To a parent a play kitchen might seem like just another cute toy for children to pretend. To a child the best wooden play kitchen is a place where their inner chef can run wild. It’s actually much more than either of these things. Kids’ kitchen sets create a fun and engaging opportunity where growing minds can learn.
Playing is a critical part of childhood that offers numerous benefits to their development in many different areas. It’s something that comes so naturally to most children to help them learn more about the world and daily life around them. A variety of skills can be acquired through play and the kitchen is no exception. While there are many dangers that could be lurking in real kitchens, a play kitchen set provides the ideal opportunity for kids to learn in a safe way.
What Makes Toy Kitchens So Great for Kids?
There are many different types of educational toys that are marketed for toddlers and kids. These are designed to help children grow and develop into healthy beings. Toy kitchens and play kitchen accessories fall into a category that is also referenced to as Montessori toys. These toys follow the Montessori approach to teaching by enhancing coordination, self-confidence, cognitive preparation, respect for others and the environment. The idea behind this concept of play and teaching is to encourage children in reaching their full potential as they grow. The implement of play through real-life actions such as those in a kitchen or other real-life setting help foster all of these key areas:
Active children build kinesthetic development by learning through play. Kinesthetic development can help young children learn more efficiently by doing what they see as opposed to simply being instructed. Our children see us everyday doing things around the house from cooking to cleaning and everything in between. Providing them with their own space and environment to carry out these tasks is a great way to instill those tasks through imitation.
Pretend play is what encourages role playing. When a child is pretending, they can be whoever they want to be. Often times, parents are the biggest inspiration to children’s role-playing. In the kitchen your child can be pretending to cook as mom or dad, imitating what they see. With popular shows like Chopped Junior, they might be inspired to be a top chef striving for culinary excellence above the rest. Multiple children playing together can implement teamwork as they cook up dishes together. Role playing also helps in social and emotional development as children identify with the role they’re pretending to be.
Fine Motor Skills
These are the skills children need to master tasks using the small muscles in the hands and forearms like grasping. This is an important skill in development to be able to write, move objects, and use tools like scissors. Pretend play, especially in the kitchen, utilizes these fine motor skills to improve dexterity. Actions like turning knobs, pulling handles, stirring, and pressing buttons are all actions that help improve and enhance vital motor skills. In most toddlers between the ages of 1 and 2 years, fine motor skills are increasingly developed through the many actions of play.
Providing toys and activities that motivate children to use their imagination are particularly helpful in creative thinking. There are studies supporting that when kids use their imagination to play they perform well in school, become more creative, and develop better problem-solving tactics than kids who don’t engage in imaginative play.
There are many factors that can affect a child’s development. Activities that encourage and stimulate key developmental areas can be very helpful for children that may be delayed. For a child that is challenged in specific areas, a toy kitchen can be an ideal environment to their development. Toys that move and make a lot of noise, such as electronic toys, could be problematic for a child that is challenged in sensory development. These kitchen toys are simplistic in design without causing over stimulation. The wooden sets featured in this lineup have no or very little electrical components. Likewise, they encourage the child to do more providing self stimulation.
Best Wooden Play Kitchen Sets
Toy kitchens come in many varieties and while they typically serve the same purpose, some styles are better suited than others for particular homes. A multi-piece set that takes up a great deal of space, for instance, would not be practical for an apartment. Families with multiple children relatively close in age, however, may want a set that can accommodate more than one chef in the kitchen. Toy kitchens generally come with a hefty price tag which is why choosing the right one is important. Here are some pointers to keep in mind:
Space – Before you go out and buy that set you may have been eyeing, consider where it’s going to be placed. If the set is fairly large or has multiple pieces, measure the space where you plan to put it. Look carefully at the dimensions listed on the package to ensure it will fit for the space.
Size – For a toy you’re likely going to be spending a considerable amount of money on, you want to be sure they’ll get enough use out of it. Some toy kitchens are smaller than they may appear and are better suited for younger toddlers. Choose one with a height that is ideal for the age of the child.
Assembling – Most toy kitchens will require some assembling which can be time consuming. Keep this in mind if you’re wanting to surprise your tot on Christmas morning with a kitchen they can play with right away.
Budget – Consider what you’re willing to spend. You can find relatively inexpensive toy kitchens, however the materials they’re composed of may not be durable to outlast the time they’ll play with it. Do some online browsing to compare prices and find the greatest deals on the best wooden play kitchen for your budget.
