Best Wooden Play Kitchens Made in USA

Best Wooden Play Kitchens Made In Usa
Best Wooden Play Kitchens Made In Usa

Choosing an American-made wooden play kitchen is worth the investment.

Think quality hardwood, natural finishes, and old-fashioned American pride.

For wooden toys made in the USA, you’ve come to the right place.

Whatever your child’s imagination cooks up, get ready for a showcase of the best play kitchens for kids made in the USA.

Set the kitchen timer — because you’ll find one you love in a jiffy. Let’s jump right in!

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American Kids Play Kitchen Quick List

Where to buy American-made wooden play kitchens? Here’s your top 6 heirloom-quality quick list:

Elves & Angels – Best Overall

Made in Maine

  • Price: $$$ (Average)
  • Dimensions: 40″(H) x 37″(W) x 12″(D)
  • Counter height: 24″(H)
  • Wood: Pine, Birch, or Cherry

Based in Maine — Elves & Angels (a.k.a. A Toy Maker’s Daughter) has been making childhood dreams come true since 1988 — founded by the grandson of an old-time cabinet maker who learned the value of sustainable craftsmanship.

Elves & Angels is a family business who cares about heirloom quality. All of their children’s wooden toys, gifts, and furniture come with a lifetime guarantee.

They offer a handful of uniquely-designed play kitchens to pick from, and today we’ll be reviewing their best-selling Elves & Angels Waldorf Play Kitchen & Stove Set.

One thing that makes Elves & Angels special is they let you choose between a softwood or hardwood. It matters because softwood (pine, in this case) is less expensive than hardwood (light-hued birch or dark-hued cherry, in this case). So if you’re on a budget and still want to buy American — picking softwood will get you the same play kitchen at a more affordable price.

The Waldorf Play Kitchen & Stove Set is like an entire play center — with a three-shelf mini-fridge on the left, a two-shelf cabinet in the middle, and double mini-ovens on the right — and of course a metal kitchen sink built into the countertop.

Do note — a greater number of cubbies and compartments means it’s perfect for organizing lots of small items, but not ideal for large items. Like the mini-oven? Maybe not ready for a full-sized imaginary turkey.

The piece is built for growing children! Wider than other play kitchens on this list (below), and therefore offers more countertop food-prep space and more room for shelving above.

Not to mention a tall 24-inch countertop means 4-6 year olds won’t need to hunch over to wash pretend veggies. Since USA-made play kitchens are a hefty investment — it’s worth it to plan ahead for years to come.

→ Check price on Etsy.

Palumba (Camden Rose) – Best Features

Made in Michigan

  • Price: $$$ (Average)
  • Dimensions: 39″(H) x 24″(W) x 14″(D)
  • Counter height: 22.5″(H)
  • Wood: Cherry or maple (with walnut and birch accents)

From the thumb of Michigan’s lower peninsula, Palumba believes in open-ended play with simple toys made from natural materials. As a division of Camden Rose — known for beautiful natural home goods — Palumba promotes imaginative playtime hand-in-hand with mother nature.

Palumba’s Simple Hearth Wood Play Kitchen is available in your choice of natural cherry or maple — two quality hardwoods robust with natural beauty. Polished with pure beeswax and organic Jojoba oil for long-lasting protection the way nature intended.

By picking premium materials, Palumba’s kitchen play stations are naturally kid-safe. No matter which wood you choose — the piece is decorated with delightful walnut and birch which add visual depth to the design. A perfect touch!

Unique features you won’t find in other toddler kitchen sets include a slide-out cutting board on the side and a sliding wire oven rack inside.

Expect twistable knobs, a swiveling faucet, a slide-out cutting board, and shelf space a-plenty — plus a stainless steel removable sink for easy clean-up.

For a matching hardwood play table or refrigerator (sold separately) — Palumba’s got you covered for a fully-equipped Waldorf-inspired play experience. Naturally!

→ Check price on Etsy.

Milton & Goose – Best Design

Made in Pennsylvania

  • Price: $$$$$ (Very pricey)
  • Dimensions: 26″(H) x 30″(W) x 13″(D)
  • Counter height: 22″(H)
  • Wood: Baltic birch & North American maple

Inspired by real designer kitchens, Milton & Goose creates America’s most modern play kitchens and refrigerators. Truly beautiful, but also quite expensive.

The saying goes “necessity is the mother of invention” — and when Milton & Goose’s mom founder couldn’t find a kitchen playset chic enough for her little one, she decided to make her own.

