Step 2 Fun With Friends Kitchen Review

Editor's rating:
8.4
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Reviewed by Bobby Brower
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We like

Encourages role playing and group play

Comes with about 40 life-like accessories

Teaches your child the joys of cooking and cleaning

Made from durable plastic that will last many years

Allows your child’s imagination to run wild

Makes life-like sound when your child cooks

We don’t like

Assembly can be difficult

Does not come with play food

How it works

Step2 has created a play kitchen that is very detail-oriented and as real-to-life as possible. The Step 2 Fun With Friends kitchen set comes with about 40 accessories to make your child’s play experience as realistic as possible. Although it does not take up a lot of room in your home or play area, it is the perfect size for toddlers and young children who want to role play as if they are cooking and baking in the kitchen.

The set has details down to food and water bowls for animals and a cell phone that comes with the set. Your child will be able to cook, bake, clean, and even make coffee in their very own kitchen. With so many fun decals and toys that go along with this set, the Step2 Fun With Friends Kitchen is a great way for your child to let their imagination run wild. 

 

Design

Design

The design of the kitchen is to make the kitchen feel like a real-life kitchen. The amount of accessories that come with the kitchen set makes it more lifelike than most play kitchens that are on the market. The stove top makes real boiling sounds and plays music as your child cooks, which in turn makes your child feel as if they are really cooking a meal. The sink is big enough to put in several plates and cups and silverware to make it look as if your child has just had their very own dinner party.

At the top of the set is a line of hooks where your child can hang up their spatula and spoons along with an area where they can safely store their dishes and the pods for their coffee maker. Below the hooks is a shelf where the condiments can rest and the salt and pepper shaker. In the middle of the shelf area is the coffee maker where your child can put in the pods and then put their coffee cup or to-go cup underneath the pod for pretend coffee making. And the counter space area consists of the stove top, the prep area, and the sink.

On the bottom of the Step2 Fun With Friends Kitchen is where you will find an oven, a storage area, microwave, and refrigerator. All the areas have their own sticker decals that you place yourself, and those decals add the perfect touch to the play kitchen that makes it all the more real for your child.
Safety

Safety

The kitchen is recommended for play areas that have thin carpeting or hardwood floors. The set does not get mounted onto a wall, instead, it has been designed to lean up against a wall, so the flatter the surface, the less likely the kitchen will have the potential to tip and fall.

None of the accessories or pieces that come with the Step 2 Fun With Friends Kitchen are small enough to be put in a child’s mouth, however, you can buy food accessories for the kitchen, and young children may try and put those smaller food items in their mouths, which would then pose a huge choking hazard. It is recommended to never leave your child unattended when they are playing with the kitchen as they may try and eat something that is not edible. Also, the set does come with a set of play forks and knives, and those items may pose a poking hazard.
Assembly Required

Assembly Required

Many parents differ on the difficulty in putting together the Step 2 Fun With Friends Kitchen. Some parents found it to be no problem at all putting the kitchen together, while other parents found it an extreme hassle to organize all the stickers, decals, and parts of all of the accessories. It should be noted that almost every aspect of the kitchen set needs to somehow be assembled or detailed by you. Almost nothing comes already assembled.

When you open the box, the first thing that you will see is that the kitchen comes in three major parts. What you will need to assemble from the get go is the base, the countertop, and the back of the kitchen. Once those three parts are assembled, you can start to install the hooks, the doors, and the stove top along with the sink and doors to the oven and microwave next. There is also a coffee maker area that also will require your attention. The three major pieces are held together by screws, and some parents have found that there are no screw holes, so you have to find where the screw hole is suggested and use your screw there.

