The recipe for a loving family is as simple as it is elusive. As parents, some days you have to experiment tirelessly to find the perfect blend of trust, acceptance and freedom; while on other days, you find your plate overflowing with patience, kindness and understanding.

To create a loving environment at home, create opportunities where family members can connect through shared interests and passions. There’s no better way to achieve this than through our common love for food. Here are a few reasons why cooking and having your meals together are great for family bonding!

1. Spending Quality Time Together

With the busy life families lead these days, connecting on an intimate level is challenging. When you set aside time to come together and cook as a family, you are making the most out of that moment.

Cooking together also gives you the opportunity to impart cooking skills, share stories of how the recipes had been passed down through the generations, and even create new memories that deserve a special place in the family albums. 

2. Sharing Responsibilities

As with sports or other shared activities, it is important to efficiently and effectively divide roles and responsibilities in the kitchen. Establishing these roles from the beginning ensures that everyone is aware of their contribution to the team and will work together to achieve a common goal.

You will learn how to balance each of your strengths and weaknesses in a way that complements one another. When your family members finally sit down to enjoy the meal prepared together, they will be able to appreciate it more as they understand the effort that goes behind it.

3. Serving Slices of Culture and Tradition 

Who doesn’t love the timeless taste of Grandma’s age-old recipes? Cooking is intrinsically linked with one’s culture and traditions. It is a great opportunity for the older generation to pass down recipes, skills and techniques, and “tricks of the trade” to their younger counterparts. Passing on such “family secrets”and values is key to keeping the family’s unique tradition alive. 

The kitchen is after all a gathering place where memories are homemade and seasoned with love. Take some love and mix it with compassion, tenderness, and understanding. Add encouragement and patience; sprinkle with copious amounts of laughter. Serve the combination of these ingredients on a regular basis and in generous helpings. Voila – you will have laid the foundation to a happy and loving family. 

Here's a useful list of 8 tips to weave in family time into our busy schedules.