Dishin' up with Diane

February is all about sweethearts and sweet treats, and lip-smacking delights! I've got some crazy concoctions for you to whip up with your little ones, that will have their sweet tooth more than satisfied.  

lollipop fizzy treat science experiment, February recipes for kids 

Fizzy Sweet Treat: A Science Lesson For Young Students

Toss some "fizzies" in a plastic bag and dip a cherry or strawberry lollipop in it and you have one awesome treat for a little kid to experience.  I never really knew what was in my "Sweet Treats" as a child, nor why it sparkled and made my tongue all tingly, but it was great fun.  Your students/children can do this too and have a science lesson at the same time!

The basis of the sweet treat is confectioners' sugar.  50g will make enough for about 6 children.  For that amount you will also need a scant teaspoon each of bicarbonate of soda and citric acid.  You can buy the latter, in the form of white powder,  very cheaply, in small quantities, from the pharmacy.  Children will also enjoy having a lollipop to dip into the powdery confection.  I get the small "dum-dums" at The Dollar Store so that they don't last "forever". 




  • 50g icing sugar 
  • teaspoon bicarbonate of soda 
  • teaspoon citric acid 
  • lollipops

Directions: Mix all the powders together thoroughly.

Why does it fizz? It's a reaction between the citric acid (the same acid as in lemons) and the bicarbonate of soda, which is an alkali.  In this case the chemical reaction happens on your tongue, as the two dry ingredients mix with water (saliva) they create a gas in the form of lots of tiny little bubbles.  The bubbles provide the tingle in your mouth.  You are creating the same chemical reaction when you drop a bath fizzy bomb into your bath water.  The active dry ingredients-which again include bicarbonate of soda and citric acid-react when they meet the bath water.   Try doing this with vinegar as the liquid and get a real fizzy, bubbling result.  The reaction happens immediately because the vinegar is the liquid.  Combining vinegar and bicarbonate of soda is actually an old-fashioned cleaning recipe, used to help remove suborn stains in the kitchen,  I use this chemical reaction in September during my dinosaur unit and add red food coloring to the vinegar so that it looks like lava.  I put all these ingredients in my students' baby food-jar volcanoes and they have fun watching them erupt!  Keep your "Fizzy Sweet Treats" dry.  Store in little re-sealable plastic bags ready to dip your lollipop in,  or in a plastic food container.  You could also add some red Kool-Aid for a splash of color for Valentine's Day.  

February recipes for kids, kids in the kitchen, ice cream in a bag 


Shake It & Make It - Ice Cream In A Bag

If you've got a few minutes, you can make another Sweet Treat with your students and have more science fun in the classroom.


  • Tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup milk
  • 6 tablespoons rock salt
  • 1 gallon-sized Ziplock baggie
  • 1 pint-sized Ziplock baggie
  • 1 bag of ice
  • plastic spoons
  • Optional: Red, Pink & White sprinkles


  • Fill the gallon-sized bag 1/2 full with ice. 
  • Add rock salt to the bag and seal.
  • Pour sugar, milk, and vanilla into the small baggie and seal.
  • Place the pint-sized bag into the large bag and seal.
  • Shake the bag for 5-7 minutes. 
  • I put on a zippy dance CD and my students "shake it up" and dance with their bags.
  • Take the small bag out of the large bag.
  • Open the small zip bag and enjoy your ice cream with a spoon!
  • Put the other students' small bags into the other large bags and repeat, 'til everyone has made a bag of ice cream. 
  • Because it's close to Valentine's Day when I'm doing this, I buy some sprinkles and we add this to our ice cream too. 


cinnamon heart ornaments, gifts for Valentines day, February recipes for kidsCinnamon Heart Ornaments:


  • ¾ cup cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon all spice
  • 1 tablespoon nutmeg
  • 1 cup applesauce
  • 1 ½ tablespoons white glue
  • 1 drop cinnamon oil added to the white glue to make them really fragrant.


