Cooking Classes & Camps for Kids

Parent Q&A

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  • I browsed the lists of classes and couldn’t find any cooking classes for kids, that are not camps.

    My 8yo participated in cooking summer camp and loved it. So we are looking for an after school cooking class for her.

    Any recommendations? We are in Berkeley.

    Thanks in advance!

    I just noticed that Albany Community Center on Marin offers after-school cooking classes that start at 3:45pm and 4pm some days of the week. I am not sure where in Berkeley you are, but if closer to Albany, you could consider that.

  • Baking Camps for 14 year old

    (1 reply)

    We know about Cooking Round the World Summer Camp and will definitely sign up for at least one week of that, but were wondering if there were any other summer camps or types of things that offered such an experience for a teenager. She has been baking on an almost daily basis since this fall and would love an opportunity to learn more about baking. Any suggestions appreciated.

    My son loved ! And a friend did her birthday party there!

  • My ten year-old son would like to take cooking classes either with a group or on his own.  He is already pretty skilled in the kitchen, and many of the classes that I have found for kids seem to be geared toward teaching the basics like chopping and how to make really easy things.  Can anyone point me either toward established classes or anyone they know who would be interested in teaching an interested budding home cook?



    My caterer gives in-home classes and loves to work with enthusiastic kids. She's European, moved to the US ages ago, has grandkids nearby. She's a lovely and elegant lady with mad skills in the kitchen. Her name is Margaret Reisen, and her email is Margaret [at]

    My adult daughter just took a class at and loved it! I think if you contact Emily directly you would probably be able to arrange a private lesson.

    You didn't say where in the Bay Area you are, but if North Berkeley is convenient my teen son had a good experience last summer at Kitchen on Fire's teen summer sessions. You should call them and see if they'd accept a 10 year old. They learned how to make a variety of teen-friendly foods like pizza from scratch and kids were able to participate at the level they felt comfortable/competent. 

Archived Q&A and Reviews

Cooking Classes for Kids & Teens  


Recent reviews for summer cooking camps?

Feb 2015

The reviews are pretty old. There seems to be COOK! (Paulding) camp in Emeryville which are really expensive and not full day. There's Sprouts. I think some of the summer programs have cooking camps, but I don't know how to find them or know if they're any good. Thanks for some current advice, BPN! kid wants to cook

Look up Cooking Around the World - combines cooking lessons with geography/cultural lessons. My kids have enjoyed it. Anne

We have loved ''Cooking Around the World'' camps run by Mindy Meyer. Each day the kids study a different country, the clothing, traditions, art - usually with books and a slide show, and then cook recipes from that country. They also do field trips to the farmers market, Chinatown, etc. At the end of the week - you get a whole binder full of the recipes of the week (we are still making the Arroz Con Leche recipe!) Half day or full day options. Lissa

Summer baking for teen?

March 2014

Bpn, My 14 year old is interested in baking and cake decorating. She is interested in finding some volunteer apprenticeship around this summer. Any ideas on where to look? I am at a loss. Any leads would be helpful. Thanks.

Check out Tante Marie cooking school in SF. Good classes. Tracy C.

Sprouts, formerly Culinary Kids

July 2011

Our child was underwhelmed with Sprouts, compared to the marketing hype and videos on their website (none of which was experienced by this camper.) There were not as many hands-on experiences, and many were simply watching the adult chefs cook or prepare foods. For those times when they could cook or prepare food, there was no running water or place to wash their hands or the food. When we mentioned this to the camp leader, she suggested we use hand sanitizer (??). Add to that the fact that the camp for 15 students was in a 12' x 10' canopy in the front parking lot of Whole Foods, and you may agree it was a bit less than one might expect for over $400. a week. Also, many simple ingredients such as vanilla for baking, no freezer for making the ''ice cream'' promoted on the schedule and one torch that frequently broke for glazing, and you start to get the picture. A great idea but very poor execution. Great marketing, little follow through in our experience. One Who Likes to Wash

Cooking class for 16yo boy

Oct 2010

Does anyone know of cooking classes in the bay area for teens. My 16yo nephew is very interested in cooking and I'd like to find ways to encourage his efforts. Thanks

Check out Paulding and Company in Emeryville. Terry and her daughter are great cooks and great teachers. They have a lovely teaching kitchen, and I'm pretty sure they run a teen program. Plus they were involved in Pixar's Ratatouille, teaching the animators cooking, which is very cool. You can find them online. Hope he has fun; cooking is a great hobby. Anne

Nutty Cookie Baking Camps

July 2010

My daughter took a summer baking camp at The Nutty Cookie in Emeryville. She had a lot of fun and the teacher to student ratio was very low. They also do kids birthday parties at their bakery that is where we found out about them. Their web site is 510-597-0200 SF

