A Recipe Contest Just for Kids

photo by Virginia

There are moments when the state of disrepair in the American diet seems too broken to fix. But it’s my concern for our kids that keeps me hopeful and striving to improve the status quo. And I know of no better or more playful way to engage kids around food than getting them to cook.  So, this year, as part of National Nutrition Month, I’m hosting The Mom’s Kitchen Handbook Snackdown, a recipe contest just for kids. That’s right, a competition for junior cooks to create tasty, nourishing morning, lunch box, or after school snacks.

Here are the essentials, which you can pass along to any pint-size chefs in your house.


  • Must be under 16 years of age to enter.
  • Must take the lead on recipe development with help from grown-ups as needed (no unsupervised knife work or cooking over an open flame).
  • Should submit an original recipe or one adapted from an existing recipe with at least three distinct changes.
  • Must live in the United States (sorry international friends).
  • Must not be related to me.
  • Must submit entries by Sunday March 31 at midnight PST.
Recipes will be judged on taste and nutrition. Both sweet and savory concoctions are welcome. Kids should think about using wholesome ingredients such as dried and fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, whole grains such as whole wheat flour or oats, yogurt and other low-fat dairy, less sugar, no artificial anything. This feature in Cooking Light about healthy snacks for kids may provide some inspiration.


The grand prize winner’s recipe will be styled, photographed, and featured on the blog. In addition, the winner will be awarded a $50 gift card to Amazon.com. Two runners up will also be selected and featured on MKH.


Please email recipes to [email protected]. Entries should include the child’s name, age, and the name of the recipe, along with a snapshot of the finished dish, if desired. Adapted recipes should include a copy of the original. I may feature entrant photos here on MKH or the Mom’s Kitchen Handbook Facebook page. Please post any questions regarding contest rules in the comments section below.


May the best kid win!



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