Too many cooks in the kitchen, who screws up your cooking?

Sigh. Who has a family member or friend that insists on cooking and has no clue what they are doing as you try to prepare a meal?

I won’t start my rant yet, but I’m sure some people here have that one person that you wish you could do without.

Some food stories might compliment this thread :slight_smile:

Anyone other than me! Whether my mom or Justin or friends. If someone wants to help with prep, fine, but once I start actually cooking, make me a drink and get out of my way!

I move pretty fast and nothing annoys me more than bumping into someone and ruining my rhythm.

Part of cooking for me is hanging out and conversation, but that can happen with people several feet away from the cooking area.

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Oh and I should add, getting asked the question more than once, “Is there anything I can do?”

Yes there is. Pour yourself a drink, have a seat somewhere a few feet away, and relax!


Those same people seem to disappear when it comes to cleanup time, when you can really use some help :smiley:


Exactly. I am glad you mention that.



Out of my way! I cook alone and don’t talk when I’m cooking.


There have been very few people that I can cook with. Many just get me rattled or get in the way. I’m quite happy doing it on my own and requesting help when I need it from a person of my choosing.

Any help has to be very clearly defined. “Sure, please can you peel the potatoes” does not mean “Then cut them into bits totally unsuitable for Dauphinoise”. Also, putting the butter back in the fridge is a tiny bit irritating if it has been left out to soften. Darling.


The only person I can tolerate cooking with is my daughter. Everyone else - out!


I appreciate people asking if you need help, most of the time will be no. At times, I will ask them to go and set the table or set the fire for barbecue instead. Or go and buy the stuff I forgot to buy… but sometimes I do need some help for repetitive jobs like peeling shrimps or vegetables etc. It’s a nice time to have people around in the kitchen when cooking is in the final stage but just sit and socialise.

A reward of cleanup is finishing the wine and a bite of overlooked choice morsels.


There’s only the two of us. Most nights, we cook together. Sometimes we cook alone.


Amen to all of above! And, PLEASE stay away from my sink when I’m cooking. Leave used glasses for later; wash your hands in the bathroom or back sink. There is NOTHING that needs attention now that requires my sink.


My mom has been saying for years that she wants to put up electric tape around her kitchen because everyone always wants to hang out there! She says I’m the only one that she can cook with but she is wildly particular and doesn’t let anyone even wash dishes. No issue for me! I hate doing dishes!!!

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My DH rarely “helps” me cook but when he does, I want to throttle him. He basically just gets in the way trying to “clean up messes,” which are never actually messes but various items in stages of preparation, i.e. butter left out to soften, cheese left out to come to room temp, a bunch of herbs waiting to be chopped last minute, a used measuring cup that I am going to use again for another ingredient, etc. Drives me insane.

I generally prefer to cook solo but I do enjoy cooking with other people who know their way around a kitchen, as long as it is clear who is in charge. My brother is a chef and we cook together on occasion; usually whoever planned the meal/menu/event takes on the role of head chef. Once that is decided, he is happy to take orders from me and vice versa, and the whole thing generally goes very smoothly.


I’m getting in trouble for this, but my mom :slight_smile: She is a good cook but just so slow. And often times she stops what she is doing entirely because she remembered a story or some tidbit she wants to share.

I usually start T-day prep on Tuesday. Some of the dishes are prepared entirely (stuffing) except for baking. Other things are just prepping veg for later chopping, cooking, etc. I was making stuffing a couple of years ago and asked her to cut herbs while I cut bread. And then onions. And then celery. And then mushrooms. You get the gist. She still wasn’t done picking the thyme. So I finally took that and gave her the green beans to trim, which I didn’t need for 2 more days :slight_smile:


Pretty sure that’s justifiable homicide … if not, it should be!


I have a strange forte. I find organizing chaos easy. Analyze, sort. Rather simple. But, ahem, others don’t seem to have the same vision. So I find that helpers have redistributed dirty dishes or leftovers in ways that make their resolution more rather than less difficult. Use counter space efficiently. Handle something once. When all else fails, don’t hit a well meaning helper with that dirty frying pan; just stuff it in the oven and deal with it after she leaves, like tomorrow.
Above all, follow DH’s mantra. Lead, follow or get out of the way!


Boy, that’s definitely true. There has to be 1 boss in the kitchen. Everyone else is (or should be) hired help.
My ex was the worst. She’d just come in to fuss.
My FIL, who was allowed, even told her to get out of the kitchen one thanksgiving.

I read that too quickly and somehow thought that was “go set the table on fire instead…” Made me laugh out loud, until I re-read it.

Yeah, don’t be in the kitchen with me when I cook, unless you are cleaning the dishes. Even then, do it quickly and don’t linger. When I cook, I kind of move around a lot from stove, counter, island, sink and fridge. I usually ask my mom, who does always offer to help, to clean up at the end, which she gladly does.

She’s also the one with the terrible habit of putting my knives back into the knife block the wrong way…100% of the time. Not sure why she hasn’t figured it out in over 10 years, but it’s really really annoying.