Today, we’ll be reviewing Milton & Goose’s Essential Play Kitchen. The piece is made in Lancaster, PA — by contracted Amish artisans who generate their entire livelihood by the reputation of their woodworking.

Made from finely-selected baltic birch and solid North American maple — and perfected with a 100% non-toxic finish — you can rest assured the kitchen is as visually appealing as it is safety-approved.

Another big perk for moms with a knack for interior design — you get to pick out a color to create a special ambiance in your home — white, grey, or natural.

With imaginary stovetop burners, a modern-designed sink, an extra-large oven with a pull-down see-through door, and a spacious two-level cabinet for ample wooden play food items — the set includes all the essentials for your little bistro chef’s pretend play.

Milton & Goose offers other perfectly-matching add-ons like a kitchen hood and play refrigerator too — sold separately.

→ Check price on their website.

Willow Toys – Most Affordable

Made in New Hampshire

  • Price: $$ (Affordable)
  • Dimensions: 36″(H) x 22″(W) x 12″(D)
  • Counter height: 22″(H)
  • Wood: White pine

Willow Toys is a family-owned company you can feel good about buying from. Specializing in wooden Waldorf-inspired playthings at reasonable prices. Play kitchens are by far their most popular products! They make a handful of different kids’ kitchen sets, but today I’ll be reviewing their best seller — Ivy’s Wooden Toy Kitchen.

Special features – First of all, this is a 100% real wood play kitchen — handcrafted in New Hampshire using sustainably-sourced white pine and sanded soft-to-the-touch.

Finished with a combination of food-grade mineral oil, all-natural beeswax, and carnauba wax to protect the wood from drying and cracking — you can rest assured your child is working with a non-toxic toy you can pass down from generation to generation (or big sibling to little sibling).

The only parts of the playset made of metal are the sink — waterproof and easily cleanable, just like a real sink — and the hinges for the oven and cabinet doors. All the oven and stove knobs are move-able, too for an extra interactive experience.

Shipping is free for all 48 contiguous states — and the kitchen ships play-ready right out of the box — no assembly required! Down to the last-mile, Willow Toys makes your shopping experience delightful.

→ Check price on Etsy.

Wood N Poppy – Best Outdoor

Made in California

  • Price: $$$$ (A little pricey)
  • Dimensions: 60″(H) x 61″(W) x 20″(D)
  • Counter height: 24″(H)
  • Wood: Redwood or Pine

Fresh out of California, Wood N Poppy is a family-owned and operated business founded by a husband and wife whose kids love nothing more than playing outside.

With sunshine in mind, the two set out to create imaginative outdoor play experiences for children across the United States. Wood N Poppy’s double-sink outdoor wooden mud kitchen for kids does just that!

By choosing an outdoor play kitchen, your kids will get a ton more counter space to work with. With all that space plus two removable and rinse-able sinks — both siblings can play side by side and clean up is as easy as a garden-hose spray-down.

With a broad shelf below the counter, a flat surface atop the kitchen hood — and hooks, nooks, and crannies everywhere to be found — there’s a place for all types of pretend food prep activities.

Not only do you get to pick out your choice of Californian redwood, or pine wood — but you get both unfinished and painted varieties to pick from — sky (pastel blue), sage (pastel green), and rose (pastel red).

Staying true to an outdoorsy-feel — the playset does require minor assembly when received. If you’ve never assembled a table or counter before — not to fret! Wood N Poppy’s team provides all the hardware, plus some helpful video instructions to put together your play kitchen.

→ Check price on Etsy.

Lapp’s Toys – Best Amish

Made in Pennsylvania

  • Price: $$$$ (A little pricey)
  • Dimensions: 26.5″(H) x 30″(W) x 14″(D)
  • Counter height: ≈21″(H)
  • Wood: Baltic birch

A list of American-made play kitchens wouldn’t be complete without mention of the Amish of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Lapp’s Toys is an Amish-owned woodshop passed down for generations — offering wooden toys, games, and furniture for children of all ages.

Available in pure white or ten other beautiful finishes to choose from — from light to dark — for woodgrain enthusiasts, this is a great kids’ kitchen set to consider.

The play kitchen comes with an oven, stove, and sink all built-in one — plus a cabinet beside the oven and a pull-out drawer underneath.

Unlike other models on this list, Lapp’s Toys’ kitchen has no shelf space above the countertop. At 30 inches tall — that could be a good thing, if you’re lacking vertical space — or if plenty of storage is a deal-breaker for you, then it’s a definite drawback.

One thing you might not like is the metal hinges and handles visible on the outside. While durable for playtime wear and tear — some people might think they’re a bit of an eyesore.

