5 Big Take-Aways from the Forks Over Knives Cooking Course

Forks Over Knives Online Cooking Course


Ease of Use/ Navigation


Quality of Videos


Timely Grading/ Support


Price Point



  • Go At Your Own Pace
  • Lifetime Access
  • Abundance of Delicious Recipes
  • Online Community
  • Valuable Feedback by Professional Chefs


  • Price Point Can Be Considered High for Some

During the summer of 2019,  I started a new 90-day adventure by taking the Forks Over Knives Cooking course.

I will admit I was a little nervous since I was not the primary cook in the house, but I knew we needed to improve our overall cooking skills. Despite our best efforts, we were still finding ourselves in somewhat of a rut with cooking the same things over mainly because of our lack of cooking skills.  This also led to continued dependence on processed foods.

While neither Larissa nor I follow a strict vegan diet (and still don’t), we both strongly believe that animal-based and processed food diets lead to many chronic diseases people are suffering from today.  

We also believe that one can reverse chronic diseases by following a plant-based diet so I had some great motivation going into this course! Not to mention, the film “Forks Over Knives” was one of the documentaries we saw early on in our switch to a vegetarian lifestyle!

In Episode 265 – Forks Over Knives Update (July 15, 2018) I provided you all with a quick update with respect to how I was doing and what I was learning. This past week I just graduated from the Forks Over Knives Cooking course, having successfully completed all activities and assignments. Here is a summary of what we discuss in the podcast.


avocado dip created from forks over knives cooking course


Forks Over Knives Cooking Course Syllabus

The course is set up in 9 units as follows:

9 Units

  1. Getting set up
  2. Knives and Knife Cuts
  3. Basic Cooking Methods Steaming and preserving vegetables, cooking in water.
  4. Basic Cooking Methods Part 2.  Dry heat cooking (caramelizing, sauteing, pan tossing, roasting, braising, and combo cooking methods).
  5. Batch cooking. Stir fry, salads, preparing veggies in advance. Rice, grains and legumes.
  6. Flavor Balancing and Seasoning. Forks over knives is all about foods with flavor!
  7. Plant-Based Staples Shopping List.
  8. Daily Meal Inspiration.
  9. Final Assessment. The final exam and a BUNCH of resources!


Listen here to hear us discuss my top takeaways or read on for a quick summary:


My 5 Big Takeaways

  1. The Forks Over Knives Mindset

Think about food as a whole package of nutrients rather than as getting certain nutrients from one food. If you live and eat according to a whole foods plant-based lifestyle, you will get all of the nutrients you need (with the exception of B12).


  1. Good Kitchen Equipment Can Make a HUGE Difference!

One of the activities we did was a “kitchen reset” which entailed stocking the staples (such as stock, spices, etc.). There was a big focus on organization, which I totally understood as the course went on. Being organized helps you focus on the food.

Knives are some of the most important pieces of equipment in your kitchen. You don’t have to buy the best but buy the best that you can. It really does make a difference!  

Since the knives I had for years were pretty bad (in fairness, I never really took care of them), I decided to buy a new set. I chose the  Top Chef 9-Piece set that was very reasonable and do a GREAT job!

The course also discusses the importance and “how-to” of taking care of your knives so be sure not to skip that! It makes a difference to the quality and life of your knives.


Our Pick
Top Chef - Classic 9-Piece Block Knife Set
  • Set includes: 8" chef knife, 8" bread knife, 7" santoku knife, 4.5" utility knife, 3" paring knife, shears, sharpening rod, and knife block
  • Durable: Made from ice-tempered 4116 high carbon german stainless steel for an exceptional degree of corrosion resistance and peak edge retention
  • Professional grade: 15-degree edge sharpness for precision cutting and hand finished with Japanese ultra-fine polishing wheel
  • Balanced: Full tang construction for balance, durability, and ease of use


  1. Mise en Place – The French Culinary Term for “Setting in Place”

Since taking this course, Larissa, and a whole new podcast on the concept of mise en place because it was a HUGE takeaway for me. Listen to it here.

Mise en Place refers to the act of gathering and prepping (i.e. Slicing, dicing, etc) so that you’re all set to go as the cooking begins. This helps you focus on the process of cooking and the food itself.

Mise en Place also helps to minimize the risk of cross-contamination.


mise en place


  1. Cooking Without Oil. Yes, It’s Possible!

This was the concept that I was probably the most skeptical about, but now I believe that cooking without oil is possible!

The trick to sauteing and caramelizing is constant movement and high heat! In order to de-glaze your pan, all you need is some water or cooking wine.

Also, a good quality pan really makes a difference! This is something I didn’t really think about or put much stock into before taking the class.

A quality plan doesn’t have to cost a lot. I bought the Emeril Lagasse 62952 Stainless Steel Fry Pan from Amazon and LOVE it! 



  1. Welcome to Flavor Country!

A lot of people think of plant-based food as being bland but really, there can be some amazing depth to the flavors when you learn how to properly cook with them and mix them.

There is a whole section of the course dedicated to flavors. The five flavors discussed were sweet, salty, bitter, sour, and umami. Umami is particularly important to adding flavor to plant-based cooking.

Plant-based sources of umami include:

Some More Cool Things About Taking The Course

Here are a few other cool things you get when you take the course:

  • Lifetime Access to all course content
  • Quizzes and virtual Q & A’s.
  • Progress Tracking
  • 30 credits from the American Culinary Federation (you are LEGIT!)

forks over knives cooking course certificate

Would I Take the Forks Over Knives Course Again?

Absolutely! I thought the course was very well laid out and the feedback from the instructors was great! Honestly, I wasn’t sure what to expect from an online cooking course but the material was great and I walked away learning a LOT!

Lifetime Access!
Forks Over Knives Cooking Course from Rouxbe
  • Learn to master knife skills
  • Cooking without oil and creating healthy stocks/ sauces
  • Time-Saving cooking strategies
  • Virtual Q&A's and instructor support

Not ready to jump into the full course just yet? Try a monthly membership for only $9.99/ month to see if Rouxbe online courses are right for you!

rouxbe membershipaff i?offer id=10&file id=96&aff id=2082aff i?offer id=8&file id=80&aff id=2082

Please note that some of the links on this page may be affiliate links and, at no additional cost to you, we will earn a commission if you decide to make a purchase after clicking through to the product using the link we have provided. We never recommend or provide affiliate links to products or services we do not use ourselves, and our ultimate goal is to provide helpful products and advice to you, our readers and listeners.


Today’s Sponsors

The Golden Apple Roundtable | Our Supporters on Patreon
  • Patreon is a simple way for listeners to contribute to Vegetarian Zen every month.
  • Pledge levels start as low as $1 a month. Pledge $5 or more and you’ll receive some sweet Veg Zen swag…t-shirts, stickers, magnets, grocery bags, and more!
  • By becoming a sponsor on Patreon, you are automatically inducted into our prestigious Golden Apple Roundtable!


Recipe of the Week (Yes! It’s a Forks Over Knives Recipe!)


Related Post


Resource of the Week


More Resources and Sources Cited


Thanks for listening!

Peace, love, and veggies,
Vickie and Larissa

Scroll to Top