The Ultimate Gift – Step 2 Fresh Market Kitchen

Love isn’t a strong enough word for how much my daughter adores her Step 2 Fresh Market Kitchen.  Some days I think that the entire house could disappear around her and she wouldn’t even notice as long as she had 4 things with her:

  • her Step2 Kitchen
  • our working refrigerator (for real snacks)
  • her Corolle baby doll (to feed)
  • me (to provide real food out of the real refrigerator and cheer for her while she plays)

I’m pretty sure that’s the order of preference, too. 

We were fairly certain a play kitchen was going to be a huge hit with her this year, but even we had no idea the kind of love that could exist between a toddler and a toy.  She spends roughly 2 1/2 hours each day playing with her Step2 Fresh Market Kitchen, and if she could talk in full sentences she would tell you that’s not nearly enough time.  

Kitchen_selector Besides being absolutely adorable, Step 2 makes the coolest play kitchens anywhere.  All of their kitchens come with accessories and goodies to spare, which makes their already awesome playsets even more so.  With a kitchen collection that features a classic 50’s Diner, a Party Time Kitchen, and even a Gourmet Café, Step 2 has the best lineup in kids kitchens anywhere.  Because their kitchens are so varied and cover a wide range of configurations, I absolutely love the Kitchen Selector tool available on the Step 2 site that helps you choose the playset that is perfect for your children as well as the best fit for your space.  The Kitchen Selector tool recommended the Fresh Market Kitchen, and my family and I could not agree more that this was the perfect Step 2 kitchen for us.

So what is it about the Fresh Market Kitchen that’s so incredibly cool?  Everything!  For starters, the kitchen has activities on three of the four sides of the Fresh Market Kitchen, making the play options so much greater than a standard kitchen set up.  It has the kitchen cook area on one side, a sitting area on the opposite side that you can pass food through to, and then it has a Fresh Market display front and countertop to purchase all your fresh foods and bakery items on the other side. 

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The Step 2 Fresh Market Kitchen comes with all sorts of really cool accessories – 47 pieces, to be exact – from pots and pans and kitchen utensils to use on the kitchen side, to a calculating cash register, fruits, veggies and pastry counter goodies for use in the market.  Of course, it also comes with a credit card and market bag for your little shopper to purchase all their goodies and take them back to the kitchen with.
 

XPICT2068 As well as being an immense amount of fun for our entire family, the Fresh Market Kitchen does more than just provide hours of play.  The play and learning opportunities are twice as great in this kitchen because of its unique Market/Kitchen design that allows kids to play chef as well as shop keeper. The included fresh produce and market goods offer great tools for teaching kids about fruits and veggies and the food groups, while the calculating cash register and beeping scanner help kids learn about counting and money.  Then, once they are in the kitchen there are countless opportunities to really expand on the learning themes and help your little one learn to cook just like mom and dad.  With really cool touches like a bubbling cooktop that lights up to a real working light above the stove, the Fresh Market Kitchen is full of realism that both parents and kids can appreciate and makes the learning experience that much greater.

Play Kitchens as learning toys isn’t exactly a new concept or cutting edge in any way.  In fact, experts such as the best selling children’s cookbook author Barbara Beery have widely endorsed play kitchens as great learning tools for children to help cultivate their imaginations and encourage a love of cooking.  Everyone knows that I simply can’t resist a learning toy, and to me a play kitchen is one of the ultimate learning vehicles for young kids.  

We look for any and every way we can encourage our daughter even more and involve her in our cooking routines, so we are always brainstorming ways to have our daughter help with either prep or serving of food, and the Fresh Market Kitchen has ample opportunities to do this.  We have been known to “cool” foods in her play oven as the last step before eating, display her real lunch amongst the play foods in the display case, which she then buys (with kisses, of course) before taking them to the table and even letting her store certain cooking items in her Step2 kitchen, which she then retrieves for us when we need them to really cook.  

XPICT2062 As great as it is to play with her in the Fresh Market Kitchen each day and narrate all the things we’re doing and why, I love just sitting back and watching my daughter play in her kitchen alone and watch what happens during her open ended play.  I love when I see her do something that I know she learned from watching hubby, or something that is just like mama, and realize how much of our day to day activities she is already processing and emulating as she figures out how to heat, scrub and serve just like we do.  I have to admit that my heart skipped a beat or two the day my daughter asked for a washcloth and then proceeded to pretend to wipe down her kitchen counters after she was done cooking.  Maybe she is mama’s girl after all. 

