This post features some of my favorite play food sets and options for toddlers including some you can purchase on an extreme budget.
Today I am sharing some of my favorite Play Food Gifts for Toddlers with options in everyone’s budget. A few of these gifts are available for only a few dollars. Over the past few months, I have had a blast picking up play food sets as gifts for my little one, his friends, and family. In fact, for my son’s birthday party we gave away a chef apron and play kitchen utensils as party favors.
It is probably no surprise that this Registered Dietitian wants to activate my little one’s culinary imagination. I enjoy watching him, and his friends use play food to set the stage for playing pretend games like starting a restaurant, grocery shopping, or cooking elaborate meals for others. Sparking this imagination doesn’t require extensive play kitchen set-ups or elaborate toys. Play food came come in all types of materials and varieties, including plastic, play-doh, felt, stickers, and more. Read on for my some of my favorite toddler options!
1. Melissa & Doug Prepare & Serve Pasta Play Set
This super fun set includes cooking pots, several different felt pasta varieties, and additional wood ingredients to add to the pasta. One of my favorite features of this set is the felt ravioli pasta you can stuff with either cheese, meat, or veggie filling (which is a wood disk). The set also includes a flat stove-top to allow the imagination to take the kitchen anywhere.
2. Play-Doh Kitchen Creations Magical Oven Set
For all of the inspiring little bakers, this play-doh set is a perfect match. They can use their creativity to make pizzas, baked goods, or any other food their little mind can think of, all out of Play-Doh. The oven even has a feature that lights up to simulate the food being cooked.
3. Melissa & Doug Cutting Food
This crafted set includes several realistic-looking fruits and vegetables that are pre-divided and held together by self-stick tabs. Little ones can use the wood knife to “cut” through the produce and make divided pieces.
4. Green Toys Meal Maker Dough Set
This unique meal set encourages children to create a variety of meal options. Several food molds are included in the set such as spaghetti, cheese, and tomatoes. A few pre-made options like buns and bread pieces are also included. The dough is made from organic flour.
5. Custom options at Etsy
If you don’t see the exact play food or ingredient you were hoping to purchase for your child, there is a good chance it is available on Etsy. Etsy offers several super creative custom play food options made out of materials such as wood or felt. Until recently I had no idea the play food world had exploded on Etsy.
ON A BUDGET?!
I have also found some exciting deals on play food options that will keep your little ones entertained for the long-haul.
1. Melissa & Doug Make-A-Meal Sticker PadKids three and older can create or plan an entire meal all by placing food stickers on sheets with plates on them. With all of the food options represented in stickers, parents can work with their children on how to create balanced meals. Several place settings are available such as a picnic, cafeteria, and fine dining.
2. Target felt and wood playsets
If you have ever gotten sucked into the dollar section at Target (typically right at the entrance of the store), you have likely found some exciting budget friendly finds. Recently I found these felt and wood small play food items for only a few dollars. Other food options available include breakfast, sandwich, cookie, and pizza options.
3. Dollar Store food accessories
Recently I found a few worthwhile play kitchen accessories at my local dollar store including kitchen utensils, mixing bowls, min silicone baking pan, play food, chef apron, and chef hat. Even these few finds are enough to spark the creative play for most toddlers. You could also take these items and put together your own set or basket to give as a gift.
And there you have it – my favorite Play Food Gifts for Toddlers!
Your Family’s Dietitian,