Give your child a chance to play with his or her food by making these fun, edible crafts.
Engaging in simple crafting is a great way for your preschooler to learn to follow directions, practice fine motor skills and cultivate his or her imagination. These easy crafts range from open-ended activities that spur creativity to projects with step-by-step instructions that result in cute (and tasty!) creatures. Whether it’s a rainy day or your child is just feeling crafty, look for opportunities to create some of the edible art below.
Peanut butter–sandwich monkey
Make your own first or use the photo above as a model for your little one to create a cute monkey using the classic combination of bread, peanut butter, a banana and raisins.
- For the face, top the bottom of one slice of bread with half of another slice of bread that you’ve cut in a curved line.
- For the ears, take the remaining half of the second slice of bread, cut out two small circles and then cut the circles in half with a curved line. Then top each ear with half a slice of banana and place them next to the first slice of bread to create ears.
- Add peanut butter as desired and use raisins to make the eyes, nose and mouth.
Edible necklace or bracelet
Use string plus any O-shaped candy, cereal, or other food items to make bracelets or necklaces. Bonus if it’s colorful!
Edible finger paint
Make your own finger paint at home using cornstarch, water and food dye. It doesn’t taste great, but it’s inexpensive, easy and fun.
Use graham crackers and a binder (glue or something edible such as peanut butter or royal icing) to build a house. Take it a step further and create a small village using crumbled chocolate cookies for dirt, broccoli for trees and… well, use your imagination for the rest!
Custom potato stamps
Cut a potato in half and push a cookie cutter in the shape of your choice all the way into the cut side. Use a paring knife to cut off the potato outside of the cookie cutter. Use the homemade stamp and paint to make pictures or patterns.
Like the peanut butter–sandwich monkey above, this craft offers a good opportunity to practice following directions. Also, the pita, hummus, carrots and olives make a great snack.
- For the body, cut a pita in half.
- For the head, cut a small circle out of the second half of the pita.
- Cut another round and halve it for the wing.
- Top with hummus, using a slice of olive for an eye and the tip of a carrot for a beak.
Flowers come in simple shapes and every color, so they are perfect for creating out of whatever foods you have on hand. Make one or two to give your child the idea, then let him or her run with whatever ingredients can be found in the fridge or pantry.
I’ve seen these made using marshmallows instead of grapes, but I love a healthy substitute! Assemble a structure for your little ones to re-create or have them make their own.