Welcome to Cooking With Sass!, a comprehensive and fun online course that teaches you the skills you need to step into your kitchen, see what's on hand, and get cookin' without a recipe in sight!
On-the-fly improvisational cooking is what we've always taught in all of our courses and across our entire VeganCoach.com website.
This advanced vegan cooking course will show you the big picture (plus all the steps!) of how to make recipe-free cooking work day in and day out from the time you head into your grocery store to shop all the way through plating and garnishing your very own unique homemade vegan dish.
If cooking without recipes intrigues you or it's something you've been interested in but you haven't quite figured out how to actually pull it off in your day-to-day life, then you're going to absolutely love Cooking With Sass!
It's important to learn the skills to mastering recipe-free cooking. Not only does this save you time (for example, painstakingly measuring out the exact ingredients a recipe calls for) but it saves you money too! How? Because you'll choose ingredients that are in season and at their freshest while priced less than ingredients out of season.
PLUS, when you cook without recipes you use the nutritious food you have on hand instead of tossing old and wilted veggies into the garbage -- sheesh, the money you'll save on this alone is likely substantial. (And believe me, I understand that guilty feeling you have when you toss those sad past-their-prime vegetables out. It makes you feel sad, mad and frustrated!)
What follows is a description of what we'll cover in the course, student testimonials and more!
Thanks for checking it out and I hope to see you in class. :)
Here are just some comments about this class from our beloved students:
"Before this course, I ONLY used recipes from my hundreds-of-cookbook collection. I have much more confidence now and really can cook recipe-free. It is the BEST way to learn how to free-style cook and also to learn about the vegan diet."
-- Lynne D.
"Before Coooking With Sass! I felt terrible about recipe-free cooking. VERY uncomfortable! Zero confidence! I had no knowledge of the whys and hows...the science of cooking. Of course I could follow a recipe...but free-hand!?! NO WAY! I was very nervous to have anyone taste my food for fear they would not like it! I felt very insecure! Sassy, you have given me something no recipe ever could give me. That is...CONFIDENCE! Just 12 short weeks ago, I NEVER could have waltzed into my kitchen and just made up dishes like this! And, had FUN, to boot! Yes! I HAVE learned in this class! I can't imagine what I will feel after our next seasonal class!?! But, I look forward to it so much! Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime! Thank you Sassy!"
-- Shirley M.
"Best course ever to learn no recipe cooking with entertaining and very helpful videos."
-- Beverly U.
"I just turned 53 and for the first time in my life I feel a type of freedom in the kitchen that I never felt before! So creative, so healthy, so economical (no waste), so tasty. Even my husband and son here are being amazed. Thanks to you."
-- Carol M.
(More student comments further on down the page...)
I'm Patty Knutson, but my friends call me Sassy. Vegan since 1994 and Publisher of this vegan cooking website since 2007.
From the start of VeganCoach.com back in 2007, I've been teaching the methods, techniques and tips I've gathered over the years so YOU can learn all about the magic of cooking without recipes too!
Now, I've taken it even one step further by creating an online class that teaches you every single step I take to get a recipe-free meal on the table from the time you select your in-season produce in the store all the way to plating and garnishing. And it's ALL covered right here in Cooking With Sass!
Winter! Hope you'll consider joining us for our Winter class which will last for 12 weeks (January, February, March).
One of the biggest and most important things we'll do in Cooking With Sass! is move step-by-step through the very process I use to get a recipe-free meal on the table, from the time I step into the kitchen to see what I have on hand until I'm plating it up.
Week after week we'll hyper-focus on each step. No stone is left unturned. I'll completely deconstruct everything I do so you can follow along and do the exact same steps in your own kitchen.
This is the course you've been asking for that will help you pull together everything we teach here at Vegan Coach.
The BEST way to learn is to just step into your kitchen and start playing with your food! And that's what you'll do each and every week during the course with unique challenges that ease you into cooking without recipes.
You will amaze yourself with the progress you'll make from the first challenge to the very last one. Because the tips you'll pick up week after week and Lesson after Lesson will help you gain the CONFIDENCE you need to move forward. As your skills increase, your cooking becomes easier and more fun and your food is tastier.
