Today we tried Cook School Clubs family recipe box which is specifically designed for kids to make and wow! We were sent this family recipe box to try out by Amanda (one of the co founders of Cook School), but I had no obligation to write anything at all about it. However, as soon as I opened the box I knew I would be doing a full review and if you follow me on Instagram you will also know that I went wild with stories about the box. I was so very impressed from the very start.
What is Cook School all about?
Cook School is a nationwide, not-for-profit that helps children understand food and learn to cook. So far they have been able to give cook school lessons to some 50,000 children, but it doesn’t stop there. They also have a cook school club family recipe box that you can subscribe to and this not only provides your family with a meal that you can cook together at home, but also helps to support the organization with its mission to teach further kids about food and cooking.
Their mission is:
‘Our ambition is to help children to understand food, teach children how to cook basic, healthy meals and give them the skills and the confidence to repeat cook at home for their family and friends.’
and their in-person lessons are delivered at schools and in local communities across the nation. Their Cook School family recipe box is a spin off of this and means that even if your child isn’t in a Cook School lesson they can still get the experience of cooking a meal for their family.
What is in your Cook School Family Recipe Box?
Our Cook School Box contained all of the ingredients to make a vegetarian Paella. Every Cook School Box is vegetarian and has pre portioned ingredients for you to use so there is no measuring or messing about. Everything food item that is in your cook school box is for that meal.
The box also contains a really clear recipe card. The idea is that your children do the cooking. Depending on their age you may of course need to support them and assist with some elements, but the recipe card is laid out very simply and clearly so that it can be easily followed by children.
The cook school box recipe card has both words and pictures for the kids to follow and here is the best bit… it also has a QR code on it which, when scanned, takes you to videos of the recipe being made by other children which is just perfect and so much more relatable.
The other thing that is in your Cook School box are Kitchen Skills Cards. These are cards that explain how to perform a particular process within the recipe. In the Paella box we were sent two cards about using a knife and the different way that you can safely hold your knife when cutting the vegetables up.
Again there are QR codes on these cards so that you can see the technique in action, but it is also explained on the card in words and drawings. I actually think that this is genius and it really did teach my son (aged 10) how to hold the vegetables and gave me comfort that he wouldn’t remove his fingers as our knives are sharp and ordinarily off limits to the children.
What are the benefits of ordering a Cook School Family Recipe Box?
Well the fact that my eldest son learnt some valuable knife safety skills for cooking is benefit number one for me… My kids rarely listen to me especially not when I am trying to teach them something, but if it is written down or they can watch a video of the instruction they are all over it!
The second benefit is that children really are able to make these recipes. I did not help my ten year old with this. He made this meal himself following the instructions. Obviously I was supervising and I helped him get the heavy pot in and out of the oven, but apart from that he did everything!
Not only did that mean that I didn’t have to cook tonight as he made the meal for all 6 of us, but it is awesome for his self esteem. He was, quite rightly, super proud of himself as he served up this delicious meal (and it was flipping delicious) that he had made all by himself. At his age he is looking to become more independent and to try doing this alone. He wants to be given responsibility and this Cook School box is such an amazing and positive way to give this to him.
He and I spent time together talking about cooking, shelling peas, trying vegetables that he didn’t think he liked and discussing how their taste changes when they are cooked. Essentially, we had a lovely time together whilst he prepped the food. Cooking is, for me, all about enjoying the process and so often as a busy mum I don’t enjoy it. It is a necessity rather than a joy, but today, even though I was only taking pots out of the oven and shelling a few peas, cooking was a joy. I had someone to share my love of great ingredients and cooking with and it was lovely.
Cooking is a life skill. I have heard people say that they can’t cook so many times and I always think that is such a shame. Cooking can be so relaxing and a way of making those that you love happy and a way of keeping you all healthy. So I think a Cook School Box that encourages children to learn about food and helps give them these vital cooking skills is a fantastic idea.
How did the Cook School Box Recipe Taste?
I was ludicrously impressed with the Veggie Paella. I would not have chosen to make a vegetarian paella without this box if I am honest. I always think of it with meat and seafood, but I did not miss those things at all with this recipe. I was so very pleasantly surprised by the amount of flavour that was still in the dish even without the meat.
Also, don’t tell my children, but I don’t really like cooked peppers that much, but in this Paella they were just perfect. I ate every mouthful and may have gone back for seconds…
How much are the Cook School Family Recipe Boxes?
You can order a one-off Cook School family recipe box for for just £22. The recipe we were sent said that it would feed 4-6 people and it did that easily considering the husband, eldest son and I all had seconds. We were two adults and four children for dinner this evening and there was more than enough. There are even leftovers for my parents.
The subscriptions are £20 / delivery and you will receive a box once every two weeks. You can pause these for holidays etc…
Remember each time you buy a cook school club family recipe box you are helping the organization continue its work to educate children around food and cooking. There is also an option to make donation towards the wider work of the organization which is, of course, delivering as many cooking lessons to as many children as possible. The aim is to reach 200,000 children this year!
On the Cook School website, you will also find some of their recipes that you can try at home. My son has picked out these https://cookschool.club/cinnamon-buns/ Cinnamon Buns for his next project as they are the husband’s very favourite sweet treat.
Seeing how happy it made my son to be there doing it and making this dinner for all of us was the highlight of my week. I will 100% be getting a cook school box again. In fact, I have already had a look to see what the next recipe is and I am salivating. Head over and take a look (not at me salivating 😊)
I am hoping that the second box will go down as well as the first and if it does then I will look at getting a subscription where you get one recipe every two weeks. I am genuinely so very impressed with the cook school box both from an ethical and ideals point of view and from a wow it was yummy point of view! This would make a super weekend or half term activity for the kids and I really recommend giving them a try. If you like this you may also find our bread making with kids post useful.