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Children's Fiction Cooking & Food

Our Little Kitchen

illustrated by Jillian Tamaki

Groundwood Books Ltd
Initial publish date
Sep 2020
Cooking & Food, Homelessness & Poverty, Stories in Verse
Recommended Age
4 to 8
Recommended Grade
k to 3
Recommended Reading age
4 to 8
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2020
    List Price
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Sep 2020
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Download Teacher’s Guide

Where to buy it


A picture book about a lively evening in a community kitchen from Governor General’s Award–winning author and illustrator Jillian Tamaki.

Tie on your apron!
Roll up your sleeves!
Pans are out, oven is hot.
The kitchen’s all ready,
Where do we start?

In this lively, rousing picture book from Caldecott Honoree Jillian Tamaki, a crew of resourceful neighbours come together to prepare a meal for their community. With a garden full of produce, a joyfully chaotic kitchen and a friendly meal shared at the table, Our Little Kitchen is a celebration of full bellies and people looking out for one another.

Includes two recipes and an author’s note about the volunteering experience that inspired the book.

Key Text Features
illustrated recipes
author's note
speech bubbles

Correlates to the Common Core State Standards in English Language Arts:

Identify words and phrases in stories or poems that suggest feelings or appeal to the senses.

Describe how words and phrases (e.g., regular beats, alliteration, rhymes, repeated lines) supply rhythm and meaning in a story, poem, or song.

About the author


Jillian Tamaki est l'illustratrice et la caricaturiste de plusieurs livres, dont Cet été- là, un roman illustré pour ados qu'elle a créé avec sa cousine Mariko Tamaki. Ce roman lui a valu le Prix littéraire du Gouverneur général, catégorie littérature jeunesse – livres illustrés et le prix Eisner dans la catégorie « meilleur album graphique ». Les illustrations de Jillian se retrouvent dans les publications les plus prestigieuses comme le New York Times, le New Yorker et le Guardian. Originaire de Calgary, en Alberta, elle habite maintenant à Toronto.


Jillian Tamaki is a cartoonist and illustrator living in Toronto, Ontario. Her books include Skim and This One Summer, both co-created with her cousin Mariko Tamaki; and Super Mutant Magic Academy and Boundless. She has contributed illustrations to some of the world's top publications, including the New York Times, the New Yorker and the Guardian, and has taught at Parsons and the School of Visual Arts in New York City.


Jillian Tamaki's profile page


  • Winner, Eisner Award — Best Publication for Early Readers
  • Short-listed, Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award
  • Commended, Globe 100 Favourite Books
  • Commended, New York Times Best Children’s Books of the Year
  • Commended, Washington Post Best Children’s Books
  • Nominated, Governor General’s Literary Awards for Young People’s Literature — Illustrated Books
  • Commended, 49th Shelf Canadian Books of the Year
  • Commended, Horn Book Fanfare Best Books of the Year
  • Commended, CBC Books Best Canadian Picture Books

Editorial Reviews

Our Little Kitchen is a celebration of full bellies and looking out for one another.

Book Riot

Our Little Kitchen shines.

Picture Book Builders Blog

Energetic, filled to the brim with compassion and ever-changing perspectives, this book needs to be in every school library and classroom.

Sal’s Fiction Addiction Blog

[A] a vibrant picture book.

Vancouver Writers Fest

[W]hat’s most striking is Tamaki’s gentle but empowering message about the need to be kind.

Globe and Mail

[A] lively, rousing picture book.

Canadian Children's Book Centre

Tamaki’s colors are bright and the energy from the book gives out so much happiness. … The book is about hope and love for each other.

International Examiner

Warm and inviting.

Canadian Children’s Book News

[V]ibrant illustrations and fun text.

Buffalo News

[T]his color-saturated, mouthwatering whirlwind of a book bursts with energy from the moment its diverse group of characters starts chopping and slicing, whisking and whipping.

New York Times

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