Kids who are eager to participate when you're baking cookies (and not just for the dough!) are empowered to become their own chef during these innovative cooking camp programs. They'll have the opportunity to handle appliances, learn basic skills (including knife skills, depending on the class and age level) and get the opportunity to make some cool dishes—everything from breakfast and dinner to dessert.
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Some programs additionally focus on international cuisine and reading recipes too!
Cooking camp for kids
The teachers at Taste Buds Kitchen’s half-day camp create scrumptious sweet and savory dishes each day. Each day campers learn a new skill like creaming butter and sugar for twist-and-twirl cookies or kneading the dough for mouthwatering apple- honey challah bread. Morning sessions are for kids ages 4 to 8, with afternoons for kids ages 9 to 13 years. Each week is a different theme, so campers can learn many techniques. All ages.
Little chefs get in on the farm-to-table trend and don’t just learn to cook—they find out how food makes it from the earth to their plates through planting and harvesting the ingredients when possible. If you're looking for a real farm-to-table experience, this is the perfect opportunity to give kids the opportunity to see urban gardens and local beekeepers; they'll even go catch-and-release fishing in Central Park. They'll also be working as a group to make their own lunches every day—and will find out what food they love best in the process! The Corlears School, 324 West 15th St · The Co-op School, 40 Brevoort Pl, Brooklyn, NY 11216.
Visit faraway lands like Mexico and Russia without leaving the city via this cool culinary day camp that focuses on a different international cuisine each week. In addition to mastering basic kitchen techniques, such as accurate measuring, grating and knife skills, and testing out recipes, campers get a practical education in the Around the Globe camp’s farm-to-table philosophy, foraging and shopping for local, organic produce from farmers’ markets and nearby grocers whenever possible. They explore the art, music and culture of exotic locales to understand the traditions supporting the food they make—a global adventure with no passport required. Ages 5–14.
The overall focus at Camp Zeke is wellness, so campers learn the value of a healthy lifestyle that includes fitness and a nutritious diet during their stay. It’s structured with electives, meaning kids can choose from activities, such as Krav Maga, soccer or dance, or opt for more chill pastimes, like yoga, running or boating. Children interested in food can try the culinary-arts program, explore the teaching kitchen, compete in cooking competitions and learn recipes they can whip up at home. Campers often help prepare the wholesome dishes served in the dining hall, a.k.a. Cafe Zeke, using organic, locally sourced ingredients. There's plenty more, too—including dance and circus arts programs. Ages 7–17.
With amazing weekly themes like Taco Time (South American Food!), Around the World in a Week and All About Baking, kids really get to dive into the stuff they love. A typical day might start with a visit to a local farmers' market to pick produce and end with a trip back to camp to cook up something delicious! While you'll need to pack 'em lunch Monday through Thursday, Fridays are pizza party days in which kids create their own pizzas from scratch and top them with their favorite stuff. Additional location at W. 93rd St and Broadway. Ages 5–11.