Best Wooden Pretend Food Toys for Creative Play

Educational Toys Teach Kids How to Be Adults

Our children learn how to become adults through creative play and observing and copying what they see grown ups do around them. One way to teach kids how to eat healthy foods is to provide them with pretend play food to role play with.

I recommend wooden play food because it is much safer and more durable than other materials such as plastic or paper. Natural wood will hold up to long hours of playtime, and will not pass along any unsafe chemical to children from being bitten or chewed on like plastic will.

These toy sets are very affordable and can be combined for extended play. Children can also bring their toys along to the grocery store, or to help mom or dad make meals at home. They can share food with their friends and learn to create meals for others using the food groups, vegetables and fruit toys below.

Melissa & Doug Wooden Food Groups

Melissa & Doug Wooden Food Groups

Why Role Playing is Important for Kids

Children learn who they are by copying adults. You may not realize it, but your children are watching you constantly as an example of how to do things. As they grow, you will notice how they pick your expressions, habits and mannerisms.

By actively teaching your children how to create healthy meals and buy healthy food through role playing, you encourage their natural tendencies towards copying your actions. You can create a salad for lunch or dinner, and they can then copy you by creating salads for their friends and dolls.

A child’s job is to learn how to be an adult, and you are the adult that they learn from.

These pretend food toys can teach your children while they have fun, and create scenarios for daily meals, holiday meals and other special occasions. And because they are made of wood, they will last for a long, long time.

Here are some basic ideas on how to use the wooden food group toy shown above:

Ask the child to identify each food item (other than condiments) and to categorize it by basic food group: meat, dairy, grain or fruits and vegetables. Ask the child to place each food group in a different crate.

Have the child identify the colors of each food item, and sort the items by color among the four crates.

Help the child to assemble a balanced meal in each basket. Explain that each meal must have one item from each food group.

Visual memory skills: Place 3-4 ingredients in front of the child. Let the child study them before asking the child to close their eyes while you remove one piece. Ask the child which piece was removed. Gradually increase the number of ingredients.

Why Role Playing is Important for Kids

Children learn who they are by copying adults. You may not realize it, but your children are watching you constantly as an example of how to do things. As they grow, you will notice how they pick your expressions, habits and mannerisms.

By actively teaching your children how to create healthy meals and buy healthy food through role playing, you encourage their natural tendencies towards copying your actions. You can create a salad for lunch or dinner, and they can then copy you by creating salads for their friends and dolls.

A child’s job is to learn how to be an adult, and you are the adult that they learn from.

These pretend food toys can teach your children while they have fun, and create scenarios for daily meals, holiday meals and other special occasions. And because they are made of wood, they will last for a long, long time.

Here are some basic ideas on how to use the wooden food group toy shown above:

Ask the child to identify each food item (other than condiments) and to categorize it by basic food group: meat, dairy, grain or fruits and vegetables. Ask the child to place each food group in a different crate.

Have the child identify the colors of each food item, and sort the items by color among the four crates.

Help the child to assemble a balanced meal in each basket. Explain that each meal must have one item from each food group.

Visual memory skills: Place 3-4 ingredients in front of the child. Let the child study them before asking the child to close their eyes while you remove one piece. Ask the child which piece was removed. Gradually increase the number of ingredients.

Haba Vegetable Set in Shopping Bag

HABA Vegetable Set in Shopping Bag

Melissa & Doug Wooden Sandwich-Making Set

Melissa & Doug Wooden Sandwich-Making Set

Educo Healthy Gourmet Salad For Green Eaters

Hape – Playfully Delicious – Garden Salad – Play Set

PlanToys Plan Activity Large Scale Meat Set

The Large Meat Set will familiarize the kids with different types of Meat like – steak, slide, fish, sausage, chicken drumstick, salami, and bologna. It also includes a knife to slice them. The Meat pieces can be stuck together again with sturdy velcro!

Recommended For ~ Children Over Three

PlanToys Plan Activity Large Scale Meat Set

Shopping Cart with Wooden Pantry Products and Fridge Food Set

Does your child like to shop for Food at the Supermarket? If yes, then this is just the right Christmas present for him/her. The set includes lots of Wooden Pantry Products, as well as Fridge Food Set.

Recommended For ~ Kids Over Five

Melissa & Doug Shopping Cart with Wooden Pantry Products and Fridge Food Set

Melissa & Doug Cutting Food

Melissa & Doug Cutting Fruit Set – Wooden Play Food

This great set can help children practice cutting food before they get to the real thing with no danger involved. Just one of the cutting food sets by Melissa & Doug.

Melissa & Doug Cutting Fruit Set

Melissa & Doug Sushi Slicing Playset

If your family likes sushi, here is a complete sushi set from Melissa & Doug so that your child can become a complete sushi chef. Using this set, you can teach your child the way to safely make sushi at home, and give them hours of creative play time.

Melissa & Doug Sushi Slicing Playset

Melissa & Doug Slice and Bake Cookie Set

One of my favorite food sets, this will teach your child some of the fundamentals of baking and serving cookies. And they look very yummy, but have no calories. Great gift for holidays, especially Christmas.

Melissa & Doug Slice and Bake Cookie Set

More Creative Wooden Food Toys from Melissa & Doug

This selection of food toys includes several by Melissa & Doug, however there are several more that are available. If you would like to see more of them, and ideas of how they can be included in creative play, click here.

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Meet The Author

Paula Atwell

I am an artist, freelance writer and the owner of Lake Erie Artists Gallery.

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