Taking a cooking class is something I consider a must do when traveling because food is such an important aspect of every culture. It’s a great way to see how locals cook, eat, and even source the food that brings family and friends around the table for a delicious meal.
Even better, taking a cooking class abroad allows you to bring home a valuable souvenir that you don’t need to jam into your suitcase or make extra space for.
Get a taste of why 21 bloggers loved the cooking class they took while traveling, and hopefully you’ll find yourself at one of these cooking classes around the world quite soon.
Note as of 07.28.16: The title was updated to “More Than 21 Cooking Classes Around the World” because I’ve been adding more and more from the classes I take as I travel the world!
Cooking Classes in Asia
Hoi An, Vietnam
Cooking Class: Cafe 43 Cost: $5 + cost of items cooked Time: 1-2 hours
What we made: We had a private cooking class, we got to cook anything off of the menu, and only paid $5 plus the menu price for the items we cooked. For less than $20, we learned how to cook papaya salad, fresh Vietnamese spring rolls, and chicken chili lemongrass.
Why I loved it: I took an amazing cooking class in Hoi An which ended up being one of my favorite things to do in Hoi An Vietnam. This wasn’t your typical cooking class, as this was a private cooking class at a small local restaurant in Hoi An.
by Hannah from Getting Stamped
See other cooking classes in Hoi An, Vietnam here.
Nyaung Shwe, Myanmar
Cooking Class: Bamboo Delight Cooking School Cost: $20 Time: 4 hours
What we made: We learned to make traditional Burmese and Shan dishes like tea leaf salad and both meat and vegetarian curries.
Why we loved it: We loved our morning spent at Bamboo Delight Cooking School. Our class started out by shopping for ingredients at the local market and ended with a huge lunch shared with fellow classmates.
The best part? Owners Sue and Lesley have dedicated their lives to bettering the future of Nyaung Shwe and 15% of your class fee goes towards the education of local children.
by Alana from Great Big Globe
Cooking Class: Viavia Cost: $12 Time: 4 hours
What we made: We made two local dishes with chicken and veggies. Then for the sides, we made vegetables, coconut rice, and sambal sauce. We evenf ried our own tempeh and kerupuk and got duck eggs and salak from the market.
Why I loved it: I loved it because they took us to a local market for the ingredients, which was a great experience. The class was intimate with only two students so we could interact with the teacher cook. We were actually cooking our food from scratch from buying to washing to chopping to cooking to plating.
Lastly, there was free ice tea, side dishes, and fruits. For such a nice homemade lunch, it was a very low price!
by Kenny from KNYCX Journeying
See other cooking classes in Indonesia here.
Cooking Class: Sweet and Spicy Gili Cooking School
Cost: $28 or RP 385,000 Time: 2 hours
What we made: In this class we made 5 dishes; a traditional rice dish, gado gado, tofu satay, seafood hot curry and even a sticky dessert called Klepon which means sweet coconut rice balls.
Why we loved it: I loved this cooking class because not only was the class set in an informative and fun way, but everyone of us had our own personal cooking station, which meant we could cook as the class went on and learn as we go. I have had a cooking class before in India where we merely watched and took notes and did no cooking ourselves.
The food was delicious and there was so much to spare, I gave out my coconut rice balls to random people later on the day!
by Vicky from vickeblueyes
See other cooking classes in Indonesia here.
Cooking Class: Shashi’s Cooking Class Cost: $12 Time: 4-5 hours
What we made: The menu for the day is comprised of 14 to 15 dishes depending on the availability of ingredients. We made Masala Chai, Coriander Chutney, Dry Mango Chutney, 3 Curries – Butter Paneer, Potato Eggplant Masala, and Spinach Potato, Veg Biryani, Jeera Biryani, Veggie Pakora, Chapatti, Potato Parantha, Tomato and Cheese Naan, and Sweet Parantha.
Why we loved it: Shashi’s cooking class is listed as the number one activity in Udaipur. When we first arrived to the class, we were adorned with bhindis and given an Indian cultural lesson in the kitchen by none other than the matriarch of the house, Shashi. She was bossy and feisty, which was very entertaining for such a long class.
The feast we cooked up was the best meal I had during my whole month in India!
by Izzy from the Next Somewhere
Check out this other cooking class in Udaipur
Cooking Class: Nepali Course Cost: $43 for half day, $63 for full day
Why we loved it: The class includes a tour of the local market and then a lesson which lasts around 4-7 hours (depending on which class you take) plus eating time. In our case, we spent the entire day with the family as we partied together well into the evening to celebrate Stefan’s birthday (photo attached).
