How to Child Proof the Kitchen

Of all the rooms in a home the kitchen is certainly the most problematic when it comes to child proofing. The kitchen contains numerous hazards that could cause our children to become injured. Child proofing the kitchen should occur early on, around the time that your wee one begins to crawl. 

Scan Through Cabinets and Drawers

To start, sort through each of your drawers and cabinets that are within reach of your young children. Remove any dangerous objects such as knives, scissors, or utensils that could cause a child to get hurt if they got their hands on it. Although you will likely child proof the drawers and cabinets there is still the chance that you forget to close a drawer and a child gets into that drawer. It is always best to place all dangerous items in an area that is completely out of reach of the kids. 

Baby Lock Cabinets/Drawers

Child proof cabinets, especially those that contain poisons or cleansers. Our family uses these cabinet locks, and these locks for drawers and they both work great! Have a conversation with whomever else may be helping raise your young kids and decide if you want all cabinets to be baby locked, or if you’d rather leave some drawers/cabinets accessible to the kids. 

My husband and I leave a couple of drawers unlocked that contain items that are safe if our daughter accesses them. I use those drawers as a learning tool for our daughter. I have her get her dinner plate and cup out and set it up on her high chair which she really enjoys being able to do. 

Child lock pantry door

We like to keep our daughter out of our food pantry, its where we store all our food, some larger appliances and our knives. If you are anything like us then I suggest putting a cover like this one on the pantry door. Also, consider storing the knives in your home out of your youngsters reach and if possible behind a locked door. Our favorite way to store knives is on this magnet strip that we placed in our child proofed pantry. 

Clear Off The Countertops

Keep the counter tops of your kitchen as bare as possible during the toddler phase. All it takes is for a toddler to scootch a chair into the kitchen (in .01 seconds because these little buggers are so dang quick)  and grab onto your glass vase, or decorative bowls and throw them shattering to the ground.

Don’t be naive about this one, take it from somewhere who knows from experience… if there is something on the counter that they can see, kids will find a way to get there fingers on it when your not looking. This is why it’s so important to have a specific place out of reach of kids for anything and everything that has the potential to be dangerous.

Children are so much smarter than we will ever know. If they see you cutting watermelon with a knife and you leave the room they will make it their mission to get there hands on the NO NO, so keep the hazards off your counters!

Outlet Covers

Cover all kitchen outlets that are accessible, here are some affordable outlet covers that we use in our home. 

Create A Safe Zone

Before cooking I recommend placing young children in a safe zone, otherwise they will be under your feet the entire time dinner is being prepared. (nobody wants their child under them while transfering a boiling pot of water to the sink.. No no no!)  A pack in play like this one that is about twice the size of a normal pack n play would work well as a safe spot for more than one child, or even placing them in their high chair with a book or toys to entertain them while cooking would be a good safe solution. What my husband and I typically do is place our daughter in the living room and turn on a twenty minute show that she loves and this keeps her out of the kitchen while dinner is being prepared. 


The stove is the most dangerous appliance in the kitchen, for obvious reasons…heat. It is very important to take every precaution with the stove. To begin child proofing check that the stove is secure. If you can shake the stove and it moves then it needs to be secured to the wall, this is especially necessary if you have a lower oven or broiler. If a child were to open the door to the lower portion of the oven and stand on it without the stove being secured to the wall, there is the possibility of the stove tipping over on top of them… ouch! 

Next, consider putting a lock on the oven door. Oven doors are very heavy and will injure a baby or toddler if they try to pull it open. This stove lock will do the trick to secure the oven door. 

Thirdly,  do you have a handle on the bottom portion of oven? If so, I recommend removing it while the kids are young. Children will climb on the handle, and god forbid they climb on the handle of the oven while you are making them mac and cheese and grab onto the pot of boiling water… ouch, lets not think about that any longer.. Just remove this handle. 

Now it’s time to consider if the burner knobs on the stove should be child proofed or not. Test out your knobs, if it’s pretty simple to turn on the burner then they MUST be baby/toddler proofed, for their safety and yours. Toddlers specifically can easily turn on the gas with these knobs without a parents knowledge which is a hazard for everyone in the household. Use these best selling clear knobs to cover the knobs.

