I find it really hard to manage my kids, who are ages 2 and 5 and cooking takes my attention away from them. Many times I find the food burning because I’m running after them, Could you suggest any solutions?

I sympathize with you. It can get tough trying to juggle everything. How about letting your 2 year old play in his playpen with a few wooden utensils that can’t hurt him, and give your five year old a few tasks. Usually children respond well to responsibilities as they like to have some things to do, especially when they can see the results of their work when the food is cooked. Give them aprons and let your older child wash the greens and other chores that are important, but won’t mess up the place.

What are the safety precautions I should take while involving my children in cooking?

Safety for your children should always be top priority. Don’t give them knives or sharp kitchen tools to work with. Don’t let them near the stove and don’t let them near hot objects. As a parent, you have the best instincts on what is best for your child.

How do I keep my toddler active?

Young children have curious minds and they absorb information like a sponge. They pick up on everything you do – the kitchen is a great place to impart information and start their life’s lessons. It is challenging to keep them busy every day and at times you may run out of ideas. You could get stuck doing the same routines and activities day in and day out. What you have to remember is that what we view as boring could be new and exciting for the young one. Your activity for the day could be to do something as simple as baking cookies together. It will be a messy experience, but one where all involved would have lots of fun – while learning things along the way.

Is it unhealthy to eat store bought ready-to-eat foods or frozen foods?

It doesn’t hurt to have those kinds of meals once in a while, but it is not a healthy option if you have them on a daily basis. There are many easy to make alternatives to frozen food that can be prepared in less than ten minutes or thereabouts.

I get tired making different dishes every day, especially with two young ones running around which take up a lot of my attention. How can I cook smart or be smart about this?

It can get quite tiring, and you don’t have to cook new dishes everyday from scratch. You can cut down on your prep time by buying pre-cut veggies which can be used in your foods. Make food in bulk so that it can be stored or frozen for use later. If you make gravy or sauce, freeze it so that you can add it in your dishes even a week or two weeks or more in the future. You’ll find that this simple tip of using frozen bulk food a huge time saver.