Cooking 101: The 5 Moves


Whether you are an experienced chef or afraid of your own shadow in the kitchen, this lesson sets the stage for everything that follows.

Breaking Free of Recipes

To practice the Kitchen Karate approach to meal prep it is critical to break free of recipes and make your meals from the ingredients up.

Luckily, this is not a difficult feat to pull off. In fact, you can learn to cook without recipes in less than an hour, while making a delicious meal to enjoy. That’s what this White Belt week is all about.

Start by watching this video…

The 5 Moves of Kitchen Karate

Learn ‘em, love ‘em, live ‘em.

Shop. Get your ingredients

Chop. Clean and prep your ingredients

Sprinkle. Season your ingredients

Poke. Cook what needs cooking (Poke to see if done)

Plate. Assemble your meals.

Six Good Reasons To Break Free of Recipes

Recipes are prison for your inner chef. Following recipes does not encourage you to trust your Chef Sense. When you follow a recipe and the outcome is good, the recipe gets all the credit. If it’s bad, you take all the blame. And in neither instance do you learn anything but how to follow recipes better.

Recipes are nothing but long to-do lists. Do this, then this, then this… blah blah blah. Recipes reduce cooking to a big fat chore. When you cook without recipes it’s a creative and fun experience.

Recipes force you to shop inefficiently. You hunt and peck all over the store for items on your “list”, rather than making a quick clean sweep.

Recipes don’t account for what’s fresh in your market. While you are ping-ponging around the store trying to check off items on your list, you skip all the best, freshest and in-season items simply because they don’t conform to your recipe.

Recipes don’t account for your particular taste or portion sizes. Searching for recipes that conform to your diet is limiting to begin with, and a recipe does not consider your particular serving size or the nuances of your palate.

Cooking without recipes is surprisingly easy and infinitely more fun and rewarding. Over the next few days I will teach you everything you need to know to break free of recipes for life.

But I Love Recipes!

I’m a recovering recipe-follower myself. I understand the allure. Recipes inspire you to do things you wouldn’t think to do on your own. They allow you to get something “just right”. And they are a great way to communicate and share ideas about cooking.

All that said, consider that there is a time and a place for recipes in your life. Think of using recipes to create SPECIAL meals rather than everyday meals.

When you need to throw together a quick, healthy, delicious meal you should be able to look at what ingredients you have available and spring to action.

Cooking Is A Life Skill

Unfortunately in this day and age fewer and fewer people know how to actually cook.

Memorizing recipes or developing the ability to follow complicated recipes is not the same thing as knowing how to cook.

If your cooking ability is limited to following recipes, whether written or memorized, two things will happen:

  1. You will eat the same old things over and over.
  2. You will go out to eat more often than your wallet or waistline can afford.

Your Freedom From Recipes Starts Now

Throughout this White Belt Week we will explore how The 5 Moves allow you to cook your everyday meals recipe free.

In the Yellow Belt Week we will see how The 5 Moves allow you to create an ultra-efficient and super-effective meal prep practice.

The 5 Moves of Kitchen Karate work the same whether you are cooking one meal at a time or 15 meals at once.

Questions and Comments on This Lesson?

Drop me a note in our private forum The Dojo Lounge. I will respond during office hours.

Up Next

Cooking 101: Shop