Teaching Kids About Money Through Cooking

Teaching Kids About Money Through Cooking

As your child grows, you want to teach them life skills and money management to help prepare them for a successful future. Parents need practical ways to show their kids real-world skills in everyday life. Getting your kids involved in household chores and activities like cooking is a great place to start. Cooking is a fun way for kids to contribute to the home and an excellent opportunity to work on money skills they can use for life.

Teaching kids the value of numbers with cooking

Cooking makes for a fun visual way to teach kids the value of numbers, including more difficult concepts like fractions. Baking and following recipes can help your child understand how numbers and fractions work in real life. Measuring out flour and sugar for cookies makes an engaging way to show ¼ cup compared to ½ cup visually. Have your child practice doubling a recipe, showing how ¼ becomes ½, and so on. These real-life examples pave the way for kids to grasp important math skills and the value of money.

Teaching kids to budget with cooking

Before turning on the stove, you can start teaching kids to budget with your grocery shopping list. Get kids involved in the meal planning process and show them how to add up the money totals of ingredients they’ll need for cooking. Have kids find and grab different items on the list to involve them while shopping. Even young children can participate by putting things in the cart. A shopping plan is an excellent way to introduce budgeting for kids and smart spending.

Practice budgeting for kids and budget-setting

When you sit down to make your grocery list, you can start the conversation with your children about planning your budget with food. You can show them how to set a budget amount to spend at the grocery store and practice making a spending plan. Ask kids what they want to eat and walk them through the process of listing ingredients. As kids get older, you can give them the opportunity to plan a dinner night or even an entire grocery shopping trip themselves. Practice basic budgeting skills like:

  • Setting an overall grocery budget for the week
  • Making a plan for your money at the grocery store
  • Adding ingredient totals together
  • Smart spending and staying within budget
  • Avoiding wasteful spending and wasting food

Build confidence and money skills

Teaching kids to budget in an age-appropriate way can build your child’s confidence with money as they grow. As you teach them how to handle chores and manage money with groceries, kids will create good habits to manage money on a larger scale, such as with a kid’s debit card. A budget for a week of groceries now is great practice for a monthly budget with bigger bills down the road. Kids of all ages can benefit from important lessons that come from meal prep and budgeting. Introduce concepts slowly over time to keep the lessons positive and kids excited to learn more. 



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Written by Kristin Yarbrough Published Jun 15, 2022 ● 3 min. read