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Make some tasty biscuits

Make a tasty snack using this simple biscuit recipe.

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You’ll need

  • Ingredients (see recipe)
  • Oven
  • Kitchen scales
  • Wooden spoons
  • Mixing bowls
  • Baking trays
  • Fork or whisk
  • Rolling pin
  • Cookie cutters
  • Baking paper
  • Kitchen timer (optional)
  • Oven gloves
  • Wire rack

Before you begin 

  • Use the safety checklist to help you plan and risk assess your activity. Take a look at our guidance to help you carry out your risk assessment, including examples.  
  • Make sure all young people and adults involved in the activity know how to take part safely.
  • Make sure you’ll have enough adult helpers. You may need some parents and carers to help if you’re short on helpers. 
  • Check for allergies, intolerances, fasting, food-related medical conditions, eating disorders, food sensitivities or dietary requirements, then adjust the food items used as needed. This may include making sure there’s no cross-contamination of packaging and no cross-contamination during the storage, preparation, cooking and serving. 
  • You may need to use separate chopping boards, equipment and utensils, such as tongs or toasters, for different dietary requirements, allergies and foods.
  • If you’re unsure, check with the young person and their parents or carers. You can check with the adult directly if it’s a volunteer or helper.
  • Some people may not like certain food textures or tastes and that’s OK. People don’t need to use all the ingredients if they don’t want to, and no-one should be made to try foods if they don’t want to. You can try to find an alternative for them. 
  • Take a look at our guidance on food preparation
  • You could run our kitchen hygiene activities before this session.
  • Always have a hand washing station, washing hands regularly throughout this activity, and taking extra hygiene precautions when handling food. If you're using gloves to prepare food, treat them like your hands. Wash any gloves before using them and in between if necessary.
  • Spray and wipe down all working surfaces and tables with anti-bacterial spray before and after use, and wash any equipment you’re using in hot soapy water.
  • Take extra hygiene precautions when handling raw meat, such as regular hand washing.
  • Keep raw and ready-to-eat foods separate, having separate equipment for raw and cooked meat, and washing up equipment as soon as it's been used. 
  • Make sure food is properly cooked before you serve it. Always cut through poultry and meat to make sure it's fully cooked, especially when barbecuing food. Make sure it's cooked slowly and thoroughly, and not just done on the outside.
  • Always follow cooking instructions and never use food past its use-by date. 
  • Keep food out of the fridge for the shortest time possible.
  • At the start of this activity, remind everyone of kitchen or indoor cooking safety rules and how to act safely. Always tie hair back, tuck in neckers and loose clothing, and wear closed toe shoes. Take a look at our kitchen safety tips.
  • You may want to run a demonstration on how to use the equipment safely, such as for cooking or chopping ingredients. You could use our kitchen safety activities before this session.
  • Make sure any cooking equipment or heat sources, such as ovens and hobs, always have adult supervision, including during free time and arrival times. If anyone struggles with sensing danger, you should consider providing extra adult supervision. This could be especially helpful at unstructured times, such as breaks or waiting to cook.
  • Remind everyone to keep their fingers away from any knives. You may want to use blunt, child-friendly knives, or you could also have ingredients pre-chopped.
  • If you’re using a gas stove, tabletop hob plates or a mini oven, make sure it’s on a stable heatproof surface and in a clear and open area, with plenty of ventilation. Gas appliances and sources can increase risk of carbon monoxide exposure. Take a look at our guidance on different cooking methods and carbon monoxide.
  • You may want to put child-safe locks on cupboard doors to prevent access by young people, especially for cupboards containing matches, cleaning products or chemicals.
  • People can work in small groups or as a whole group to bake or cook. Each group should have adult supervision.
  • You may want to be in groups, but everyone to use the same cooking source, rather than having each group have their own.
  • You may wish for groups to make or prepare the ingredients in a wider, more spacious area, then invite each group into the kitchen to cook one at a time. 
  • Remember the groups not using the kitchen or cooking will still need to be supervised, always following the Yellow Card
  • Make sure you have all the ingredients ready. You may want to pre-chop or pre-measure some activities.