We loved our cooking course because Amrit showed us what a Nepalese family is like. He embraced us like we were family and made us feel so comfortable. We bonded with everyone in the family who made us feel so welcomed.
by Stefan from the Nomadic Boys
Check out these other cooking classes in Kathmandu
Koh Samui, Thailand
Cooking Class: Spices Café Cost: $20 Time: 2-2.5 hours
What we made: We made Spicy Thai Beef Salad, Coconut Soup With Chicken, and Red Curry Chicken with Rice.
Why we loved it: Taking a cooking class with a local restaurant owner and chef right in her own restaurant is an incredible experience and opportunity for immersion in the local food culture.
The restaurant was closed for the cooking class, and it was just the two of us and the chef. She was amazingly talented and knowledgeable about the dishes and ingredients used. Taking her time to tell us about the ingredients, any connection to Thai culture and their proper preparation, she guided us through the steps to create a delicious menu of Thai dishes.
We loved that we each had own station, were able to take part in designing the menu and, at the end, relax as we ate everything we had just created!
by Carolann & Macrae of One Modern Couple
Check out this other cooking class in Koh Samui
Koh Samui, Thailand
Cooking Class: Samui Institute of Culinary Arts Cost: 1,850 baht or $50 about Time: 5 hours
Why we loved it: Many travelers will tell you that their favorite food is Thai food, and what a better way to remember your trip than to take a Thai cooking class so that you can try to replicate these amazing dishes back at home.
We were fortunate to stumble across the Samui Institute of Culinary Arts (SITCA), a highly reputable cooking school in Koh Samui that offers both professional classes for aspiring Thai chefs as well as for tourists. We participated in SITCA’s standard course during which we prepared 4 authentic Thai dishes from scratch.
The whole experience was so professional, yet relaxed and fun – we laughed with the instructor, enjoyed drinks with our classmates, and enjoyed quite the Thai feast at the end of it all.
by Liz from Peanuts or Pretzels
Check out this other cooking class in Koh Samui
Chiang Mai, Thailand
Cooking Class: Siam Rice Thai Cookery School Cost: $25 Time: 7 hours
What we made: We made chicken coconut soup, fried noodles, deep fried spring rolls, fried ginger with chicken, curry paste, green curry, and sticky rice with mango.
Why we loved it: We loved the amazing atmosphere of Siam Rice cooking class. Everybody was friendly and smiling so we had a lot of fun there. In addition, we learned a lot about the Thai cuisine and spices.
by Karolina & Patrick from Karolina Patryk
Check out these other cooking classes in Chiang Mai
Cooking Classes in Europe
Cooking Class: Marta Amb Tu Cuinem Cost: $44 Time: 3 hours
What we made: We made Paella, the spectacular rice & seafood dish that Spain is famous for.
Why I loved it: I loved this class for Marta’s down-to-earth attitude and gentle teaching manner. We could be as hands on or off as we wanted to be.
Marta teaches the classes in her own home, so with small intimate groups I felt like I was learning to cook with my Auntie! The quality of the ingredients we used in the class were obviously very high, and the recipe was easy to follow.
The end result was delicious, and of course, the best part of any cooking class was settling down to enjoy the fruits of our labour with a nice glass of wine!
by Claire from Tales of a Backpacker
Check out these other cooking classes in Barcelona.
Cooking Class: Podere San Guiliano
Why I loved it: I love Italian food and taking a cooking class in Italy especially in Bologna, (one of the food capitals of Italy) was a mandatory experience.
This was my favorite food experience spending a day at an agriturismo farm called Podere San Giuliano. It was a wonderful experience to spend the day with chef/owner Federica Frattini touring the farm, picking what was in season, and going to her kitchen to create some amazing dishes like handmade Tagliatelli in Bolognese sauce, Italian meatballs with Bolognese, Bolognese pumpkin Tortelloni, and a tortellini soup in simple broth.
In one word it was “Magnifico” and definitely worth the whole Bologna experience one favorite memories of Italy.
by Noel from Travel Photo Discovery
Check out these other cooking classes in Bologna.
Chiusdino, Italy (Tuscany region)
Cooking Class: Spannocchia Farm Cost: $100 Time: 5.5 hours
What we made: We made homemade pasta, leeks, chicken and tiramisu.
