9 Best Children's Books About Food

How many of these food-themed classic children’s books have you read?
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When I was a kid, I had a poster on my wall that read, “A book is a present you can open again and again.” And it’s true — books make a perfect holiday gift for kids of all ages.

Some of my favorite books for children are about food. Surely you’ve read The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Green Eggs and Ham, but have you heard of any of these other delicious stories?

Bread and Jam for Frances by Russell Hoban

In this classic book, Frances wants to only eat her favorite foods — bread and jam — at every meal, turning up her nose at all the delicious things her family enjoys. Mrs. Badger ultimately gives her what she wants, but Frances soon realizes an important lesson about the importance of variety.

Image courtesy of HarperCollins
The Seven Silly Eaters by Mary Ann Hoberman

Another good one for the picky-eating set, this rhyming book tells the all-too-familiar story of dedicated mother Mrs. Peters, who becomes exhausted from making each of her seven children a completely different meal. On her birthday, they surprise her with the best present she could imagine.

Image courtesy of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt


Photo by: ver2prm18mac


Gregory, the Terrible Eater by Mitchell Sharmat

According to his family, Gregory the goat is the pickiest eater imaginable — instead of garbage, tires and old shoes, he craves only fresh veggies and fruits — what a disgrace! Kids are sure to giggle at the silly nature of this book that encourages eating a variety of foods.

Image courtesy of Scholastic

This historical book tells the story of four different families, in four different time periods, making the same dessert, giving the reader a lesson in how technology and time have changed how we prepare our food. Kids love to see how cream was whipped in 1710 — before the invention of mixers or modern whisks!

Image courtesy of Schwartz & Wade

There are several lovely children’s books about Julia Child, but this one is my favorite. From this story told through the voice of Minette, the curious cat she adopted while living in Paris, young readers will learn about Julia’s delicious life and cooking journey, accompanied by lush illustrations.

Image courtesy of Harry N. Abrams
Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey

This classic storybook tells the simple tale of Little Sal, who heads off with her mother into the wilds of Maine to gather blueberries to can and store for winter. On the other side of Blueberry Hill is a mother bear and her cub, also filling up for the season. When the children become separated from their mothers, an adorable mix-up ensues.

Image courtesy of Puffin Books
Strega Nona by Tomie dePaola

Strega Nona can get her magic pot to make a never-ending supply of hot, delicious pasta just by uttering the (top-secret) magic words. Hungry Anthony accidentally overhears her and uses this knowledge to his advantage — now if only he had heard the words necessary to stop the pasta pot...

Image courtesy of Little Simon
The Ugly Vegetables by Grace Lin

A Chinese-American girl and her mother plant a garden in their American neighborhood. As the plants grow, we learn that they are Asian vegetables, quite unlike the pretty flowers in her neighbors' gardens. Embarrassed by her “ugly” garden, the girl comes to embrace her perceived differences as the neighborhood comes together in this beautiful tale of community.

Image courtesy of Charlesbridge
Stone Soup by Marcia Brown

Grandparents might remember this classic childhood story. Kids of today also will enjoy the tale of the poor soldier who outwits the stingy inhabitants of a village by making them a delicious feast from just a few stones (and a small measure of trickery!). There are several published accounts of this tale, but this Caldecott-honored 1947 version is our favorite.

Image courtesy of Aladdin Books

How many of these books have you and your children read? Have we left any good ones off the list? Tell us in the comments below.

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