Good morning and I hope you all have had a lovely weekend. I had a great time baking with two of my children yesterday and the cake tins are now full again for the start of the week.  When planning a children’s party the food is going to be a very important part and whilst we love to serve sugary treats at parties it is also important to offer healthy options too.  Today I am thrilled to welcome Annabel Karmel to help you all with planning party food treats.  Annabel has written twenty six books on baby and childrens food and nutrition to encourage young children to eat healthy food, often without them realising that vegetables are included and providing parents with quick and easy recipes.  Now you can get great recipes, meal planners, shopping lists and more to your iPhone with Annabel’s new app ‘Annabel’s Essential Guide To Feeding Your Baby & Toddler’.

Now without further ado let’s find out Annabel’s party food ideas.

Having your own children’s party can be a lot of fun, and as the trend for ‘Do it yourself’ is getting more and more popular, there are great ideas available to get you inspired whatever the size and budget you have.  The most successful parties I have had are when my children got involved, this can take a bit more time, but they can take so such pleasure from creating something themselves and having a say in something like the theme or some of the games.

caterpillar sandwiches – image source

I think cooking parties are great, as all children love getting involved and getting their hands messy. If you are doing this you want to make it as simple as possible, just make one or two things that don’t involve too much cooking and no sharp knives! Try making different shaped sandwiches and see who can come up with the most interesting character using cookie cutters and brown and white bread.
cookie cutters from cookie crumbles
Make up lots of cookie dough (gingerbread is a nice easy one to use) and divide up balls of dough and give everyone a rolling pin and a variety of cookie cutters. Cupcakes are also a great idea for a cooking party. You can make a whole batch of cupcakes in advance and freeze them, then you have lots for children to decorate. Just put our some bowls with different coloured icing and lots of sweets to decorate, you could have themes such as animals or faces.
Jelly boats from Annabel’s Kitchen- My First Cookbook

Make your life easier by not overcomplicating the food you make. Children are often drawn to the most colourful and fun looking food, which is often the shop bought brightly coloured sweeties and cakes, if you make your food as attractive and fun as possible it is much more likely to be eaten. Jelly boats are a great classic and look fantastic, why not print out a map and have them sailing on the sea as a centre piece for a pirate theme party.

Thank you Annabel for some really great ideas.  I love the idea of jelly boats at a pirate party and my own children love making sandwiches using cookie cutters. 

Tomorrow I am delighted to be sharing with you a recipe for Marshmallow Sheep Cupcakes from Annabel Karmel, especially for our readers.  In the meantime if you are stuck for ideas for meals take a look at Annabel’s website or better still try the  new iPhone app.

Have a fab day,