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“When Your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart's delight.”

The Cooking Workshop harnesses the creative and intense sensory fun of making and eating foods to "taste and see" the Bible lesson.  Be sure to read "What is the Cooking Workshop?"  All our Bible Lesson Forums have Cooking Workshop topics full of ideas. Supporting Members should be sure to visit the Writing Team's exemplary and extra-creative Cooking Workshop lessons.

Member JeremyC posted the following question:

"Why have a Cooking Workshop in Sunday School?"

He added that his church built a fellowship hall/gym with a state of the art kitchen a few years ago. Because of this, they had an old kitchen not being utilized and was wondering about the wisdom of turning it into a Cooking Workshop at their Workshop Rotation Model Sunday School.

His questions were:

1. Do kids (boys and girls) like the cooking station? 

2. What type of appliances will we need? (The stove and fridge were removed due to non use!)

Thank you for your responses.

Signed, Jeremy

This topic thread has a number of the replies made to Jeremy's question.

You may also enjoy reading "What is the Cooking Workshop?"

Last edited by Neil MacQueen
Original Post

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Our kids LOVE the cooking rotation. Boys like it as much as girls.

While there are some recipes that use the stove, oven there are many that do not. If you don't think you will use them often, you can always use my college dorm standby's -- hot plate and toaster oven Big Grin at least for awhile. But seriously, you might have a member willing to donate a stove when they do their kitchen remodel. The fridge is convenient for storing materials until time to use, but you can move it from the main fridge. The main thing to think about is "are we making our children second class citizens?"

We actually use our "state of the art" kitchen for rotation. A few stools around the island for the kids to sit on, and aprons and chef hats have done the trick.

Remember that "cooking" doesn't always have to involve an oven/stovetop. We've even done some food related lessons in our game room when no cooking was involved. There are lots of non-cook recipes and ideas.

When we do a cooking rotation, we don't have a designated workshop. We just use our small fellowship room that has a very small attached kitchen. We had planned a cooking rotation a few months ago and lo and behold no one told me in advance that the oven there was "dead". So we just had our "shepherd" take the items down around the corner to the "big kitchen" to cook. So that may be an option for you, too.

ALL our boys and girls love the cooking rotations!

Jan @ First Pres. Napa CA
I have done 'cooking with kids' in a before and after school program with no use of a kitchen at all. See if you can get a hold of an electric frying pan, an electric griddle and/ or a toaster oven. I picked up my electric frying pan when my mother was going to throw it out. One of the feet on the base is broken, so it's a bit wobbly. It works fine.

Our kids, both boys and girls, love the cooking rotation. Who doesn't like to eat?! We often don't use the stove or oven. It's certainly not necessary to have one in the room if there's one in the building somewhere. In another church in which I did rotation model, we conducted our class in the "big kitchen." There are a number of cooking resources out there. In addition to the ones already mentioned, there's one called "Edible Bible Lessons" (or something close to that).

This book can be found listed in the Cooking Workshop Book Resources.

Last edited by Luanne Payne

Our kids love cooking as well and it fills the church with such great smells! These are the cooking workshops we have done in our first year and the first two months of this year:

pretzels - Lord's prayer
latkes - Rosh Hashana
lentil soup - Jacob and Esau
challah - Jewish traditions
palm leaf cookies - Easter (Palm Sunday focus)
seder items - Passover
bean soup packages to give away - Joseph
Joseph's Jumble pudding - Joseph - Was once available as a free lesson from the publisher Potters Workshops, they are no longer active.


Exchange Volunteer updated source of Joseph lesson.

Last edited by Luanne Payne
Cooking is one of the most popular workshops we have. We use our kitchen table mostly. Occasionally we need to use the stove, but we ALWAYS use the sink. If only to wash our hands before class or to wipe up the table after.

I highly recommend using cooking as a workshop. It allows the children to expience the stories is a truly differant way than they normally would!
Good LUck,
Like others have said -our cooking workshop--Five Loaves Kitchen is one the kids favorites.

