Ideas for creating a mud kitchen

A picture of a wooden play kithen in the garden painted green
Let their imagination run wild with a play kitchen

What is a mud kitchen?

It’s an outdoor play kitchen for children, encouraging them to explore nature, be creative and take part in messy play – without ruining your house!

Mud kitchen inspiration

Mud kitchens can come in all shapes and sizes, just let your imagination run wild and create something truly unique. Why not see what’s already lying around the garden? You could use old pallets, wooden benches, bricks or even upcycle old furniture. Consider different areas/levels for mud, water and gravel and make sure to leave a space for a sink which could be made from a plastic washing up bowl.

A picture of a girl playing outdoors in a toy kitchen made from wood
Mud kitchens come in all shapes and sizes

Here’s how to turn your pallets or wooden furniture into a mud kitchen:

First start by designing your kitchen, how big do you want it be and how do you want it to look? We suggest creating a table style kitchen with two wooden pallets on their sides as the legs while wooden boards lay across to make a kitchen table top. You could even create a seating/table area using some sanded down off-cuts of wood - perfect for little outdoor picnics in the summer. Why not get the kids to help you design it? Once you have a plan you can start building.

Start by measuring out any pieces of wood you need and cutting them to size using a jigsaw or a NanoBlade saw. Then lay out the component parts and assemble using a cordless screwdriver and metal screws. Remember to cut out a section to fit in your sink!

Once you are happy with the shape, sand any rough areas for a smooth finish. Then add some hooks or shelves to store pots and pans. You could use old pots and kitchen utensils from your home or buy new ones from bargain shops, just make sure they are safe for kids to use. For ingredients add containers of pine cones, wood off-cuts and twigs collected from nature, great to get the kids using their imagination. Then finish with a lick of paint to bring the whole kitchen to life. For a fun addition, create chalkboards from wooden boards and chalk paint, brilliant to use as signs or menus.

A picture of boy showing his muddy hands
Let your little ones explore nature

Mud kitchen activities:

Painted pebble food

Get the kids to paint pebbles to emulate food, it’s a great way to get the kids involved in the creation of the mud kitchen and lets them get crafty. Also using pebbles as food is better than plastic toys as it won’t matter if they get muddy.

Play outdoor cafes

A great game for the kids is outdoor cafes, let them draw up a menu and serve you mud meals. It’s a great for getting your little ones to be more creative and play while you can sit back and relax.

A picture of a girl playing with a toy tea set outdoors in a garden
For a fun game, play cafes with your little ones

Junior Mud Masterchef

Set up a junior Masterchef competition among the kids to see who can make the most creative mud pies. There’s so much they can find in the garden to decorate them with!

A picture of muddy hands
Let your little ones create tasty mud creations for you

Most importantly, embrace your inner child and have fun!