The Phoenix Chef makes cooking easier and more enjoyable for kids

The Phoenix Chef makes cooking easier and more enjoyable for kids

FOX 10’s Danielle Miller reports.

Children can be picky eaters, making dinner difficult for parents.

Now a well-known Valley chef is hoping to inspire and teach parents how to create healthier households – with the kids fully on board.

Chef Aaron Chamberlin of Taco Chelo has cooked and fed people at many of his popular restaurants in the valley for dozens of years.

In his own kitchen, however, food is most important. His sous cooks: 6 year old Arturo, 4 year old Shaffer and 1 year old Charlie.

The children all started cooking when they were one year old.

“This is my time to spend with them and bond,” Chamberlin said. “For me there is no more value and love than feeding my children.”

The kids help cook almost every meal to keep them interested and improve their skills.

“We have a wide variety of knives,” said Chamberlin. “I’m starting with a wooden knife. So soon Charlie will get the knife and start playing with it. It couldn’t cut him at all. Then I just move her up [with] her knife. I work with them. I show them knife skills. “

When Chamberlain and his wife had children, they knew they wanted to enable them to support themselves.

“I’m so shocked how many kids are so great at a computer right now, but they have no idea how to feed themselves and I see that over and over again,” said the cook. “I think one of the most important skills you can have is being able to cook for yourself and for other people.”

His kids don’t just cook their own food with vegetables, no processed foods or sugar – and they actually enjoy it. They even long for it.

Chamberlain says this is possible for all families, but starting small and making a plan is the first step.

“They take a long time to develop a palate. For example, if you give your child broccoli once and they don’t like it, you have to think that you have to give them this over 20 times before they can like it,” he said. “I keep spinning and trying new things so they don’t get stuck in this one category.”

Above all, you have to lead by example.

“I tell parents … children watch what you do,” Chamberlain said. “The best you can do is improve your own diet. If you improve your own diet and watch you eat broccoli … my wife eats a salad every day. My kids watch this and leave just assume that we eat salad every day.

“You can’t separate your food,” he continued. “We never make their food and our food. We only make food.”

Chamberlain says this will instill lifelong skills and habits for happier, healthier families.

“I think people are making it too complicated,” he said. “It’s a lot of work. It’s planning, it’s organization, but I know it’s worth it and I can see it with my children every day.”

Chef Chamberlain’s Instagram:


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