  • In a bowl, mix ¾ cup of cinnamon, 1 tablespoon all spice, and 1 tablespoon of nutmeg together. 
  • Slowly stir in 1 cup of applesauce. 
  • Pour in 1½ tablespoons of white glue. 
  • Mix well until mixture is stiff.
  • Pour the mixture onto some wax paper.
  • Press another sheet of wax paper over it and roll it out to ¼-inch thickness. 
  • Cut out hearts with a cookie cutter. 
  • (I use a mini copper heart cutter so that I can make more hearts with some to spare in case a child breaks one.  
  • How many you get out of a batch will entirely depend on how big your cookie cutter is. 
  • Use the scraps and roll out the "dough" to make more. 
  • Poke a hole near the top of each heart with a toothpick.  
  • If you are doing this with only one or two children, use a bigger heart cookie cutter, and poke a hole with a straw. 
  • Just an FYI don't do this on Valentine’s Day, because it takes about a week to dry (at room temperature).
  • When dry, string with a ribbon. These make wonderful Valentine's Day gifts and your home or classroom will smell absolutely fantastic while you're making them!  

strawberry chocolate swirl cupcakes, February recipes for kids, cooking with kids, kids recipesValentine Strawberry-Chocolate Swirl Half 'n Half's 

A room mommy brought these cupcakes in for her daughter's February birthday treat. She got the recipe from the Internet and shared it with me.  Makes 24 cupcakes


  • 1 package strawberry cake mix (plus ingredients on the box to prepare mix)
  • 2/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 4 ounces cream cheese
  • 1 cup strawberry frosting
  • 1 cup chocolate frosting


  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Grease or use paper baking cups in a 24 muffin pan.
  3. Melt chocolate chips in microwave for 30 seconds. Let child stir, and microwave for 10 second intervals until melted.
  4. Prepare cake mix according to directions, letting your child help with each step depending on age and skill level. Separate half the batter in a different bowl. 
  5. Combine melted chocolate chips and cream cheese to one batter. 
  6. Beat with mixer at medium speed until blended.
  7. Using chocolate batter first, spoon chocolate and strawberry batter’s side by side in muffin cups about two-thirds full.
  8. Bake for 16 minutes or until tooth pick that you insert, comes out clean. 
  9. Cool cupcakes in pan for 10 minutes before placing them individually on wire wracks to cool completely.
  10. Let your child pick which frosting he wants to be in charge of . They spread the frosting on one half of each cupcake. 
  11. You spread the opposite frosting on the other half.
  12. If you want to get fancy, take a Popsicle stick and swirl the center, making a little peak in the middle. 

I hope you enjoy these sweet treats with your little sweeties!  

May you have a love-filled February! 

pumpkin pie play doughCraft Recipe’s For Kids

Pumpkin Pie Play Dough Recipe


  • 5 ½ cups of flour
  • 8 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • ¾ cups of oil
  • 4 cups of water
  • 1 ½ ounces of canned pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 cups of salt
  • orange food coloring


  • Mix all ingredients in a sauce pan.
  • Cook over medium heat ‘til the mixture separates from the sides of the pan and is the consistency of dough.
Kool Aid Play-doughkids in the kitchen, cooking with kids, kool aid play dough

This recipe is 100% edible and can be eaten + it really smells good. Whatever the color of of the Kool Aid that you use, is the color of the Play-dough. I like to make this kind when I’m working with really little ones, as they often put the clay in their mouths, this way I don’t have to worry!

1 cup water
3 teaspoons of Cream of Tartar
1 cup of flour
1 package of Kool-Aid Mix (any flavor of unsweetened)
1 tablespoon of cooking oil
1/2 cup of salt

Directions: Mix dry ingredients in a large/medium pan. Add water and oil. Stir over medium heat until it looks ligh dough. This takes about 8 minutes.

No Cook Play Dough Recipe


  • 1 cup of flour
  • 1 cup of boiling water
  • 2 tablespoons of cream of tartar
  • a half cup of salt
  • 1 tablespoon of oil

clay and play dough recipes, cooking with kidsDirections:

  • Mix all the ingredients together.  It’s quite hot so use caution.

 Self-Hardening Clay


  • 1 ½  cups salt
  • 4 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon alum (as a preservative)
  • 1 ½ cups water


  • Mix dry ingredients in a bowl then add water.
  • When dough forms a ball, knead the dough, add a bit more water if it is too crumbly.
  • The clay can also be baked.
  • Set oven to 300º and bake for 30-40 minutes or until hard.

 Finger Paint:finger paint recipe

  • Mix 2 parts of liquid laundry starch with 1 part powdered tempera paint or a few drops of food coloring as you paint on the paper.
  • Or you can mix flour and cold water into a paste.
  • Add food coloring or powdered tempera paint on the paper as you paint.
  • Add a pinch of powdered soap flakes (I like Ivory) to help paint glide over the paper.
  • Clean up is a lot easier too.

