Monday, August 5, 2013

Joni & Friends Cooking Club - Take 2!

Last year I had the honor of organizing and leading the Cooking Club for Joni & Friends Family Retreats and it was quite fun! I'm so happy I was able to design, return and head up the club once again for week 3. Though I quickly renamed the club to be "Cooking Chaos," with 10 campers and their STM's on average participating, food just seemed to be moving in every which direction.

This year's camp theme was race cars, so for inspiration I looked to the disney movie "Cars." There are a lot of "Cars" themed birthday parties out there that provided perfect food-related activities inspiration. 

Without further ado, this is what we created:

I told the campers that they were to create snack baggies to "fuel" their afternoon activities. Yup, ok that was an easy one, but they seemed pretty thrilled with the opportunity to choose what went into their mix. Some made multiple snack packs to share with friends or family.
Ok, this one was my favorite! Though I thought of them as bicycle race wheels instead of cars, it's all the same I guess. Really, the campers decorated them however they wanted, making smiley faces, etc. All you need is an english muffin + pizza sauce/cheese + pepperoni and an assortment of veggies. We baked them in the oven for 10-15 minutes (400 F) and they devoured them afterwards! A great mini snack.

I'm not into cars so I made the cute bicycle! I found that pickling cucumbers, carrots and roma tomatoes made for the best car vehicle "base."
This was a repeat activity from last year but it fit the theme perfectly and was still very popular. Some campers created random other things (i.e. a referee or boat), but most stuck with creating a race car. We put out hummus and vanilla yogurt for dipping and they each received points for eating their cars afterwards and double points for trying a new fruit or veggie. Yes, the dietitian in me was VERY happy!

This is our mixed bag of time fillers, because this kids would fly through the activities! "Stop light" veggie- hummus sandwiches and fruit kabobs, chocolate "dipstick" pretzels, and fruit-yogurt parfaits. 

The overall goal for cooking club was the expose the campers to a number of healthy foods and create some delicious snacks while having fun. Simplicity was key in keeping it a little less chaotic this year, though it was still pretty crazy with everyone working at different paces! Then again, isn't that how camp is suppose to be?? 


  1. That's a great little project for introducing new fruits and veggies to your campers. It sounds like you and they had a great time!


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