Here are a few ideas for making shaped or iced biscuits.

  • You can find squirrel cookie cutters online. Beaver and Cub cookie cutters are a bit harder to find, but you could try making your own template.
  • You could use your hands to shape your dough into animal shapes. If you want to keep it simple, roll the dough to make worms, snakes, and snails.
  • You could use melted chocolate (make sure it’s not too hot to touch) or icing to add some details. You could also use sprinkles and biscuit crumbs to add texture and details.
  • You could use red and black icing to make ladybird biscuits. Cover the biscuits in red liquid icing, then roll solid black icing to make a tiny line across the middle of each biscuit. Add tiny balls of solid black icing, and your ladybird has their spots. You can even use the spots to practise counting.
  • You could use red and yellow icing to make bee biscuits. Cover the biscuits in yellow liquid icing, then roll solid black icing to make stripes along the bee. You can use the stripes to practise counting.

Baking’s a really fun activity, and it’s full of opportunities to learn and try new things. Here are our top tips for keeping everyone engaged:

  • Encourage everyone to use their listening skills to follow the recipe. Can they remember what to do first?
  • If anyone’s started to learn to read, they could practise reading some of the words (or recognising some of the numbers) in the recipe.
  • Try to support everyone to take it in turns to get stuck in. People can share jobs like finding and weighing the ingredients and mixing everything together. They could take it in turns to roll out the dough, or you could give everyone their own piece to roll out.
  • Remind people to wash their hands again when they need to, including if they touch their face or handle raw egg (including touching the dough).
  • An adult should put the baking tray into the oven. When it’s ready, an adult should take it out and leave it somewhere out of reach. The adult should help everyone understand that the oven and tray get really hot, so it’s important not to touch them. They should explain that they’re wearing oven gloves to keep their hands safe.


Planning and setting up the activity 

  • Remember to give a safety briefing for the cooking equipment and methods you’re using. You may wish to demonstrate the methods or activity before you all start cooking. 

Running the activity

  1. Ask everyone what you need to do before baking. Tell everyone why it’s important that people tie long hair back, wash their hands, and clean surfaces before they start baking.
  2. Everyone should wash their hands and get ready to bake.
  3. Now, ask everyone to think about when people might need to wash their hands again, such as if they touch their face, go to the toilet, or touch any foods, such as raw egg.


  • 200g unsalted butter, softened
  • 200g golden caster sugar
  • One large egg
  • Half a teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 400g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • A splash of milk (if needed)
  • Chocolate or icing to decorate the biscuits (optional)

Prep time: 10–30 mins

Cook time: 20 mins

Serves: Makes 24 biscuits

  1. An adult should pre-heat the oven to 200C (180C if you’ve got a fan oven, or gas mark six).
  2. Grease the baking sheet with a little spare butter and line it with baking paper.
  3. Put the butter in a bowl and beat it until it’s soft and creamy.
  4. Beat in the sugar, then the egg and vanilla, and finally the flour to make a dough.
  5. If the dough feels a bit sticky, add a bit more flour and knead it in. If it’s a bit dry, you could add a splash of milk.
  6. Sprinkle some flour on a clean surface and roll out the dough until it’s about half a centimetre thick (that’s about the thickness of two £1 coins).
  7. Cut out your shapes. If you’ve got time, you could make patterns by gently pressing a spoon or fork into the dough.
  8. Place the biscuits on the baking tray and an adult should place them in an oven for 8 to 10 minutes, until the edges are just brown.
  9. When they’re ready, an adult should remove the baking trays from the oven, using heat-proof protective equipment.
  10. Place the trays on a heat-proof surface or a wire rack to cool completely, out of reach of young people. Remember to turn the oven off!
  11. If you’ve got time, decorate your cooled biscuits.

