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The best play kitchen for your little chef

The best play kitchen for your little chef

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The best play kitchen for your little chef

Play kitchens are an excellent way for your kids to have fun. But they're also ideal for improving the motor, cognitive and social skills of kids from infants through preschool.

Best play kitchens

Play kitchens are an excellent item to help young kids learn, explore their creativity and have fun. What's more, play kitchens look great in your playroom or out in the yard and are scientifically proven to boost social, cognitive, motor and life skills in kids. 

Whether you plan to purchase a play kitchen as a gift, toy or equip your child with vital life skills, you probably have some questions. You may want to know what age ranges play kitchens are suitable for or what features you should consider. 

Regardless of your kids’ current age and stage, there are many play kitchens available to help them learn, grow and develop.

What is the best age for a play kitchen?

Play kitchens are suitable for kids of all ages. But different models are built to suit the needs of varying age groups. You can also choose from basic models right up to whole corner kitchen units complete with accessories.

Play kitchens for infants

A play kitchen set for infants up to one year old allows babies to develop fine motor skills by handling various play kitchen accessories. The different shapes, sizes and dimensions of a play pot, pans, foods and fruits engage their brains and improve motor skills development.

Play kitchens for toddlers

Toddlers love the look, feel, and fun they have with their play kitchens. With a play kitchen made for toddlers, they can entertain themselves for hours or engage in role plays with friends or parents to boost social skills before pre-school. They can even follow along with you while you teach them to cook with a toddler-friendly recipe book

Play kitchens for preschoolers

A play kitchen appliance offers preschoolers the opportunity to learn fundamental cooking skills while learning boundaries, social skills and communication when completing complex tasks. 

All in all, play kitchens offer children of all ages the ability to develop self-confidence, self-esteem and self-awareness in a safe, fun and interactive environment.  

Best play kitchens for your little chef

Step2 Best Chef's Kitchen Playset: available at Amazon and Wayfair

Our take: Little toddler chefs will love cooking and baking with friends in this super realistic mini-kitchen. 

What we like: The realistic stovetop, frying pan, boiling pot, coffee maker, doors and accessories make this play kitchen a great all-rounder.

What we dislike: While users report that kids love it, it may take the adults in the household a little time and patience to construct. 

CUTE STONE Little Kitchen Playset: available at Amazon 

Our take: This super cute playset for older toddlers comes with water circulation, simulated steam, lights, sounds and realistic kitchen accessories. 

What we like: The detail and accessories make this perfect for toddlers intrigued by the real kitchen world. 

What we dislike: Some users report that this set may be a little big for kids under 2 years. 

KidKraft Grand Gourmet Corner Wooden Play Kitchen: available at Amazon, Home Depot, Kohl’s, and Wayfair 

Our take: This kitchen is great for toddlers and preschoolers. Little super chefs can practice environmentalism by growing veggies in planter boxes.

What we like: The ice maker and a chalkboard menu are excellent additions for little chefs who like to set different menus on different days.

What we dislike: The assembly instructions may be challenging to interpret.

KidKraft Modern White Play Kitchen: available at Amazon

Our take: This sleek and stylish play kitchen for preschoolers or ages three and over is an ideal option for households that may be short on space. 

What we like: The 27-piece cookware set is excellent for little chefs who love to role play and share with friends. 

What we dislike: Some users report that the kitchen is fragile and highly complex to assemble.

KidKraft Ultimate Corner Wooden Play Kitchen: available at Amazon, Home Depot, Kohl’s, and Wayfair

Our take: If you’re looking to give your kids a feel for real-life household chores, this corner unit provides highly realistic cooking, cleaning and coffee-making experience. 

What we like: For parents, the numerical and alphabetic lettering on each of the accessories makes cleaning up an interactive exercise to help little chefs learn their letters and numbers. 

What we dislike: Kids who like flashy lights may find this kitchen a tad disappointing as only the stovetop and ice maker have lights.

Little Tikes First Market Kitchen Pretend Play Kitchen: available at Amazon 

Our take: If you and your kids are regulars at the farmer’s market, you can bring the environment to their play experience with this traditional farmstead kitchen playset.

What we like: This kitchen is perfect for interactive role plays with friends.

What we dislike: This tiny kitchen is not suitable for kids under 2 years. 

Little Tikes Super Chef Kitchen Blue & Cream: available at Amazon 

Our take: This super-compact, stylish and modern kitchen is excellent for smaller households.

What we like: The coffee maker, oven, phone, stovetop, microwave and plate holder make this a very detailed unit for its size, meaning kids will never get bored. 

What we dislike: You may need to buy some extra items to make this kitchen fully functional. 

Step2 Fun with Friends Kitchen: available at Amazon, Kohl’s, and Wayfair

Our take: A cute play kitchen with burners that light up and provides enough space and interaction for group play with friends. 

What we like: This play kitchen is super realistic and comes with detailed and complete food and kitchen utensils accessories. 

What we dislike: Some users report that the handles are pretty delicate on the accessory parts.

D-FantiX Backpack Kitchen Set for Kids: available at Amazon 

Our take:  This super tiny and super affordable play kitchen is perfect for toddlers who can carry their favorite play kitchen to their friend’s house. 

What we like: This perfect three-in-one playset doubles as a backpack, is easily storable and does not require complex assembly. 

What we dislike: This play kitchen may be too small for older kids. 

Lauren Farrell is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money.

BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. BestReviews and its newspaper partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links.

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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