6 Easy Ways to Childproof Your Kitchen

In the eyes of small children, the kitchen is a wonderful and mysterious place full of sights, sounds, smells, and tons of strange metal apparatuses that magically make food. It’s basically the grown-ups’ playroom!

But in the eyes of parents, the kitchen is a warzone full of sharp edges and unknown dangers that can potentially hurt their children. And this is true, of course; knives, stoves, and most kitchen tools are known to cause harm to even the most professional of chefs. What more can they do to kids who don’t know what they’re doing?

Thankfully, childproofing your kitchen is easy and won’t cost you a lot. All you need are some basic materials and a little bit of common sense. Here’s how to get started.

1. Secure Electricals

One of the easiest ways to childproof your kitchen is by securing all electricals. A toddler’s usual reaction to seeing a dangling cable is to pull on it. If that cable is attached to a kitchen appliance like a blender, the blender could fall and hurt your child.

To prevent accidents, keep all cables out of reach of children, and stow away these appliances when they’re not in use. Additionally, outlets that are within your child’s reach should be covered with safety plugs.

2. Check Cabinets, Shelves, and Drawers

Another important step to childproof your kitchen is to check all cabinets, shelves, and drawers. Freestanding shelves, i.e., those that aren’t attached to anything, should be secured to nearby walls. They could easily be tipped over and climbed on by an overactive child. If you can’t attach these kinds of shelves to anything, consider replacing them with something more secure.

Drawers and cabinets are also potential hazards. You could use plastic loops and strings to secure low drawers and cabinets that are within reach of your child. However, sometimes kids find ways to get around these flimsy locks. If that’s the case, you can use special magnetic lock systems that only open when you touch a magnetic key to them.

3. Be Aware of Burn Risks

Stove guard protection

To prevent burn risks in your kitchen, never leave the stove unattended, even for just a second. Let your child know that the stovetop will always be hot after use, even if it’s not turned on or there’s no visible fire. Pot and pan handles should always be turned inward so that a child won’t accidentally knock them over.

Alternatively, you could get a stove guard. This way, you can move and use your stovetop freely without worrying that your child can get access to your stove and cooking areas.

Consider getting an induction cooktop too. This is the ultimate form of stove childproofing. Induction cooktops are great for families with children because they only heat up the pan and can easily cool down within seconds after use.

4. Store Sharp Objects Safely

Another crucial step in childproofing your kitchen is to store sharp objects safely. Knives, scissors, and other sharp objects should be stored in a secure and out-of-reach location, such as a locked cabinet or a high shelf. Avoid leaving them lying around on countertops or tables where they can easily be grabbed by curious little hands.

If you use knives frequently, consider investing in a magnetic knife strip that can be mounted on a wall. This way, your knives are easily accessible to you but out of reach for your child.

It’s also important to teach your child the dangers of sharp objects and the importance of staying away from them. Encourage them to come to you if they ever see a sharp object within their reach.

5. Keep Hazardous Chemicals Out of Reach

Cleaning products and other hazardous chemicals are a particular concern. Store all chemicals out of reach of children. These items should be kept in a secure location and locked up in a cabinet or drawer.

Kids can easily mistake cleaning products and chemical containers for food or drink, which can result in serious harm if ingested. Definitely store these items in a safe and secure location, away from curious little hands.

Consider using child-proof locks or latches on cabinets and drawers to prevent access. Also, make sure to keep all cleaning products in their original containers and with their labels intact, so you know exactly what they are and can identify them quickly if necessary.

6. Set Up a Safe, Enclosed Area for Your Kids

You can’t keep your kids away from the kitchen forever. If your child is still too young to understand the dangers of the kitchen but still wants to watch you cook, consider setting up a safe, enclosed area nearby.

For example, you can place their playpen in a quiet corner of the kitchen so that they can watch you while you cook, but still have access to their toys in case they get bored.