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In addition to these public lessons and ideas posted below, our Writing Team has been creating some terrific lesson sets for our supporting members that cover Holy Week stories. Here's the Team's link to the John 20 story of Mary Magdalene, Peter, and John meeting Jesus at the Empty Tomb.

Related Lesson Forums:
Road to Emmaus, Jesus eats breakfast, Feed My Sheep, Great Commission, Ascension

The illustration seen here is part of the Annie Vallotton Holy Week Collection at

This topic was originally posted in the Teachers Help Lounge and has been moved here to preserve its helpful answers.

I'm looking for another cooking idea for the story of the Empty Tomb/Resurrection of Jesus.

We have previously done the resurrection rolls (with crescent rolls wrapped around a marshmallow). Need something new.

Please don’t let me resort to something as obvious as half a donut on a plate!

half of a donut on a platethanks in advance,
— Carol


Images (1)
  • half a donut
Last edited by CreativeCarol
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Hey Carol,

You could use the pudding painting idea - mix up pudding in jars, give each kid a big spoonful of pudding on a wax paper palette and a spoon and have them illustrate several scenes from the story. After the resurrection, they get to eat! Yum! (by the way, I wrote this up for Jesus Raises Lazarus... I'll let you know how it goes.)


You know... this story might be a GREAT one to use candy/snack items to illustrate key words/emotions from the scenes... thinking through how the disciples must have felt at the cross and the days following (despair, disappointment, confusion, fear), then their amazement and joy (and probably confusion, too) on resurrection morning. If you add some music to it as they create it might be really powerful. Maybe "Arise My Love"?  


OR, just add a teddy graham for Jesus and a bit of white frosting for the grave cloth and use the donut idea!  



The donut tomb pic is pretty funny.

Simply recreating the story scene using any food product potentially trivializes the story, especially one that has so much "pathos" to it. However, if the aim of your project is to create a reflection "discussion prop" and you don't trivialize the tomb by making it out of candy or donuts, then I can see creating the scene as a sort of "discussion map" using a food product to Reflect on the story, rather than merely re telling it.  .

Create a fondant covered (pre-baked) cake discussion map" of the stories locations.
Then have kids create an edible version of themselves (on a skewer) they can move about on the map, -relocating to respond to the needs of the following discussion.
"Where are YOU in this story?"
Are you running or walking to the tomb?  To Easter
Are you excited or bored by this story and its meaning?
Are you back home thinking Jesus is dead?
Are you distracted? Too busy to realize what this means?
Off doing something else?
Are you off the map not believing it?

How do people act, what do they say, what is their attitude at these different "locations"?

I suppose you could bake the tomb as bread and eat it after the discussion if you didn't want to build it out of cake and fondant.

This is an outline of an idea that needs to be colored in.

Last edited by Neil MacQueen

Good point Neil. Although, I think any activity without good discussion can trivialize the story -- not just cooking. (although cooking is often the most difficult to utilize in my experience)


In our Lazarus Pudding Painting, we focused on the feelings of the participants in each scene... made a handout of emoticons for them to explore a bit deeper than "mad, sad, glad" that kids typically resort to.


I really LOVE the question thread -- where are YOU in this story... may add some of that to our lesson!



Last edited by Jaymie Derden

There are lots of Easter food traditions, especially using eggs. Unfortunately, many Easter breads (hot cross buns, paska, colomba, kulich) require several rises and the doughs are sticky, hard to handle and time-consuming to bake, making them impractical for a cooking workshop. Most are egg-rich, to celebrate the resurrection from Lenten abstinence. One article said eggs laid during Lent were hard-boiled in order to preserve them until they could be eaten again in Easter-tide.


You might identify families with particular ethnic traditions (Greek, Russian, Italian, etc.) who would bake and share a traditional family Easter bread recipe.


There are a number of ways you might use eggs to tell Easter stories. The following suggestions are adapted from "Focus on the Family" here.

  • Before you hide the eggs or put them in baskets, encircle each one with a colored strip of paper (or place the strip inside plastic eggs) that tells one small part of the Easter story. When the eggs have been found, the children must unscramble the story and put it in the right order.
  • Instead of decorating the eggs with dye, or in addition to dying them, write one attribute of Jesus on each egg in white crayon -- to be revealed in the dying.
  • Send kids on a hunt for the eggs that have Jesus' attributes written on them. Instead of just discovering eggs, they will be discovering the wonderful things that make Jesus so special. If the eggs are plastic, fill them with treats to remember how sweet the life of Jesus really is.
  • Dye eggs in certain colors and use them to tell the story of salvation.
  • Eggs are included in the Passover tradition. They suggest the cycle of life in anticipation of the new chick. They are also the first food offered to Jewish mourners who have been sitting shiva. (There is an interesting discussion of "The Egg in Exodus" here.)

There are lots of speculations about the origins of the association of eggs with Easter all over the internet. I can't point to an authoritative source, though many of these articles sound like they know egg-actly what they're talking about.






Last edited by Anne Camp

Neil - love your idea and how you bring the kids right into the story!

I found this a website (link no longer works) where the woman created simple edible people made of marshmellows stuffed onto a skewer - faces painted with an edible ink pen and hair was a bit of icing and sprinkles.

Last edited by Luanne Payne

This thread raises interesting insights and questions about the Cooking Workshop.

Food as an art medium.
--a canvas for decoration/expression.
Ex:  baptism dove cookies, seed painting

(Making) Food as props for storytelling or drama.
Ex: unleavened bread --empty tomb

Food taste/texture/smell and food visuals as memory hooks.
--ingredients represent key ideas
Ex: sweet cross rolls, bitter root, salt, making a story sandwich

Science and Process of cooking as an illustration of principles
Ex: leaven, binding ingredients, melting

Food as gift, reminder
Ex: trail mix, seeds, care cookies

What else could we add?

Last edited by Neil MacQueen

Food as ritual or tradition:  Seder meal; ethnic seasonal foods (Easter breads, harvest celebrations)


I think this is distinct from props for storytelling because of the long history associated with these traditions.





We made cookie maps for Abraham and Sarah -- baked a large cookie as the map and the kids used icing and different candies to represent the different places Abraham and Sarah visited and the altars they built. I think this idea might work better for a Walk Through Holy Week rotation though.

We had done a “cookie” map with our Rotation on Holy Week - made ahead of time, Rice Krispie Treats and the kids added the walls of Jerusalem and all of the important spots using frosting and edible "stuff.” It was a hit. This lesson can be found here.

Keep the ideas coming!

— Carol

Last edited by Luanne Payne

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