The next part of the assembly is taking all the decals and properly sticking them over almost every facet of the kitchen. The trim, the woodwork, the items within the oven and microwave are all on sticker decals that must be placed in the proper areas of the kitchen for the kitchen to make sense. Once all the stickers are on, then you can start putting out all the accessories. For the accessories, all the condiment bottles need their labels affixed, and then all the plates, silverware, kitchen gadgets, pots and pans all need to be hung up where they belong and the rest of the accessories organized to their rightful place. The salt and pepper shakers will need to be assembled as well. Some parents were able to get this done in about an hour while other parents took twice as long to assemble the entire set.
The Accessories

The Accessories

The Step 2 Fun With Friends Kitchen boasts that its realistic feel comes from the amount of accessories that come in the box with the set. The amount of accessories allows your child’s imagination to run as wild as possible. The accessories that come with the set are: two full place settings of plates, bowls, tea cups, cups, forks, knives, and spoons; a slotted spoon, two serving spoons, and a spatula; three coffee pods plus two travel coffee mugs; a salt and pepper shaker with condiments that include mayo, relish, bbq sauce, ketchup, and mustard; a pot with lid and frying pan with lid plus a colander; a play cell phone; and two storage bins for vegetables and other items found around the kitchen. Your child may never run out of fun ways to cook with all the parts that come with the set, but it should be remembered that upon purchase, you will have to assemble most of if not all of these parts.
Role-Playing

Role-Playing

Role-playing is one of the best ways for children to learn and experience the world. Children pay attention to everything that goes on around them, and children then mimic what they see their parents and grandparents say and do. When a child role-plays they put into practice what they believe to be acceptable language, habits, and everyday ways of getting chores and to-do items done. Many parents find that when they role-play with their children or watch their children play with other children or siblings, parents get to see what their child is absorbing in their daily lives.

This toy kitchen allows children the opportunity to role-play. They can pretend they are running a restaurant with their friends and serve up orders for Mom and Dad or other friends who come to join the fun. They can pretend they are Mom or Dad themselves and they can be cooking for their own pretend children at Thanksgiving or some other family event.

The area with the pet food and water decals at the bottom of the playset is a great place for your child’s favorite stuffed animals to live while they eat and drink with the rest of the family, and after the animals are done eating, your child can take them for a post-dinner walk. The role-playing that is available from this set will not only allow your child to use their imagination, but it will also allow them to fantasize about life and Mom and Dad can be right there to guide them in learning life lessons
What is Not Included?

What is Not Included?

Although the Step2 Fun With Friends Kitchen comes with a lot of accessories, there are a lot of things that do not come with the set that some parents think may be necessary to be included, but are not. The biggest thing that parents wish was included was play food. The kitchen set comes with all that you need to pretend cook and serve, however, there is no play food, so parents have had to purchase play food separately so that their child would have something to cook. Some parents did not find this to be a hassle at all, but others think there should at least be some sort of food included to get their child started considering you can use this set to “bake” and “cook”.
Learning Life Skills

Learning Life Skills

The Step2 Fun With Friends Kitchen can be considered a nice stepping stone to your child wanting to learn how to cook and clean and take care of others. The role playing your child will get to do will enable them to develop a joy for cooking and will give them the impetus to help Mom and Dad clean up after meals and around the house. Role playing doing these chores is a great way for your child to not only learn how to do them, but also to enjoy doing them and it helps create some quality time between parent and child.
Price

Price

The price for this play kitchen is the middle of the road for a toy of this type. The price is not too expensive, but it’s not inexpensive either. This set may be out of the price range for some parents, but it is still affordable if the set is being considered for purchase. Many may think the price would be more considering the number of items that come with the set, but it should be remembered that you will have to do a lot of the assembling and designing of the set, which is what makes the price drop because you will have to do all the labor yourself.

The one good thing is that when the set is fully assembled, it stays together and can be a part of your child’s toy collection for many years to come as it gets passed on to other children or donated once your child outgrows it. The recommended age range is two-years-old to six-years-old so each child can get a good four years of play out of something that really won’t go out of style considering it is not electronic-based.

Conclusion

The Step2 Fun With Friends Kitchen is a great toy to buy for the child who loves to role play and use their imagination to play pretend. The set gives the most life-like experience of cooking in a kitchen and serving the ones you love. The accessories add the perfect touch to the playset, although play food does not come with the set and needs to be purchased separately. Your child will get to experience washing dishes, baking, cooking, serving, and keeping their kitchen stocked and clean at all times.

The imaginary cooking and cleaning will help your child build those same skills in their own lives. The kitchen promotes group play as kids learn to play together and serve each other, and kids can take turns being the chef and the person being served. Kids get to play together and learn how to play well together. With a price tag that is affordable, this toy kitchen is a great buy for the child who wants to expand their imagination and pretend to be an adult.
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