I promise you that you will LOVE the cooking challenges. They will help make you a better cook, no matter what your current level of expertise.
One of the hallmarks of cooking without recipes is learning the SKILL of seasoning your food. In Cooking With Sass! I'll teach you how to flavor your food so you can feel super confident in your flavoring choices as well as how to bring balance to every dish you create.
Because once you learn how to properly work with flavors, it extends to every single dish you make; recipe-free or not!
For instance, let's say you followed a recipe to a T but the resulting flavors are a turn-off. Has this ever happened to you? It's happened to me! Maybe it's too bitter for your liking or too sweet or too sour or...or...
If you know how to season your food properly, you can FIX that recipe! Because you'll know without a doubt exactly what you can add to bring balance to the flavors. No more choking down a crappy meal, or tossing it into the garbage to order take-out!
We cover flavoring and seasoning in full. In fact, 2 of the 12 Lessons are devoted to this topic. You'll walk away with this incredible skill under your belt that you'll use over and over for years to come. It's so important!
This will go beyond what we've taught in any of our other courses so if this is a sticking point for you, then I think you'll really enjoy what you'll discover in this course.
Each week you'll watch me as I go into my kitchen to see which ingredients I have in my
fridge, freezer, and pantry (such as beans and whole grains, fresh veggies, nuts, seeds, etc), and then pull them all together into
delicious good-for-you vegan dishes on the spot -- without recipes!
Here's an example of one of these Inspirational Cooking Videos. It shows me hopping into my kitchen, seeing what's on hand and making a meal in front of you:
This is an example of what YOU will be able to do by the end of the course. So you can simply open your fridge to see what ingredients you have on hand to play with then dive right into making a meal on the spot without a recipe.
Because the skill level of the students in this class range from those fairly new to recipe-free cooking to those who are a little more advanced, I do my best to mix things up each week, fluctuating as much as possible between a fairly simple dish to slightly more advanced so there's something for everyone.
There was a time when these videos were the ONLY THING we were going to offer in this class and our students were incredibly excited about them -- enough that they would have paid money just for these alone!
You'll be helped tremendously just by watching how I cook improvisationally right in my own home.
Because cooking with the seasons is a delicious way to ensure that your meals taste their best, your ingredients are chock-full of nutrients, and you're not spending a fortune when you do your grocery shopping since you generally pay less money for ingredients that are in season.
Our next 3-month class (Winter 2018) will feature gorgeous ingredients that celebrate the season like potatoes, kale, leeks, Brussels sprouts and broccoli, just to name a few!
We'll do our best to only buy ingredients that are the freshest, most beautiful and most readily available during the Winter months (January, February, March) before we bring them home to whip up unique and tasty home-style meals with them -- that means ALL OF US; you, me and the rest of the class. We're all in this together! You'll also enjoy weekly videos that give you some ideas of exactly how we pull it off in our own kitchen.
"My level of confidence in the kitchen has risen enormously with CWS. I'm more adventurous with my ingredients and flavors. I'm more conscious of not only how a dish tastes but also its eye appeal. I especially love the videos. Watching you create delicious food from humble beginnings is a true delight for me. I also really enjoy all the dishes from the other students. No matter the skill level or vegan experience, the results are always amazing."
"I think most people would benefit from the concepts and practice of flexible use of ingredients, learning about flavor matches, balancing tastes, trying creative combinations, how to avoid wasting fresh foods, and easy shopping and in-the-moment meal planning."
La Conner, Washington
"My level of expertise in vegan recipe free cooking has improved significantly with this course. I've gained lots of knew skills, tips, and experience in cooking, flavouring and presentation and learned a lot about my own cooking style."
Darlington, Western Australia
"I love seeing what ingredients others use in combinations that I wouldn't have thought of myself. It's inspiring! This is the best cooking class I've ever taken. Very engaging. It's so freeing to cook without a recipe, and it's fun to share your creations. Freestyle cooking allows you to use what you have on hand, think creatively and approach what can be a chore with a playful attitude. Also, Sassy is a wonderful, encouraging teacher and her positive energy is infectious!"
