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Community Cooking: Wholesome Eating on a Budget brings nutrition education directly to the people who need it most: clients of emergency food programs. The program is held on site at our member agencies and is designed to help their clients create healthier meals on a tight budget, with a focus on balance, moderation and variety.

This month, to celebrate Valentine's Day, Community Cooking presents a heart-healthy recipe for you to try at home. 

Baked Oatmeal and Blueberry Muffins are a great way to fuel your body on a cold winter morning. 

And try our Black Bean Brownie Recipe

Focus on Health
In addition to offering learning experiences for clients, the Food Bank also trains staff and volunteers at our 
member agencies, so they can extend these opportunities to more people.

Community Cooking  is a flexible program, designed to meet various levels of interest and availability among those we serve. Regardless of the length of the learning experience, we always focus on four key areas:

  • Nutrition (following the USDA's guidelines for healthy eating)
  • Healthy Cooking
  • Food Safety
  • Food Budgeting

The Eight-Week Program
This in-depth course, held once a week, gives participants hands-on experience as they cook and sample a different healthy recipe each week, using food typically available at food pantries. During classroom time, the instructor targets a particular aspect of nutrition and provides tips on shopping and budgeting to help participants make the most of their food dollars. At the end of each class, each participant leaves with the ingredients for the day's recipe so they can put their new skills to work at home.

Some of the topics include:

  • Good Grains
  • The Value of Vegetables
  • Filling Up with Fruit
  • Mooving on to Milk
  • Choosing Lean Protein
  • Facts about Fact

One-Time Lesson Plans
Some clients may not be able to commit to an 8-week program, so we offer one-time workshops on a variety of topics. Interactive, hands-on activities help people to learn new cooking and shopping techniques in an hour or less that will improve their ability to feed their families.

Quick Picks
In addition to our formal workshops, we also do "pop in" lessons at food pantries -- the perfect diversion when someone is waiting in line for their food. What can you do in just a few minutes? Learn to make salsa! Find out how much sugar is in your beverage choice. Understand how to use portion control. All useful skills that can be acquired in just a few minutes.

For a complete menu of Community Cooking program offerings, click here.

Find out more about Community Cooking in this short video.