Best Childrens Play Kitchen Ideas For Role Playing

by Tonya Staab
Published: Updated:

A childrens play kitchen is perfect for role-playing, learning, and creativity. We are sharing the best play kitchen and handmade ideas.

Marisol loves role-play with her kitchen set. I’m going to be devastated when she outgrows it. As she gets older her role-playing is developing and changing as she learns new skills. When I first purchased the wood play kitchen it had the bare basics.

A pink kitchen for kids with kitchen accessories for role playing.
Wood play kitchen and accessories for children.

It’s no longer just about hosting a tea party for family, friends, and her dolls though. She’s learning new skills and developing different character roles.

Some of the things she has learned through kitchen role play:

  • Where to place cutlery when setting the table
  • How to set a timer for baking
  • That oven mitts need to be used when cooking in the oven or on the stove
  • How to wash fruit and vegetables

Here are some of her favorite role-playing activities:

Childrens play kitchen ideas

Playing waitress

She takes our orders, writing each one down carefully on a notepad, and reads it back to us to confirm it is correct. The table is set with flowers, napkins, salt & pepper, and cutlery. After the meal, she clears the table, washes the dishes, and puts everything away.

A little girl playing cafe writing down orders, and serving food.
How to role-play being in a restaurant with your kids.

Cafe Open and Closed

On her bedroom door is a ‘cafe open/closed’ sign that she turns over when she is ready for guests. She charges a 5 cent fee to enter her kitchen (which is returned along with a receipt after the meal has been enjoyed). My favorite thing is when she stands in the hallway with a tray of pretend cookies for us to sample as we walk past.

Playing chef

She loves nothing more than to play chef. I have given her a real kitchen timer which she sets when she is baking. The time is adjusted as she learns how to estimate cooking times depending on what she is baking. Learning which food should be cooked on the stove or in the oven and which tools she needs are also a big part of her role-playing. She even pretends to wash fruit and vegetables in a strainer in her sink.

A little girl cooking eggs on her play kitchen and having breakfast together.
Best play kitchen ideas for kids to role-play.

Kitchen accessories

We have quite a collection of play kitchen items. Most of these are from the $1 section at Target. I’ve also found a lot of great second-hand items at thrift stores. Here are some things you should consider purchasing:

  • Serving ware
  • Rolling pin
  • Utensils
  • Oven mitts
  • Kitchen timer
  • Scales
  • Cutting board
  • Serving tray
  • Napkins
  • Tablecloth

Handmade play kitchen food

The play kitchen contains a lot of handmade items too, particularly food. Over the years I’ve knit small food items including sandwiches, desserts, and strawberries.

Handmade knit sandwiches for a play kitchen.
Handmade knit sandwiches for a play kitchen.

The free patterns for the sandwiches and desserts can be found at Jean Greenhowe Designs.

Handmade knit desserts for a play kitchen.
Handmade knit desserts for a play kitchen.

You can find my free pattern for knit strawberries at FaveCrafts.

Handmade knit strawberries in a plastic punnet.
Knit strawberries in a punnet for kitchen play.

This article was created for Rusty and Rosy, however, that website is currently offline.

Are you looking for more role-playing activities for your kids? Try these:

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Play kitchen ideas for kids Pinterest image

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