Why we loved it: Since this cooking class is on a farm and locally sources its food right from its own organic gardens, we got to take a tour of the gardens, learn about how the food is grown, and see exactly where our food came from. We got to connect to our food– something that is rarely done in Western society.
Also, we got to cook with Loredana who has lived her whole entire life on or around this farm. My only wish in Italy was to cook with an OG Italian grandma, and that wish was fulfilled at Spannocchia.
Click here to see full post on this cooking class where I explore the organic gardens and cook slow food at Spannocchia.
by me 🙂 🙂 !
Check out these other cooking classes in Tuscany.
Cooking Class: Villa Bordoni Cost: €150 Time: 3 hours cooking + mealtime
What we made: During the class, we made the four courses typical of an Italian meal – antipasto, primo, secondo and dessert.
Why we loved it: We loved this class because it was led by one of the highly-skilled chefs at Villa Bordoni in their custom-made chef’s kitchen. We learned invaluable lessons about making perfect pasta and gnocchi that I was able to recreate at home with ease.
The dishes that we prepared were then served to us at dinner with as much wine as we wanted. It was definitely the best cooking class we’ve ever taken.
by Nick and Laura from Savored Journeys
Check out these other cooking classes in Chianti.
Cooking Class: ‘La volpe e l’uva’ agriturismo Cost: €105 for 2 people Time: 4 hours
What we made: With contagious love for her childhood food, in her beautiful, rustic kitchen, Raffaella holds your hand as you learn to cook a full 4 course Italian meal. We made starters of ‘torta al testo’ (a local kind of bread we stuffed with local cheese and ham), home-made pasta, a wonderful juniper based meat sauce and the most delicious chocolate cake I have ever tasted – and I tasted many!
Why we loved it: Fun and easy to follow, the friendliness of the teacher and the location are what make this class so special. While working away on your pasta dough, your eyes will wonder from the beautiful view outside the window to the many local artifacts in the house and you are sure to find yourself dreaming of relocating to Italy forever.
by Marta from Learning Escapes
Check out these other cooking classes in Umbria.
Cooking Class: La Cuisine Paris Cost: €69 – €90 Time: 2-3 hours
What we made: I have done a Millefeuille and Croissant class here. Without a doubt, the highlight was learning how to make them from a French chef, but then also being able to re-create them again when I got back home.
Why I loved it: Who wouldn’t love doing a pastry class in Paris!
These classes are enormous fun, and a great mix of people from all over the world. They are kept deliberately small so that interaction is easy and no-one gets left behind. At the end of your class you get to eat what you have made over a cup of coffee. Then you can also take some home with you to show your travel buddies what you have achieved.
If you are an avid cook like me, La Cuisine Paris are also on hand after you leave to help you with any questions you might have.
by Kerri from Beer and Croissants
Check out these other cooking classes in Paris.
Cooking Class: La Cuisine Paris Cost: €90 Time: 3 hours
What we made: At the same school that Kerri (above) went to, I took the baguette making class. We made two baguettes, two fougasses, and mini buns.
Why I loved it: Guillame, the instructor, was witty and very helpful. He gave us lots of instructions that you couldn’t get from reading a recipe.
We got to take home a large helping of baguettes and fougasses as well as eating them throughout the class. I highly recommend this class!
Check out the full blog post on this cooking class in Paris here.
Check out these other cooking classes in Paris.
Cooking Class: Chef Thierry’s In Home Class Cost: €55 Time: 3 -4 hours
What we made: Cervelle du Canut, Choux two ways, Ratatouille, Chicken sausages with a creamy white wine sauce, and Lyonnaise Salad
Why I loved it: I’ve never taken a cooking class like this before. It was at Thierry’s home so it quite personal. It felt like I was cooking with friends and family for friends and family, which is a much more practical way to cook than cooking with pre-measured ingredients for one plate like you do in a normal cooking class.
If you only have time to do one activity in Lyon, I highly suggest taking this cooking class with Thierry (full post with photos here).
Updated as of 06/23/16 so this makes this post about 22 cooking classes, not 21!
Check out these other cooking classes in Lyon.
Cooking Class: Ciop Ciop Cost: €65 Time: 2.5 hours
What we made: In Vilnius, Lithuania, we had the chance to make traditional Lithuanian food with a modern spin. The appetizer was a deconstructed version of a bright pink beet soup that is found throughout the Baltic states. The venison entree was served with potato dauphonoise and followed by a rhubarb souffle.
