What’s Cooking With Kids?

These kid-friendly, no-cook recipes from Rainbow Chefs in San Mateo can be made without heating up the kitchen, and some could even be assembled outdoors to minimize the mess. Then pack up your results for a perfect picnic, complete with invited bugs that you can eat!


Watermelon “Cake”

Makes 6-8 servings



1 large seedless watermelon

2 cans coconut milk

½ tsp. vanilla extract

1 tbsp. agave

1 cup shredded coconut, optional

Seasonal fresh fruit (for topping)


For coconut whipped cream

1. Make sure to place the can of coconut milk in the refrigerator for at least six hours (or overnight). This will cause the cream to separate from the milk. The cream will be at the top of the can.

2. Open the can of coconut milk and scrape out the cream into a medium-sized bowl. Tip: Open the can from the bottom and pour the milk out into a separate container before scraping out the cream.

3. Add the vanilla and agave to the mixture. Whip the cream with a hand mixer on medium speed and work your way up to high speed until the cream is fluffy. Place the bowl of whipped cream in the refrigerator until ready to use.


“Cake” Assembly

1. Remove the top and bottom from the watermelon and remove the rind from the middle section. You should be left with a cake-shaped piece of watermelon.

2. Pat the outside of the watermelon dry with paper towels to help the coconut whipped cream adhere better.

3. Dip the outside edge of each slice into the coconut whipped cream and then into the toasted coconut, and reassemble the wedges into a cake shape on a serving platter. Top with more coconut whipped cream and your favorite fresh fruit.


Festive Cranberry Feta Pinwheels

Makes 24 pieces



6 oz. dried cranberries

10 oz. cream cheese

1 cup feta cheese, crumbled

¼ cup green onion, chopped

4 extra large tortillas, any kind



1. In a bowl, combine first four ingredients and mix well.

2. Divide the mixture into four parts and spread each part evenly on each tortilla.

3. Roll up the tortilla with mixture on it tightly in plastic wrap to hold its shape. Let it sit for 5-10 minutes, if possible in a refrigerator.

4. Cut each roll into six pieces and serve.


Alternative Bruschetta

Makes 8 servings



8 oz. traditional hummus            

1½ cups English cucumber

2 cloves garlic, chopped

¼ cup basil, chopped or ripped into small pieces

Salt, to taste                         

Pepper, to taste

1 baguette, cut into 12 rounds



1. In a bowl, mix the hummus, garlic, salt and pepper together until well blended. Set aside.

2. Toast the cut pieces of bread until lightly brown. Take out and let cool.

3. Spread the hummus mixture generously onto the bread rounds.

4. Sprinkle the basil and cucumbers on top of the hummus mixture on the bread, lightly pressing the items into the hummus mixture. Serve and eat.&pagebreaking&Creepy Spider Macaroons

Makes 12 servings



1 stick butter, room temperature (softened)

3 cups quick cooking oats

3 oz. chocolate chips

1 cup powdered sugar

1½ cups unsweetened shredded coconut

1 tsp. vanilla extract


Pinch of salt

1 bag Chinese noodles or pretzel stick for legs



1. Mix all ingredients except “legs” and water in a large bowl.

2. Slowly add in water to create a modeling texture. Do not use too much. Form into small balls.

3. Then add Chinese noodle or pretzel sticks for legs and eyes.


Chef Scott Davis is the senior instructor and recipe development coordinator for Rainbow Chefs, which offers cooking classes, camps, parties and more. Davis, who has degrees in culinary arts and education, also teaches cooking classes for children and adults as The Culinary Dude. Visit www.rainbowchefs.com or www.theculinarydude.com for more information.

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