My daughter took a week-long baking class at Nutty Cookie this summer and absolutely loved it. Nutty Cookie is a family-owned wholesale bakery in Emeryville. Each day the children baked at least three items from start to finish and brought home a bountiful supply of their creations (scones, turnovers, muffins, cookies, granola, pizza...). Everything they made was delicious. Two additional highlights of the camp are the small class size (4-6 children) and the teacher (the bakery's owner) who truly cared about the experience for the campers. Abigail

Paulding Summer Cooking Camp

March 2010

We are considering the Paulding cooking summer camp in Emeryville this summer. Any feedback about the quality versus the price would be greatly appreciated. anon

My daughter attended the first year of Paulding and Co.'s Cook! Creative Culinary Camp in Emeryville ( last summer. She had a wonderful time, and we are basically prioritizing all other summer activities around the sessions she wants to complete this summer. The camp is in a professional kitchen (the first season of Top Chef was filmed there), with a knowledgeable, caring staff. In addition to all the cooking the students did every day, the camp also brought in local chefs, including the executive chef at Oliveto and a chocolatier from Valrhona Chocolate, for special classes and demonstrations. While the camp was not inexpensive, I felt that we got a good value, based on the level of skills that my daughter was exposed to, the meals she was fed and the amount of fun that she had there. Claire

Summer cooking class for 16-year-old son

Feb 2010

My son is a sophomore at Berkeley High and will be 16 this summer. He's expressed an interest in taking a cooking class this summer. Any advice on where to look for a teenager? I'd love to find something interesting for him since he's quite the gourmand. thank you!

I think Paulding and Co. in Emeryville has a teen cooking class this summer. They have great instructors and a great kitchen - that has been used in Top Chef and to teach the animators of Ratatouille. Anne

Last summer, my daughter participated in the first year of Paulding and Co.'s Cook! Creative Culinary Camp in Emeryville ( She had a wonderful time, and we are basically prioritizing all other summer activities around the sessions she wants to complete this summer. The camp is in a professional kitchen (the first season of Top Chef was filmed there), with a knowledgeable, caring staff. In addition to all the cooking the students did every day, the camp also brought in local chefs, including the executive chef at Oliveto, for special classes and demonstrations. I am sure your son would be very happy at one of their summer 2010 sessions. Claire

I took some very fun and very inexpensive cooking classes at Albany Adult Ed. School. Sur Le Table on 4th St. offers cooking classes and there is another place that I think is upstairs in the complex that houses the Imperial Tea Garden near Chez Panisse. Bon appetit! kl

Cooking camp for teen

August 2009

We feel privileged to have been a part of the first year of COOK! Creative Culinary Camp at Paulding & Co. My 13 year old daughter participated in the two week session (this year they offered two one-week specialty sessions and two two-week sessions), and every day she could not wait to leave the house to get there, and every day was sad to leave the kitchen. Tracy Paulding had a wonderful manner with the students, and I was astounded with the high level of cooking accomplished in this course. Far from the usual English muffin pizzas taught in kid's cooking classes, the students at COOK! made such things as duck confit, tuna tartare, strawberry shortcake with isomalt sugar, pavlova with passionfruit mango sauce, and the list continues. On top of the great things they made in class, the students met professional Bay Area chefs, and were taken on a back-stage kitchen tour of a major area restaurant. They learned to shop at the farmer's market and to appreciate quality ingredients, and also enjoyed the community service project they performed at the Emeryville Senior Center, serving a lunch of jambalaya to a group of appreciative seniors. Their two weeks culminated in a cooking demonstration and meal for friends and family. I feel the two weeks my daughter spent in the Paulding & Co. kitchen gave her a whole new set of kitchen skills, as well as interest in a possible career path. We are already looking forward to next year's program! Their web site and more information is at Claire

Sprouts Cooking Club experience?

May 2009

Has anyone had prior experience with the Sprouts Cooking Club (formerly known as Culinary Kids)? I am thinking of sending my daughter to their summer cooking day camp. I would love to know what you thought of it. Is it well run? Did your kids have fun? Was there anything you didn't like? Thanks

My daughter participated in the Sunday classes during the winter. She loved it and was sad when the session ended. It was well run and working with real chefs in real restaurant kitchens as a great experience. My daughter learned a lot, ate new foods, and had fun. She unfortunately cannot participate in the summer program because I need full day care for her. -- mom of cooking kid

Summer cooking class for 14-year-old

April 2009

Looking for a summer week long cooking class for 14 yr old. Any recommendations? nedtions? Thanks. Micky

