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4-Ingredient kid-friendly recipes

Even the pickiest eaters will dig into these kid-friendly dishes from 4 Ingredient Kids: Simple, Healthy Fun in the Kitchen.

This book brings clever cooking into your home for you and your kids to enjoy. 4 Ingredient Kids: Simple, Healthy Fun in the Kitchen, by Kim McCosker, shows that you don’t have to fuss over a long list of ingredients or several steps of prep to bring fab, fun food to the table.


Chicken orchard sammy

Chicken Orchard Sammy

Transform the humble sandwich into a lunch box favorite. Note: Bacteria grows rapidly within the temperature range of 40 degrees F to 140 degrees F, so it’s always smart to add ice packs to a lunch box, placing them near the food meant to be kept cold.

Yields 2


  • 1/2 cup shredded poached or roasted chicken
  • 4 dried apricots, finely diced
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 slices multigrain bread
  • Lettuce (optional)


  1. In a bowl, mix together the chicken, apricots and mayonnaise. Use as a sandwich filling for the 2 slices of bread.
  2. Add lettuce for color and crunch (optional).
  3. Slice the sandwich before serving or wrap tightly and pop it into a lunch box.

Meatloaf cupcakes

Meat Loaf Cupcakes

Every time I see this photo, it makes me smile. Isn’t food just wonderful? It allows us to be so creative, easily turning a staple meatloaf into gorgeous cupcakes. The options are endless, but some of my favorite smuggling ideas are finely chopped celery, onion, grated carrot and beets with seasoned fresh thyme. What’s smuggling? Sneaking veggies into foods, undetected by kids.

Yields 12


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 egg
  • 2 slices multigrain bread, grated
  • 1/4 cup barbecue sauce, plus extra for basting
  • Warmed mashed potato as the “icing” (optional)


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 12 cups of a muffin tin with foil liners.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the beef, egg, breadcrumbs, and 1/4 cup barbecue sauce.
  3. Divide the mixture evenly among the muffin cups. Brush the tops with a little barbecue sauce and bake until cooked through, 20-25 minutes.
  4. Remove from the oven and let rest.
  5. For the optional “icing,” spoon some warmed mashed potato into a large, sealable plastic bag. Cut off the tip of one of the bottom corners and pipe the potato onto the top of each meatloaf in a swirling motion to “ice” your cupcakes.

Copyright © 2011 by Meymott Enterprises Pty Ltd. Originally published in 2011 by Simon & Schuster Australia.

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About the book

 4-ingredient, kid-friendly recipes

How often do you find a recipe that sounds healthy and delicious, only to find that it will take much more effort to make than you can spare on some days or nights? Luckily, the solution to your situation can be found in 4 Ingredients Kids, by Kim McCosker. This cookbook of 80 recipes makes life easy on adults, and fun for kids.

Kim takes meal making to new levels — as in, her recipes are made with just four ingredients (or fewer). Kim shows that teaching kids to eat well doesn’t have to be a chore — or unhealthy. She acknowledges that a child’s take on healthy meals begins at home. So not only are these recipes good for your family, but they’re easy enough to get kids involved in helping to prepare them. And when kids are more involved with their meals, they take more interest in them.

Through the pages of recipes that include sections for breakfast, lunch, snacks, dinner and dessert, you’ll also find tips on kitchen safety, optional additions to dishes, info on healthy eating habits and even advice on how to “smuggle” more veggies into many of these dishes.

Full-page, vibrant photos accompany each recipe in this book to entice you. You’ll be excited to work your way through the pages of these fun recipes. Don’t forget to check the back of the book for a section on party ideas and games.

About the author

Kim McCosker is a devoted mom and a self-taught passionate cook, putting her mantra of “family first,” into all her books. Her 4 Ingredients collection is now published in 12 countries around the world, with her own TV show airing in 18 countries. 4 Ingredients helps everyday families save time and money in the kitchen by improvising ingredients, using leftover food and reducing waste. Creating a phenomenon in her native Australia, with sales exceeding 5 million copies, the 4 Ingredients series has taken digital media to heightened levels with one of the fastest growing Facebook pages and with her app that has more than 55,000 downloads. Today, Kim has published 10 books, establishing an ingenious collection of sweet and savory recipes full of flavor and fresh, easy-to-find ingredients. Kim’s focus has remained the same — simple to prepare, delectable and inexpensive meals made with just four ingredients for any size family. The 4 Ingredients brand includes 4 Ingredients Gluten-Free; Baby Bowl; 4 Ingredients Christmas; and 4 Ingredients One Pot, One Bowl. For more information, you can visit Kim on Facebook and Twitter.

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