What do a couple from Montego Bay ,, an instructor in Tokyo Sushi Academy ,, and the heir of a restaurant dynasty located in New Delhi share in common? All three host virtual Airbnb cooking classes that can show you how to make new and exciting dishes in your own home kitchen. We were avid travelers who wanted to experience local cuisines and would often book cooking classes via Airbnb in any country we visited. So when the world effectively shut down in 2020 due to the pandemic, putting our globetrotting on hold, we were delighted to find that the platform had brought all of those culinary experiences we loved online. And just like their IRL offerings, each class is designed and led by vetted hosts who are deeply knowledgeable about their local cuisines and cultures; easily bookable on the site’s platform, which allows you to filter by location, time, language, price, and number of people; and pretty affordable, starting at around $18 per person. We’ve already taken several virtual classes since discovering them. Each class was interactive, engaging, and well-organized, regardless of whether it was taught by an Italian nonna who has decades of experience or a casual restaurateur. Each instructor sent us an email before the classes started, listing all equipment, ingredients and preparation tasks. This ensured that we got the best lessons possible. We’d be able to prepare a delicious dinner for our date night from the comfort of the living room at the end of class. We know that choosing the right class is the hardest part. So, from Poland’s iconic cheese and potato-stuffed pierogies to chewy chapatis from Kenya, we’ve combed through the 3,000-plus virtual Airbnb cooking classes to bring you nine that are all guaranteed to take your taste buds on a world tour–no passport necessary.
In this nearly two hour class–which takes a 15 minute “noodle dance” break at the halfway point–you’ll learn how to make Chinese hand-pulled noodles from a couple of bonafide chefs in Shanghai. Brenda and Lee will show you how to make wheat dough from scratch, and then how to prepare noodles in two different ways: BiangBiang (broad noodles that look like belts) and Xinjiang Lamian(thin noodles that look like strands) before dressing them with a hot and sour. This class is full of bold flavors and great vibes. This reviewer gives it 6 stars. !”
In this 75 minute class, Bruna, a proud Italian nonna, will teach you how to make ravioli and tiramisu. She is a former student at the Paul Bocuse Institute in France, where she has spent many years cooking for her family. Bruna learned her family recipes while there. These are the same ones you will find in her class. Bruna’s online course was as fun as the in-person class we took a few years ago. We were welcomed to her Milan home by her, sharing a few funny stories and enjoying a round of Aperol shots. Bruna continued to lead the class with a clockwork efficiency. Bruna was a wealth of knowledge and shared many tips and tricks. She showed us how to seal ravioli without trapping air and how to make pasta sheets as thin and flexible as possible. We were able to enjoy plenty of delicious, pillowy-soft ravioli as well as decadent tiramisu by the end. Cin cin
Cooking tamales from scratch is a tall order, even for a seasoned home cook. Arturo, a chef, makes it much easier. He hosts his two-hour tamale tutorial online, even though he isn’t the head chef at a Mexican restaurant group. First, he’ll show you how to make masa dough, then how to fill it with chicken, pork or other vegetables. Also, you’ll learn how to make fresh salsa for those delicious corn husk-swathed treats. The class is a huge success, as is the food. One reviewer said that these were the best tamales she had ever tasted.
Every Sunday, Montego Bay-based home cooks Latoya and Delroy teach a one hour cooking class on the signature Jamaican patty. The class will cover the basics of flaky pastry making, as well as the rich and savory filling. They also share stories from the past and present cultural history. We had complete control over the ingredients and could make substitutions for our vegan diet preferences, which is a big advantage to an online class. We used Impossible Burgers in place of beef. It was Latoya’s and Delroy’s personal touches that made their class stand out. Our hour together felt like we were old friends, even though we only met them a few days before. We cooked, we ate, and at the end of the class, they sent us a playlist of reggae jams, along with 50 Jamaican recipes. If patties aren’t your speed, choose from 11 other Jamaican dishes–like ackee and saltfish or banana porridge–that Latoya and Delroy teach throughout the week.
In this 90 minute class, you’ll learn how to make not one but three Kenyan dishes. Josephine, a skilled home cook from Nairobi, will teach you how to make a variety of menus during the week. We loved her class on chewy chapatis, aromatic chicken, beef or vegetable curry, and ugali with steam cabbage. A fervent believer that the best meals are the ones you make for yourself, Josephine has shared her treasured family recipes with 7,000 students and counting. One reviewer recently wrote that Josephine was the best. Our chapatis were delicious. We took so much inspiration from Josephine’s class, that we are still talking about our experience days later.”
Team building exercises used to involve gathering in violently lit fluorescent rooms, sipping Folgers, and ‘trust-falling’ into the arms of your colleagues. You can now stuff samosas together with your colleagues thanks to online conferencing. According to the reviews, host Jd’s 75 minute class, which he teaches from his home in New Delhi, has been attended by teams from Google, Tesla, Apple, and Facebook. His family has been in the restaurant business for three generations, and he’s taught over 6,000 Airbnbers how to make his potato samosas with vibrant cilantro chutney. We loved the fact that he provided many substitutions, such as air-frying rather than deep-frying to accommodate different kitchens.
Kazari maki, which translates to ‘decorative roll,’ is where art meets sushi. Aya, a Tokyo Sushi Academy instructor, will teach you how to make Instagram-worthy sushi that looks like Renaissance-era stained-glass. These rolls are stunningly beautiful and delicious. The tamago and pickled vegetable fillings create flowers and stars. Awarded the 2020 Certificate of Excellence on TripAdvisor, Aya has instructed over 4,000 students on creating these edible canvases. We are open to any type of art that you can eat afterward.
Istanbul is a street food-lover’s paradise, and lahmacun–cracker-thin flatbread topped with a layer of spicy ground meat–is one of the ancient city’s most quintessential bites. Fatma, a Turkish chef, shares her family’s cooking secrets with her virtual students from her Turkey home. We found this experience authentic and enjoyable, despite the distance between us. This is mainly due to Fatma’s engaging personality and patience. In 90 minutes, Fatma walked us through the steps of making the crispy crust, the meaty topping, and herby garnish. Fatma’s lahmacun recipe can be easily adapted to any diet, including vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free. We used a sumac-laced herb garnish instead of meat to make our vegan flatbread. The food was excellent and the conversation was delightful. Each bite took us back to Turkey where we spent our honeymoon.
Turkish Cooking With Chef Fatima
Streaming from their home in Krakow and wearing traditional garb, Monika and Tomasz will acquaint you with their grandmother’s recipe for Poland’s favorite stuffed dumpling: the pierogi. In addition to preparing and rolling the stretchy dough, in this 90 minute class you’ll learn how to make the classic potato, white farmer’s cheese, and fried onion filling. This is not just a cooking class, it’s a chance to relax. Monika and Tomasz are great hosts, so they encourage you to enjoy a drink (preferably Polish vodka) while you cook. The whole class is a deep dive into Polish culture, with a touch of folk tradition and some food history.