By Elizabeth SanFilippo

Three Chicago chefs dish on some fun recipes that kids will enjoy making with you in the kitchen. These recipes include everything from breakfast to dessert.



Pumpkin Bread Pudding

Hash House a Go Go
1212 N. State Parkway
Chicago, IL 60610
(312) 202-0994

Hash House a Go Go in the Gold Coast offers “twisted farm food” — classic diner food with bold flavors and fun presentations — that both parents and kids love. Try this pumpkin bread pudding instead of french toast the next time your kids have a sleepover!


  • 3 loaves of milk bread
  • 1/2 gallon heavy cream
  • 2.5 quarts whipped eggs
  • 9.5 pounds pumpkin pie mix
  • 6 cups brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons pumpkin pie spice


  • Remove all crusts from the bread and cut into 1.5-inch cubes.
  • Whisk together egg yolks, sugar and heavy cream.
  • Whisk in pumpkin pie mix and spice by hand.
  • Add bread to the mixture and let it soak until 2/3 of the liquid is absorbed.
  • Spray non-stick spray on a 4-inch deep hotel pan.
  • Lay bread mixture into hotel pan (do not overwork).
  • Cover firmly with plastic wrap, then foil.
  • Place the hotel pan into a hot water bath and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for approximately 1.5 hours.

(Credit: 2Toots Train Whistle Grill's facebook)

(Credit: 2Toots Train Whistle Grill’s facebook)

Beef Burger

2Toots Train Whistle Grill
450 N. Main St.
Glen Ellyn, IL 60137
(630) 858-4300

The 2Toots Train Whistle Grill serves up the all-time favorite dish of so many kids — burgers. But these burgers are healthier than most. That’s because the only thing in these burgers are pure 100-percent grass-fed beef packed with omega 3s and no hormones or steroids. So the next time your kids ask for a burger, head to your local butcher to cook up one delicious burger that doesn’t need a lot of fixing.


  • 100-percent grass-fed beef
  • Wheat or gluten-free bun
  • Toppings – cheese, lettuce, tomato and pickles


  • Create a ball out of the beef and place it on grill top.
  • Flatten the meat with a smooth meat press.
  • It will cook quite quickly, so flip after it sizzles a bit.
  • Once done cooking on both sides, take off the grill and put in the bun.
  • Top with whatever else your child wants to decorate their meal with.

Black Bottom Cupcakes



The Bristol
2152 N. Damen Ave.
Chicago, IL 60647
(773) 862-5555

Before executive pastry chef Amanda Rockman studied at The Culinary Institute of America, appeared on “Top Chef Just Desserts” Season 2 and worked at Tru, Fino, Asti Trattoria, L20, The Peninsula Hotel and currently The Bristol, she discovered her love of pastries while making these cupcakes with her dad.

Filling Ingredients

  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup chocolate chips

Cake Ingredients

  • 1.5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • To make the filling, cream the cream cheese until smooth.
  • Add the sugar, salt and cream until the mixture is light.
  • Add egg and vanilla extract.
  • Lastly add chocolate chips and reserve.
  • To make the cake, add all the dry ingredients in a bowl and the wet in another.
  • Put the dry ingredients in a kitchen-aid mixer with a whisk attachment. Slowly add wet ingredients until it comes together.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Either line the muffin pans with liners or spray with non-stick spray.
  • Pour the cake batter half way into tins and then add a tablespoon of the cream cheese filling on top.
  • Bake until the cake is soft and springs to the touch and the cream cheese topping has slight color. Allow it to cool.
  • Be sure to leave a bit of the cream cheese frosting so you have something to snack on while waiting for your cupcakes to bake.

Elizabeth SanFilippo is a freelance writer, who enjoys trying new foods from all over the world. But her favorite city for culinary treats will always be Chicago. When not writing about food, she’s scribbling novels, and TV show reviews and recaps. Her work can be found at