Throwing a kids’ party? Not sure what food to include? While party food is supposed to be easy, it often turns out to be a lot more complex than it needs to be.
Make sandwiches and there’s a child who hates tuna. Plump for pizza, and there’s someone who doesn’t like cheese. And if you decide to make a chopped veg platter, there’s tons left over – so much so that you find yourself chomping on soggy cucumbers and carrots for days on end.
Whether you’re on the hunt for finger-food inspiration or are having the little ones sat down at a table, check out the below sweet and savoury ideas for a manageable and memorable kids’ party.
Made using potatoes, cornflour and cheese, this quick and easy-to-make recipe is a great addition for parties. It’s an all-time kid’s favourite, sure to go down a treat at any party. Serve them up with low-sugar ketchup or mild chilli sauce for a tasty treat any little one will love.
No time to make these? Opt for potato smiles by McCain – they’re made from fluffy mashed potato with sunflower oil for a tasty crunch. Even better, they take only 15 minutes to bake in the oven.
- 500g mashed potato
- 50g Cheddar cheese, grated
- 2 tbsp cornflour
- 1/2 tsp oregano
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 medium egg, beaten
- 50g breadcrumbs
- Fire up the oven to 180°C.
- In a bowl, stir together the mashed potato, cheese, cornflour and oregano. Sprinkle with some salt and pepper. Refrigerate for half an hour. The more chilled the mixture is, the easier it is to work with.
- Take out of the fridge and mould the mixture into 12 equal balls. Squash each ball into a flat, round shape so it has the thickness of a one-pound coin.
- Pop the flattened potato balls onto a baking sheet lined with parchment, sweep with egg and scatter with breadcrumbs. Turn the potato smiley over and do the same on the other side.
- To create the smiley faces, use the end of a teaspoon to score out two eyes then use a knife to cut out a mouth.
- Bake in the oven until golden brown.
Baked Mango Chicken Bites
Soft in texture, these mango chicken bites have a delicious fruity flavour making them incredibly kid-friendly! I also love that they include some vegetables for children to munch on.
- 100ml coconut milk
- 50g carrot
- 30g onion
- 75g mango cubes (fresh or frozen)
- ½ tsp turmeric
- 200g chicken mince
- Preheat oven to 180°C.
- Marinade 50g of oats in the coconut milk, for roughly 10 minutes.
- Blitz the carrot and onion up in a food processor until finely chopped.
- Tip in the mango, marinated oats, turmeric and chicken mince, and pulse to combine.
- Pour in the rest of the oats, and blend to combine.
- Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.
- Spritz a non-stick mini muffin tray with oil.
- Using a spoon and your hands, create some balls out of the meat mixture, then pop into the muffin tray.
- Bake until the bites are thoroughly cooked and golden brown.
Kids parties needn’t be expensive, either. Easy to make, cheap and incredibly nutritious, my fruit-and-veg skewers are brilliant for kids’ parties. I originally planned to make fruit skewers, but then decided to hide a few salad vegetables in among the fruit as well.
- 1 kiwi fruit
- green grapes
- red grapes
- red pepper
- orange pepper
- yellow pepper
- 1/4 cucumber
- cherry tomatoes
- Peel and chop the kiwi fruit into chunks; wash the grapes; wash and hull the strawberries; wash and chop the cucumber into thick chunks; wash and chop the peppers; wash the cherry tomatoes.
- Thread through the skewers.
- Serve and enjoy!
This carrot hummus takes traditional hummus to another level. What’s more, it’s quick and simple to make – perfect for little ones. This recipe is wonderful for any party and is best served alongside carrot sticks, breadsticks or cucumber slices.
- 1 large carrot, peeled and diced
- 400g tinned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 2 tbsp tahini
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1-2 tbsp water
- salt to serve, optional
- Steam the carrot until soft.
- Put to one side and leave to cool. Then use a food processor to blend with the chickpeas, lemon juice, garlic, tahini and olive oil until smooth.
- Spoon in one tablespoon of water and blitz again. Add the other tablespoon slowly until you have the consistency you want.
- You can keep the hummus in the fridge for two or three days, so long as you store it in an airtight container.
Orange and Vanilla Cupcakes
These tasty treats are perfect for parties and will go down a storm! Most little ones love the taste of orange, and combined with vanilla, it’s just glorious. A wonderfully sweet treat for any party.
For the sponge
- 175g softened butter, cut into large pieces
- 175g self-raising flour
- 175g brown sugar
- 1/2 tbsp baking powder
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- Juice of half an orange
For the butter icing
- 140g butter, softened
- 280g icing sugar
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- Juice of half an orange
- Rind of three oranges, finely grated
- Hundreds and thousands for decorating
- Preheat the oven to 180°C. Fill a 12-hole muffin tin with paper cupcake or muffin cases.
- Using an electric hand whisk or wooden spoon, beat all the cake ingredients together until smooth and evenly mixed. Spoon the mixture evenly between the 12 paper cases.
- Bake until the cakes are well risen and firm on top. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
- Meanwhile, make your orange and vanilla buttercream.
- First, beat the butter in a large bowl until soft.
- Combine half of the icing sugar and whisk into a smooth paste.
- Tip in the rest of the icing sugar, the orange juice and rind.
- Whisk the mixture until creamy and smooth. If the mix still needs loosening, pour in more milk.
- Using a piping bag, squirt some swirls onto your cupcakes with the buttercream.
- Decorate with sprinkles.
These quick, fuss-free kids’ party food ideas are especially hand-picked for little hands – and with non-nonsense prep, you can get on with the decorations! From rainbow skewers to mango chicken bites, I hope the above ideas will inspire you when you host your next party.