Preschool Cooking Lesson Plan on Healthy Living

Updated on May 14, 2019
CeCe Rees profile image

CeCe has served as Vice President and President of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (Affiliate).

Start With Circle Time

Share colorful and fun Oliver's Fruit Salad written by Vivian French and illustrated by Alison Bartlett. Oliver discovers he loves fruit when it's mixed together! This book is the perfect pairing for a classroom-cooking day featuring a fruit salad. Equally delightful, by the same author and illustrator, is Oliver's Vegetables. Both books are great conversation starters about trying new foods.

Music and Movement Lesson

CeCe's Salad Spin! (sung to the Hokey Pokey)

This movement song is sung to the tune of the Hokey Pokey. Children draw the ingredient they will play out of a large salad bowl. Repeat each verse with ingredients children have contributed. Depending on the number of children in the classroom, you may need two or three slips of paper with lettuce, three slips of grapes, etc. Children form a circle:

  • Verse 1: The lettuce steps in, the lettuce steps out, the lettuce steps in and spins all around. Reaching up high, reaching down low. That's what it's all about!
  • Verse 2: The apples step in, the apples step out, the apples step in and spin all around. Reaching up high, reaching down low. That's what it's all about!
  • Verse 3: The kiwis step in, the kiwis step out, the the kiwis step in and spin all around. Reaching up high, reaching down low. That's what it's all about!
  • Verse 4: The grapes step in, the grapes step out, the grapes step in and spin all around. Reaching up high, reaching down low. That's what it's all about!
  • Verse 5: The mandarin oranges step In, the mandarin oranges step out, the mandarin oranges step in and spin all around. Reaching up high, reaching down low. That's what it's all about!
  • Verse 6: The pineapple steps in, the pineapple steps out, the pineapple steps in, and spins all around. Reaching up high, reaching down low. That's what it's all about!
  • Verse 7: The red raspberry dressing steps in, the red raspberry dressing steps out, the red raspberry dressing steps in and spins all about. Reaching up high, reaching down low. That's what it's all about!

All of the children are in the center of the circle. This is an opportunity to sit down and talk about the healthy ingredients that have been contributed. Another option? Depending on classroom budget, parents may make a donation to cooking day.

Color Game Lesson: CeCe's Community Salad Game

Children form a circle and sit down. The teacher is the caller. Purple grapes stand up, purple grapes sit down. Orange mandarin oranges stand up, orange mandarin oranges sit down. Green butter lettuce stand up, green butter lettuce sit down. Yellow pineapple stand up, yellow pineapple sit down. Red raspberry dressing stand up, red raspberry dressing sit down. Or call each salad ingredient until all the children are standing.

Memory Game: Call out color of salad ingredient. Purple stand up, orange or yellow stand up. Children love to take turns being the caller!

Butter Lettuce With Fruit and Raspberry Vinaigrette Dressing—Adapted From Giada de Laurentiis's Raspberry Vinaigrette Which Serves 18-20 Children

  • 1 1/2 cup frozen raspberries, thawed
  • 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 6 tablespoons honey
  • 4 large heads butter lettuce, torn into inch pieces
  • 4 Red Delicious apples, diced
  • 4 kiwi, peeled, diced
  • 1 cup red seedless grapes, halved
  • 1 cup pineapple, drained, diced
  • 2 11 ounce cans mandarin oranges, drained


  1. For the dressing blend the raspberries, olive oil, lemon juice and honey.
  2. In a large salad bowl mix lettuce and fruit. Just before serving, add dressing and coat. Tip: Children may use tablespoons to measure pineapple and grapes into measuring cup. This is also an opportunity to talk about blender safety. Tell the children that the teacher will always operate.

Gathering Time

Did you try a new food today? Let's see what happens to Charlie and Lola in this very funny story, I Will Never Not Ever Eat A Tomato. The author, or person that wrote the book also drew the pictures. She is both author and illustrator. Her name is Lauren Child.

Tyler Makes Pancakes!

We have all been chefs today. The writer of this book is a chef. His name is Tyler Florence. The title of the story is Tyler Makes Pancakes! (After reading, sing CeCe's Chef Song and play the memory game.)

CeCe's Chef Song (Oh, Do You Know the Muffin Man?)

Oh, do you know my friend (child's first name)? My friend (child's first name)? My friend (child's first name)? Oh, do you know my friend (child's first name)? What would he like to make? ( Ask each child what he or she would like to prepare.)

Play a memory game! Each child tries on a simply made chef hat, while classmates remember what recipe he or she would like to make.

Art Extension Activity

Children illustrate recipes they would like to make, including steps needed. Teacher may transcribe. Share with the group.


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    • Decaturflyfisher profile image


      2 years ago

      Love this lesson plan! I need to get busy - this motivates me!


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