Play Food

Today after school, my daughters declared they wanted to play cafes and before I knew it, I was sat down with a menu in hand, ordering a sandwich, tea and ice cream! 🙂


We made some play food for our cafe during the summer holidays last year. I meant to share it here at the time, but I didn’t get a moment. But playing with it today reminded me of those lovely crafty mornings and how well used and loved these play foods have been ever since. I didn’t take any photos today as my camera is playing up (eek!) but I found these on my computer and thought I would share them with you – Ah those long summer days….




We already have wooden play food, but these are mainly vegetables and cakes and my daughters felt that they needed some real ‘cafe-style’ food to make their cafe more authentic (they are getting bigger after all so they need the right props!).  So on one of our ‘making’ days in our summertime rhythm, we pulled out recycled cardboard, coloured paper, scissors and glue and I helped the girls whip up a few sandwiches, pizzas and cheese on toast.Not the healthiest of fare, but this is what the girls thought their customers would like to eat! 🙂

These foods are so easy and cheap to make, I had to share them with you here:

For two sandwiches, you need a 12cmx 12cm square of corrugated cardboard, cut in half diagonally twice to form four triangles (we cut up an old cardboard box).


Then its entirely up to you to decide what sandwiches you would like to include in your cafe. We used coloured paper to cut out the toppings: the frilly lettuce and cheese need to be cut a little larger than the cardboard so you can see them when the sandwich is closed and the cream coloured paper for the cream cheese needs to be a bit smaller, as you can’t have cream cheese leaking out of your sandwich, can you?! Stick these onto the cardboard and add your choice of filling. We added eggs, tomatoes and cucumbers, stuck on again with glue. For a closed sandwich, just place a plain triangle of card on top. Easy peasy! 


Pizzas are also a cinch to make. Use the same type of cardboard as it is robust and trace around a small plate for the pizza base. Cut a similar sized piece of red paper to serve as the tomato sauce and glue on top. Then just add all the toppings you love. My daughters only eat olives and mozzarella with the occasional sweetcorn if they are feeling adventurous (!) so our pizzas are quite simple. 


There was a request for cheese on toast which both my daughters enjoy. For this, you just need to cut a 12cm x 12cm square of card, rounding off the corners a little and cut a slightly smaller piece of yellow paper to go on top as the cheese. Add tomatoes too if you like. Simple! 


Over the summer holidays, we consumed our fair share of ice cream (a distant memory now…), so my daughters thought it only right that their customers should be able to enjoy ice creams at their cafe too 🙂 So on another “making” morning, we wet felted some balls of ice cream in vanilla, chocolate, mint choc chip, cherry and strawberry colours. 


To make the ice cream cones, I cut out a circle of thin corrugated card, 28cm in diameter and cut that in half and in half again. I then rolled the quarter circles into cone shapes and glued and stapled them to make them durable. (The staples can be taken out later once the glue has taken a good hold).

These foods are really straightforward to make with bits and pieces we all have lying around the house. A good rainy day activity. It is very satisfying to have a larger menu now. The cook and waitress certainly seem to think so!


Sharing at Frontier Dreams KCCO and The Really Crafty Link Party


6 thoughts on “Play Food

  1. Love this! Recycling is the best for kids creative endeavors. My now 12 yo made puppets with recycling for the better part of a year when she was younger. Always a sad day when I take it all in to be recycled and they have to wait for it to accumulate again. Such lovely girls you have there!


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