Growing Chefs! Ontario is a registered charity based in London, Ontario that unites chefs, growers, educators and community members in children’s food education projects.
In the last decade of program delivery, Growing Chefs has seen the impacts of food and food education first-hand. Cooking develops and encourages many important skills in areas of math, science, history, geography, literacy, art and more. Understanding how and where food grows, how food interacts with our senses, the history of different foods and techniques, the names we give to food, and how food relates to our own lifestyles and cultures are all important to child development.
Growing Chefs! Ontario offers a variety of food education projects to get kids and communities excited about healthy, wholesome food! Click the Educational Programs tab to determine which Growing Chefs! project is right for your children, school, class or community group. For resources you can use at home or in your own classroom without the Growing Chefs! team, click the Kids tab.
Growing Chefs! Ontario has been incorporated since 2008.
To get kids excited about wholesome healthy food!
To build and maintain a healthy, empowered community that is engaged with our food system.
- To provide an avenue for chefs and growers to get more involved in the community and to support food education.
- To provide children with the confidence, knowledge and enthusiasm to grow and prepare good, healthy cuisine.
- To support and encourage the development and growth of food education for children and families.
Our Core Values:
- Community: To engage, strengthen and support communities in their ongoing conversations around food.
- Food: To celebrate the positive change that we can create through food.
- Health: To foster healthy bodies and minds through positive relationships with food.
Our Food Charter:
To help community members see food and cooking as fun, inclusive and empowering. Good food is for everyone.
To help all community members feel confident in making the best decisions they can with the resources available to them. We work to achieve this in our own programming by means of:
Promoting local foods whenever and wherever possible (i.e., to look to source local first and incorporate at least one local seasonal food in each Growing Communities cooking class as a learning point)
Emphasizing whole ingredients, and minimizing use of processed foods
Trying our best to ensure all seafood used as an ingredient is sustainably sourced
Trying our best to ensure all meat and egg products used as ingredients are locally, ethically and sustainably sourced
Promoting recipes featuring whole grains
Promoting recipes using reduced and/or natural sugars
Advocating home cooking as a tool for a healthy and balanced diet
Keeping in mind recipes need to be simple, clear and consider common barriers community members may be experiencing.