Why Visuals are Louder than Words in the Kitchen

visual recipes

Visual recipes allow my kids to get involved in cooking and really learn the process. This is why I have created The Visual Cookbook. Now is the perfect time to do more cooking with the kids while they are home and we can’t go to our usual activities.

Cooking is one of the most valuable skills we can teach our kids. As soon as a child can hold a spoon they are ready to help with mixing, it is never too early to start.

Why Visual Recipes Matter

Most people prefer a recipe with a picture of the end result because this shows us what we are trying to replicate. Language and communication can be complex and children have varying degrees of comprehension. Visuals on the other hand are clear and easy to understand.

I don’t know about you but I love watching Tasty videos to see how to make something, it shows everything I need to do. My kids need far more processing time so a video is too fast for them and that’s where a printable visual is important. Having time to look at what they need to get / do at each step of the recipe allows them to be confident in what needs to happen.

blueberry milkshake ingredients
blueberry milkshake ingredients

My 6 year old loves cooking and helping in the kitchen, as he is non-verbal and has auditory processing issues visual communication is vital for us. It is with him in mind that the visual recipes and instructions have been created.

Language can easily be interpreted differently. Ask a child to get some flour and some will instantly think of a flower and be confused. Kids are much better in the kitchen when we show them what to do, plus most kids get frustrated when we are just telling them what needs to be done.

Step by step recipes

Each recipe is broken down into the key steps with visuals and written instructions. Obviously children will need adults to help them through the process but having a recipe that they can follow and use gives them more control. I think most kids like to be in control and they are likely to learn the process better when they feel they are in charge.

visual recipes
visual recipes

I usually use graphics and logos in my visuals but have found pictures of real food more appropriate for cooking.

Easy Snacks, Cakes and Light Meals

The Visual Cookbook is a selection of easy snacks, cakes and light meals. Below you can see the visuals used to make a cheese sandwich. A very simple recipe perfect for young children and great to get them making their own lunch too.

Cheese sandwich visual recipe
making a cheese sandwich

My children both have limited diets and its hard to find food they will eat. I find cooking is an important process and helps (over time) for kids to try new things. My eldest is also a sensory seeker and baking is perfect for him and this is why I have included the Focaccia recipe along with how to knead bread. Kneading is a brilliant activity with lots of sensory feedback to use up some of that excess energy.

The Visual Cookbook includes kids favourites like cupcakes and jam tarts and there is hopefully something for every taste and ability.

visual recipes

Practice really does make perfect in the kitchen, using a few favourite recipes regularly will enable your children to improve their skills and become confident cooks.

The Visual Cookbook

The Visual Cookbook

This easy to print 25 page document has 16 sets of instructions with clear photos. It is designed so you can print each recipe as needed from the eBook.

A perfect first cookbook and ideal for getting your children involved in the kitchen.

Available to download now for just £2.95. More information on the link below –

Do you cook with your kids? What are your favourite things to make in the kitchen?

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  1. madelinelittlejohns
    6th June 2020 / 11:16 pm

    This is such a lovely idea. I often forget how much I need to take things right back to basics when it comes to cooking with my children and I love how this really breaks things down and shows each step so clearly. x #KCACOLS

  2. 7th June 2020 / 12:24 am

    What a fantastic thing. I didn’t know. Great idea. #KCACOLS

    • admin
      7th June 2020 / 12:31 pm

      Thanks Lydia, glad you like it x

  3. 7th June 2020 / 10:19 am

    What a great idea! Your cookbook looks fab for children 🙂 #kcacols

    • admin
      7th June 2020 / 10:23 am

      Thanks Hannah x

    • admin
      7th June 2020 / 12:31 pm

      Thanks Claire

  4. 7th June 2020 / 11:10 pm

    This is such a good idea, and really helpful to kids. I’ve done lots of baking with my two year old twins in lockdown – mainly banana loaf of course, and they’ve loved it! #KCACOLS

    • admin
      8th June 2020 / 6:15 pm

      I really enjoy it cooking is great for interacting with the kids and usually with a good result!

  5. 8th June 2020 / 11:29 am

    It hadn’t really occurred to me before what a great sensory activity kneading bread would be! I love kneading bread as it’s so relaxing and therapuetic so makes perfect sense. #KCACOLS

    • admin
      8th June 2020 / 11:30 am

      It didn’t really occur to me until I saw how much my son lived loved doing it

  6. 9th June 2020 / 4:32 am

    Awesome idea. I think that a lot of people would benefit from the instructions to a lot of things being broken down like this #KCACOLS

    • admin
      9th June 2020 / 8:46 am

      Thanks Jeremy, I hope so x

  7. Shelley Whittaker
    9th June 2020 / 3:57 pm

    You make such a valid point here and a visual cookbook for kids is a great idea. As you said, I like to watch cooking shows but they can even be too quick for me. And if you are cooking something completely new, sometimes it can be really helpful to know what each step of the dish should look like. #KCACOLS

    • admin
      9th June 2020 / 4:44 pm

      Thank you Shelley. It’s more obvious to me now as my eldest relies upon visuals but they are so valuable for all kids

  8. paternaldamnation
    10th June 2020 / 12:03 pm

    Fantastic resource! Kids feel such a sense of achievement when they’ve helped cook something. Think I might just have to get my son to make us some focaccia! #KCACOLS

    • admin
      11th June 2020 / 10:03 am

      I was surprised how easy it was to make focaccia, a but of waiting between rises so perfect while we are spending so much time at home.

  9. 12th June 2020 / 8:59 pm

    I totally agree with you! Visuals have been an important part of recipes nowadays. People tend look at the photos first before they pick the recipes I must say. #KCACOLS

  10. 13th June 2020 / 2:21 pm

    What a brilliant idea. Children (and grown ups!) love seeing visuals when it comes to cooking and baking. Step by step elements are so useful and I like how your book would give independence to an older child to be able to make things without too much adult involvement. Good luck with the book! Thank you for sharing this with the #DreamTeamLinky xx

    • admin
      13th June 2020 / 5:42 pm

      Thanks Annette really appreciate your comments

  11. Tracey Carr
    19th June 2020 / 7:41 pm

    That is so impressive looking! My daughters love helping me in the kitchen and we try to do a lot of things but their favourite is fairy cakes because they love decorating them with sprinkles. It’s so good to get them involved so that they begin to understand where food comes from. That and they get to lick the spoon at the end!! #KCACOLS

    • admin
      19th June 2020 / 7:43 pm

      My eldest loves doing fairy cakes too really enjoys the sprinkles too although it can get pretty messy!

      • 20th June 2020 / 6:19 am

        This is a fantastic idea for a cookbook, especially helpful for children to see each step in the process. My daughter likes to help with cooking sometimes, but I never really do any proper baking, I’d like to try making cakes with her sometime (and should make the most of this time that we’re stuck at home!). #kcacols

        • admin
          20th June 2020 / 7:33 am

          Making cakes is always fun. Most kids love baking and who can’t resist a sweet treat reward

  12. 20th June 2020 / 2:15 pm

    Reading this is making me hungry! Everything looks fab! #KCACOLS

  13. Natasha Mairs - Serenity You
    23rd June 2020 / 2:35 pm

    This is such a good idea. Once when my kids were younger they were following a recipe to make a sandwich and when it said cut the sandwich in half, they cut in length ways #KCACOLS

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