Lao food uses the traditional flavors of Laos such as garlic, lemongrass, chilis and kafir lime, combining them into pallet-pleasing delicacies.
Discover the best of Lao cooking in Luang Prabang, Vientiane, and Pakse by taking a cooking class at one of these renown schools. Learn from local chefs and bring home the knowledge to re-create your favorite dishes.
TOP 10 COOKING CLASSES IN LAOS
Here are our recommendation of some cooking classes in Laos that you may join during your journey
Tamarind Restaurant and Cooking School - Luang Prabang
Tamarind Restaurant is located on the Nam Khan in historic Luang Prabang.
The longer day class and shorter evening cooking classes are taught at Tamarind Gardens, an idyllic outdoor setting surrounded by lily ponds.
Transportation to and from the Gardens in included in tuition. Day participants start with a trip to the market to purchase ingredients for dishes such as chicken stuffed in lemongrass, jeow and mango sticky rice.
If you are vegetarian, inform the instructor in advance as there is a veggie-friendly menu available.
Here is their website if you want to read further: http://www.tamarindlaos.com/cooking-school/
Bamboo Tree Restaurant and Cooking School - Luang Prabang
Inside family-run Bamboo Tree Restaurant is a cooking school where students learn how to prepare northern Lao dishes from sister chefs Noy and Linda.
What we love here is that you can which dishes you’d like to make then start the course with a visit to the local market to select ingredients and speak with merchants.
After cooking, sit down with the other students and instructors and enjoy the fruits of your labor in an intimate feast.
Take home a cookbook with recipes to replicate the meal in your own kitchen.
Visit their website for further schedule and price
Nahm Dong Park Cooking Class - Luang Prabang
Our favorite cooking class in Luang Prabang, where you can join a cooking class with plenty of activities on site such as trekking, zipline, or bathing at the natural pool.
Here, you can discover the Lao cuisine through several traditional dishes. Not only can you learn techniques and recipes but you can visit the gardens of the park and pick your ingredients.
The course is minimum 5 dishes depending on the season. A booklet with all recipes is provided.
For us, we prefer to joining the cooking class in the morning, then exploring the park in the afternoon.
Before transferring back to your hotel in town, you can refresh with a splash into one of the clear natural pools of the park
Check their website if you are interested, there are also plenty of activities in case you wish to join: http://nahmdong.com/activity/cooking-class
Cooking Class at Sofitel Hotel Luang Prabang
The Cooking School at Sofitel is run by head chef of a restaurant on site.
This four-hour class is offered twice a week and begins with a breakfast at Governor’s Grill at Sofitel.
Students then head to the market to learn about local food customs.
Prepare a four-course meal of traditional Lao food and learn about plating and presentation before enjoying the huge gourmet meal in the outdoor restaurant.
Group classes are limited to 10 participants; private classes are also available.
This course is informative, professional and ideal for those who love cooking.
Bamboo Experience Cooking Class - Luang Prabang
This is our recommendation for you although the cooking class is just a part of the morning activities.
The aim here is to help you learn about Lao culture via bamboo.
The local guide will explain about the uses and importance of many bamboo products that Lao people have been using for hundreds of years as such fishing traps, musical instruments, carry bags, weapons, sticky rice containers, furniture, floor mats and roof thatching etc.
You also have chance to try making a small bamboo drink coaster and take back home as souvenir.
The last part of the morning, of course is the cooking class, which makes this place different from other cooking classes in Luang Prabang.
The main ingredients is bamboo shoot, but you will be surprised with the dishes that you can create from that, such as deep fried stuffed bamboo shoot with pork, steam fish & bamboo shoot wrapped in banana leaf, fermented bamboo shoot dipping and sticky rice and more.
There are some local games if you want to spend more time on site. Check their website for more information: https://bambooexperience.org/
Suan Khua Laos Cooking Class - Vientiane
This is our recommendation for the cooking class in Vientiane. Why? It is unique and different from all other cooking classes you can find in Laos.
Their service includes 2 main parts
- Khao Tom Lao: this is the cooking class demonstrating the steps of cooking the most famous Lao dessert made from sticky rice with banana leaf, so-called Khao Tom. This is also the popular food that is used for morning alms giving. This part normally start early from 13:30 until 16:30
- Jeaw Party: This is the dinner with traditional music, following with a feast of traditional “Jeaw” dips and the famous sticky rice. This activity starts after the Khao Tom Lao part from 17:00 until 19:30
There are also the extra services for Baci Ceremony before the dinner and the alms giving in the next early morning to offer Khao Tom for the monks. Check further on their Facebook page
Tuk Tuk Safari Tour and Cooking Class - Vientiane
Tuk Tuk Safari offers a cooking class, as well as guided food tours, a textile/handicraft tour and village homestays.
The cooking class is offered on Saturday evenings, taking place at Soumaly’s outdoor home kitchen.
If you’re looking for a guided food tour, “The Hungry Tuk Tuk” takes you through fresh markets to see how some Lao ingredients are made before hopping from shop to shop to sample the best local eats.
If you want guidance on how to navigate the city’s intimidating night time street eats, “Dinner with the Locals” will remove some of the mystery and have you trying some surprising items.
Most tours require a minimum of two people. They post any upcoming dates you can join on their website.
Madam Phasouk Cooking Class - Vientiane
Madam Phasouk runs cooking classes in her home and she boasts over 15 years experience as a cooking teacher at hotels.
The lesson begins with a visit to the market to buy all the fresh ingredients and cooking two main dishes and a salad.
Choose either a 09:30 start time for lunch, or 15:00 for dinner. Pick up from accommodation is included. Call Madam Phasouk at (020) 5601 2458; or check the Facebook page
Laos Experience Cooking Class - Vientiane
Lao Experiences’ owner Ms Nouk gained some fame when she taught popular Vietnamese-Australian chef and TV host Luke Nguyen about Lao cuisine.
Whether you’re a professional chef or an amateur, students are picked up at Full Moon Cafe and taken to a pleasant garden setting to learn how to prepare some of the country’s favorite dishes like mok pa, fish filet and herbs steamed in a banana leaf, spicy papaya salad and mango-sticky rice for dessert.
Morning (10:00 to 13:30) and evening (17:00 to 20:00) sessions are available, or sign up just for their morning fresh market tour (08:00 to 10:00, US$25)
Check their website for more detail: http://www.lao-experiences.com/
Xuan Mai Cooking Class - Pakse
Xuanmai Cooking Class is the only place in Pakse that you can find, yet it stays unique even in comparison with all other cooking classes in Vientiane and Luang Prabang.
The owner actually originated from Vietnam, hence, joining the class, you learn to cook a dish of Laos, Vietnam, and also Thailand, all mixed together makes a different taste.
The cooking class takes place at their own Xuanmai Garden Guesthouse. In some booking portal, you can find them under the name Ngoc’s Cooking Class.
Check further on their website: http://xuanmaiguesthouse-pakse.com/
So you have already known the 10 best cooking classes in Luang Prabang, Vientiane, and Pakse. Of course, there are some of other good cooking classes that cannot be listed in the scope of this articles.
Thanks for reading and contribution.