Cooking with Kids: Chiquita Banana No Bake Cookies
The kitchen in my home is a place where some of the best memories and bonding opportunities are created. We are blessed to have dinner together as a family every night, and that has proved to create a supportive atmosphere to share about our day or talk through family decisions. Even before we sit down at the family dinner table, memories have been made and lessons learned during the preparation of the meal, snack, or whatever we are sitting down to enjoy. Many nights, my girls join me in the kitchen as we chat about life (sometimes important topics, other times unimportant topics), make memories together, and I teach them all about cooking for a family. Caitlyn, my eleven-year-old, enjoys it a bit more than Kylie (age 9).
Cooking with your children is a perfect way to not only create memories, but also create a relaxed space of time to get to know your children better. My mother bakes pies with my children every Thanksgiving holiday, and it’s something my children look forward to every year. It is my hope that spending time in the kitchen with my children (especially my girls) will create a love of cooking in them that will last for the rest of their lives, and allow me to teach them healthy cooking and eating habits that they can teach to their families one day. I want my children to look back on the moments they spent with me in our kitchen and have good warm memories.
There are so many items you can create in the kitchen that are easy and fun to make even for boys! Recently, I was browsing the Chiquita website, and found a recipe for Chiquita Banana No Bake Cookies. What an easy and fun recipe to make with kids of all ages! It’s easy to mix, requires no baking, is nutritious and yummy, and you get to play with your food! This recipe is also perfect for using up those brown Chiquita bananas everyone seems to shy away from. But if you remember from Tricia’s post about the Chiquita banana ripeness scale, those are the tastiest ones!
3 Chiquita Bananas w/brown flecks
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup 2% Milk
1/2 cup peanut butter
3 cups quick cook oatmeal
2 cups chopped walnuts
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 cup cocoa powder (optional, but recommended)
Making the cookies is seriously simple, but even though the name includes the words “no bake”, there is a bit of cooking involved. First, add your Chiquita bananas, sugar, butter, and milk to a sauce pan and bring to a boil, stirring frequently until the mixture is smooth.
Then add your mixture to all of the remaining ingredients. The recipe calls for walnuts, but I used a combination of walnuts and pecans and the cookies still tasted super yummy.
The recipe makes two dozen cookies, so next spoon out 24 gooey cookies onto wax paper and let cool completely. This was where the ‘playing with your food’ part comes in. The kids were more than happy to ‘help’ shape the cookies.
After the cookies are cooled, refrigerate for one hour and you have easy Chiquita Banana No Bake Cookies. I would recommend storing them in an airtight container in the fridge. The warmer the cookies get, the gooier they are. Enjoy!
Have any kid-friendly recipes you like to make with your kids?