The Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center (Higher Ed) provides undergraduate and graduate degree programs, professional development courses, as well as 95,000 square feet of high-tech conference facilities. LEARN MORE
  Cooking Along the Crooked Road

  Cooking Classes

Fall And Winter Classes in the Teaching Kitchen!

What better time than fall to tie up your apron strings and start getting creative in the kitchen! The season is changing and with it comes new recipes and holiday dishes. Join us to learn new skills and techniques and add wonderful new recipes to your collection. .

“Cooking Along the Crooked Road” classes offer children, teens, and adults a hands-on, creative experience that can transform mere nourishment into a culinary adventure. Students of all ages acquire valuable life-long skills, taught by local chefs and other accomplished, imaginative cooks. From Classic German to Holiday Pie Making; Youth Party Planning to Soups of the Season; and Gluten free baking to healthy cooking styles, there is something for everyone in the warmth of the teaching kitchen! We are offering over 12 new classes to choose from on Monday evenings and Saturday mornings.

With the holidays fast approaching, what better way to surprise that hard -to -buy-for chef in the family or that friend who loves to cook...than with an HEC culinary class gift certificate. Our culinary classes are both fun and educational and promise to leave you hungry for learning more! Certificates can be purchased by phone or click the link right here on our website to purchase online.

Did you know that our culinary kitchen is available to rent for special events? Groups up to 20 can create their own special hands-on cooking class and meal. Want to have a unique party for that upcoming shower or birthday? What about a girl or guy’s night out? A bridesmaids’ luncheon or special anniversary? We can help plan this and steer you to the perfect culinary teacher. For more information on room rental rates, contact conference services. Non-profit rates available.


Winter Wellness Warm-up Weekend
Spotlight: Cooking for Health 2015
January 17 and 18, 2015
A weekend of 5 Fantastic Classes
Classes: $35.00 each; 3 for $90.00; 5 for $125.00

Winter Canning for Healthy Eating
Kristy Slaughter, Gluten Free Guru
Saturday, January 17, 2015 9-11:30 am

Want to learn how to eat healthy and save money? Have you ever wondered what you can do with that big bag of dried beans or that wonderful pot of fresh vegetable soup? Come join us and learn the techniques of home canning with our gluten free canning class! In this class we'll share with you some of our favorite canning recipes. The class will sample soups & even can take home some culinary creations. Please bring 3 pint ball jars. This class is limited to 12 participants.

Paleo Diet: Pathway to Better Health
Saturday, January 17, 2015 12:15-2:45
Nicki McNew

Nikki McNew has observed first-hand how this approach to eating can change lives. She will share her advice and her delicious recipes as well as talk about how this approach to eating has changed her life. According to Dr. Loren Cordain, “The Paleo Diet is the healthiest way you can eat because it is the only nutritional approach that works with your genetics”. Students will enjoy preparing a meal together.

Living Food: Sprouting and Dehydrating
Saturday, January 17, 2015 3:30-5:30 pm
Jennifer Raichlin, Healing Meals

For the human body to thrive it must consume Live Food. In this hands-on class, Raw Culinary Chef & Chef Instructor, Jennifer Raichlin will explain how Live Food feeds the body and aids in healing. You will learn to sprout and grow your own living foods, plus how to turn them into delicious components of a healthy meal using the process of dehydration.

Juicing for Health
Sunday, January 18, 2015 12:00-2:00
Nicole Dyer, White Birch Company Juice Bar

Learn to mix and match fruits, vegetables, herbs and spices to conjure up some tasty, healthy juice on a Sunday afternoon. Nicole will take you through the steps of how to juice, what the benefits are of the juices you make, and how to pair/balance flavors to come up with the most healthful, tasteful nutrition in a glass! She will focus on sourcing produce as locally possible, sharing how to juice seasonally. There will also be some sample juice cleanses for those interested.

Body and Soul Vegetarian Soups
Sunday, January 18,, 2015 3:00-5:30
David Bassinger, Uncanny Kitchen

Keeping your body balanced and healthy is important in the winter time. Learn some new and delicious vegetarian soup recipes from David’s creative favorites. He will share local sources for seasonal organic produce as well as creative ways to liven up soups to keep you warm and your immune system strong this winter. The class will work together to prepare soups together.

Cooking from the Book II: SEAsoned: A Chef's Journey with her Captain
February 14, 2015
10 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Chef Catherine Elliot

Have you ever been caught up with descriptions of recipes and foods in a novel and wished you could slip into the book and have a taste? Now you can join in lively book discussions while participating in a hands-on cooking classes. Chef Catherine will choose one book each season and select her favorite recipes to cook and enjoy together.

“ An odyssey worthy of Homer” NPR

SEAsoned has it all: brilliant writing, wonderful humor, travel, adventure, and humanity, along with 30 mouthwatering recipes. From start to finish, this five star book will have you immersed in the hilarious and fascinating life of a newlywed chef sailing the high seas with her husband, the captain…. all the while tantalizing our tastebuds along the way with her delicious recipes! A perfect book to read with spouse, friend or significant other for a lively discussion and incredible lunchtime cooking class on Valentine’s Day!

Cancellation and Refund Policy

The Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center reserves the right to cancel any class or make any other changes it deems necessary. Course fees will be refunded in full when the Higher Education Center cancels a course.

We also recognize that you may occasionally need to cancel your registration. You will receive a full refund for a Monday Class if you cancel your class by noon on Wednesday prior to the day of the class and a full refund for a Saturday Class if you cancel your class by noon on Monday prior to the day of class. It must be at least five days prior to the class. The chefs and cooks need to order their food and supplies several days ahead. If you fail to show up for a class, no refund will be made. You may allow someone to come in your place if you notify us by noon on the day of the class.

If you do need to cancel prior to the cancellation deadline, you may apply your payment to a future class. If you request a refund, you will be required to register as a vendor with the University of Virginia. This is a simple process that takes only a few minutes and may be done online by going to and choosing the Vendor Registration Form link.

See the schedule of classes (Adobe Reader required)

Comments about recent classes:

Summertime Grill and Chill: Both instructors and staff were great and very professional! Elizabeth

Cooking Along the Mediterranean Class: Wonderful class, great food and nice facilities! Thanks Laura

Cooking Along the Mediterranean Class: Amine was awesome and so enthusiastic. He answered any questions we had. I can’t wait to come back! Barbara

Low Country Boil class with Shawn Crookshank/Tim Arnold: This was a wonderful class. Please offer more opportunities like this. I enjoyed relaxing on the patio for a meal! Jeoff

The Julia Child Class was fabulous. Sheridan was so calm, prepared, efficient and made it all look so easy and taste so good! Judi

I cannot suggest one thing to make the Julia Child class more perfect. Hannah

Recipe of the Month:

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Archive of Recipes

No Classes Currently Scheduled

Contact Information

For additional information regarding Cooking Classes, contact the information desk.

tel: 276-619-4300

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