Christmas tree cone, December recipes for kids, Christmas tree cone cookieLet’s trim the Christmas Cone! This is relatively inexpensive so that you could do it with your students at your Christmas party for a fun snack that they would create. Or do it during your Christmas Tree theme day.


  • Sugar cones
  • Green frosting (I bought a pre-colored tube. You could buy a can of white frosting and then color it with green food coloring.
  • Green food coloring
  • Sprinkles, I used two different kinds. (You could also use red hots)
  • Popsicle sticks
  • Waxed paper


  • Make sure everyone has washed their hands.
  • Give each child a sheet of waxed paper to place their cone on.
  • Give each child a dollop of frosting, Popsicle stick and cone.
  • Children frost their cone with the Popsicle stick.
  • Give them some sprinkles, or red hots.
  • Children decorate their tree by pushing the red hots into the frosting.
  • If they are using little sprinkles they can roll their tree onto them.
  • When they are done, take a group picture and then the children can eat their trees.

Reindeer_snack_cracker, Rudolph the reindeer snack cracker, December recipes for kidsRudolf the Snack Cracker Reindeer

You can keep this simple, or make it an even heartier snack by adding cheese spread between two crackers.  Because I want to do this with my entire class I omit the cheese.


  • Oval Crackers (I used Keebler's Town House Flip-Sides pretzel cheddar crackers.)
  • Optional: Cheese spread (Put some on one cracker and then add a cracker to the top.)
  • Chocolate frosting (I used a tube because you don’t need that much. Just enough to act as a “glue” to stick the eyes and nose on Rudolph.)
  • Toothpicks
  • Red gumdrops or red M&M’s or Skittles for Rudolph’s nose (I used a gumdrop.)
  • 2 raisins or 2 chocolate chips (I used raisins, but I think children prefer chocolate chips.)
  • 2 pretzels (antlers)
  • Wax paper


  • Make sure everyone has washed their hands.
  • Give each child a sheet of wax paper to work on + their ingredients.
  • Children put a little frosting on their tooth pick and spread it on their gumdrop and then “glue” it to the bottom of their cracker so that Rudolph has a nose.
  • Students add some frosting to each raisin eye and then “glue” them to the top of the cracker.
  • Children spread some frosting on the bottom of their pretzels and put them on the back of their cracker so that Rudolph has antlers.
  • When they are done take a group photo and then children eat their reindeer.

cookieChristmas Cookie

Every year my Y5’s make a Classroom Cook Book and give it to their mommies for Mother’s Day.  I often thought it would be fun to make a Cookie Cook Book for Christmas.  I had one mom submit her “grannie’s” “Red & White Chocolate Drop” cookie recipe from Ocean Spray®, also known as Oatmeal Cranberry White Chocolate Chunk Cookies They are 5-star delicious!



  • 2/3 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 6-ounce package Ocean Spray® Craisins® original dried cranberries
  • 2/3 cup white chocolate chunks or chips


  • Preheat oven to 375ºF.
  • Using an electric mixer, beat butter or margarine and sugar together in a medium mixing bowl until light and fluffy.
  • Add eggs, mixing well.
  • Combine oats, flour, baking soda and salt in a separate mixing bowl.
  • Add to butter mixture in several additions, mixing well after each addition.
  • Stir in dried cranberries and white chocolate chunks.
  • Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets.
  • Bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Cool on wire rack.
  • Makes approximately 2 1/2 dozen cookies.

gingerbread cookie recipe, December recipes for kidsMy two favorite cookies to eat that my grama Lydia used to make were her oatmeal raisin cookies and her sugar cookies that we put our thumbs in and filled with a dollop of jelly.  During December tho' the most fun cookie we made were her gingerbreaad cookies.  She made them with black strap molasses which she believed was a cure-all for all sorts of ailments.  I don't think our cookies tasted all that fine because of all the gobbledy gook we loaded them with, but oh what fun we had making them, licking our frosting spoons and then decorating them.  I carried the tradition on with my children when they were really little, and plan to do it with my grandchildren too.  Click here for grandma Lydia's gingerbread recipe from my heart to yours.  There are two; one with molasses, and one without. Gingerbread Recipes


