Cooking Skills and Life Skills

In everything that we do as parents, we are either cooking or doing something in the home that is a skill that most children need to survive in this crazy world. A strong foundation of life skills prepares most kids for independence and success. Recently, our autistic son completed one of his general education classes for 9th grade, which was a culinary class. He loved that class in all of its glory but the only caveat was that all of the classes are online and there was no hands on cooking, just lots of videos. Just one of the necessary set backs that we are all going through because of social distancing. But then I got to thinking of what things, as a parent, could I be doing to instill more life skills and cooking skills for our autistic son.

Life Skills Taught By Cooking

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  • Working with Others
  • Learning About other countries
  • Following Directions or Instructions on how to make the recipes
  • Learning about food freshness and safety
  • Learning about health concerns and obesity
  • Interest and knowledge in food

Cooking Skills Taught about Life Lessons

As a parent of a special needs child I am often concerned with how life will be when our son graduates. We hope that the life skills he learns in school, life, books, videos, social distancing and yes even in the midst of a pandemic that it will be enough to sustain him throughout his life. Here are a few more life skills that can be taught by cooking classes.

Social Skills

The time you spend around others and your same age peers helps develop more social skills.

Product Testing

We all know this is the fun part of cooking and so fun! Sampling and tasting the food you prepare, you can even make a career out of this.


Food Safety 3D cube Word Cloud Concept

Learning to take the necessary steps to make sure the kitchen area and everywhere around the kitchen is safe, good, cleaned, stored properly, prep surfaces are cleaned and overall equipment is properly disinfected.

Creativity Around Cooking

There are many opportunities to be full of creative ideas and firsts around food. You can create your own master pieces, upgrade or totally overhaul and old recipe. The sky is the limit!


cheerful little asian girl sitting at table while grandmother serving lunch with fresh veggies
Photo by Alex Green on

Cooking is a great activity to work with others. Learning to succeed with the help and expertise of other people, will in turn help the autistic individual draw from professional talents and experiences.


Unfortunately, this is is a skill that usually takes a back seat. In regards to cooking, this is usually the last skill that parents teach to their kids, especially if they are on the spectrum or other types of special needs. Cooking is a skill that should be taught early and as often as possible so that the end goal always remains the same to possibly one day have your son or daughter cook dinner for you or a four course meal!

Here are some more activities and information that I found regarding special needs cooking and life skills, especially for those on the spectrum.

Life Skills Activities for the Classroom

Cooking Tasty Videos and Facts

Enjoy and Have a Wonderful Weekend!

By MomAdvocate