Lastly, make a point to cook using the back burners if possible, and if using a front burner ensure that the handles of pots and pans are tucked in so they are not accidentally bumped which could result in a burning hot spill.


Often parents will overlook the dishwasher when it comes to baby proofing and that can be a huge mistake. The dishwasher stores dishes like knives that we would never want our young ones getting their hands on. If it does not have a lock on it then I highly suggest getting yourself one, especially if you have or are soon to have a curious toddler on your hands. These safety locks work great to keep little ones out of the dishwasher. 


Do you want to deal with your little one helping themselves to everything in the fridge when your not looking and leaving a huge mess for you to clean up?… I didn’t think so. Use these safety locks to keep your little one out. Our daughter is now two years old and beginning to get into the fridge. So if your babe is 18 months to two years of age then it’s a good time to consider these fridge locks. 

Also, always keep items like alcohol that could be in the fridge up high just in case your kiddo discovers his or her way to sneak in. 


We are lucky enough to have our microwave up high in our kitchen so we don’t need to worry about child proofing it, thank goodness! If the microwave is on the counter, ensure that it is pushed back as far as possible and heavy enough to not be moved or mounted to the counter. If a child could gain access to the microwave by climbing on the counters then be sure to have a lock on the microwave to avoid your child from placing items in and cooking them. Microwaves have fun beeps, lights, and the inside spins which is very appealing to young kids so lock it up! The Jool Baby strap will work great to lock up the microwave. 

Garbage Disposal 

Garbage disposals are extremely dangerous. Each year a staggering amount of adults and children are admitted to the ER due to garbage disposal inflicted injuries. If you know that your toddler can access the kitchen sink then I highly recommend a batch feed garbage disposal like this one. This type of garbage disposal is great because in order to turn on the disposal a special cover needs to be placed over the drain. As long as you keep the cover out of the child’s reach then this type of disposal is completely safe! 

Another option that will child proof the garbage disposal is to pick up this child proof light switch guard which will ensure that your child is unable to flip the switch and turn the disposal on. 

Trash Compactor

If you own a trash compactor use these straps to ensure it is not accessible to your little one!

Sharp edges and corners

Majority of parents spend a lot of time in the kitchen, which means so will their kids. Our daughter’s favorite place to run and play is in the kitchen, so it was very important to us to protect all sharp edges and corners in our kitchen to keep her safe. Walk around your kitchen and see if any counter edges are sharp and protect them using these clear corner protectors. 

A Few Important Tips

  • Plastic bags should never be in reach of a little one for the fear of suffocation. Find a safe place to store all plastic bags.
  • Spices should be stored out of reach from children. We keep our spices in our baby locked pantry. Many spices can be toxic to children so it’s never a good idea to keep your spice rack on your counter if there is any chance that the child could get his or her hands on them. 
  • Use a child resistant garbage can or keep garbage behind locked cabinet. If you are unable to place your garbage can in a cabinet then i recommend this trash can that comes in multiple colors and has a child proof lock.
  • Keep aluminum foil, waxed paper and plastic wrap dispensers away from children, serrated edges on boxes can cut fingers.
  • Alcohol needs to be stored out of reach or children for obvious reasons.
  • Not everything has to be off limits, we like to keep a drawer or two accessible for our daughter so she doesn’t feel like she has zero access to the kitchen. We put some of her cups and plates and tupperware in this drawer so she can play.. We also use this drawer as a tool to teach her how to set out her own dishes for dinner, how to clean up her dishes, and how to organize them into the drawer.

Related Questions

How to baby proof cabinets without handles?

Use these locks if you do not have handles on your cabinets, they work like a charm!

How to keep toddlers out of the kitchen?

Place the toddler in either a pack n play or high chair with some fun activities to do while the kitchen is off limits. If the toddler has a difficult time being restrained in the pack n play or high chair try turning on a favorite show as a last resort so you are able to achieve successfully cooking dinner without pulling your hair out!