Gingerbread Play-dough Recipe: Now is a great time to mix up a batch of gingerbread play dough! Put it in your kitchen center or have a 15-minute whole-group gingerbread play dough center and give each child a cookie cutter and a small ball of gingerbread play dough to make their very own gingerbread play dough boy!  Click on the link for this delicious smelling recipe. This is a fun activity to do after you've read the story.   Gingerbread Play-dough recipe

Christmas Blessings Snack, December recipes for kidsChristmas Greetings-Christmas Blessings Snack


  • Bugles® brand corn snacks
  • Small pretzel twists
  • Chex Mix
  • Craisins
  • Peanuts/Cashews
  • Red and green M&Ms®
  • Hershey's® chocolate kisses


  • Use even amounts of all the ingredients.
  • Mix together in a large bowl.
  • Each ingredient in the snack symbolizes something associated with Christmas.

Bugles : Symbolize trumpets reminding us that the world is heralding the news that Jesus is born

Pretzels : Symbolize arms folded in prayer thanking God for the reason for the season; LOVE the greatest gift of all.

Chex Mix:  Symbolize a blanket of warmth, comfort and joy

Craisens : Symbolize the holly berries that decorate our homes

Peanuts or cashews: Symbolize the planting of seeds of thanksgiving and peace on Earth.

M&Ms:  Symbolize sweet Memories and the Magic of Christmas

Hershey Kisses: Symbolize the love of family and friends.

If you'd like to make this snack as a gift and put it in a tin along with a note, click on the link to print a copy.   

Christmas Blessings Snack Notehersey_kiss_mouse

To make this adorable Hershey Kiss Mouse click on the link. His tail is the stem from a cherry that's dipped in chocolate. His ears are almonds. MMMMM-MMMM delicious!


Cinnamon Ornaments  

Are something fun you can do with your entire class.  They make a nice gift that is relatively easy to make, incorporates math extensions, and is inexpensive.  If you had parents sign up at your Open House to bring things in when needed, draw from that list for your ingredients, or tie it in with your snack time and ask that parent to donate bulk size jars of applesauce.    A bonus of this activitiy is that  your room smells fantastic!

cinnamon ornaments, December recipes and crafts for kidsIngredients:

  • 1 cup cinnamon (The Dollar Store sells a large bottle. Wal-Mart has 2 for a dollar.)
  • 1 tablespoon cloves
  • 1 tablespoon nutmeg
  • 2 tablespoons white glue
  • 3/4 cup applesauce (Let drain in a strainer for several hours)
  • Optional: cinnamon oil
  1. Mix cinnamon, cloves & nutmeg together
  2. Add applesauce & glue.
  3. Work mixture with hands until smooth and well mixed.
  4. Roll out to 1/4 inch thickness cut with cookies cutters. (I use small hearts )
  5. Use a coffee straw to make hole for hanging.
  6. Put on wire rack to dry at room temperature for several days.
  7. Turn twice daily so they don't curl.
  8. Use ribbon to hang.
  9. So they smell extra strong of cinnamon I spritz with cinnamon oil, and then let dry again.
  10. How many you get from one recipe depends on how big your cookie cutter is. 
  11. Wrap gently in tissue to send home.
  12. Remind students that they will break if they are not careful.


Well that's it for Dishin' Up With Diane for this month. I'd love to hear from you if you have a favorite December recipe or holiday tradition, or if you tried one of my recipes and had fun with it.  Drop me a line at   In the meantime, I hope you have a simply wonderful time with your kid in the kitchen!

gingerbread cookies, cooking with kids, December recipes for kids

     The snow’s melting; look at all that mud! That’s what these no-bake cookies remind me off…little mud pies! And that’s just one of the reasons they are so much fun for kids to make.

no bake cookies, easy recipes for kids, Winter recipes for kids, oooking with kidsNo-Bake Oatmeal Mud Pie Cookies


  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 stick margarine
  • ½ cup cocoa
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups oatmeal
  • ½ cup peanut butter


  • Blend cocoa, margarine, sugar, milk, and salt together in a pot.
  • Put pot on low heat and cook ‘til blended and melted together.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Add vanilla, peanut butter and oatmeal.
  • Mix well.
  • Drop from spoon onto wax paper.
  • Let cool.
  • Mmm mmm delicious!

Build a Sweet Treat Snowman!

