Delaware Success Stories

Drawing of two kids in chef's attire Kid CHEF

This article is a modified version of text submitted by the Food Bank of Delaware.

Kid CHEF (Cooking Healthy, Easy Food) is a skills- and knowledge-building program that focuses on teaching children about healthy eating and how to prepare nutritious, easy foods on their own. The Kid CHEF module includes a series of five interactive sessions highlighting the key food groups in the USDA's MyPlate for Kids: grains, vegetables, fruits, dairy, and protein. Each session is 60 minutes and will include child-centered discussions about each individual food group. In addition to nutrition education, during each session children prepare a simple recipe using food(s) from the targeted food group that day. Children also receive a chef hat, apron, oven mitt, and five kitchen utensils to keep and use to reinforce lessons learned. Kid CHEF is taught by the Community Nutrition Educators and Registered Dietitian staff at the Food Bank of Delaware. Parents receive a packet of the nutrition information their children learned as well as tips on cooking safely with children and how to be a healthy eating role model from the Choose MyPlate 10 Tips Nutrition Education Series. The Kid CHEF program appeared on Mrs. Obama’s Let’s Move! Web site.

Type of Program
Nutrition Education/Culinary

Years of Implementation
2010-Present

Number of Participants
300+/year

Target Audience
8 – 12 year old SNAP-Eligible children

Program Evaluation
Pre- and post-surveys targeting behavior changes are administered at the beginning and end of the five session program. Surveys utilize a Likert scale.

Statistics and Program Impact
Fiscal year 2014-2015: 37 programs reaching 316 children were completed. Average response for positive behavior changed from “rarely” to “sometimes” between pre- and post-survey responses.

“Angela comes home every day and shares what she learned in the class. She is looking forward to the end of the week so she can bring home her chef tools and prepare a recipe for us”, said her grandfather. After taking these classes, Angela one day hopes she can be a chef so she can “feed a lot of people”.

Seantana made the healthy [vegetable stir fry] fried rice for her family. “It turned out great…they liked it because I made it myself!”.

For further information please contact Leah Brown MS, RDN, LDN, Community Nutritionist or Anna McDermott. All logos are used with permission.