and cook in high pressure for 3 minutes)
- Using a handheld blender, purée soup until smooth. Add any addition liquid to reach desired consistency and blend until combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Ladle into bowls and sprinkle with toasted pumpkin seeds, if desired.
#6 Apple “Cookie” Decorating
Looking for apple recipes to cook with kids at a play-date or family get together? This is a great activity or snack-tivity, as I like to call it, to put out to entertain and feed a crowd. Here’s how to set it up:
Slice some apples into 1/4-inch rings then cut the core out of each slice with a cookie cutter or pairing knife. Let kids spread on peanut butter, almond butter, frosting, or whatever spread you like. Set out some toppings, decorate, and eat! Some people also call cutting apples into rings like this apple “donuts.” Either way, it is a fun, healthier treat!
Here, I used a small paint palate from a craft store to organize the toppings and create a fun display, but you could also place toppings in little bowls or silicone cupcake liners.