Ingredients per person:

  • Hershey Chocolate Kiss
  • 3 large marshmallows
  • 1 piece of red licorice
  • 2 thin stick pretzels or 2 shoestring potatoes
  • 6 raisins
  • 8” paper plate
  • Popsicle stick
  • Toothpick
  • Small tube of red gel
  • 1 can of white frosting


  • Cut raisins into 1/3rds so that students can use them for eyes, noses, and buttons.
  • Cut licorice in ½ and then in ½ again and then slice it down the middle lengthwise. This is the snowman’s scarf.
  • Pass supplies out to students.
  • Have students design their snowman on their plate.
  • The kiss is the snowman’s hat.
  • Give each student a spoonful of frosting. They use their Popsicle stick to “glue” their marshmallows together and stick their accessories and facial parts on. The raisins might stick on by themselves if they pick at the inside with the toothpick.
  • Children can poke a hole in the sides of the snowman with the toothpick and insert their potato sticks/pretzels for arms.
  • Adult puts a red gel smile on each snowman.

Frosted Face Sugar Cookies


  • Pre-made sugar cookie dough
  • 2 cans white frosting
  • Popsicle sticks
  •  Things to decorate the snowman face: Raisins, red hots, M&M's, Skittles, colored gum drops, Fruit Loops etc. 


  • Follow directions on cookie dough and make circular cookies.
  • Set up the decorations on paper plates at a table. Children choose which things they want, putting them on their plate and then return to their seats to decorate. 
  • Give each child a spoonful of frosting and have them frost their cookie "face" with the Popsicle stick and then decorate their snowman. 
  • Take a group photo of all the frosty faces and then "crunch-nibble-munch!"

 banana logs, easy recipes for kids, no bake recipes, cooking with kids, winter recipes for kids

Snow Covered Logs

Ingredients per person:

  • 1 banana
  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter
  • ¼ cup shredded coconut (There will be some leftovers.)


  • Cut banana in half lengthwise
  • Spread peanut butter on the halves.
  • Press together like a sandwich.
  • Sprinkle the coconut on a sheet of waxed paper.
  • Roll the banana in the coconut until completely covered.
  • Chill in fridge for 15 minutes.

Purple Sauce Slurpies


  • 6 cups applesauce
  • 3 cups grape juice
  • 24 paper Dixie cups
  • 24 Popsicle sticks


  • Combine applesauce and grape juice in a large bowl.
  • Stir until blended.
  • Spoon equal amounts into Dixie cups.
  • Freeze for 1 hour and then insert Popsicle sticks.

Popsicles, no bake recipes, cooking with kids, easy recipes for kids, winter recipes for kids, From a Liquid To a Solid

In January we study liquids turning into solids and then melting when they get hot.

A fun way that I demonstrate the liquid to a solid with my students is making Popsicles.  As a behavior modification technique I write the word Popsicles on the board and circle a letter at the end of each portion of our day, if everyone has performed/behaved appropriately.  It helps them clean up, line up, stay focused, get their work done etc.  When all the letters are circled, we take the Popsicles out of the freezer and see that the liquid has turned into a solid!  We also let one melt in the sun on our shelf to see a solid turn back into a liquid.

Popsicles with a Punch


  • Red Hawaiian Punch or juice of your choice.  This is my Y5’s favorite.  The blue Hawaiian punch is also a fun color for winter.
  • Tupperware molds or Dixie cups + Popsicle sticks.


  • Pour liquid into molds.
  • Put covers on
  • Put in freezer
  • Run under a bit of warm water to loosen the molds
  • If you don't have molds, use Dixie cups, fill them 1/2 full and freeze for 1 hour.  Insert Popsicle sticks. 
  • When ready to serve, remove paper.

