The best online cookery classes – written by Melanie May
As many of us stay at home to help limit the spread of the coronavirus, our favourite chefs, home cooks and bakers have found virtual ways to help us be more confident in the kitchen. Through Zoom workshops, Instagram cook-alongs, Facebook Live tutorials and pre-recorded courses, we can learn how to take our kitchen skills, or lack thereof, to another level. All from the comfort of our own homes. Want to get the kids involved too? There are plenty of cookery courses aimed at getting the little ones into the kitchen, too.
Some of these virtual cooking experiences will cost you and some are free. But all are a great way to improve technique and to liven up your recipe repertoire.
So, if you are spending more time cooking and could do with some inspiration for mealtimes, here are 10 of the best online cookery classes.
Ready. Steady. Cook, or bake!
- Ballyknocken Cookery School – Catherine Fulvio
Catherine has classes to suit all levels and abilities on her online cookery school. She runs one-off classes as well as longer courses for those looking for a more in-depth experience. She also has a great selection of classes for students and those in transition year.
You can choose from pre-recorded courses with videos and recipes as well as live cook-along workshops.
For more details, visit the Catherine Fulvio website.
2. Ballymaloe Cookery School
The world-renowned Ballymaloe Cookery School in Cork offers a variety of cookery classes online hosted by Darina Allen, Rory O’Connell and Rachel Allen.
Classes are live-streamed, so you can cook-along. Prices start at €50 and most of the classes last one and a half hours. You can also book a course which shows you how to make three delicious suppers and this runs over three nights.
For more details, visit the Ballymaloe Cookery School website.
3. Brian McDermott
Brian McDermott is one of Ireland’s top chefs and TV food personalities. While his ‘No Salt’ cookery school in Donegal is closed, Brian is inviting people virtually into his kitchen where he shares his skills and recipes. There are loads of classes to choose from including ‘Breakfast and Brunch At Home’ and ‘One Pot Winter Warmers’. He also has a great ‘Dinner Date At Home’ course coming up that would be perfect prep for a romantic Valentine’s night at home.
When you book a class, you will be given a list of ingredients so you can pick them up in time for the demo and cook alongside Brian. Classes take place via Zoom and cost €25.
For more details, visit the Chef Brian McDermott website.
4. Clodagh McKenna
Over on her Instagram account, Irish chef and cookbook author, Clodagh McKenna is doing daily lockdown cookery demos on IGTV. You can watch and cook-along with her or if you can’t join in, she saves all her recipes to her highlights. She is also running live cookery classes via Zoom where she cooks two suppers from her new cookbook.
For more details, see the Clodagh McKenna website.
5. Dingle Cookery School
The award-winning Dingle Cookery School has a superb selection of online cookery courses, which cover everything from bread making to mastering shellfish. Voted the Best Cookery School in Ireland in 2019, the celebrated tutors show you in a fun and engaging way how to prep, cook and serve a variety of dishes. Classes start from €110.
For more details, visit the Dingle Cookery School website.
6. Dunbrody House Cookery School – Kevin Dundon
Celebrity chef, and owner of Dunbrody House in Wexford, Kevin Dundon is cooking up a storm each day, Tuesday to Saturday at 2pm over on Facebook and Instagram.
You can also book a range of longer online experiences which cost €70 per course. Did you get an air fryer for Christmas? Kevin has a course for that. His ‘Air Fryer Secrets’ course runs over seven days and has seven pre-recorded tutorials with recipes, there are two live cook-along sessions and a dedicated private Instagram page.
For more details, visit the Dunbrody House Cookery School website.
7. Firehouse Bakery – Patrick Ryan
Were you one of the many who tried to bake sourdough whilst stuck at home last year? Do you knead (not sorry in the slightest) to get another carb fix? Well, bread baker extraordinaire, Patrick Ryan of Firehouse Bakery is running an isolation bake club over on his Instagram profile.
During these Instagram live sessions, Patrick shows you step-by-step how to make a whole range of bread including baguettes and sourdough loaves.
For more details, visit the Firehouse Bread Instagram profile.
8. Kids Cook Cookery School – Lisa Halpenny
Get the kids cooking with the Kids Cook Cookery School. Using a private streaming service called Vimeo, Lisa and her fellow tutors do live cook-alongs as well as pre-recorded tutorials. There are easy recipes, activity sheets, informational videos from a registered dietitian and kitchen tips videos.