Safety – These toys can be fairly large and likewise heavy by design. They should be considered as furniture when it comes to the safety of young toddlers playing on one. Be sure the structure you purchase sits sturdily where it will be placed and not on an uneven surface. As additional precaution, wall mounts are advised with heavy wooden kitchen sets to prevent them from tipping over on a toddler.
We chose some of the best wooden play kitchen sets that inspire young minds to get creative in the kitchen. With so many realistic features these toy kitchens are perfect for whipping up any concoction they can imagine. These are built with great quality and value to outlast their childhood and will give you your money’s worth.
Teamson Kids – Little Chef Wooden Toy Play Kitchen
Burlywood model : Best wooden kitchen
- Stove comes equipped with accessories, cabinet, oven and microwave open for easy storage and pretend play
- 21.5″(L)x 11.625″(W)x38″(H)
- Safe, sturdy wooden structure made by eco-friendly MDF (CARB-P2) with lead free paints – CPSIA, EN71-1-2-3, ASTM F963 compliant
- Estimated assembly time: 30 minutes. Packaged with step-by-step assembly instruction
Perfect for ages 3 and up
This little play kitchen is cute and compact to boot. It features all of the essential elements a kitchen needs like a sink, stove, oven, microwave, and a fridge. The stove has two burners and knobs that turn with sound effects. The sink has a plastic tub that can be popped out for cleaning. The oven opens up to pop in a baked dish or serve as storage space for pots and pans (not included). The cabinet beneath the sink serves as a fridge where toy foods can be stored.
There is additional storage space above the sink with two small pull out drawers, a shelf, and a wooden space above the microwave for decorative purposes. There is a clock featured above the shelf with movable hands that can help them learn about telling time. Accessories that come with the kitchen set include 3 different spices, a toy spatula, and a play phone that can be attached to the side.
Hape — Gourmet Kitchen
- Peek into the oven through the window to check on dinner or turn the chuck knobs to change the temperature
- Cleanup is a snap with the sink
- Hutch and towel rack and the cupboard space to store all dishware and pots and pans
- Simple classic design kitchen offers loads of possibilities for playtime
- Encourages kinesthetic development as your child cognitively develops role play skills
- Recommended for ages 3 years and up
- Non-toxic finishes and child safe materials
Get cooking in this Hape Gourmet white kitchen where imaginations can run wild. This kitchen is a great place for playing and sharing in the kitchen with a neutral design and toddler-friendly features. Large round knobs and handles help fine tune motor skills as they turn and pull. The oven door opens down and features a window to keep an eye on their baked dishes. A shelf above features slats that the Hape Kitchen accessories (sold separately) fit perfectly in for convenience. The oven and cabinet that could serve as a fridge also provide storage space for additional accessories (not included). This is a great starter toy kitchen set that is the ideal height for toddlers to grow into and additional play sets can be purchased to expand the set.
- Cabinet-style refrigerator with top-mounted freezer with ample storage inside
- Built-in ice dispenser for realistic role play
- Perfect size to accommodate little chef’s as they discover their creative process
- Simple assembly required and made of sustainably sourced wood products
- Non-toxic finishes and child safe materials complete this fantastic product
Complete your gourmet kitchen set with this separate wooden refrigerator. It is equipped with a functioning built-in ice dispenser that actually releases the cubes included for realistic play. The cabinet-style fridge is designed with a top-mounted freezer. It features plenty of storage space with a shelf inside for stacking all of their favorite pretend foods and dishes.
Hape – All-in-1 Kitchen
- All inclusive kitchen featuring a variety of kitchen appliances and accessories
- Includes a pretend coffee maker, sink, oven, storage cupboards, a microwave, dishwasher, cooking utensils, smoke detector, light, recycling area, and more
- Features clean and fresh design with bright and colorful blue and red accents
- Compact and sturdy design for years of playtime fun
- Realistic design is perfect for inspiring role-play and creativity
This inclusive kitchen has everything for culinary enthusiasts. It features the familiar components of the kitchen such as a sink, stove, and oven as well as many extras like a dishwasher, microwave, and pretend coffee maker. Safety features like a pretend smoke detector have also been incorporated for learning about hazards in the kitchen. Additional accessories are included such as cooking utensils with plenty of cupboard storage space for storing. The hood above the stove has a working light and there is also a built-in chalkboard so budding chefs can write what’s on the menu.
