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Recipe for Success
by Marie E. Cecchini

Kid-friendly recipes can help you make some extra dough — no pun intended. You needn’t be a culinary expert, but you do need to know what kids like to eat and how to properly present a recipe.

Getting Started

Think kid-friendly. What kinds of dishes would kids like to prepare? What kinds of dishes would be easy for them to prepare? What do they like to eat? If you’re not sure, ask — your own kids, your neighbors, nieces, or nephews.

Create something original. If you discover kids like to prepare and eat pizza or popcorn (big surprise), try concocting a breakfast pizza or an unusual topping for popcorn.

Consider healthy recipes. Many children’s publications prefer recipes that encourage children to eat healthy foods rather than sweets. Create recipes to suit the individual tastes of various publications.

List the ingredients before directions for preparation, and always list the ingredients in order of use.

When writing the directions, be very specific. For example, “Slice the bananas and lay them in the bottom of a 9 x 9 inch baking dish” is better than “Place bananas in a square baking dish.”

Always use numbers rather than words when dealing with measurements and cooking times — 350° rather than three hundred fifty degrees.

Be sure to read a copy of the publication you’re considering and check the company’s guidelines for recipe specifics and presentation.

Finally, always try your recipe, preferably with children, before submitting. Will the recipe work? Will the children actually be able to do it themselves (with a little adult assistance)? Will the end result be something kids will enjoy eating? These are questions you can only answer by trying out your recipe.

Once you’ve created a recipe or two you’ll need to submit them to appropriate publishers. The following will get you started.

  • Highlights for Children – They are always in the market for fun learning experiences.
  • Carus Publishing – Many of their publications, like Ladybug and Spider, use simple kid-friendly recipes.
  • Family Fun – They use one recipe at the end of each issue, and sometimes include recipes in their holiday and birthday articles.

If this idea works for you, you might also consider putting together a book of recipes. A quick trip to your local library or book store will show you how popular this topic is with the children’s market. You may just find yourself in an entirely different writing mode – one you never expected. Sometimes it pays to think “outside the box” and create your own recipe for success.

© Copyright 2007, Marie E. Cecchini

Marie is the author of five books and has created award-winning crafts for children. She also writes children’s poetry as well as articles for parents, teachers, and writers. She can be contacted at MarieE2049@sbcglobal.net.

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