Plan your alternative bake-off

We share some food for thought ahead of #GreatRainbowBake with some alternative ways you and your little ones can partake in the Rainbow Bake challenge.

For children with special diets or with a condition that requires them to be tube or TPN fed, we have some ideas to help you get involved on 7 May.

Make it an excuse to play with food!

Messy food play can be great for young children who may not have had many opportunities to explore food, for example if a child has been tube or TPN fed. Creating messy play with the sights, smells and texture of food can create pleasant sensory experiences. From fruit paints, dry pasta necklaces to a miniature sandpit with rice crispies - here’s some messy foody play ideas we love.

Have a teddy bear bake off!

Get crafty and make a pretend cake or tasty dish to feed hungry teddies. You can make food shapes out of play dough, stir coloured sand or rice in mixing bowls, or get outdoors and make a mud pie out of anything you can find. The only limit is your imagination!

Find a recipe to suit special diets

Look for ways to change up your rainbow cake recipe to accommodate allergies and intolerances with gluten-free flour, egg replacement powder, dairy-free milk or dyeing your batter with natural food dyes like beetroot, spinach, berries and carrot. Remember you don’t need to bake a rainbow layer cake to get involved, you can always #fakeit and decorate a favourite sweet treat from the supermarket!

Try a (cup)cake smash photo or video!

Baking doesn’t have to be just about the eating – enjoy a messy play session by taking a cake smash selfie. Often used to commemorate a first birthday, it’s also a great way to get involved and take some fun photos…if you’re brave enough to deal with the post-selfie mess! Read some top tips here.

Send us ideas or photos of your alternative bake-off with the hashtag #GreatRainbowBake and help raise awareness for families with a seriously ill child on 7 May. We’d love to know what you got up to!