Make a Mud Kitchen Spot in the Backyard

How to make a mud kitchen on a budget

There are fully established mud kitchens on the market but instead of spending your hard earned cash on one, you can easily set one up at home on a tight budget. It is not something that my kids play in every day so I would rather set one up when they have the urge and make it different every time.

In addition to the mud kitchen, you can set up a drinks station, pie shop or bake sale.

Set up

I picked up a whole range of items including spoons, tongs, saucepan and frying pan, baking trays, plastic cocktail glasses and a drying rack – all for $7. Other ideas would be to try op shops and other second hand stores, gumtree and garage sales to find old items that are cheap (or free). Maybe you even have items in your kitchen cupboards that you are looking to get rid of. It is handy to have a set of pots and pans that can stay with the mud kitchen so you don’t have the added hassle of washing up afterward.

  1. Find a suitable location for your mud kitchen. There is going to be a whole lot of mess so away from the house is a good option. We set ours up under our playground equipment in the backyard. There was a space underneath that the kids don’t use and this was perfect for mess making.
  1. Hunt around the house and find a few items that can be used as benches. I found some Styrofoam boxes, plastic tubs and a thick cardboard box that were perfect.

Backyard Play Idea - How to make a mud kitchen for play

  1. We made a simple oven using a thick cardboard box, a plastic tub and a few milk bottle lids. I sat the plastic tub on top of the cardboard box and taped on some milk bottle lids for the knobs of the oven. You can’t get any easier than that!

Backyard Play Idea - How to make a mud kitchen for play

  1. Set up the kitchen with pots, pans, cups, trays, utensils, measuring spoons etc. You can use the ones from your kitchen but I sourced mine from the recycling shop that can stay outside permanently. This way, a quick hose down when the kids are finished and they are ready for play again.

Backyard Play Idea - How to make a mud kitchen for play

  1. I also added some spice jars, straws, patty cake pans, oats and coconut to the kitchen so the kids can use a number of ingredients and get creative.

Backyard Play Idea - How to make a mud kitchen for play

  1. Make the mud! Most people don’t have huge backyards where mud pits are commonplace but you can create mud in the smallest space without doing too much damage to the grass. Fill a tub with dirt, add some water and go for it. We made a few big tubs of mud and once the cooking activities were over, the kids ended up tipping them out and jumping in the mud. Because they just weren’t dirty enough!

Backyard Play Idea - How to make a mud kitchen for play

Backyard Play Idea - How to make a mud kitchen for play

mud kitchen

Backyard Play Idea - How to make a mud kitchen for play

  1. When finished, hose the kids and the kitchen will be ready for play again tomorrow.
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Amanda started on this journey when her 3rd child was born, and feeding a family of 5 became even more of a challenge with three children under 3 1/2 years of age! She started working on a list of recipes that were simple and affordable that she could make ahead of time so she wasn’t stuck in the kitchen at 5pm when the household duties kicked up a notch. Amanda’s goal is to create simple meals that anyone can cook and enjoy without spending hours in the kitchen. Her recipes are perfect for that busy weeknight dinner, snacks to fill the lunch boxes or for students learning to cook. It’s simple home cooking at its best to free up your time to enjoy the fun things in life — your kids! Check out her cookbooks at www.foodbefore5.com.au and her Simple Home Cook Facebook page here: www.facebook.com/foodbefore5

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