- Wood kitchen set features contemporary design
- Includes clicking knobs, chalkboard, sink, oven, and more
- Educational and encourages imaginative role-play
- Quality wood craftsmanship from sustainably sourced forests
- Non-toxic finishes and child safe materials
This contemporary kitchen has many functional aspects to encourage imaginative role-play. It features a sink, oven, two-burner stove, and a pull-out shelf that provides additional play space and storage. This kitchen design features a black board for kids to write the name of their restaurant as well as their menu items for the day. It also gives this them more room to play from either side so little chefs can have more elbow room. A shelf above the sink and stove also features hooks for fun and easy storage. The height of the counter from the floor is 21.5 inches for an ideal height for children from 3 years to 8 years.
My Little Chef — Teamson Kids Wooden Play Kitchen Set
- Stove comes equipped with cabinet, oven, and microwave open for easy storage and pretend play.
- Safe, sturdy wooden structure made by eco-friendly MDF (CARB-P2) with lead free paints – CPSIA, EN71-1-2-3, ASTM F963 Compliant.
- Estimated assembly time: 30 mins. Packaged with step-by-step assembly instruction.
- Perfect for ages 3 and up.
This modern kitchen has a cool retro design with many realistic components. It features a sink with removable stainless steel basin for durability. The knobs on the sink and stove turn with ease for realistic experience to encourage imaginative play. The refrigerator also features a built-in water and ice dispenser. The doors to the oven and cabinets open for pretend play and can serve as storage space. This one-piece kitchen set takes approximately 30 minutes to assemble with easy to follow step-by-step instructions included.
Melissa & Doug — Cook’s Corner
Best Wooden Kitchen Play Set
- Compact wooden kitchen with realistic details to stir up imaginations
- Features refrigerator, cook top, oven, removable sink, a working timer, and more
- 26″H x 36″L x 16″W assembled
- Contains small parts, adult assembly required
- Ages 3 years and up
This compact wooden kitchen sits perfectly in a designated corner for a fun piece that takes up minimal space. The kitchen has a sink, fridge, oven, and 3 burner-stove in addition to storage space, cutting board, and a shelf. A timer is included to keep track of their baked dishes. The cutting board provides the perfect space for meal prep – giving kids a realistic experience in role play. The dials on the stove make a clicking sound when turned and the faucet to the sink features a swivel action. The removable plastic sink can also serve as a bowl for preparing or serving up foods.
KidKraft — Uptown Natural Kitchen
- Working knobs on oven and sink
- Cordless phone with hands-free clip
- Shelving and hanging pegs for pots, pans and accessories
- See-through doors on oven and microwave
- Chalkboard surface on the freezer
- Removable sink for easy cleanup
- Smart, sturdy wood construction
- Packaged with detailed, step-by-step assembly instruction
- Large enough that multiple children can play at once
- Refrigerator, freezer, microwave, oven and dishwasher doors all open and close
- Paper towel holder
- Convenient storage space above the sink
- Innovative speckled counter top design
This modern kitchen has many realistic elements with high-end style that will have you wishing you were a kid again. It provides a fun and engaging experience in a design that can accommodate multiple little chefs. Familiar elements like a sink, stove, oven, microwave, and refrigerator are included in addition to a dishwasher and built-in water/ice-maker. The stove top has four burners with realistic detail. There’s even a paper towel holder and cordless phone featured on this high-end kitchen. A built-in chalkboard can feature the day’s menu or the grocery list.
Hape — My Creative Cookery Club
Best Kid’s Wooden Play Kitchen
- Solid wood construction features a combination of painted and natural wood surfaces
- Features include kitchen, cooking sets, wood toy food, and more
- Quality craftsmanship from sustainably sourced forests
- Encourages children to imagine and create role-play situations
- Assembly is simple and all tools and hardware needed are included
This simple and compact wooden play kitchen is a great low-profile design for young chefs in the making. This basic kitchen is a nice introduction to the kitchen with a sink, stove top, and oven to prepare meals. Wooden toy foods and cooking set are included with familiar foods they can easily identify to whip up imaginative creations. The oven and cupboard provide additional storage and hooks to keep utensils easily in reach.
KidKraft — Ultimate Corner Play Kitchen Set
with Lights & Sounds
- Speckled granite style counter top;Sink with faucet and taps that turn
- Refrigerator, freezer, microwave, oven and dishwasher doors all open and close
- Stove-top burners,Ice makers has lights and sounds
- Knobs click and turn
- Convenient storage space below sink;
- Made of composite wood products
This is the ultimate kitchen set with many elements to imitate real-life actions. They can cook, clean, and even do laundry in this functional piece that has a contemporary design. It has a sink, stove, oven, refrigerator, freezer, and microwave for meal preparations. When they’re not busy whipping out treats in the kitchen, the all-in-one piece also features a washer for laundering those towels and aprons they’ve dirtied.
