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The BEST Cooking Classes in the World

The combination of food tours and cooking classes are cornerstones of culinary travel. If you have more time and really love food than taking a cooking class is an excellent way to learn much more about a culture. Not only do you learn to make something new but you also can learn about the history of a place, why foods are important and likely you’ll hear plenty of great stories from your teacher.

The one-on-one interaction is what makes cooking classes such a great part of travel. I think the best cooking classes are small in size, offer you the opportunity to actually do something – not just watch the instructor, and use traditional cooking techniques.

Over the years I’ve done my fair share of cooking classes and just like my best food tours of the world post, I asked others to share their best recommendations for cooking classes around the world.

  • Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin – Osthoff Resort from Wisconsin Parent
  • Burlington, VermontEssex Culinary Resort Spa from Go Girlfriend
  • Ottawa, CanadaC’est bon Cooking from Moi, mes souliers
  • Leon, NicaraguaNicAsi Tours from Vagrants of the World “It was held in the home of a local indigenous family cooking traditional food after we shopped the ingredients in both markets and some places we didn’t expect.”

  • Paute, EcuadorCooking Class at Restaurant Corvel from Nomadic Texan
  • Valparaiso, ChileCasa Kultour from Ever in Transit
  • Buenos Aires, ArgentinaThe Argentine Experience from Moi, mes souliers “This Buenos Aires food class was also fun, although it was more of a wine and dine experience where we learned how to make most elements of our meal, yet they were cooked for us so we had time to chat, talk about the culture and learn a lot of stuff about Argentinian food!”

  • Budapest, HungaryChefparade Cooking Class from Wagoners Abroad
  • Rome, Italy – Eating Italy Kid’s Pizza Making Class from We 3 Travel “What I loved about this kid’s pizza making class that we did in Rome was that the kids were occupied for a couple of hours while the adults got to sit and eat and drink wine while we watched! Fun for all.”
  • Rome, Italy – Nonna Lina’s Private Cooking Class from Holiday Nomad
  • Rome, ItalyWalks of Italy from Calculated Traveler
  • near Florence, Italy – Max&Me: Tuscany Cooking from Curry Strumpet “I’m useless in the kitchen, but I gifted my husband (our household’s resident cook) with a one-on-one Tuscan cooking class in the kitchen of a formidable Italian mama. He loved it! What made the day was sitting down to lunch with her family and simply feeling very much at home with some real locals. No fuss and glamour.
  • Venice, Italy – Enrica Rocca Cooking School – Venice, Italy from Laura at The Culinary Travel Guide
  • Istanbul, TurkeyIstanbul Culinary Walks from Women on the Road
  • Istanbul, Turkey – Istanbul Cooking School from The Kay Days

  • Bangkok, ThailandAnita Thai from Nomadic Texan
  • Bangkok, ThailandSomphong Thai Cooking Class from Around the World L
  • Penang, MalaysiaPenang Cooking School from Malaysian Meanders
  • Penang, Malaysia – Pearly’s Cooking Class from Travels4Yum “The instructor was absolutely incredible. Learned a ton about culture and even picked up some handy cooking technique tips!”
  • Uji, JapanNakamura Tokichi Honten from Ever in Transit
  • Chiang Mai, Thailand Thai Farm Cooking School from Travel ‘n Lass “Though there isn’t exactly a dearth of cooking classes in Chiang Mai, the thing that sets the Thai Farm Cooking School apart is that the classes are a full day out in the country at their organic farm. And the classes are so well orchestrated, that we each had a choice of *15* different dishes (plus 3 curry pastes we pounded from scratch). We each got to make 5 different dishes, and I opted to make Green Curry with Chicken plus Tom Yam with Shrimp, Chicken with Cashew Nuts, Stir-fried Noodles, and for dessert: Mango with Sticky Rice!”
  • Ubud Bali, IndonesiaPaon Bali Cooking Class from World Wide Adventurers
  • Petra, JordanPetra Kitchen from Lumemare
  • Hanoi, VietnamHanoi Cooking Center from The Culture Mom

  • Marrakech, Morocco – Amal Women’s Training Center and Restaurant from MarocMama
  • Marrakech, MoroccoFaim d’Epices from Wagoner’s Abroad
  • Brufut, GambiaHome Cooking Course with Ida from Travels with Kat “I’ve done this cooking course with a very colourful lady, Ida in The Gambia a couple of times. Visiting the fish market with her is an exciting experience in itself but its her character and interesting anecdotes that make it such a brilliant day.

There’s still plenty of room to add more! If you’ve taken a great cooking class, leave a comment or send me an email. I would love to include your suggestions!

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Heidi (@WagonersAbroad)

Monday 12th of January 2015

Wow, this is a great list. Now we just have to travel all over the world and try them all out. Thanks for including our favorite experiences.