Cooking Matters


Share Our Strength's Cooking Matters™ empowers families at risk of hunger with the skills, knowledge and confidence to make healthy and affordable meals. With the help of volunteer culinary and nutrition experts, course participants learn how to select nutritious and low-cost ingredients and prepare them in ways that provide the best nourishment possible to their families.


Cooking Matters has received special recognition from the U.S. Department of Agriculture for excellence in nutrition education. The program was also featured by First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move campaign, a nationwide initiative dedicated to raising a healthier generation of kids.


Each of Cooking Matter’s curricula teaches hands-on meal preparation with particular emphasis on fruits, vegetables and whole-grains, practical nutrition information and food budgeting skills. All participants receive recipes and take home materials from the day’s lessons. Adult and teen participants take home a bag of groceries each week to reinforce and practice what they have learned.


Cooking Matter’s courses include six weekly, two-hour lessons:

1. COOKING MATTERS FOR ADULTS teaches low-income adults (offered in English and Spanish) how to prepare and shop sensibly for healthy meals on a limited budget. This curriculum can be paired with:
            • EXTRA for Parents of Preschoolers, an addendum focused specifically on adults with preschool-age children.
            • EXTRA for Diabetes, an addendum offering specialized information for adults living with or at-risk of diabetes.

2. COOKING MATTERS FOR KIDS engages kids ages 8 to 12 in learning about healthy eating and provides simple nutritious recipes that children can prepare themselves.

3. COOKING MATTERS FOR FAMILIES teaches school-age children (ages 6 to 12) and their parents about healthy eating as a family and the importance of working together to plan and prepare healthy meals on a budget. This curriculum can be offered in English or Spanish.

4. COOKING MATTERS FOR TEENS teaches teens how to make healthy food choices, meals and snacks for themselves, their families and friends.

5. COOKING MATTERS FOR CHILDCARE PROFESSIONALS teaches child care professionals about healthy meal preparation and creating a healthy food environment for the children in their care.

6. SHOPPING MATTERS is a one-time educational grocery store tour lead by a local, trained facilitator who guides families to make healthy and affordable choices when grocery shopping. Visit for more information.





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