Dirty Snow-Ball Cookies


  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup butter
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 15 oz. package Hershey Kisses
  • Powdered sugar


  • Combine sugar, butter and vanilla in a large bowl and beat until fluffy.
  • Add nuts and blend.
  • Chill the dough.
  • Shape dough around unwrapped individual chocolate kisses.
  • Put on greased cookie sheet.
  • Bake 12 minutes at 350 degrees.
  • Set pan aside to cool
  • Roll in powdered sugar ‘til completely covered and looking like a slightly dirty snowball.

snow cone recipe, no bake recipes, easy recipes for kids, winter recipes for kids Kool-Aid Cool-Snow Cones


  • 2 Cups crushed ice
  • 2 Cups sugar
  • ¾ Cup water
  • 1 package unsweetened Kool-Aid


  • Combine sugar and water in a pot and bring to a full boil.
  • Remove from heat.
  • Stir in the Kool-Aid
  • Chill.
  • Crush the ice cubes in a blender.
  • Put the ice in a cup or cone and pour the Kool-Aid syrup over the ice.
  • Eat with a sippy straw spoon.
  • I’ve also used real “just-fallen” clean snow for that special touch of “winter wonderland magic!”

Yogurt “Snow” Fun Pops


  • 2 cups vanilla yogurt
  • 6 oz. frozen orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla


  • Mix ingredients in large bowl ‘til blended.
  • Pour into ice cube trays.
  • Freeze for 30 minutes and then insert Popsicle sticks.

     soupDreaming up frozen concoctions with a kid in the kitchen can be "snow" much fun, especially if your state is a bit on the warmer side!  I hope you have a great time with yours.  

     These recipes were all rather on the "cool" side, but January is also National Soup Month so why not have a nice bowl of your favorite some frosty day, especially if your state is on the colder side like mine is in Michigan.  MM-MMM-Good!  And you won't be alone while enjoying this comfort food.  According to Lifestyle Magazine approximately ten billion bowls of soup are consumed by Americans every year!  Bon Appétit!

You will LOVE LOVE LOVE these adorable "Kids In The Kitchen" fun activities this month  They are some of my favorite family traditions and recipes.  They also make a nice food-craft for your students if you're looking for something fun to include for your Thanksgiving Feast Day Celebrations at school, or just a nice treat for your children the day before the big holiday weekend to wish them a Happy Thanksgiving.

gumdrop_turkey, cooking with kids, Kids Thanksgiving recipesGrama Karis’ Gum Drop Apple Turkeys 

  • 5 tooth picks
  • 1 apple (body)
  • 10 multi-colored gumdrops (1 has to be red for the wattle.) (feathers)
  • 1 raisin (eyes)
  • 1 Hershey kiss (head)

Background: Every Thanksgiving the guys would go deer hunting and the women would putz in the kitchen getting dinner ready. One of the things we’d do with the children while we were “watching” the turkey was make these adorable Gumdrop Apple Turkeys. Grama Flohr would bring all the supplies and each child would design their own gumdrop feathers so they could have a darling turkey sitting next to their plate.  At about the time we were getting finished with our creations the men would come home all red-faced, orange-clad and exuberant with tales of a near miss or a bull’s eye. After they’d shower it was time to eat, drink and be merry around a very thankful table.  I sure miss Grama K and those special memories. I hope you can make a gumdrop turkey and start some memory making of your own. It’s a wonderful family tradition.


  • Put two gumdrops on a tooth pick and put it in the back of the apple.
  • I put 4 feathers on the turkey, but 5 also looks nice.
  • You can make each feather have the same color gumdrops or you can have different colored gumdrops on each feather as shown in the picture.
  • Put one gumdrop on a tooth pick (neck) + a Hershey kiss (head) and put this tooth pick on the front of the apple.
  • Cut a red gumdrop in half and stick it tot eh kiss.
  • Cut a raisin in half, and then in half again and stick these to the kiss for eyes.

Tootie_Frootie_apple Turkey cooking with kids, Thanksgiving recipes for kidsTootie Frootie Turkey 

  • If you’d like to make this affordable to do with your class, as well as a cool math extension, do it with cereal. Children can sort the Tootie Frootie’s and make their feathers and neck all one color, like mine in the photo, or they can make all sorts of color patterns AB ABC or even ABCDEF as there are 6 different colors of Tootie Frooties! Tootie Frooties are made by Malto Meal. They are only $1.99 a bag as opposed to a more expensive box of Fruit Loops.  Send a note home asking parents to have their child bring in an apple. You could also ask 3 parents to donate a bag of Hershey kisses, Tootie Frooties, and candy corn.

Ingredients for ONE turkey.

  • 6 tooth picks
  • 34 Tootie Frooties  (feathers & neck) (6 for each feather.)
  • 1 apple (body)
  • 1 raisin (or yellow frosting) (eyes)
  • 1 red jelly bean or gum drop (wattle)
  • 5 pieces of candy corn (To hold feathers on toothpicks)
  • 1 Hershey kiss. (head)
  • Optional: Yellow frosting in a tube (For eyes.)


