Melissa & Doug Chef’s Kitchen Pretend Play Set – Charcoal Review

Melissa & Doug Chef's Kitchen Pretend Play Set – Charcoal Review

Children who have play kitchens to play with develop a wide range of skills essential for their overall development, thus, the view that these play sets are worthwhile investments. These skills span the range from fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination to communication and socialization skills, especially when children play with each other and with their parents.

The money spent on play kitchens is then well worth every cent considering that children not only enjoy playing with them but also benefit from them.

This is also the case with the Melissa & Doug Chef’s Kitchen Pretend Play Set, which comes in a charcoal color scheme. The play kitchen evokes the modern kitchen that we see in homes, from the sink with its faucet to the appliances including a fridge, stove with oven, and microwave oven.

Let your kids play with it and learn from it while you, the parents, either play with them or enjoy activities of your own!

Features of the Melissa & Doug Chef’s Kitchen Pretend Play Set – Charcoal

Many children show an early interest in kitchen activities, particularly in baking and cooking. Let your own kids discover their budding chef aspirations by playing with the appliances and cooking utensils that come with the set. Even adults will be encouraged to play with the children because the play kitchen looks and feels like a real kitchen!

Suitable for children 3 years old and up

Children below 3 years old shouldn’t play with the make-believe kitchen because of the small cooking toys, such as the ladles and food items (i.e., choking hazards). Older children are also more likely to appreciate mimicking Mom and Dad in the kitchen.

Once assembled, the play kitchen measures 43.25″ x 39″ x 15.5″ so there’s room for 2-3 kids to play with it at once. The 3-feet height is also suitable for children 3 years old and up, although we don’t recommend them using it for other purposes aside from make-believe cooking and baking.

The risk of the play kitchen topping over when kids climb on top or use it as a makeshift ladder is present so parents should instruct kids to avoid doing so.

Wood materials

The wood used seems strong and sturdy – we knocked on it several times and we heard solid, not hollow, sounds – while the robust overall construction means that it will likely withstand a few years of use.

The paintwork has a solid quality to it with no signs of premature peeling although it’s always best to tell kids to clean up the surface when spills happen.

Many wooden kitchen play sets have several types of screws so assembly becomes more difficult, no thanks to the mistakes in matching screws and holes. But the Melissa & Doug set has the same type of screw for all the holes so there’s an interchangeable convenience to them.

The assembly was also easier and faster because of the detailed and illustrated instructions that came with the set. There wasn’t even an issue about which side was the front or back side, thanks to the correct orientation. Besides, just looking at the set’s photo will make it easier to identify which part goes where.

Even the plastic components have a more robust feel than expected. The latches are easy to open for little hands yet strong enough to stay in place even with little hands putting them through the motions one time too many.

With modern kitchen appliances

What’s a modern play kitchen without the miniature appliances? With the Melissa & Doug play kitchen, the essential appliances are present so your kids can spend hours pretending to cook and bake make-believe food.

These appliances include a refrigerator with an ice dispenser and a freezer, a stovetop with an oven, and a microwave oven, as well as a sink – truly, a compact play kitchen that kids will love.

The small details make it more adorable, too. There are separate doors that can be opened and closed for the fridge and freezer. The stovetop and oven have dials that can be turned on and off, as well as make clicking sounds like the real thing.

The ice maker even dispenses two make-believe ice cubes!  The microwave plate has a spinning motion because that’s what the real thing does while turned on.

Plus, there’s plenty of storage spaces for your kids’ miniature cooking utensils! There are moveable hooks for pots and pans, as well as shelves and cabinets. You can buy more Melissa & Doug play kitchen items, which are compatible in size and style to this play kitchen set.


  • Durable wood materials and construction
  • Easy to assemble for adults
  • Modern kitchen design
  • Plenty of engaging interactive features
  • Encourage kids to explore their young chef side


  • Instructions aren’t stapled together
  • Minor damage to paint, perhaps from shipping


The Melissa & Doug Chef’s Kitchen Pretend Play Set   where parents are concerned, as well as functional features and beautiful design that children want in their make-believe kitchens.

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