Start a Cooking Club

Start a Cooking Club
Yours truly, making some mozzarella…

During yesterday’s #Attune Twitter chat*, in which I posed several questions about reading food labels, the conversation shifted from a spirited one about labels to an even more enthusiastic one about bringing back Home Economics classes and the sad fact that many people no longer know how to cook (Sandra Lee doesn’t count!).

At the end of the chat, Annelies asked a terrific question: How can you help just one person in your circle learn how to read labels or cook?

That got me thinking. How could I do that? I know from comments and emails I receive that I have a positive impact through my blog, but in my personal circle? How many friends have I actually helped learn to cook? (Granted, I’m not the world’s greatest cook, either, so I’m happy to learn from my friends and family, too!)

I then realized the best way to help someone learn how to cook is simply to cook with them. That’s how children learn from their parents,of course. I remember cooking in the kitchen with my mom (and with dad on the weekends for pancakes). I also learned a lot by cooking with my college roommate Jim (to this day, I remain grateful to him every time I dice an onion and manage not to cut myself).

So how can we get people cooking together? Sure, you can invite a friend over to cook dinner with you – that’s certainly a great start. But what if we take it further? There’s been a resurgence in “Book Clubs” in the past couple of years, right? Where everyone chooses a book to read that month, and then they get together to discuss it?

Well, how about Cooking Clubs?

Say you get together a group of six friends, and once or twice a month you all meet at someone’s house, taking turns of course, to get together and cook dinner. One person hosts. One person makes the appetizer. Two friends make the entrée. One person makes a (healthy!) dessert. And one person does the dishes.

Or get four friends together, and meet up one night each week, so each person hosts once a month. You get the idea.

I know I’m not the first person to come up with this idea. “Supper clubs” have existed for a while (and here are some good tips for those) but these days it seems it’s more likely that people are going to get together at a restaurant for dinner. Or people will cook their dishes at home and then bring them, like a potluck.

To be clear, I’m specifically not talking about a potluck where people show up with completed dishes. I’m talking about six people in the kitchen, making dinner together from start to finish. Sure, you might need a bigger kitchen, but do what you can. Set up a prep station in the living room if you have too! Get someone outside with the BBQ. Do whatever it takes to cook. Together.

I bet everyone will learn something. It’ll be a ton of fun, too.

What do you think? Could you find five other people interested in doing this with you? Why not email them right now and get your cooking club started?

* I’m a proud Brand Ambassador for Attune Foods. Part of the fun is our weekly twitter chat on Wednesdays at 9am Pacific, 12pm Eastern. We all follow the #attune hashtag, and discuss various food & health related topics. I hope you’ll join us next week!

A photo of Andrew Wilder leaning into the frame and smiling, hovering over mixing bowls in the kitchen.

Welcome to Eating Rules!

Hi! My name is Andrew Wilder, and I think healthy eating doesn’t have to suck. With just three simple eating rules, we'll kickstart your journey into the delicious and vibrant world of unprocessed food.

You May Also Like:

Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
January 18, 2013 1:51 pm

I’m heading off to my cooking club tonight! There are 7 of us and the host plans the meal, buys the groceries (and wine!) and make the appetizer and the dessert. Everyone else jumps into the kitchen and rolls up their sleeves. We all pay the host $25. When we leave, we all get a copy of the recipes done up in a booklet – some people make it look very scrapbooky and lovely…whatever you want to do! VERY FUN and my confidence in the kitchen has soared!

January 18, 2013 1:51 pm

Ok!!! I just e-mailed a large list of people and gave them two upcoming dates to choose from. Yay! 🙂 I think it is a fabulous idea to learn from each other and just spend quality time with people you love!

January 18, 2013 1:40 pm

LOVE IT! As for “How many friends have I actually helped learn to cook?” – you can count me as one!! Some of my fondest memories of hanging out with you – including when we first met and you were prepping portobella mushrooms at an engagement party – are in the kitchen. Whether making cheese, dinners at home, Big Bear meals, camping, etc. Seems like we’re always cooking together and what I’ve learned from you is that healthy and delicious is very easy to do (even from scratch) and worth the time!

January 18, 2013 1:35 pm

I love this idea! I think it would be great for some of the Moms in my neighborhood! I loved my Home Ec class in middle school…I learned the “correct” way to wach dishes. I really wish I still had the book we made…had some great recipes

Reply to  Katie
January 18, 2013 1:36 pm

Oh…and how does one correctly chop and onion without cutting themself? I usually use a food chopper…

January 18, 2013 1:30 pm

Just don’t talk about cooking club.

January 18, 2013 11:17 am

This is such a great idea Andrew. And fun. And a great way to see friends more regularly too. Huzzah!

January 18, 2013 10:46 am

You are having to much fun!!

January 18, 2013 10:35 am

Great idea Andrew! Happy New year by the way!

Jean Layton
January 18, 2013 10:20 am

Love, Love, Love this idea.
Once our local move gets finished with my pots and pans out of the boxes, I commit to getting a group together.
Might even do a teen age group for my girls friends. I’ve always been the mom with the mess anyway, happy to teach them the basics.
Bellingham, in their wisdom, actually removed the home ec classrooms from the high schools about 4 years back. There is literally no place to learn how to boil water for ramen or make a simple omelette.
So sad.

Reply to  Jean Layton
January 18, 2013 11:16 am

That is sad to hear they actually still had home ec classes and decided to remove them. Argh. If kids learn how to cook, then they will be adults who know how to cook. There are so so many adults who don’t know how and I hope your cooking club group works out. You are so skilled and have so much to teach! 🙂

January 18, 2013 10:06 am

That’s a great idea, Andrew! I have been thinking of that for some time. Supper clubs are a wonderful way to combine several things I love into one enjoyable evening:)
Happy New Year!

1 2 3