Features aside, old-world Amish carpentry skills are something you can trust. Each piece is made to order down to the last detail — corners sanded smooth and wood stains that surpass all U.S. safety standards. It’s that honest Amish work ethic that ensures both quality and safety come first.

→ Check price on Etsy.

American Play Kitchen Quick Tips

Whether you’re still shopping around, or your kitchen just arrived in the mail — here’s some honest-to-goodness good advice from me to you!

Made in USA vs. Made overseas — Which is better?

Honestly, it’s a world of difference between kitchen playsets made in the USA and those made overseas. You can tell just by looking at it. Still, let’s get into some more nuanced differences.

Price. Overseas play kitchens typically range from just under $100 to just over $200 — where most American play sets fall between the wide range of $200 and $600. Higher quality materials, higher cost of labor, and more rigorous safety standards all contribute to American-made play kitchens’ higher cost.

Style. American play kitchens focus on quality wood and craftsmanship and tend to have a simpler, more natural look and feel. When you think Waldorf, think American. Overseas play kitchens tend to focus on themes — like pastel, barbeque, or vintage.

Accessories. American kitchen toys typically come with no accessories at all. What I mean is, you get the play kitchen with its oven, sink, cabinets, countertop, and convenient storage shelves — but kitchen accessories like cooking tools, eating utensils, and food sets are not included. Overseas-made toddler kitchens are quite the opposite — most sets including one or two dozen different kids toy kitchen utensils, tools, food, and other accessories.

Safety. You can trust American toymakers to use child-safe materials and eco-friendly quality standards. For overseas toy companies, there’s a severely un-transparent global supply chain that I won’t pretend to understand. The point is — you can’t be sure where the materials or sourced, by whom they’re manufactured, and what safety standards are complied with.

Recommendations. Beyond the toy set itself, there are several reasons to buy American — like supporting local small businesses — protecting American jobs and values. But with start differences in price, style, and accessories offered — financial circumstances and personal preference come into play as well. If you do choose to go with an overseas play kitchen, here are a few I have my eye on.

KidKraft is a good pick for special-themed kids’ kitchens with all sorts of accessories.

Hape is a good pick for simpler, more open-ended, Montessori-style kitchen play.

What age are play kitchens appropriate for?

The cookie-cutter age range is 3 to 6 years old, but toddlers as young as 18 months can join in the fun.

More important is your particular child’s stage of growth and development. Play kitchen countertops range between 19 to 24 inches tall. Your child needs to be able to stand on his or her own and be tall enough to see and reach over the countertop.

To give you an idea — the average toddler height is 2 feet 10-11 inches at 2 years old and 3 feet 1-2 inches at 3 years old.

How to tell a play kitchen is non-toxic?

First of all, common sense. Ethical toy companies have nothing to hide. On their websites, they’ll tell you which materials are used, where their toys are made, and in what conditions. For truly non-toxic play kitchens — the way they are made is a core selling point.

One of the most common ways to turn a good wooden toy toxic is not the wood itself — but how the wood is finished. By adding a toxic layer of paint, finish, varnish, glue, or sealant to the wood’s surface — that’s the same surface your child will be in contact with most. Before you buy a play kitchen, be sure to double-check what paint of finish is used — to ensure it’s cadmium and lead-free and meets American safety requirements.

What are the benefits of make-believe kitchen play?

But imaginative and educational — kitchen pretend play starts with pure fun and cascades into all kinds of developmental benefits.

Toddlers see their mommies and daddies in the kitchen all the time. Beyond teaching kids about food preparation — role play is a way to channel young minds’ natural inclination to mimic their parents into a healthy developmental exercise.

By cooking with friends during group play, children develop social and language skills — describing the imaginary feast their preparing, and how they work together with other kids to cook up a complete pretend meal.

Fine motor skills are developed by opening and closing the play kitchen doors and drawers — and by handling cooking utensils (real or make-believe). Cognitive skills — like problem-solving and reasoning — are developed while your kiddo plans out which dishes to cook in what order, and what steps need to be taken from start to finish.

Ding, ding, ding! Dinner’s ready!

There you have it — an all-American coast-to-coast road trip of the best wooden play kitchens for toddlers and kids.

While more expensive than their overseas cousins — American-made pretend kitchens are made from eco-friendly and child-safe materials to keep your child safe in mind and body. Hours of fun — plus heirloom-quality craftsmanship that’ll last for generations.

I’d love to hear from you! What’s your little one’s favorite imaginary meal to cook? Did you find a play kitchen made in your home state? Let me know in the comments below.

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