Phad Thai. Green curry. Som tam. Thai is one of the world's most popular cuisines, loved by many for its fragrant flavors and fresh spices. Instead of fumbling through a recipe with confusing ingredients, learn how to make your favorite Thai dishes while you're on vacation in Thailand with a hands-on cooking class in Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket, Krabi or Koh Samui. Choose from three different types of classes, all led by English-speaking instructors, in which you get to prepare three to five classic dishes. The best part? You'll eat whatever you've made at the end of the class.
Interested in taking a cooking class, but unsure which is right for your experience, budget and preferences? To make selecting a Thai cooking class even easier, we've broken down the options for you, from one-to-one instruction to classes that visit nearby markets.
Private Cooking Class
Most cooking classes are held in small groups of no more than 15 people, but if you want the undivided attention of the instructor, consider booking a private cooking class. Aside from receiving a more hands-on experience in a private class, you'll generally have the advantage of selecting the dishes you'd most like to prepare from a list of available menus.
Cooking Class with a Market Visit
A trip to the market is the first step to any great meal, and knowing how to select the best ingredients is just as important as knowing what to do with them. Begin your cooking class by joining the instructor on a visit to a typical Thai market. Watch the buying and selling rituals as you peruse stalls filled with fresh, seasonal produce; learn about and sample some of the herbs and spices typically used in Thai cuisine; and then pick up the ingredients required for your class before heading to the kitchen.
Cooking Class in a Local's Home
Get a taste for home-cooked Thai food by opting for a class that takes place in a local's home rather than a restaurant, hotel or cooking school. Swap the hustle and bustle of central Bangkok for a quiet home on the capital's outskirts, step inside a traditional teak house in Chiang Mai, or perhaps find yourself in a small island village for an afternoon. Your cooking class might begin with a tour of the garden, where you'll pick essential herbs like Thai basil, lemongrass and ginger. Then, learn how to prepare an authentic lunch or dinner in the instructor's kitchen before sitting down to a family-style meal at the table.