Teaching kids how to cook for university, with Co-op #ad

teen cooking a meal with Co-op - BritMums

Uni student Holly gets to work at The Brick Castle

Waving off your child to university is a major parenting milestone, one that comes with a whole raft of new concerns for anxious mums and dads. Freshers have so much to contend with for the first time, from budgeting to figuring out laundry, making new friends, and perhaps most vitally how to cook their own meals.

The stereotypical student diet — consisting mainly of cheap starchy carbs, junk foods and beer from the Student Union bar (we might be speaking from experience here at BritMums) — is hardly a comforting thought for those sending precious not-so-little-ones out into the big wide world.

We’re pleased to be working with in a paid relationship with Co-op, focusing on the role of food bringing families together and appreciating the value of a home-cooked meal.

We asked three BritMums influencers to host a family leaving dinner for their university-bound children. It’s a great way of teaching their children some simple, student-friendly recipes to stand them in good stead for university life. Thankfully these days young people are far better educated about food and nutrition than most of us were back when we were their age.

Jenny (@thebrickcastle) and her 18-year-old uni-bound daughter Holly prepared a delicious looking veggie taco meal with fresh ingredients.  

“We added lots of extras to our Easy Veggie Tacos, but the basic recipe costs around £1.50 per person per main meal and TOTUM (NUS Extra) card holders get 10% off on top of regular Co-op member rewards!” said Jenny.

[Discount available at certain Co-op stores. Use the store finder and click on “More about this store” to see if your nearest one accepts the card.]



Holly freely admits she probably won’t be eating all that sensibly while she’s at uni but we’re sure this versatile and tasty dish will one of her go-to meals – especially since the leftovers can be used up to make a lasagna or served with rice. 


family eating tacos - BritMums

Sitting down to tacos

Continuing with the Tex-Mex theme, Emma (@Emmaand3.com) and her daughter Chloe made Chicken Fajitas and Nachos for the family. “We enjoy sharing meals where everything is put on a table and you can serve yourself. I find that this promotes conversation but also that everyone mucks in preparing dinner and at the table,” says Emma. Chloe, though a  reluctant cook, agreed that this meal would be a regular student staple as you can see in their vlog below. 



Zena (@zenas_suitcase) has a son who has been at uni for a year already so has pretty much mastered the art of pasta. For their farewell family supper she decided to expand his culinary repertoire and make Chicken, Mozzarella and Pesto Burgers, which went down a treat. Her son was pleased to pick up some top tips from his mum about the many uses of pesto sauce and how butterflying the chicken breasts makes them cook faster. Mum tips really are the best. You can see how they got on below. Judging by the clean plates the meal was a huge success!


In November all three families will be paying a visit to their offspring at university to cook them a meal and find out how they’re getting on.


Stay tuned for more delicious family meals!


This post is part of the paid sponsorship campaign with Co-op. Bloggers have been compensated for their time and provided with a Co-op food shop. All opinions are their own. 

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BritMums is the UK’s original collective of lifestyle bloggers and digital influencers, fueling the country’s most influential social content. We lead the online conversation with members who are parent social influencers creating content on topics ranging from food, parenting, travel, politics, style and more.


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  1. 09 October 2018 / 11:25

    It’s such a big step for young people who are moving away from home to start life at uni. It really hit me how much I did for my son before he went, and the trick was to think of inventive ways to develop his life skills before he went. Cooking and eating together really helped all of us plan for this big change

  2. 09 October 2018 / 12:36

    I’ve loved doing this and I’m really getting excited about going over to see her at uni next month and see what she’s really been cooking! She did send me a photo of a gorgeous looking chicken and mushroom pie she made herself the other day, so I have high hopes! 😀

  3. Tina Mansfield
    09 October 2018 / 13:23

    great to see that a shop is thinking of supporting students. and great life skills. Maybe one day students will be known for their good eating habits!