What better time for the kids to assert their independence than in celebration of Independence Day?

Kids love doing things themselves, they love celebrations and they love preparing for parties. Kill three birds with one stone by letting them prepare these easy recipes for your 4th of July festivities!

1. Festive Pudding Dessert

This is a perfect DIY activity for the littlest of kids because there's no cooking involved. All the ingredients are right from the grocery store, and you can lay everything out for your little ones (Just wash and slice the fruit ahead of time), and let them assemble their own desserts!

Have your child spoon out vanilla pudding cups into individual graham cracker crust shells. Then they can make them pretty (and a bit more nutritious) by placing strawberries, raspberries and blueberries on top.

2. Chocolaty Fun

Kids as young as 8 can melt chocolate in the microwave. Just have them pour chocolate chips in a bowl, pop them in the microwave for thirty-second increments, stirring in between until the chocolate is melted. (Make sure your child is careful with the hot chocolate!)

Then the kids can go to town dipping their favorites. Strawberries can be dipped in white chocolate and then sprinkled with blue sugar to make a festive treat, or pretzel rods can be dipped in milk chocolate and sprinkled with red, white and blue sprinkles.

3. Jazzed-up Rice Krispie Treats

Rice Krispie treats are so easy to make that older kids who are able to use the stove safely can make them completely independently. To make them more 4th of July-friendly, have the kids add a few drops of blue or red food coloring once the marshmallows have melted, and then sprinkle festive sprinkles over the treats after spreading them in the pan. They can even use star-shaped cookie cutters to cut them in holiday shapes, and put American flag toothpicks in each treat.

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