There is a subscription service and you can get a free trial before you commit.
For more details, visit the Kids Cook Cookery School website.
9. One Yummy Mummy – Jolene Cox
Every Wednesday at 1pm Jolene Cox, aka One Yummy Mummy, does a kid’s cook-along via Zoom. Recipes are creative, fun and kid-friendly. Best of all, they are free too! Jolene lets you know the recipe beforehand so you have time to get the ingredients and do all the prep needed. Not that you need very much, the recipes are very simple yet simply scrumptious.
For more details, check out the One Yummy Mummy Instagram profile.
10. Picado Mexican – Lily Ramirez-Foran
Looking to cook some authentic Mexican recipes? Let Lily of Picado Mexican show you how. During her scheduled live cooking classes, Lily not only shows you how to make super tasty dishes, she tells you the story behind them too. There are one-off classes like taco dinners and more in-depth courses like her masterclass series, which will give you a great foundation in understanding Mexican ingredients and the techniques used in Mexican kitchens to create gorgeous, flavourful food. Classes cost €25.
For more details, visit the Picado Mexican website.
11. Ciara’s Kitchen
Since March 2020 Ciara has had to pivot her in-person demos to online. Most attendees cook along although there is no pressure to do so. Some prefer to watch and cook later at their own pace. Ciara has an approachable teaching and cooking style and instills confidence in everyone’s ability to make delicious, tasty and nutritious meals. The main goal is to teach people of all levels how to cook different dishes and to inspire them to try and taste new ingredients all while having fun.
Ciara offers online classes every Saturday afternoon as well as teens and kid’s online classes during school holidays or during lockdowns. Corporate, transition year groups and private group bookings are also available. Prices start at €20 per screen. For more info on what is coming up please contact Ciara directly on log onto www.ciaraskitchen.ie/demos
12. Shane Smith
Master Pastry Chef, Shane Smith has daily cookery demos on his Instagram page and is baking up a storm. So if you fancy baking along or trying out Shane’s recipes head over to his Instagram for some serious baking inspiration.
13. Eric Matthews
Eric Matthews is Head Chef at Michelin Chapter One Restaurant in Dublin. If you are not following him on Instagram you are missing out. Eric hosts daily lockdown cook alongs with the help of his wife to be, Ciara.
A lot of laughs and some seriously amazing dishes, head over to Eric’s Instagram page for some really great recipes from a Michelin Star Chef, you won’t be disappointed.
14. Erica Drum
If you are looking for some really fun and uplifting cook alongs then head over to Erica Drum’s Instagram page @drums_kitchen. Erica is back with more Instagram Live cook alongs but this time she will have a new guest on each week. Make sure to tune in for great food and some great laughs.
15. Nico Reynolds
Nico Reynolds who you might recognise from Living with Lucy is cooking up a storm over on his Instagram page. Nico is always bringing something that little bit different and loves outdoor cooking. His recipes are Irish, Caribbean and Latin American inspired making his dishes really unique. Head over to his channel for some really delicious food!
We have some amazing Chef Masterclass Series over on our YouTube channel from Patrick Ryan’s bread masterclasses to Shane Smith’s Afternoon Tea series, Kwanghi Chan’s Modern Asian Cooking, April Danann’s Wild Food Series, Giuseppe’s Italian masterclasses and much more. Make sure to subscribe as we have some more amazing series coming up this year.
16. East Coast Cookery School
Tara Walker is a Corden Blue trained chef. Due to Covid restrictions Tara has some really amazing cookery classes available. You can choose between classes from 6-7pm at €20 per screen or Family Lunchtime Cookalongs at 1pm 2 days per week at €10 per screen. Book your slot here.
17. The Cool Food School
Calling all young budding cooks, Deirdre from The Cool Food School has some great courses for you to try starting at €15 or why not try our her 6 week cookery course. Book your place here.
18. Gar Mullins
Executive Chef of The Marker Hotel, Gar Mullins has been doing some great things over on his Instagram page. Lot’s of great recipes to try out with the kids. Gar is also doing online Zoom classes and if you wish to take part drop him an email firstname.lastname@example.org
19. Holly White
Looking for some really delicious vegan recipes? Holly White has launched her Meat-Free Monday Live classes staring from €32. You can book classes here.