The 5 Best Cooking Classes in Grand Rapids (Local Favs)

best cooking classes grand rapids

Is your mise en place good to go?

“Yes, chef!”

Are you prepared to chiffonade some leafy greens? Oh yea, we’ve got some chiffonading to do.

“Yes, chef!”

Do you have your EVOO (that’s extra virgin olive oil if you’re new here) and unsalted butter on hand?

“Yes, chef!”

Alrighty. You guys are ready. Sharpen your knives and put on your chef’s whites.

Let’s take a look at some of the best cooking classes available in Grand Rapids. (A healthy appetite and a nice bottle of wine are optional but highly recommended.)

Map of Cooking Classes Around Grand Rapids

Bring the chef to your kitchen: All In One Chef

Bring the chef to you with All In One Chef.

Chef Mark has been sauteing, braising, and spatchcocking his way around kitchens throughout West Michigan for almost a decade now. And whatever dish you elect to whip up with Chef Mark, whether it’s Italian, tapas, South American, or tacos – it’s going to taste phenomenal. Like, so good, you might lick your plate clean (go ahead, no one’s looking).

My wife and some girlfriends did a cooking class with chef Mark – the ladies all brought their daughters for some hashtag girltime. They came home with some meatballs served with pasta made from scratch that was divine. Oh, and some lemon cookies that were out-of-this-world.

Kid-friendly, mom-approved. Give All In One Chef a call.

The best for Italian cooking: The Local Epicurean

The Local Epicurean doesn’t only offer cooking classes – it’s also a store. They’ve got everything you’d expect an upscale Italian market to carry, fancy vinegars and oils, tomatoes and sauces, and, of course, handmade pastas.

But you’re here for the cooking classes, so let’s dish (pun alert!). The Local Epicurean is the go-to spot for cooking classes in GR – they’re offered with way more frequency than the other options on this list. And you’re going to be whipping up some delicious Italian, one of the great world cuisines.

What’s more, all the classes at The Local Epicurean will have you cooking up a three-course meal. How does this sound: a first course of romaine wedge salad with sun-dried tomato vinaigrette, followed by a rack of lamb, rosemary pecorino pesto, handmade spaghetti, then lemon and mint gelato for dessert?

I know what you’re thinking. I had a rack of lamb with rosemary pecorino pesto and handmade spaghetti last night! I kid.

Look, if you want to learn how to make incredible, authentic Italian dishes, look no further than The Local Epicurean. You’ll be giving everything you make a chef’s kiss and declaring it delizioso.

Don’t have the time or energy to book a cooking class? The Local Epicurean has you covered. Call ahead and grab some of their goodies to go. Lasagnas, pastas, Italian sides, and sauces are all offered for sale out the door – just heat them up at home.

The best couples cooking classes: The Downtown Market

Grab your boo! You’re going downtown tonight, and you’re gonna be cooking. Hopefully, whatever you’re whipping up is an aphrodisiac.

Cooking classes at the Downtown Market happen about once a month. They’re offered in the teaching kitchen on the second floor of the market.

Options here span the globe. Try making your own sushi, or opt for a class cooking Mediterranean food.

Is Latin American cuisine more your thing (or your significant other’s)? The Downtown Market has classes on that, too.

Whichever class you elect to take, you and your plus one are bound to have an epic night to remember. Grab a glass of wine at Apertivo afterward. Hold hands, send each other peach emojis – whatever you kids are into these days.

What happens next is between you and your boo.

  • Address: 435 Ionia Ave. SW, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
  • Website: Downtown Market

The best kid-friendly cooking classes: Mary Free Bed YMCA

From peach emojis to kids’ cooking classes. That’s what happens, guys.

If you’ve got your kid-in-tow and want to teach them some healthy cooking basics, look no further. The YMCA isn’t just a gym. Or one of the greatest dance anthems of all time.

They also offer classes, including kids’ cooking classes.

The class type will be determined by the age of your kiddo. If your kid is between 3 and 5 years old, sign up for the book and cook (the price includes a children’s book to take home). So you can read through “Dragons Love Tacos,” then whip up some tacos.

If your kids are older, say 6-12, the Y offers classes for them, too. These tend to focus on preparing healthful, nutritious food.

Another great kid-friendly option: Frederik Meijer Gardens

It’s true, Frederik Meijer Gardens isn’t just a garden and sculpture park. They offer classes for kids and adults, and some of those classes involve cooking.

The classes at FMG are light, unpretentious affairs. You won’t be making French staples like buerre blanc or a demi-glace here. Think baking with kids – pizza dough and cookies are two popular classes.

They also have kombucha-making classes if you or your kids are into fermented tea (mine are. Go figure).

After your class, stroll around the gardens. My personal favorite sculpture is “Julia” by Keith Haring, located in the sculpture section of the gardens. It radiates 1980’s NYC energy.

Or, take your kids to the Children’s Garden. Note the sculpture at the entrance, “Two Bears,” which depicts a brown and black bear sitting peacefully (this would not happen in nature). The sculptor, Michigan native Marshall Fredricks, served in the air force during WWII (it pays to listen to the volunteers, kids).

  • Address: 1000 E Beltline Ave NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49525
  • Website: Meijer Gardens

Bonus: cocktail classes at San Chez Bistro

After preparing all that delicious food, I’ll bet you’ve worked up a thirst.

Quench it with a cocktail that you crafted yourself at San Chez. Actually, you’ll be making two cocktails in class, and the admission includes some light eats and 20% off your bill if you grab food afterward. Sign me up.

  • Address: 38 West Fulton, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
  • Website: San Chez

What about GRCC Cooking Classes?

While it’s true that Grand Rapids Community College has offered some cooking classes for enrolled college students, unfortunately for the rest of us, these classes aren’t available to the public.

Recently closed: Sur La Table

Sadly, Sur La Table in Grand Rapids closed during the pandemic and no longer offers cooking classes in the area.