  • Stick 6 toothpicks in the back of the turkey a Tootie Frootie space apart from each other.
  • Slide Tootie Frooties on the toothpicks.
  • You can sort them and put one color on each toothpick, or choose to make a pattern.
  • Put a toothpick in the front of the apple in the center.
  • Put 4 Tootie Frooties on this toothpick.
  • Slide a Hershey kiss on top of the Tootie Frooties.
  • Cut a red gumdrop or red jelly bean in half and stick it to the kiss.
  • Cut a raisin in half, and then in half again and stick these to the kiss for eyes.
  • Or, using a toothpick, dot on two eyes with yellow frosting.

Pilgrim Hat CookiesPilgrim Hat Cookie, cooking with kids, Thanksgiving recipes for kids

  • 1 Round cookie  ( I use the kind that are chocolate on one side and vanilla on the other and have frosting in the middle.)
  • 1 Large marshmallow
  • Chocolate frosting
  • 1 Cheerio or 1 yellow Tootie Frootie (buckle)
  • Popsicle sticks.


  • Frost the chocolate side of the cookie with the chocolate frosting. I have my students use Popsicle sticks.
  • Put some frosting on the bottom of the marshmallow.
  • Press it down on the frosted cookie.
  • Frost the marshmallow so it is completely covered.
  • Press a Cheerio or Tootie Frootie into the bottom center of the Pilgrim hat, so it looks like a buckle.

Cornucopia Thanksgiving Snack Mix:  Buy sugar cones (The kind you put ice cream in, and fill them with this mix. They make nice party favors at your Thanksgiving table, or you could ask several room moms to make them as a treat for your students.) I tie my cones with a sheer fall colored ribbon. You can buy a bolt for a Dollar at Michaels or JoAnn Fabrics. I put the mix in a baggie then rubber band it shut and tie with curling ribbon.

  • Sugar Cones
  • Pretzels
  • Candy corn
  • Chex Mix
  • Raisins
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Goldfish Crackers  
  • Reese’s Pieces

Candy_Corn_CookieDiane’s Indian Corn Cookies (My very own invention)  If you want to do these as a class snack activity, ask parents to send in the ingredients.


  • Cookies that are oval shaped. I used Keebler’s new Vienna Fingers. They are $2.99 for a package of 30.
  • Yellow frosting. $1.69 a can
  • A bag of Reese’s Pieces or Fall-colored M&M’s  $2.59 a bag (on sale)
  • A can of LaChoy rice noodles. $1.35 a can


  • Students spread frosting on cookie with a Popsicle stick.
  • Children press candy pieces into the frosting.  Each child needs 10 pieces. (5 different colors).
  • Students press rice noodles in the top to look like corn husks.

Turkey TreatsHershey_Kiss_Turkey_Cookie, candy corn turkey cookie, cooking with kids, Thanksgiving kids recipes, November treats for kids


  • 2 round cookies (I use cookies that are chocolate on one side and vanilla on the other and have frosting in the middle.) (I’ve also seen these done with Oreo cookies where they take them apart and use this frosting or Nila Wafer cookies.)
  • 1 malted milk ball (head)
  • 1 Rolo (body)
  • 5 pieces of Candy Corn (feathers)
  • 1 red jelly bean (wattle)
  • chocolate frosting
  • 1 raisin (beak)
  • Yellow frosting in a tube
  • Toothpick


  • Frost the bottom cookie, chocolate side up.
  • Press the Rolo into the frosting so that it is towards the front of the cookie.
  • Put a dab of frosting on top of the Rolo.
  • Press the malted milk ball onto the frosting so that it sits on top of the Rolo.
  • Cut the jelly bean in half and stick it to the malted milk ball.
  • Cut the raisin (beak) in half and stick it above the jelly bean. (wattle)
  • Using a toothpick dab on two yellow frosting eyes.
  • Frost the bottom of the second cookie.
  • Press the 5 candy corns on the outside edge of the cookie in a fan shape.
  • The candy corn should have the pointed end pointing down.
  • Press this cookie up against the Rolo and down into the frosted bottom cookie.
  • An easier version of this is to skip the Rolo and the malted milk ball and use a Hershey Kiss instead.  The Kiss is the head of the turkey.  I like this version better.

