Consumers' interest in learning about cooking: The influence of age, gender and education

Anthony Worsley, Wei Wang, Sinem Ismail, Stacey Ridley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


General and governmental interest in cooking has increased recently. In part this may be because the acquisition of food preparation skills may make individuals less dependent on processed foods and reduce risks of overweight and obesity. However, little research has been conducted on consumers' interests in learning about cooking. Therefore in 2012 an online survey was conducted in Australia among 1023 adult food preparers with the aim of determining what and how they wanted to learn to cook. Questions were asked about interest in learning about cooking-related topics, specific main meals and cooking techniques, preferred ways to learn, and their demographic characteristics. Frequency and cross-tabulation analyses were used to compare the responses across demographic categories, and content and correspondence analyses were used to analyse meal preferences and age-related differences. The findings show that 71% of the sample wanted to learn more about cooking. Respondents wanted to learn to cook a wide range of evening meals, especially ethnic dishes (e.g. Chinese, Thai, Italian, 'Asian'). Most preferred to learn from television (68%), newspapers and magazines (41%), although attendance at cooking classes (34%), YouTube (27%) and special newsletters (24%) were also popular. There were few, weak associations between interest in cooking and the respondents' demographic characteristics. The findings are discussed in relation to the common problems faced by all domestic food preparers and the major opportunities to communicate about cooking.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)258-264
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Consumer Studies
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - May 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Australia
  • Cooking
  • Demographic
  • Learning
  • Meals
  • Survey

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