Just like with adults, kids who learn how to cook tend to eat healthier foods and they're learning a life skill that is incredibly important. Kids who are involved in the process of cooking are more apt to eat those foods because they feel pride and ownership over the meal, but many parents hesitate to get their kids involved in the kitchen because of the dangers there: burning hot ovens and stove tops, sharp knives, raw ingredients, etc.
Those worries aren't unfounded and bringing your kids in the kitchen requires ground rules to protect them, but if you keep tasks at age-appropriate levels, even toddlers can get help out and start learning the basics of making meals.
Cooking involves things that kids are naturally drawn to like exploring different textures, smells and tastes, pouring, scooping and mixing and, yes, making a mess. Once you start exposing them to the process, it might actually be hard to get them out of the kitchen.
The following seven steps will help you get started. With a little patience and an open mind, your kids will be little assistant chefs and better eaters in no time.