Parents beware, the coolness of the Step 2 line of kitchens does come at a small price.  Give yourself 20-40 minutes of building time and use an electric screwdriver if you can, you will thank me later.  Be sure and allot enough time for set up for Christmas morning surprises so your child doesn’t come down to bags of screws and kitchen pieces.  Don't worry though, this really is a small price for the quality of the Step2 line and the look of sheer joy that will be on your child's face the moment they catch a glimpse of their new toy kitchen.  

The Step2 Fresh Market Kitchen is absolutely on my list of must-have toys for both boys and girls this holiday season as something that encourages learning and independence in a positive and playful way. 

Price: $199 MSRP

http://www.step2.com/

 And now for the Giveaway…

This giveaway is closed.  Thank you to all who entered, and congratulations to Kirsten!

Kirsten said:
http://twitter.com/miriama59/status/8015305771

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A HUGE thank you to Step2 for sending us the coolest toy kitchen ever and for offering a giveaway to our fabulous readers.  No type of monetary compensation was received for this Rave Review.

1,695 thoughts on “The Ultimate Gift – Step 2 Fresh Market Kitchen”

  1. Oh my goodness, where do I even start?!? I love the Nature Station Playhouse and the whole Naturally Playful series. I would LOVE to have just about anything in the Step 2 line!

  2. I adore their Dream Castle Convertible Bed. Perfect for a little Princess! Pretty neat that it comes with a built-in nightlight too.

  3. There isn’t much that I wouldn’t like from Step 2. I do really like the Art and Activity sets. My kids are always making something for us to put up or to give to their grandparents.
    My daughter would Love this Play set that you are giving away. I think her brothers would kinda like it too.
    [email protected]

  4. I like their Creative Projects Table. It would give my two very competitive niece and nephew equal space to work on their coloring and painting. No more “I wanna sit in this corner of the table” tantrum!! lol

  5. I would love to have their Deluxe Action Train Table with Lid for my sons. Thanks for a great giveaway 🙂

  6. the grandkids would go crazy for the construction site sandbox,it would keep them busy for hours…thanks for the chance to win.

  7. I like the Art Master Activity Desk and the Creative Projects Table. My kids are really into artsy, crafty stuff, so either would be really cool for them. Fantastic giveaway, thanks!

  8. I like the Naturally Playful Adventure Lodge Play Center. I am really meditating on getting this for our daughter. But it is the dead of winter here so I have some time.

  9. There is so much I love about Step 2!One thing I want for sure is the Creative Projects Table but my list could go on and on.
    dropcqueen at yahoo dot com

  10. My little one loves the step 2 push around buggy. She sits on it and plays even when we’re not pushing her. I’m sure she’d love the Fresh Market Kitchen. Hope we win it!

  11. My girls would love the Creative Projects Table. They love doing art projects and this table would be perfect for them!
    Thank you for the chance to win!
    girlygirlugh at gmail dot com

  12. I love the Naturally Playful® Sand & Water Activity Center. My daughter played with one of these at day care before she started school this year. She loved it and always talked about it. Such a nice product. Thanks for this giveaway…..you are awesome as usual!

  13. I love this product and LifeStyle™ Deluxe Kitchen!
    This would be such a blessing for us to have for our daughter’s 3rd birthday! I have been trying to locate any of these on sale and no such luck. She was crushed on Christmas to not get something like this!
    [email protected]

  14. What little girl wouldn’t love the Dream Castle bed or the fantasy bedroom combo? Heck, they might even entice my niece to sleep in her own bed!!

  15. We are big step 2 fans in our house. We just got the Naturally Playful Adventure Lodge Play Center and LOVE it!

  16. I LOVE Step 2 products, I had them for my children, now my children’s, children are getting them! LOL!
    The 50’s Diner is SO cute, I would love to have that for myself! lol!

  17. The Real Projects Workshop would be perfect for my grandson. He could be working just like his grandfather.

  18. My daughter wants to be a chef at this point in her life and is always cooking. I really liked the LifeStyle™ Grand Walk-In Kitchen.

  19. I have always wanted a playhouse for my little ones and the Naturally Playful® Welcome Home Playhouse
    looks like it would be a lot of fun 🙂

  20. Oh, what is there not to love from STEP 2?? They have such a brilliant, fun-looking line of toys and play centers. Besides all of their play kitchens, I just saw the Whisper Ride Buggy that I think my daughter would just love right now.