Yes, I know a great local summer culinary camp that my teenager attended. Chef-K offers week long summer camps for youth ages 7 to 18. Teen camp is July 20-24, 2pm-5pm, for Ages 13-18. Go to Chef- for a flyer and more week-long camps. Laurie Zerga is the Director, and she is both solid and fun. My daughter still talks about the skills and recipes she learned at this camp. I am happy to answer any questions you might have. Louise

Cooking class for 13-year-old

Jan 2009

My 13 year old son would like to take a cooking class! He loves to eat and has been asking to learn to cook, but doesn't want to be taught by me! Can anyone recommend a good, basic, general cooking class that is kid-friendly and near Alameda? Thank you!! Nancy

If Berkeley isn't too far (University Ave. near San Pablo Ave.), and you can wait until summer, Spun Sugar offers really fun cooking day-camps for kids and teens. Although the shop is just about sweets and baking, the summer camps do all kinds of cooking - a full, multi-course themed meal each day (which they then get to eat!). I don't know if they have started registering yet, but the classes do fill up fast. Check out R.K.

My 11-year-old has taken several classes, and a summer camp, run by Culinary Kids, and we love their classes. Check out for details. They have a Tuesday evening class starting in February -- organic whole food cooking with Susan Waters (Alice Waters sister) -- held near Clark Kerr campus in Berkeley. Most of their classes are held in Berkeley/SF restaurants and kids get to tour and cook in real restaurant kitchens (e.g., Chez Panisse, Slanted Door, Bread Workshop, Cafe Tibet). The summer camp was fantastic, and included a field trip to Cannard Farms (supplier to Chez Panisse) to tour the farm, pick produce, and prepare an incredible farm-style meal (you definitely want to volunteer as a field trip driver for this one!) The woman who directs the program is young and energetic and very passionate about cooking, you can contact her for more info at Karen [at]

Summer Cooking camp for 12-year-old

April 2007

My son, who's 12, is interested in a cooking camp this summer. Anyone know of one?

Archway School has a summer cooking camp ''Cuisine and Art''. We've never done it, for purely logistical reasons, but it sounds intriguing, and one avid junior cook we know recommends it highly. Their phone, per a post in the April 2 newsletter, is 510-849-4747

Cooking class for 12 year-old

Feb 2007

My 12-year-old daughter has discovered cooking after receiving a Betty Crocker cook book for Christmas. (Yay!) I would like to find a learn-to-cook course or class on the weekends for her to attend. Does anyone have suggestions for a class that is targeted for older kids/teens? kg

Spun Sugar bake shop on University Ave. has a cooking camp in the summer, a week- long session where the kids cook all morning and then eat lunch together. My two boys have done both the kids and teen class and really enjoyed it. I wish that the teacher paid more attention to cooking healthful foods, but the menus are fine and accessible for the kids (pastas, baked goods, soups, etc.) Carrie

Cooking classes for young children


Are there any cooking classes in the East Bay for young children? Especially available on Fridays? I haven't been able to find any. Amy

To the parent who is looking for cooking classes, Montclair Recreation Center offers them throughout the year. Frances

Montclair Rec Center in Oakland has several cooking classes for ages 4-7. My daughter is enrolled in Brunch Bunch -- Scrambles, fruit salads, pancakes, crepes, muffins and more will be explored (and eaten!) in this tasty class. Session I April 6,13,27, and May 4th or session II May 11,18,25, & June 1. Fridays 11:45-12:30. There's also Lunch Bunch -- Children will be introduced to healthful nutritious and delicious foods from all the food groups. Children will prepare and enjoy a good lunch. That's on Mondays 12:15-1:00. Cost is $50 per session which includes the cost of food. (Non-Oakland residents pay an additional $2.) Contact: Montclair Rec Center 6300 Moraga Avenue, Oakland CA 94611 510-482-7812 Sharon

Montclair Parks and Rec usually offers a cooking class for kids. The spring session started on 4/2. There is a Book Cook class where the teacher reads a book and then they prepare related recipes. Also, thee are 2 other classes that meet for 4 week sessions - Lunch Bunch meets on Mondays at 12:15 and Brunch Bunch meets on Fridays at 11:45. The phone number for more info is 510)482-7812

Cooking class for teen

May 2002

Anyone know of any cooking classes for the summer for a 13-year-old in the Albany/Berkeley/El Cerrito area?

Sur la Table (4th Street) offers a great cooking program for kids 9-14 during the summer. It's pretty popular so it may be full already. If she's mature enough and pretty serious about cooking, their regular adult classes are great as well and fairly reasonably priced. toni

Sur la Table has a great cooking class for 9 -13 year olds (my son took it a few years ago). Call meets for one week in the mornings with a field trip in the middle of the week. I think Carolyn is the instructor and she's great! Rochelle