Homemade Pepperoni Pizza | Cooking with Kids, a classic recipe with tips and tricks to help get kids cooking. Getting the kids involved in making a well-loved dish like a Pepperoni Pizza for a family meal.
Ready to get cooking? With your kids? Here’s a great and fun recipe to include your kids in the kitchen for family meal prep. Pizza is a kid (and adult) favourite so why not play it up and have a ton fun while making dinner.
This post is in support of Better Together BC for their Hands-on Cook-off Contest, of which I am a huge fan. Cooking with kids and the ability to win cash prizes sounds like a total win-win situation to me. Grab a camera and film a short video of either two or more kids cooking together or two or more generations cooking together for your chance to win a great prize in addition to having a ton of fun.
I’m at the stage where I still need to be right there for cooking with my twins (4 yr olds). They adore it and ask to cook with me all the time. I’ve got a few tips to make the whole homemade pepperoni pizza mission more fun and less stressful if anyone out there is like my hubby who panics at the thought of having kids near the stove or anything remotely sharp.
Hands-on Cook-off Contest Details:
- Runs April 16th to May 16th, 2018
- Open to BC residents with a video that is 3 minutes or less of 2 or more people (either 2 youth or 2 multigenerational family members)
- Videos to be submitted online through Better Together BC.
- Prizes: several cash prizes of $1000 and $500 to be awarded in different categories to individuals and schools.
- Judges include chefs, parents, dieticians, and a cookbook author.
- More info on the judging process and tips for making home videos can be found here.
Tips & Tricks for Cooking with Kids:
- Embrace the mess and have expectations of clean up help. When my twins were 2 years old I often resorted to making food on the floor with them. It’s safer and the floor will probably need to be cleaned anyways (if we’re being honest here). Now that they’re a bit bigger I always ask for help cleaning off the counter after cooking with them. I have my kids set the dinner table for all the kids tableware and empty the kids dishes from the dishwasher regularly. I relocated all the kids kitchen tableware to a drawer that is accessible at their height and ask of them to help with the not so fun parts of the kitchen like clean up and table setting.
- Trust your kids. I purchased some affordable kid-safe knives off of Amazon to let them practice with a safe kitchen tool, in a safe environment. These knives are dishwasher safe, BPA-free, and have great grip. We’re slowly working towards using regular knives, but these ones are great for practicing.
- Empower your kid. Having their own tools helps, but asking loads of questions where they get to make their own decisions helps build confidence. Something as simple as “when should we put the cheese on the pepperoni pizza?”, or, “if I need 4 scoops of flour how many do each of you get to do?”, or, “we need 6 cups, who can be in charge of counting?”. Giving them tasks that are easily accomplishable also helps avoid frustration or angst about not being able to do it. I find that my kids are always more excited for a meal that they helped to make.
- Sharp tools are ok when used properly. Need some carrots peeled? Sticking a fork in the end of the carrot for grip keeps tiny fingers away from the sharp vegetable peeler.
- Safety first. Every time I take out a kitchen appliance like a mixer, blender or food processor I always say “fingers and toes away from the machine”. I’ve said it so often that before I open my mouth now, my older girls say it without prompting to remind their baby sister and themselves. Incorporate safe practices into everyday cooking (how to handle raw meat properly, always wash your hands before cooking, etc.) so that they are the norm. Practice health and safety in the kitchen and it will become second nature for your kids too.
- Stove and oven. My kids are quite small still (4 year olds and a 2 year old) so the work in and around the stove or oven is still being worked out. They definitely help me whisk the scrambled eggs while they’re on the stove, but I don’t have them take the pizza out of the oven (because the tray is too heavy for them and I don’t have proper oven mitts for them at this time). As they grow and want to take on more kitchen responsibilities I’m preparing myself to empower them to do so (safely).
- Making memories. There is nothing that can compare with the huge smile on your child’s face when they see their finished product. It can be a completely misshaped pizza, salad with mushed tomatoes from the kids cutting them, or lots of hand washing from messes made, BUT meals made together taste better.
Looking for more recipes that promote cooking with kids and eating pizza?
- This easy salad was the first one my kids made solo.
- Bianca Pizza for a sneaky veggie pizza.
- These Healthy Creamsicles never get made by me, my kids can probably make them in their sleep at this point.
I can’t wait to see all your videos! Don’t forget to enter them over at Better Together BC (and for full contest details).
Homemade Pepperoni Pizza | Cooking with Kids, a classic recipe with tips and tricks to help get kids cooking.
- 3 tsp active dry yeast
- 1 cup warm water, lukewarm not boiling
- 2.5 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling dough
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1/3 cup tomato sauce
- 2 cups shredded pizza mozzarella (low moisture mozzarella)
- 20-30 slices pizza pepperoni
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
Add yeast and water to a large mixing bowl (or the bowl of a stand-mixer). Stir once to activate yeast. Let sit for 5 minutes.
Add flour and salt and mix until a dough is formed (around 3 minutes of mixing). Add olive oil and mix until combined. Cover with a tea towel and let sit for 10-15 minutes to rise (just slightly).
While dough is rising, preheat oven to 450° F, grate cheese and prep other ingredients.
Have two baking sheets turned upside down and lightly dust with flour. (Or use a pizza stone if you have one).
Divide dough into 2 parts and roll out to 1/8-1/4" thick on a floured surface. Transfer to baking sheets.
Top each pizza with tomato sauce, mozzarella, pepperoni, parmesan, basil, and black pepper. Drizzle with olive oil.
Bake for 12-15 minutes or until cheese is bubbling and brown and the pizza's edges are browned and starting to crisp.
Garnish with fresh basil if desired. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before serving.
* feel free to skip this step and purchased store-bought pizza dough. Remove from fridge 10-15 minutes prior to use and roll out to add toppings.