Background: When I was an aide helping teach 2nd grade at Grand View school in Grandville, a room mom, Sheila, made these for tour students as a pre-Thanksgiving treat.  They LOVED them!

Chocolate Pumpkin Guts   Sounds awful tastes yummy!

Ingredients:Chocolate Thanksgiving pumpkin guts cupcake, cooking with kids, kids thanksgiving recipes Filling:
• 8 oz. cream cheese
• 1 egg
• 1/3 cup of sugar
• Orange food coloring
• 6 oz chocolate chips

• 3 cups of flour
• 2 cups of sugar
• 1/2 cup cocoa
• 2 tsp of baking soda
• 1/2 teasp salt
• 2 cups of water
• 1/2 cup +  2 tbs vegetable oil
• 2 teasp cider vinegar
• 2 teasp vanilla


Filling: Combine cream cheese, egg and sugar in a bowl.  Blend in orange food coloring.  Stir in choclate chips.  Set filling aside. 


Cupcakes: Combine flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, and salt; set aside. I use a large bowl. Combine water, vegetable oil, vinegar and vanilla in another bowl.Combine both bowls and stir.Fill cupcake inner halves with batter, then place one teaspoon of the filling at center. As  the cupcakes bake the batter will rise to surround the filling..  Preheat the oven to 350º.Bake for about 25 minutes.The orange “pumpkin guts” should ooze from the center to the top of the cupcake making a nice orangey contrast against the brown chocolate. Mmmm mmm good. These colors look lovely on a fall table. Wilton has some great autumn cupcake papers with fall leaves on them, as well as Happy Thanksgiving picks to poke in the top. Too cute, and just the finishing touch!

Thanksgiving_treatsTurkey Hand Print Cookies

  • Pre-made sugar cookie dough ( I am not a baker so I need easy maintenance.)
  • Handprint cookie cutter
  • Chocolate frosting
  • 1 rolo for the head
  • 1 piece of candy corn for beak
  • 1 jelly bean or gumdrop cut in half for the wattle.
  • Raisin for eye or a dot of yellow frosting
  • Multi-colored sprinkles
  • raisins for tor the wing.


  • Roll sugar cookie dough out on floured surface.
  • Cut out cookies with the handprint cookie cutter.
  • Make sure you spread the fingers as they will rise and fuse together as mine did in the photo.
  • Place on greased cookie sheet.
  • Bake at 350º for 8-10 minutes.
  • Let cool.
  • Children decorate with chocolate frosting.
  • Add a rolo for the head, a candy corn beak, and red jelly bean or gum drop for a wattle and a raisin cut in half for an eye.
  • Use colored sprinkles, or candy corn for the feathers.
  • Add raisins to make a wing. 
Click here to see bigger pictures in pdf form of the above photographs.

Turkey Leftovers: And if you're looking for something not quite so sweet, like what to do with the turkey left overs, these are somethings I do: Make panini’s on your George Foreman with the turkey leftovers. Add a slice of swiss cheese and their favorite "fixin's".  My husband and I love them; or put the meat in a soft shell taco, spread on some cream cheese and sliced olives and mmm mmm you have a yummy turkey wrap.  Or shred the turkey, add some barbecue sauce and serve on a croissant.  I’ve also diced up the turkey and made it into a quiche.

Or how about something to go with your turkey:

Sweet Potato Casserole With Marshmallows

This is my husband Daniel’s favorite. My daughter Kelli also requests that Mom Henderson bring it as her something to pass dish when we get together for the holiday.
• 1 (40 ounce) yams, drained (I cut them up.)
• 1/2 cup brown sugar
• 1/4 teaspoon salt
• 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
• 1 egg, beaten
• 4 tablespoons melted butter
• 1 (16 ounce) bag miniature marshmallows

  Directions:  .Heat oven to 350º Mash yams in a large bowl and add brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, egg, and melted butter. Mix well. Place 1/2 mixture in baking dish. Top with a layer of marshmallows, then add remaining mixture. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and top with remaining marshmallows. Bake for another 10 minutes or until marshmallows are lightly browned.   Yummy!

Whatever you're makin' or bakin' in the kitchen with your kids, I hope it's turkey-riffic and that these ideas will give you some wonderful memories to keep you warm through the holiday! 

Happy November!

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