“Airbnb introduces “Cooking” as a new category within the Discoveries”

Making pasta with Nonna Nerina in Italy
  • The new category offers access to over 3,000 unique recipes from over 75 countries.
  • The hosts include British TV presenter and culinary entrepreneur Prue Leith, world-famous Mexican chef Enrique Olvera and Master Chef Juror and Chef Damian D’Silva from Singapore.
  • Launch action: Airbnb is looking for the 100 best hobby chefs in the world and sends them on a unique journey to Italy to learn from culinary experts.

From Oma’s recipes to traditional Uzbek home cooking: With the new category “Cooking” during discoveries on Airbnb, guests can get acquainted with culinary traditions of families all over the world. There are 3,000 unique recipes from over 75 countries to choose from, previously reserved for friends and family.

Historical food traditions of Mexico

The new category offers travellers the unique opportunity to discover new cultures in a culinary way while counteracting the disappearance of local eating cultures and traditions. The discoveries are offered by families, farmers, confectioners and other local hosts, who highlight the deeper meaning of the dishes prepared, pass on traditional recipes and share personal stories with guests. Unlike traditional cooking courses, which can be intimidating or time-consuming at times, family human contact is at the heart of every discovery: people come together to prepare and share meals together.

Each discovery was examined against criteria based on the concept of Slow Food, an organization whose mission is to prevent the disappearance of local food cultures and traditions. Through this process, Airbnb ensures that all hosts of a discovery on Airbnb convey the uniqueness of each dish through their personal stories and have a deep knowledge of the origins and traditions of their cuisine.

Italian landscape

As a special campaign around the launch of the category, Airbnb is looking for the 100 best hobby chefs and sends them on a unique trip to Italy. At the University of Gastronomic Sciences, located in Pollenzo in northern Italy on a UNESCO World Heritage-listed estate, participants will learn all about the Slow Food mega-trend. Here they will learn from chef David Chang and his mother Sherri how to refine their family recipes. Their personal recipe will then be recorded in a cookbook for Airbnb, which is expected to be published next year.

At www.airbnb.de/d/100cooks interested hobby chefs can either apply directly themselves or nominate their favourite hobby chefs by 23 December 2019. A jury consisting of representatives from Airbnb, “Slow Food” and the University of Gastronomic Sciences will finally select the 100 best chefs. The four courses will start on 15, 22 and 29 June and 6 July 2020 respectively and each have 25 places.

Making pasta with Nonna Nerina in Italy

In addition to workshops, tastings, excursions and seminars by UNISG lecturers, courses are also offered by one of the most booked hosts on Airbnb: Nonna Nerina, who has already earned over $150,000 by welcoming travellers to the countryside near Rome and sharing her love and her family’s passion for pasta dishes. With hosts like Nonna, it’s no wonder that bookings of culinary discoveries on Airbnb have been growing at around 160 per cent annually since 2018. The new category “Cooking” combines the best of already offered discoveries as well as brand new discoveries on Airbnb, all based on principles that enable an authentic local experience in small groups and a family atmosphere.

“From the very first guests who travelled on Airbnb, we have seen how important meal sharing and eating together are in developing cultures and fostering connections. Through the culinary discoveries on Airbnb, we want to bring back the tradition of coming together, preparing and sharing meals together, helping to preserve unique recipes that are shared in family kitchens around the world,” said Brian Chesky, CEO and co-founder of Airbnb.

Making pasta with Nonna Nerina in Italy

Building on Airbnb’s partnership, “Slow Food” itself is introducing 15 special cooking discoveries on Airbnb that are perfectly in line with the principles of “good, clean and fair” – including “Walk, Cook & Eat” on the Amalfi Coast and “Save Food” in Cartagena, Colombia.

“It’s really motivating that Airbnb asked us for advice on how to help people preserve their family recipes and also wanted us to become advocates for quality and sustainability,” says Paolo Di Croce, Slow Food General Secretary. “Discoveries related to cooking on Airbnb provide a unique opportunity to spread our urgent call for sustainability standards and protection of food biodiversity around the world, reach new target groups and initiate changes in the entire food and tourism sector. Our long-term commitment is to ensure that travel experiences remain authentic and to help travellers learn more about local communities and raise awareness of sustainable food practices”.

Making pasta with Nonna Nerina in Italy


Cooking lunch with Prue Leith (London, Great Britain)
Corn Workshop with Enrique Olvera (Mexico City, Mexico)
Traditional cuisine with Damian D’Silva (Singapore, Singapore)
Traditional Uzbek home cooking (Brooklyn, New York)
French pastry in Montmartre (Paris, France)
Mexican cooking course (Mexico City, Mexico)
Home made flavours Singapore (Singapore, Singapore)
Historical Mexico & Cooking Course (Mexico City, Mexico)
Japanese Streetfood homemade (Tokyo, Japan)
Grandma’s handmade pasta (Rome, Italy)
Self-made soba noodles in a traditional home (Tokyo, Japan)
Traditional Argentinean home cooking (Forest Hills, New York)
Modern interpretation of traditional Zulu cuisine (Dolphin Coast, South Africa)
Chinese dumplings homemade (New York, New York)
Slow Food – Making Bento Box yourself (Fujinomija City, Japan)
cocoa dishes – from the fruit to the bar (London, Great Britain)
Secret Garden Dinner at the historic mansion (Khet Pom Prap Sattru Phai, Thailand)
Cooking with insects (Los Angeles, California)
cooking and sword performance in Edo (Tokyo, Japan)