NYC - The Official Guide

14 Best NYC Cooking Classes

Julie Besonen
Updated 02/25/2020
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Ready to roll up your sleeves, tie on an apron and sharpen your cooking techniques? Gain knowledge and mastery of the kitchen at cooking classes that will have you making fresh pasta, sushi, dumplings and cupcakes—even learning knife skills. Opportunities abound for dabblers, date nights, serious home cooks and anyone who aspires to take on another culture’s cuisine. We’re highlighting 14 of NYC’s best venues to find your inner chef, make new friends, share delicious food and just plain have fun.

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 Abigail's Kitchen Courtesy, Abigail's Kitchen

Abigail’s Kitchen

Who’s it for? Cooking and drinking enthusiasts.

What to expect: Chef-owner Abigail Hitchcock invites adults into her Greenwich Village restaurant kitchen for hands-on instruction. Guests build confidence by prepping ingredients and doing the sautéing and searing, making it all less of a chore. Hitchcock is also a certified sommelier, so her wine-tasting sessions provide the groundwork for intelligently perusing wine lists and wine shops. Most classes are limited to 10 students and are about three-and-a-half hours long.

What you’ll master: Homemade mozzarella, fresh pasta, boeuf bourguignon for two or the art of Southeast Asian cooking using Thai ingredients from an off-site shopping trip to Chinatown.

Cost: $75 for a wine class matched with Murray’s Cheese; $125–$150 per person for most of the others, all of which include unlimited local beer and wine.

Brooklyn Kitchen

Who’s it for? Beginners, skilled home cooks and date-night adventurers.

What to expect: Daily classes in an assortment of fields, held at Sunset Park’s Industry City complex, generally last two hours. Students, in groups of 12 to 21, actively participate and then sit down for a communal meal, enjoying the fruits of their labor. Many classes sell out fast so reserve in advance.

What you’ll master: Knife skills, Japanese street food, bao workshops, dumplings, pizza dough and French pastry, depending on the class.

Cost: $75–$125 per adult; $65 for kids’ cooking classes.

Cupcakes Courtesy, Butter Lane

Butter Lane Cupcakes

Who’s it for? Baking fans and those with sweet tooths celebrating birthdays, showers and romantic milestones. It’s delightful for kids, too, who must be at least 45 inches tall to see above the worktable (there’s no age minimum).

What to expect: Cupcakes 101 lasts two hours, featuring step-by-step instructions on three different cakes and icings made from premeasured flour, sugar and butter. The casual, intimate workspace can fit a dozen people.

What you’ll master: Working a mixer and swirling frosting so it looks pretty and professional.

Cost: $75 for individuals; “Sweetheart Class” is $120 per couple.

CocuSocial

Who’s it for? Beginners looking for lively date nights, a girls’ night out or corporate team-building events.

What to expect: Interactive cooking parties taught by experienced NYC-area chefs. CocuSocial classes feature a wide variety of experiences that are held in semiprivate spaces such as restaurants and hotels. Capacity ranges from 12 to 28 people, with a 21-year age minimum. Classes generally last two-and-a-half hours.

What you’ll master: Classic and creative cocktails, sushi, pizza, homemade mozzarella and burrata, French pastry, Spanish tapas or paella, depending on the class.

Cost: $42–$53; drinks are extra.

Cozymeal Courtesy, Cozymeal

Cozymeal

Who’s it for? Anyone eager to refine their cooking skills and tackle step-by-step instructions to help create a restaurant-quality dish or master a five-course meal, if that’s of interest. Classes, led by a vetted chef, are also popular as a corporate team-building activity.

What to expect: Classes are hosted at various approved locations, such as commercial venues around the City (or in a private home), depending on the chef, and can accommodate 2 to 40-plus people. The menu and price range dictate the duration, but classes usually run two to three hours.

What you’ll master: Dozens of experienced chefs, some of them Michelin-starred, offer their expertise on macarons, vegan and gluten-free Indian, modern twists on traditional Italian, sushi or a taste of ancient Greece.

Cost: $75–$145.

Degustibus, cooking classroom Courtesy, De Gustibus

De Gustibus Cooking School

Who’s it for? Fans of celebrated and rising star chefs looking for cooking tips.

What to expect: A culinary theater on the eighth floor of Macy’s Herald Square hosts audiences of up to 60 at long communal tables. Visiting chefs perform multicourse cooking demos that are also projected on large screens. Demonstrations are two-and-a-half hours long; hands-on instructional classes (limited to 25 students) are three hours. Interactive discussion is encouraged in all classes and attendees are offered samplings, wine tastings and recipes to take home. Select classes are held at the chef’s restaurant. Reservations are required for all.

What you’ll master: Depending on the guest chef, anything from tricks of classic French technique to kosher cooking concepts.

Cost: From $110 per person.

The Dynamite Shop

Who’s it for? Kids ages 8 and up, teenage cooking connoisseurs and parents who want to relax while their children pick up life skills.

What to expect: Lessons in empowering kids through food taught by co-owners Dana Bowen and Sara Kate Gillingham (also renowned food and cookbook writers). The Brooklyn storefront features a coffee shop nook in front where parents can wait for their kids or, if you’re planning an adult-oriented day elsewhere in the City, drop the kids off for weekend workshops. There are also after-school, summer camp and spring break options, with a capacity of 25 students. The monthly teen supper club is capped at 15 students.

What you’ll master: Fundamental cooking skills plus pho, summer rolls, stocks, vegetable mac-and-cheese, Shirley Temples or brunch classics, depending on the day.

Cost: 12-week after-school classes start at $1,080 and tuition includes a take-home dinner for five people daily; summer camp and spring break camp are $750/week; teen supper club is $50–$75.

