Best Montessori Play Kitchen: Top 5 Picks

Best Montessori Play Kitchen

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A Montessori play kitchen is thoughtfully designed for your child’s development to encourage independent exploration and foster practical life skills through imaginative cooking activities.

The best Montessori play kitchen is GrowGo Mud Kitchen. This functional play kitchen can be used indoors and outdoors and provides lots of real-life activities for your child.

This Montessori play kitchen is double-sided so your child can use it as a stand-alone kitchen and a grocery store. 

Our daughter interacts with her play kitchen and we see her imagination and creativity blossom every day. It also helps our family bond simply by pretending to cook a special meal.

Our top 5 picks

  1. GrowGo 2-in-1 Mud Kitchen. Best Montessori play kitchen overall. 

  2. Tiny Land Play Kitchen with real running water. Best functional play kitchen.

  3. Small Foot Compact Play Kitchen. Best compact and affordable play kitchen.

  4. Tiny Land Montessori Play Kitchen. Best Montessori play kitchen with lots of organization.

  5. KidKraft Garden Gourmet Play Kitchen. Best realistic play kitchen.

Best Montessori play kitchen

These wooden play kitchens are fully accessible to your child and will help them build real-life skills by mixing, pouring, and sorting food.

Image: GrowGo Kids

1. GrowGo 2-in-1 Mud Kitchen

This Montessori play kitchen offers endless hours of entertainment and plays a crucial role in your child’s development.

The GROWGO 2-in-1 Montessori-inspired Mud Kitchen is an exceptional product that contributes significantly to your child’s development through play and practical life skill-building. 

Studies have shown that imaginative play, like that encouraged by this kitchen, fosters creativity and problem-solving skills.

It also promotes social development as your child engages in fun and engaging role-playing activities. 

Your child will have fun washing dishes in the sink with running water, planning a menu on the blackboards, and shopping for ingredients for the next meal.

This Montessori play kitchen is built with a double-sided kitchen stand with a solid wood counter.

It comes with a bell to notify customers, two wire baskets for secure storage, a plastic water container with a working faucet that can hold up to 50 oz of water, and a stainless steel sink. 

One minor detail that impressed us was the cooking utensils that look real and I think this made our whole play experience better.

I like how simple it is to assemble. Everything you need for assembly is provided and the manual removes the overwhelm with simple step-by-step instructions.

I also like the blackboard that is included because your child can make a grocery list or create a delicious meal.

A non-toxic and water-resistant coating was used so your child can take this play kitchen outside and withstand the elements.

Before you click “buy,” make sure to enter my code LATINXMONTESSORI to save 10% on your order.

  • The 2-in-1 play kitchen works as a kitchen and grocery store.
  • Designed to be used indoors and outdoors.
  • Made from FSC-certified fir timber.
  • A blackboard is included for more fun.
  • Safety tested to 16 CFR Part 1307 & certified.
  • Nothing. We like the versatility of this play kitchen. 

Image: Tiny Land

2. Tiny Land Play Kitchen with real running water

This is the best functional play kitchen that comes with running water!

The most impressive feature of the Tiny Land Play Kitchen is that it is designed with a real-flow water system! 

I have been waiting for a functional play kitchen like this one with running water and I could not be more excited to share it with you.

To make it clear, you can’t hook it up to the water line. Instead, the water system includes a clean water tank and water gets pumped to the faucet.

A second water tank collects used or dirty water and your child can dump it out. Honestly, this play kitchen is a game-changer!

This play kitchen is fully equipped and comes with all the essentials, including a stove, sink, and storage cabinets which all create a lifelike environment for culinary adventures.

It is crafted from high-quality and durable materials and is built to withstand the test of time and countless hours of play.

  • Uses a real water system!
  • Made from high-quality, durable materials to withstand tear and wear.
  • The versatile design encourages socialization, teamwork, and communication skills.
  • You will have to clean the tanks often but this is a very minor inconvenience.

