Imaginative play is a key part of a child’s development, and my children spend endless hours creating new, delicious menus in their play kitchen. I’ve pretended to devour a lot of salad soups and chocolate mud cakes in the past few years! Recently we stumbled upon a wonderful business, The Messy Caterpillar, who build and sell mud kitchens.

Happy chefs!

With 3 little kids, my husband and I were pretty excited when we saw they had one with TWO mixing bowls! You know what they say about too many chefs in the kitchen? Well…. That’s my kids.

The Chef Mud Kitchen

The kitchen we decided on was called The Chef Mud Kitchen and was delivered completely set up (goodbye Allen key!), and I was immediately impressed by how sturdy it is. This particular kitchen costs $550 (as of 15 May 2019).

The design is “bottom heavy” (like me) so it is much safer than most play kitchens. The workmanship makes it actually a really pretty and unique addition to the backyard and the kids have been HARD at work making all sorts of stuff!  We’ve had lots of people comment on the design and there’s been up to 8 kids working in and around the play kitchen at any one time!

The kids actually enjoyed rinsing out the bowls between each use! Now to transfer that to the indoor kitchen…

If we had a bigger space inside, we could also put it inside. The Messy Caterpillar can provide footers to stop scratching. At this stage, we love having it outside and giving the kids the freedom to get as messy as they want to!

Some of the best features of the mud kitchen are:

  • Large, sturdy design
  • Weather proof
  • Wooden utensils included
  • Large open and close oven
  • Durable, quality construction
  • Flower/herb garden on the side (very cute!)
  • Two removable mixing bowls
  • Unique, appealing design
  • Delivered assembled
  • Constructed from responsibly sourced materials
  • Indoors/outdoors

I have been really pleased with the mud kitchen. It’s such a great space for the kids to play, especially in the winter when the swings and trampoline can be pretty slippery. It’s so enjoyable listening to the kids banter while they bake, stir, create, imagine and, best of all, play together nicely!

Cleaning the bowl together

I also really love the philosophy behind The Messy Caterpillar…

“Our messy story started the same way most breathtaking journeys do, through the joy, laughter, and tired tears of new parenthood. Our story involved a woodwork loving dad and a sensory play obsessed mum hoping to provide other children with the joys of messy play. Here at the messy caterpillar we believe that children learn better during messy play. It allows them to explore, enhances learning and language skills as well as inspires and fuels their curiosity.”

There are three different types of mud kitchens, ranging in size and price from $230 to $550.

The Cook Mud Kitchen
The Apprentice Mud Kitchen

You can find out more about the mud kitchens, and more wooden and educational toys at:


I received Messy Catterpillar “Chefs Kitchen” free of charge for the purposes of this review however, as for all reviews from Kids in Adelaide, the above is honest and in my own words. This is an honest review of the product. We love it!