We just had a great lesson on Peter's meeting with Jesus after the resurrection on the shore of the sea of Gallilee. A full description is on the holy week peter stories. Kids who never would try fish at least sampled their 'sea side breakfast'

We use food in other workshops--when a guest, either present day or from Bible times comes to tell their story in Bible Trails, gathering around the low tables sitting on pillows and enjoying fruit, bread or other light snack seems to encourage conversation, wondering and a sense of really getting to know a character as well as an underlying lesson of the importance of hospitality.
When watching videos there is always popcorn or goldfish.

When the kids are eating or preparing food they just seem to get more comfortable, relaxed, like they are at home. One of my goals in this way of doing church is for church to be more like home and less like school.

posted February 11, 2004

We find that our kids love the cooking rotations the best of all! What we are discovering from talking to them afterwards is that they have not made the connections between the cooking and the story. Has anyone else had this problem? How have you solved it? Is it perhaps poor delivery on the teacher's part or is the symbolism behind, say, making Lion Chow
for Daniel & the Lions, beyond them? I have taken note of Lisa, Worm Warrior's tips> What other help can people give me?



Lisa M.
Exchange Volunteer
"Mythic WoRM Warrior"

posted February 17, 2004

Hey Hilary,
It is true that children often need to have the dots connected for them -- you can't just make lion's chow and hope they figure out it has to do with Daniel. There needs to be story surrounding it.

Our general format for all lessons it to begin with some questions, delve into the story, do an activity that explains or deepens our understanding of the story, wrap it up by reviewing the story again, and then eating whatever was made.

One of the challenges with cooking is that you often have recipes that need time to cook, so you need to start right away and get things baking in the oven or chilling in the refrigerator. That works for the recipe, but it makes it harder to make the connection with the Bible story. Even when the recipe is simpler, I think the instinct is to move into preparation too soon.

If it's possible, do a simple recipe, and emphasize the need with your teachers to have opening discussion before you start cooking. If you have something that you're worried won't be done by the end of class take a page out of all those cooking shows on TV "I just happen to have a completed ___ in the refrigerator" and use that for eating together at the end of class.

We are fortunate in that we have an early and late service with Sunday School between. A woman who always attends early church teaches the class and if the recipes aren't done by the end of class, she takes them out of the oven and has them ready to hand out to the children following the second worship service. That allows them to be less concerned with finishing in the allotted time.

Hope this helps.

Last edited by Luanne Payne
When we first started Kingdom Quest, we thought our cooking workshop (Taste of Heaven) would be a nice "extra" if we needed to plug something in. Well, we soon found out that it was one of the kids' favorites (even our 5th and 6th graders who are sometimes hard to please)! Now we try to include it as much as possible.

Some things we've learned: since we were blessed to be able to have our own kitchen in our new Children's Ministry wing, we designed it to be fun and inviting. The walls are bright yellow with huge floor to ceiling fruits, veggies, utensils, etc. painted in bold colors. (Pics are at We spent the extra to purchase a double oven since we bake a lot and in large quantities - it helps when you're in a time crunch. We decided against building an island due to cost and inflexibility. Instead, we use low tables and stools and can re-arrange the room as often as we want. This way, small groups of kids and adults can work together at a table. (We've also moved everything out when we do messy projects for other workshops, such as making mud/straw bricks.)

To help with the need for quick clean-up at the end of the hour, the leaders hand out job cards. Each child gets a card with a task to do - take used utensils over to the sink, put leftover ingredients on the prep table, wipe off the table, etc. This way, everyone pitches in and knows just what they're supposed to do.

Not only is Taste of Heaven a lot of fun, but leaders who aren't comfortable in other workshops find it easy to work with the kids in the kitchen. We also try to make extra, so the kids can take some home to share along with a copy of the recipe - making it readily apparent to parents and older/younger siblings what they did and a good discussion starter at home.

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