High School Cook-Off | RachelCooks.com

You guys.

I just can’t keep quiet any more. I am so excited about this project I have been working on.

As some of you know, my husband is an assistant principal at a very large, urban high school right outside of Detroit, Michigan. One of the courses offered there is called “Food For Life.”

Food For Life is a basic food and nutrition class for high school students.  The students learn all the skills needed to prepare basic recipes from scratch.  Creativity is encouraged as they advance to more difficult recipes.  Alterations to recipes to suit their own tastes are eventually encouraged. Students also assess their own diets as they learn how to make and prepare healthier food choices utilizing the new MyPyramid.

My husband, the teacher of the class and I are creating an exciting cooking competition.

Here are some details:

The students will be making PIZZA! The possibilities here are endless. They will work in groups of 6 to create unique pizzas from scratch including the dough and sauce. Once they have completed their pizzas, there will be an in-class vote. Pizzas will be judged by staff members based on taste, creativity and appearance.  The top two pizzas from each class will be photographed by photography students at the high school. (This is happening today!)

Eight pizzas will advance to be posted here next week Wednesday to be publicly voted upon for two weeks. So show up here next week and vote (there are perks for you, too–I’ll get to that in a sec.).

Can we talk about why I am so stinking excited about this? I just think this is such a great way to support these kids.  The teacher reports that many of these students do not even have measuring spoons at home! This is a really sad thing. That means these kids are eating JUNK. Take-out, pre-packaged meals, etc. I am really hoping that this project will help them learn to love cooking at an early age, therefore also encouraging healthy habits and smart financial choices.

Let’s talk prizes for a second.

Each winning student will receive over 225 dollars worth of prizes!

Did you hear that? Over two-hundred and twenty-five dollars worth. Each! Umm, yeah. We have some seriously generous and amazing sponsors on board and I am so grateful to every single one of them. They have prizes for you too, if you come here and vote.

Each student in the winning group will receive:

In addition, winners will be chosen at random from those who cast votes for prizes including:

  • Le Creuset Essential Bakeware Set ($277 retail value)
  • Wüsthof Classic 4.5-inch Micro-Serrated Utility Knife ($60 retail value)
  • KitchenAid® 5-Speed Hand Blender ($129.99 retail value)
  • Red Star Yeast Kneaded Loaf book, apron, cutting/kneading board, spatula and thermometer ($35 retail value)
  • Keep It Sweet Desserts gourmet gift basket ($50+ retail value)
  • A case of 32 ounce Chobani yogurt ($100 retail value)
  • Three Flavor Artisan Caramel Combination Pack from Toot Sweet Caramels ($30+ retail value)
  • Kerrygold gift basket ($175 retail value)
  • California Pizza Kitchen gift card ($50 retail value)


Blendtec has also agreed to donate a blender for the students to use in the classroom (color me jealous!). They will also be using Red Star Yeast and California Olive Ranch olive oil during their pizza preparation.

I have such high hopes for these pizzas — I cannot wait to see what the students come up with. My hope is that they are overwhelmed with the support and generosity of the culinary community and are inspired to get in the kitchen on a regular basis. Come back Wednesday to pick your favorite pizza and be entered to win one of those great prizes!


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