Image: Small Foot

3. Small Foot Compact Play Kitchen

This small play kitchen is affordable, compact, and portable. Perfect for infants and toddlers.

The Small Foot Compact Play Kitchen is a great option if you are looking for something small, are on a tight budget, or need an addition to your current play kitchen.

We like this play kitchen for various reasons. First, it is so small and compact that we can take it everywhere we go like camping or to the park.

It is the perfect size for an infant or toddler because everything included in this play kitchen like the utensils and pots is within their reach.

We always stress the importance of having items at your child’s reach because this helps them become more independent and self-sufficient.

It is perfect because it completes the home environment that is appropriate for your child’s development.

We also like how this Montessori play kitchen is made out of wood, including the utensils, salt and pepper, and the pot and pan.

The wooden items included in this play kitchen are safer for your child, reduce waste, and help your child connect with nature, even if your child is indoors.

  • Small and compact design.
  • Made from high-quality wood.
  • You can take it almost everywhere you go.
  • Perfect for infants and toddlers.
  • Very affordable if money is tight.
  • Your child may outgrow it and you’ll need to buy a new play kitchen

Image: Tiny Land

4. Tiny Land Montessori Play Kitchen

This is a great Montessori play kitchen that includes plenty of organization for all of your child’s cookware.

This is another great play kitchen by Tiny Land. The design is a bit different than the other play kitchens in this article and I must say it will bring tranquil countryside vibes right indoors. 

With everything included in this Montessori play kitchen, your child will have lots of opportunities for open-ended play.

We like how realistic it is. The cabinets and knobs resemble a real kitchen and the open cabinets have a lot of space for plenty of play food.

The baskets also are very sturdy and can hold quite a few items. The pot and pan are made with real metal and this adds an even more realistic look.

This play kitchen will allow your child to engage in pretend play and explore safely while you get some free time to cook real food.

One thing to consider is that it is a big play kitchen which means that it comes with lots of parts. The assembly instructions manual is long and it may take some time to assemble it.

  • It includes lots of organization and storage space.
  • Cottage-core aesthetic.
  • Comes with a stainless steel pot and pan.
  • It will nurture your child’s imagination and creativity through pretend play.
  • It comes with lots of parts and pieces.
  • It can take long to assemble.

Image: KidKraft

5. KidKraft Garden Gourmet Play Kitchen

This is the most realistic play kitchen and comes with vegetable containers.

The Gourmet Play Kitchen from KidKraft blends upscale elements with a farmhouse chic aesthetic and brings a touch of sophistication to your child’s playtime.

One of the many things we like about this play kitchen is the butcher-block style island that fits right under the countertop. It sits on wheels so your child can roll it out easily. 

We also like the pretend vegetables so your child can get a full experience of “picking” vegetables and chopping them to create the most perfect meal.

The knobs turn and click and the ice maker dispenses pretend ice cubes, and this adds an extra layer of realism to your child’s cooking experience.

Another cool thing about this Montessori play kitchen is the recycling bin. Your child will understand the importance of environmental responsibility while they play. 

It’s a thoughtful touch that adds an educational element to the fun.

Our daughter had fun playing with the cooktop. When you turn the knobs, the light on the cooktop turns on and makes sounds as if you were cooking a real meal.

The chalkboard is another great addition because your child can express their artistic creativity and personalize their kitchen. 

Whether your child dreams up new recipes, creates a shopping list, or draws, the chalkboard is a wonderful feature.

  • It comes with a butcher block-style pull-out cart.
  • A chalkboard is included to write recipes.
  • Comes with choppable veggies.
  • The refrigerator includes an ice maker with sound and pretend ice cubes.
  • The cooktop has realistic lights and sounds with click-and-turn knobs.
  • A fabric recycling bin is included.
  • The faucet has lights and makes sounds.
  • Oven with showcase door and below oven storage.
  • A cutting board and pretend knife are included.
  • You need to replace the batteries on the faucet and cooktop when they are depleted.
  • You can’t order replacement faucets or cooktops if they stop working.