The stove top burners and built-in ice maker on the fridge feature realistic sounds and lights. A speckled counter gives an added ‘granite’ appeal. The corner play kitchen play set gives plenty of space for multiple tasks to encourage positive teamwork and role play. It’s an ideal kitchen that can grow with young children from ages 3 and up.
Toy Play Kitchen Accessories
Additional kitchen accessories are a must for the well-prepared culinary master. Many toy kitchens come with a few accessories to get them started like cooking utensils or even pots and pans. We’ve found some cute and functional pieces that perfectly complement the best wooden play kitchen to expand their creativity, imagination, and role play.
- Seven-piece set includes a child safe knife to cut the fruit
- Sturdy Velcro fasteners allow the fruit to be easily “cut” with included wood toy knife
- Classically designed for timeless appeal
- Hape finishes are all non-toxic, child safe, and of the highest quality
- For ages 3 – 5 years
One thing a kitchen must have is food to prepare all of those tasty dishes. This wooden kitchen play food set is a great addition to any of the Hape Kitchen sets or any kitchen. The fresh fruit set can also encourage healthy eating habits through role play. These fruits are designed with sturdy velcro fasteners to allow children to ‘slice’ them using the kid-friendly knife. The added element in this play food set is often used in Montessori learning to encourage imaginative play while also enhancing fine motor skills.
Melissa & Doug — Stainless Steel Pots and Pans
Pretend Play Kitchen Set
- Includes colander, pot with lid, 2 pans, 2 wooden utensils, and rack
- Hand-polished stainless steel
- Sturdy looped handles with riveted construction
- Large size for extra-large portions of fun!
- Dishwasher safe
They’ll really get cooking with this pretend play kitchen set for their kitchens. The set includes 2 pans, a pot with a lid for cooking up soups and stock, a colander to drain pasta, and wooden cooking utensils to stir. The set comes with a rack to conveniently store the set. Quality pieces are all dishwasher safe for convenient cleaning.
Hape — Kids Coffee Maker Wooden Play Kitchen Set with Accessories
Things will really be brewing up in their kitchen with this wooden coffee maker set. Some moms need their boost of energy from a mug every morning.They can imitate mom and dad with their own single serve coffee maker that comes with a sugar cup and creamer. The top of the press opens and closes and features a button to get their coffee going.
Cadson — Kettle and Toaster Set
- Realistic chrome-effect kettle and toaster set
- Imitation water gauge and lid
- Twisting timer
- Toaster has a pop up action
- Play toast supplied
- Realistic Chrome effect Kettle and Toaster
- Imitation water gauge and lid
This matching toaster and kettle set feature a chrome finish for realistic elements much like what mom and dad use in their kitchen. The toaster features a real pop up action with spring and a twisting timer. Two toast slices are included for serving up their favorite breakfast staple. The kettle features a realistic water gauge and lid.
Melissa & Doug — Wooden Make-a-Cake Mixer Set
- 11-piece wooden hand-crank mixer set
- Includes mixer, bowl, sliceable wooden egg and butter, loaf, cake pan, pretend cake mix box, cake pan, wooden knife, recipe card
- Numbered dial turns and crank spins mixer bowl
- Encourages creative thinking and imaginative play and promotes memory and number skills
- Ages 3 years and up; 13.75″ x 10″ x 5″ package
Inspire their baking skills with this mixer set that comes with everything they’ll need to whip up sweet treats. The 11-piece set includes a wooden hand crank mixer with bowl to encourage fine motor skills, cake pan, sliceable egg and butter, loaf, pretend cake mix box, recipe card, and pretend knife. The mixer features a numbered dial and hand-crank that turns the mixer.
Parents can provide even greater value to their child’s play and learning experience through involvement. As your child plays ask them what dish they are preparing. Help your child learn about different tasks in the kitchen such as cooking veggies on the stove and baking a cake in the oven. Play kitchens are also a great stepping stone to help prepare children for helping out in a real kitchen. Instill important safety tips when cooking by identifying actual dangers like hot surfaces.
There are so many ways to play with the best wooden play kitchen toys for individual children as well as multiple children. These will provide hours on enriching play as they pretend and imitate what they see in the kitchen.