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Come dine online

Don’t whisk it – use these top tips to cook up a virtual storm with an online cook-along.

You will need

  • Device with access to the internet
  • Cooking equipment
  • Ingredients

Before you begin

  • This activity’s designed for you to run during an online session. Check out the advice on using Zoom and other popular digital platforms and the guidance on staying safe online.
  • Let everyone’s parents and carers know that you’ll be cooking and explain that they may need to help their young person with this activity. Send them a copy of the ingredients and equipment (or a link to this activity) so they can prepare.

Get cooking

  1. The person leading the activity should welcome everyone to the meeting and mute them.
  2. Everyone should show that they have their ingredients, equipment, and an adult.
  3. Everyone should wash their hands.
  4. The person leading the activity should show everyone how to do each step of the recipe. Everyone should follow along. The person leading the activity could ask people how it’s going and congratulate people who are doing really well.
  5. Once everyone’s finished their recipe they should try their creation. People could put their hands up if they’d like to share something about the activity or how their finished product tastes. The person leading the activity should unmute people one at a time so they can share.

Top tips

  • Think about where you’ll put your camera: how will you make sure it’s out of the way of the mess but that everyone can see what you’re doing? Maybe you could make a tripod out of cookbooks, for example.
  • We’ve suggested cooking along with everyone, but you may want to prepare some things in advance so you can focus on leading the conversation and helping anyone who’s finding it tricky.
  • Find a good time to check in with people and ask how they are – it’s good to keep the conversation flowing, but people probably won’t want to unmute themselves if they have messy hands.
  • Decide whether you’ll include a quick recap of kitchen skills or hygiene at the start of the session. A virtual cooking session can be a great way to tick off some badge requirements.

Recipe suggestions

Looking for some inspiration? Why not try one of the international recipes below:

Taiwanese tangyuan

Celebrate the winter solstice with these simple sweet rice treats.

Tangyuan time

Madagascan meal

Whip up a refreshing glass of ranovola, a Madagascan toasted rice treat.

Rice, rice, tasty

Swedish snacks

Cook up some kanelbullar with this simple Swedish cinnamon roll recipe.

Four ingredient fika


This activity was all about building confidence in the kitchen by cooking up an exciting recipe. Reflect on this online culinary adventure with a few quick questions:

  • What food did everyone make? If people chose what to make, why did they choose what they did? 
  • Who had heard of, eaten, or made this dish before?
  • Was the food similar to another popular dish? What was similar (and different)?
  • What meal could you create with the ingredients from this recipe and three more ingredients of your choice?


All activities must be safely managed. Use the safety checklist to help you plan and risk assess your activity. Do a risk assessment and take appropriate steps to reduce risk. Always get approval for the activity and have suitable supervision and an InTouch process.


Teach young people how to use cooking equipment safely. Supervise them appropriately throughout. Make sure it’s safe to use and follow manufacturers’ guidelines for use.

Fires and stoves

Make sure anyone using fires and stoves is doing so safely. Check that the equipment and area are suitable and have plenty of ventilation. Follow the gas safety guidance. Have a safe way to extinguish the fire in an emergency.


Check for allergies before you begin and read the guidance on food safety. Make sure you have suitable areas for storing and preparing food and avoid cross contamination of different foods.