How to Start a Cooking Club

            When I moved to Delaware, I really didn’t know many people. So, when my friend invited me to be a part of a cooking club, I was all in! At the time, I didn’t exactly know what a cooking club was. Ten years later, we have tasted a lot of recipes. We learned about cooking and became the best of friends along the way.

            So, what is this cooking club and how do you start one? All you will need to get started is a few interested cooks. In this article, I will outline how we run our club. Remember though, this is just a guide to get you started. As you grow as a group, you will figure out what works best for you. Grab some friends and get to cooking! Trust me you will have fun!

  1. Get your members!

Our group is eight strong. A smaller group would work, but I don’t suggest more than nine. Ask a few friends who like to cook and have them invite a friend too. Build a committed, friendly group. You will be amazed how quickly it all comes together.

  • Select a host!

If you are starting the club, it is probably a good idea to host the first meeting. Then rotate each month until everyone gets their chance. The host sets the menu by choosing all the recipes, so everyone will want to host. We have a rolling list to keep track of who is up next.

  • Set a date!

The host sends out a group email with the suggested dates. While it may be difficult, be sure to pick a date that works for everyone. Weeknights usually work well for us, but we have had an occasional club brunch on the weekends.

  • Choose the menu!

The host creates the entire menu. This is your chance to be creative and try out all those recipes that you have marked for years; Ones that you have been too scared to make yourself. The menu usually includes a main dish, a vegetable, a starch, another side dish, dessert, and sometimes even a cocktail recipe. There is often a theme or common ingredient. For example, we have done Italian, Mexican, superfoods, chocolate, etc.  

  • Assign the dishes!

The host then emails out the menu assigning each member a dish to make. As the host, you are responsible for the main dish. Try and to be considerate and send the menu out a couple weeks early to give each member time to read their recipe, shop for ingredients, and make their dish. In our club, we give the host the next month off; meaning they are not assigned a dish the month after they host.

  • Meet and Eat!

On the set date, everyone meets at the hosts house with their prepared dish and sit down to a wonderful meal. We usually end up talking about what we think of each of the foods we made. Would we make it again? How would we change it? Was it easy to make? Is it quick? So, the actual “meeting” is more of meal. Who wouldn’t want to join and eat?

            It is not only great fun, but it is really an awesome way to get in the kitchen and try things that might be out of your comfort zone. Where else can you design an entire meal and have your friends cook it, then bring to your house to enjoy it with them? What are you waiting for? Call some friends and get cooking!

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