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Haven’s Kitchen

Who’s it for? Those with or without experience in the kitchen cook together as a community in a sociable atmosphere.

What to expect: A charming 18th-century carriage house in Chelsea with a stylish café and shop in front plus a state-of-the-art kitchen in back provides the setting for classes. They focus on using fresh and seasonal ingredients with an eco-conscious twist. Classes last between two and three hours and offer 12 to 14 seats; cocktail classes, accompanied by snacks, are held on the second floor. Also popular are select classes taught by professional chefs from across the country and “Cook the Book,” devoted to making recipes inspired by a chosen cookbook.

What you’ll master: Plant-based food combining, dim sum brunch, vegetarian Southeast Asian suppers, Korean home cooking, homemade bagels, lox and schmear, tiki drinks and fish butchery, among other objects of study.

Cost: $125–$175.

Cooking class Courtesy, Institute of Culinary Education

Institute of Culinary Education (ICE)

Who’s it for? Home cooks intent on upping their culinary game at one of the world’s top professional cooking schools.

What to expect: Recreational cooking classes offered day and night in a 74,000-square-foot facility in Lower Manhattan. They last anywhere from 90 minutes to five hours. Most involve a brief lecture, full-participation of cooking and eating, with maximum class size of 16 students.

What you’ll master: Sous vide steaks, Catalan cuisine, essentials of Israeli cooking, vegan burgers that rock and acquiring knife skills are a fraction of the catalog’s curriculum. Natural Gourmet Center (formerly Natural Gourmet Institute) was folded into ICE in 2019, bolstering its plant-based and nutritional programs. They include classes such as Bowls That Heal, Meatless Monday–Sunday and Vegan and Gluten-Free Baking.

Cost: Beverage classes begin at $100; $125 is the starting point for hands-on cooking sessions.

International culinary center, dish International Culinary Center. Photo: Arielle Figueredo

International Culinary Center (ICC)

Who’s it for? Career-oriented culinary, pastry and wine students as well as ambitious newcomers.

What to expect: One-day and multiday recreational courses, taught by esteemed professionals, held in the heart of Soho. Classes accommodate 12–24 students and cover many of the basics (knife skills) as well as training that’s a little more challenging (food styling for media). The dress code includes long pants, long-sleeved shirts and non-slip close-toed shoes. Aprons and skull caps are provided. Classes generally last four hours.

What you’ll master: Secrets of sugar paste flowers, cream puffs, gluten-free baking, olive oil sommelier certification, essentials of Mexican and Japanese cuisine, are just a slice of the school’s wide-ranging curriculum.

Cost: $195 for one-day classes; $495–$8,230 for multiday courses.

Eataly, Dish, Pasta Courtesy, Eataly

La Scuola di Eataly & Foodiversità

Who’s it for? Families, solo travelers, couples and anyone passionate about Italian food. Most private classes are aimed at team building.

What to expect: Nearly every day at both Eataly locations there are interactive classes and food demos. At the Flatiron District’s La Scuola, chef Lidia Bastianich has developed popular courses taught by Eataly’s own chefs as well as acclaimed guest chefs. Hands-on classes can hold up to 20; cooking demonstrations with a seated dinner can fit up to 34. At Lower Manhattan’s Foodiversità (Food University), look for intensives on fresh pasta, street food, pizza and regional Italian specialties. All classes include wine pairings and last anywhere from 90 minutes to three hours. Hourlong kids’ classes are held Saturdays.

What you’ll master: Butternut squash ravioli, gnocchi, wine and cheese pairings, layering tiramisu and stuffing cannoli, for example.

Cost: At La Scuola, it’s $50–$125 for adults and $100 for parent-child tickets. At Foodiversità, adults pay $40–$125; kids’ classes are $20–$30.

League od Kitchens, class Courtesy, The League of Kitchens

The League of Kitchens

Who’s it for? All levels of culinary proficiency and those desiring deeper knowledge of international cuisines and cultures.

What to expect: A warm welcome in an immigrant’s home that’s immersive and inspiring and includes cooking instruction, sharing stories and a meal plus a recipe booklet to take home. Classes accommodate six people and take place on weekends mostly in Brooklyn and Queens.

What you’ll master: Complex Bengali dishes, Iraqi biryani and baklava or Uzbek savory pies and custard, for instance.

Cost: $179 for “immersion” (four-and-a-half hours) workshops; $135 for two-and-a-half-hour “taste of” workshops.

Pizza School NYC

Who’s it for? Pizza lovers of all stripes, no prior skills necessary.

What to expect: Hands-on dough stretching, combining toppings in creative ways and baking up to four pies during an interactive four-hour workshop. Beer, wine and soda are available for purchase for the pizza party at the end. All students receive a recipe booklet to take home and a pizza box for leftovers.

What you’ll master: Thin-crust pizza made from scratch, demystifying the differences in tomato sauces and sourcing the best mozzarella.

Cost: $195 for one; $295 for two working as a team.

TasteBuds Kitchen

Who’s it for? Aspiring chefs of all ages, no experience required—popular for kids’ birthday parties, mommy-and-me projects and date nights.

What to expect: A modern, flowing space in Chelsea that sports two fully equipped kitchens and windows looking out on the Empire State Building. Adult classes—all BYOB—last two hours; those involving children last one hour but are longer for summer and holiday camps. The average class size is 24, and a spot can often be reserved a day or two ahead.

What you’ll master: Handmade pasta, a culinary tour of Tuscany, French countryside, Chinese takeout, sushi & dumplings.

Cost: $79 for adults; classes involving a child are $45 and up.


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