Squirrel storytime

Story time

  1. Everyone should sit in a circle.
  2. Someone should read Nevaeh's Magic Biscuits by Annabel Rose. This story is about working together to bake a tasty treat.
  3. After reading the story, everyone should take some time to reflect on it as a group. We’ve included some questions to help you reflect in the pink box below.

It was a Monday morning and Nevaeh was bored. She wasn’t at nursery today, so she was at her auntie’s house. Neveah’s auntie was bored of hearing that Neveah was bored.

‘Why don’t we do some baking?’ Nevaeh’s auntie suggested. ‘We could make something to share with your cousins when they get home from school.’

‘OK!’ said Nevaeh. ‘What should we make?’

‘I know,’ her auntie replied. ‘Let’s make Grandma’s magic biscuits.’

Nevaeh had never heard of Grandma’s magic biscuits before, but she thought they sounded pretty exciting.

‘How are they magic?’ she asked.

‘You’ll just have to wait and see,’ her auntie replied, winking.

Neveah and her auntie started to make the biscuit dough. They stirred some squishy butter, added grainy sugar, and cracked a large brown egg (and a big bit of eggshell that Nevaeh fished out with a spoon).

After they mixed in the flour, Nevaeh and her auntie closed their eyes, wiggled their fingers, and clapped five times. Now the soft golden dough was full of magic, it was time to turn it into biscuits and bake them in the oven.

Nevaeh made some stars, some circles, and some unicorn-shaped biscuits. They put them into the oven for nine minutes, then left them to cool on the side.

Soon it was time to pick Nevaeh’s cousins up from school. She told them all about Grandma’s magic biscuit recipe as they walked home. Then it was time to tuck in.

Her oldest cousin was first. They took a bite, and Nevaeh watched them carefully. What was going to happen? Suddenly, they started bouncing!

‘Woah!’ they said, jumping up and down. ‘The biscuits have given me a magic power! I can jump really high without getting tired. Watch!’

Then it was Nevaeh’s middle cousin’s turn. She started to eat her biscuit, waited a moment, and started singing beautifully.

‘Wow!’ Nevaeh said. ‘The magic biscuits taught you a new song!’

Finally, it was time for Nevaeh’s youngest cousin to try a magic biscuit. He nibbled the edge and closed his eyes.

‘What’s orange and sounds like a parrot?’ he said. Everyone looked puzzled. ‘A carrot!’ Nevaeh burst out laughing. His magic power was telling jokes!

Nevaeh was looking forward to finding out what her own magic power would be. She licked her lips, took a deep breath, and crunch, crunch, crunched the biscuit until it was all gone. Everyone waited to see what would happen.

‘I think my magic power is eating biscuits,’ Nevaeh declared. ‘Can I have another one, just to test it out?’

By Annabel Rose


As part of this activity, young people will build their practical skills, work on their listening skills, and practise taking turns and sharing.    

Nevaeh's Magic Biscuits

  • What ingredients did Nevaeh use to make her biscuits?
  • Have you baked biscuits before? Was it easy?
  • What magic powers do you think Grandma's biscuits would have given you?

Make your biscuits

  • Did people enjoy making the biscuits? Would they like to do more baking?
  • Did anyone find anything a bit tricky? What made it easier?


All activities must be safely managed. You must complete a thorough risk assessment and take appropriate steps to reduce risk. Use the safety checklist to help you plan and risk assess your activity. Always get approval for the activity, and have suitable supervision and an InTouch process.


Teach young people how to use cooking equipment safely. Supervise them appropriately throughout. Make sure it’s safe to use and follow manufacturers’ guidelines for use.


Remember to check for allergies, eating problems, fasting or dietary requirements and adjust the recipe as needed. Make sure you’ve suitable areas for storing and preparing food and avoid cross contamination of different foods. Take a look at our guidance on food safety and hygiene.

Make it accessible

All Scout activities should be inclusive and accessible.

Everyone can take any spare biscuits home and tell their friends and family all about making them. Maybe they could use the recipe again another time.

Everyone can shape their biscuits in their own way – they don’t all need to be the same.