Kids in the Kitchen: Easy Yogurt Cake with Berries



If baking with kids sounds overwhelming, messy and experimental at best, what if I told you that my not-quite-three year old made that beautiful creation pictured above. By himself. Every last detail was done by his little hands, while mine stayed clean and on my husband’s camera as I snapped some shots of the process. And, to top it off, my kitchen was not nearly as messy as when I make spaghetti bolognese for dinner. If you have a youngster who is interested in being in the kitchen and making their own creation, I highly recommend starting with this recipe.

In France, this is the first cake that children learn how to make. It is as simple as it is delicious. This cake requires two single-serving plain yogurts and the child uses the emptied yogurt containers to measure the rest of the ingredients. I let Finn have complete control and despite his imperfectly measured scoops (he had to add extra scoops of sugar to make it to the suggested two scoops, but we just eyed it), the cake turned out delicious.

Finn’s scoops were sometimes over- and sometimes under-sized, but he was roughly close to 4 scoops of flour and it worked just fine.

For my 32nd birthday my mother gave me 5 lbs of frozen wild mountain huckleberries she picked up on a road trip in her native Idaho. It was the perfect balance of flavor and tartness to balance the sweetness of the cake, but blueberries or raspberries would be equally delicious.

Don’t let the bundt cake form scare you off. It is just what I had in the cupboard, but you could use a square or round cake pan, or even a lasagne pan would work too. Or, if you have two kids with you in the kitchen, use two bread pans and let them choose different berries (or chocolate chips or chunks of apple or pear).

I know I am not alone in thinking that this cake does not look like it was made by three-year-old hands.

We served it with a tiny dollop of whip cream, but you could eat it plain, or with a simple lemon syrup or even a lemony-icing would be nice.

Simple Yogurt Cake

2 plain yogurt cups (ours were 6 oz single-serving, but 4 oz would work too)

2 eggs

2 scoops* sugar

1 scoop vegetable oil or melted butter (or a mixture of both), plus a little more for oiling the pan

dash vanilla

pinch salt

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

4 scoops flour

2 scoops of berries or chopped fruit (such as pear or apple) or 1 scoop of chocolate chips

*scoops mean using whatever container the yogurt came in, whether it was 4, 5 or 6 oz servings

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly oil a 9″ cake pan, bundt pan, lasagne dish, or two bread pans.

Have your child empty the yogurts and all of the wet ingredients into a large mixing bowl and mix well with a whisk. Add the dry ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon or something a little more sturdy than the whisk. Add the fruit or chocolate, spoon into the baking dish and bake until the top is golden and a skewer comes out clean, roughly 35-40 minutes depending on the size of your baking dish.

Adapted from the book Bringing up Bebe by Pamela Druckerman, which is worth reading, by the way

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  1. I just read that book and thought “I should try having my 3 year old make it” But I haven’t done it yet. With your inspiration, maybe I will. 🙂

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