Our experience with a Montessori play kitchen

We got our daughter a Montessori play kitchen when she was about 12 months old and watching her engage with it has been a truly heartwarming and educational experience. 

Our play kitchen has become a hub of creativity, learning, and bonding within our home.

She has seen us prepare real food but the play kitchen allowed her to experience what cooking and cleaning is like, of course in a pretend-play way.

She was intrigued by the play food, the metal utensils, and the pots and pans. She spent time drawing on the chalkboard that came with our play kitchen.

The best thing we have experienced is watching her creativity blossom. She washes the dishes, pretends to make soup, and sets and cleans her weaning table.

But the biggest benefit of all is that the play kitchen has allowed us to bond simply by playing together and having real conversations about food.

A play kitchen helps in your child’s development

Play kitchens are more than just a tool to entertain your child. It is a versatile and educational toy that plays a significant role in your child’s development. 

Your child learns essential practical life skills like food preparation, organization, and cleaning when they interact with their play kitchen.

They also improve their hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills when they cut and mix pretend food.

This is something we have seen with our child. The food that comes with some play kitchens can be sliced and my daughter learned how to hold a knife with one hand and the vegetable with the other.

We also discuss what meals she is preparing and this has helped develop her communication skills and language.

How to set up a Montessori play kitchen

This is easier said than done. 

To extract maximum value from a Montessori play kitchen, you need to set it up in a way that creates an environment that encourages independence, learning, and creativity. 

Montessori play kitchens come in different sizes so select one that is age-appropriate. Our daughter had a hard time reaching the pots because they were too high for her.

Again she was only 12 months old and very tiny. We had to get her a step stool so she could reach the utensils, cookware, and stove.

It also helps if the play kitchen has functional components like a sink with running water, a stove, and storage areas.

Most play kitchens don’t have running water but you can easily add a water container or a water jug and modify the sink so your child uses the play kitchen beyond imaginative play.

Place the play kitchen in a designated area that is easily accessible to your child. We made some space in our dining area so our daughter can get to the play kitchen easily.

Essentially you have to create a dedicated space without obstacles or distractions to nurture your child’s overall development.

The difference between a Montessori play kitchen and a regular play kitchen

A Montessori play kitchen is designed to mimic real-life kitchens and has realistic features like working knobs, cooking utensils, and cookware. 

The goal of A Montessori play kitchen is to encourage hands-on learning and practical life skills development.

On the other hand, a regular play kitchen is often used for pure entertainment. They are mostly made of plastic and have bright colors, flashy lights, and lots of sounds. 

Regular play kitchens can be fun and engaging but do not emphasize skill-building or promote independence to the same extent as Montessori play kitchens.

What is a good age for a play kitchen?

Your child can begin using a play kitchen as early as 18 months. We got our daughter a play kitchen when she was only 12 months old.

At that age, she was already walking and we felt it was the right time to get her one and continue to build upon her motor skills.

Your toddlers can begin with simple, age-appropriate play kitchens that involve basic activities like opening doors, putting play food in pots, and exploring textures and shapes. 

Your child can improve their sensorial and fine motor skills by doing these simple tasks.

The great thing is that most Montessori play kitchens I recommend can be used from toddlerhood to childhood.

You can make lots of modifications to a Montessori play kitchen and increase its longevity so your child continues to use it for many years.

At 2 years old, your child can begin doing more real-life activities like pouring, stirring, and setting a table. 

They can also take on more intricate role-play scenarios, explore recipe creation, and practice collaborative play.

What to do next?

These are the best Montessori play kitchens. Our favorite one is the GrowGo 2-in-1 Mud Kitchen because it can be used as a grocery store and a play kitchen.

I have an article about the best Montessori climbing toys that go hand-in-hand with play kitchens to help your child develop to their full potential.

About Leslie - Latinx Montessori

Hello, I am Leslie. I am on a mission to help you support the growth and development of your child. With the right tools and proper guidance, you can navigate parenthood with confidence and assertion! My goal is to equip you with knowledge to help you construct a strong foundation for your child’s life.

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