Why we loved it: Ciop Ciop, the “culinary loft” where we took our class, pulled out all the stops to make everything delicious and engaging.
About half the prep work had already been done when we arrived, so while we still had plenty to participate in, we got to enjoy the process of cooking and socializing without having to take care of every single detail. It also meant that we made the whole meal and ate in only 2.5 hours. The flowing wine didn’t hurt anything either.
by Lance and Laura from Travel Addicts
Cooking Classes in North America
Playa Mia, Cozumel, Mexico
Cooking Class: Playa Mia Cost: $73 Time: 3 hours
Why we loved it: My husband and I did the best Mexican cooking class in Playa Mia while on a shore excursion from our cruise in Cozumel. In three hours, we prepared a delicious three course meal and the free flowing free cocktails made it all the more attractive.
While the menu was heavily seafood based, they happily accommodated by my seafood adverse palette by substituting chicken. The dessert of caramelized plantains with chocolate and tequila sauce was a delight.
We finished the day by relaxing on the golden sands and swimming in the warm azure waters before heading back to the ship.
by Allison from Sydney Fashion Hunter
San Cristobal, Mexico
Cooking Class: Instituto Jovel Cost: $30
What we made: We made Salmon Stuffed Jalapenos, Chicken Tostadas, Dried Cheesy Chilis with Salsa Verde, and Stuffed BBQ’d Chili two ways.
Why we loved it: The best thing about this cooking class was the personal touch. Even in high season, the classes would remain small and the students would be able to have input in the menu. This is a huge bonus for me as after traveling through the region I definitely wanted to learn how to make some of the dishes I had tried.
The teacher Helga spoke limited English. However, she was very adept at communicating through other means that were both entertaining and educational. By the end of the class I felt as I had also learnt some Spanish.
It was a very hands on experience. Everything was made from scratch. There was no pre-chopped little bowls of herbs, and I had to do it myself. This was great as it showed me how some of the vegetables look different in colors, shapes, and sizes as well as introducing me to some new herbs and vegetables that I had never seen before. It was a very authentic experience.
by Helen from the Lite Backpacker
New Orleans, Lousiana, USA
Cooking Class: The New Orleans School of Cooking Cost: $30 Time: 2 hours
What we made: We made corn and crab bisque, chicken étouffée, and pralines.
Why we loved it: The class was led by a friendly instructor who gave everyone tips about how to cook the dishes they were making that day. I got to try all the dishes we made. The portion sizes were enough for a decent lunch and drinks were included.
The best part of the experience was learning about some of the history of New Orleans and how the city got its unique cuisine in a fun way way.
by Alouise from Take Me to the World
Check out these other cooking classes in New Orleans.
Cooking Class: Garifuna at Rasta Mesa Cost: 100 Quetzals Time: 3-4 hours
What we made: We made the traditional Garifuna dish of Tapado – a fish and coconut milk stew served with rice.
Why we loved it: In Livingston, Guatemala, the Garifuna presence is very strong – not least in the food. Therefore, learning how to cook their most traditional dish is an essential part of your visit. At Rasta Mesa however, you won’t learn how to cook tapado from shop bought ingredients in a stainless steel kitchen. No, you will learn how to prepare everything from garden-grown produce in the family’s simple home.
Most importantly, your donation will go some way to improving the lives of the community* whilst doing so.
*This is a community project. There will be a small number of local children who dance and drum at the end, and you are expected to tip for this.
by Andrew and Emily from Along Dusty Roads
Check out these other cooking classes in Guatemala.
Cooking Classes in South America
Cooking Class: Peruvian Cooking Experience at Casa de Avila
Cost: $18-22 Time: 4-5 hours
Why we loved it: Held at the Casa de Avila Hotel in the Courtyard, this ½ day cooking class is a hands on class featuring some of Peru’s classic dishes. You cook in a group to prepare a three course lunch which you then sit down to eat together.
There is an optional tour of the market before the class and an optional class to learn to make Pisco Sours, the national drink of Peru, after lunch. The market visit was fascinating and you will see some unusual sights and ingredients!
by Elizabeth from Compass and Fork
Check out these other cooking classes in Peru.
Have you taken any cooking classes around the world? Feel free to share with me by commenting!
Thanks by stopping! xo.
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