Glenmont, New York
"Before, I had very little comfort and knowledge of recipe-free cooking. Only would swap out ingredients or change ingredients in recipes. Now, I feel like learning about flavor balancing and matching has opened up a new world to me. I can take ingredients on hand and figure out something to make. Watching all of the cooking demos has opened my mind to the possibilities of what ingredients can be made into actual dishes. I have made some really good tasting food over this course. It exceeded my expectations."
The Nuts and Bolts of How This Course Works
Cooking With Sass! is held in our user-friendly online classroom where you'll be joined by other students on the same path as you. Our students tell us time and time again how much they love our classroom! It's fun to use and encourages you to stay involved and motivated.
Each week a Lesson is prepared and made available to you in our online classroom. So you can take the course as it comes, or take your time going through the material. This weekly "drip" of information is THE KEY to you learning and implementing each week's lesson.
And that's how you'll learn. Step by step; goal by goal.
And since you're learning one little bite at a time, you retain what you learn.
Here is a glance into some of the topics we'll cover in Cooking With Sass! ...
Cooking With Sass! will instruct you step by step how to embrace seasonal recipe-free cooking.
Here's what we'll cover in our 12 weeks together:
As you can see, we have a lot of FUN planned as we work together to bring your inner creative chef out to play! :)
With your Cooking With Sass! purchase you'll join our online community of peeps.
So you'll never be alone and you'll always find the support you need.
That's because Cooking With Sass! is interactive.
Join your fellow students to ask questions about what you're learning, share your comments and ideas, and even help other students out with your own unique experience and knowledge.
"Before I took this class, I could put a vegan meal on the table with some planning ahead and a chunk of time. Now, I can take what's available and make a vegan meal in a few minutes. This course saves you time and money, along with helping you keep on track for eating a nutritional plant-based diet without using processed foods. And the videos are always a nice surprise — we never know what Sass is going come up with next."
"Loved the class feedback and participation and the other students' freedom in sharing. I learned way more than I anticipated. Sassy is a great teacher and was so interested in all we were doing. She takes so very much of her time helping us all the way through."
Mary Jean K.
"I love the kudos and encouragement I received. Your approach makes failing more of a shared lesson we all can benefit from vs. something that should never be discussed! I felt much more confident about my Vegan cooking and much stronger with my conviction of being vegan by the end of the course. I would highly recommend this since our go-to way of cooking IS without using a recipe!"
"Since taking this class, I feel confident and am beginning to prefer meatless meals. And not just meatless...learning flavors and how to cook without oil have been real eye openers! Loved the seasonal produce chart and flavoring lessons. Also attention to garnish and texture. These things gave me confidence to be recipe free. Chef Sassy's passion for cooking and creation is infectious. Feedback is positive but videos push us to think outside the box."
"I have a lot of spices, condiments, vinegars, that I have not used that much. Cooking without recipes has taught me the value of all of those items and also how to use them to really maximize the flavor of foods. I had no idea how much I would be participating and how valuable the participation (and feedback) from the other students would be for my growth."
San Jose, California
"I am loving Sassy's Vegan Coach approach stressing creativity, experimentation, and trial and error. I find it a relaxing and enjoyable way to cook! I love-love-love this approach!!!"
Los Angeles, California
"I LOVE watching you cook, and the commentary too!! These cooking videos just bring EVERYTHING you're telling us together so CLEARLY!!! ....I LOVE THEM!!!....They are EXTRAORDINARILY INSPIRING!!!!.....I AM so excited because I made my FIRST TOTALLY IMPROVISATIONAL RECIPE-FREE DISH IN NEARLY 27 YEARS last night!!!!.....I wasn't even SCARED beforehand (NOT EVEN A LITTLE BIT!!!)....rather, I was EXCITED!!!!!!!.....and I actually had FUN, FUN, FUUUUUUUUUNNNNNN!!!!!!! THANK YOU ENDLESSLY for what you're doing.....you are CHANGING our lives, for the better, every single day. THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!!"
"This class is so much fun! There are so many different ideas to share. And I love reading all the comments from other students. I have to say this class, seeing you cook, then issuing challenges has really changed my approach to cooking. Even if you aren't vegan, you learn so much about ingredients, how to season a dish, how to cook them, how to take random ingredients and make a delicious satisfying meal without being a slave to a recipe. Looking forward to our next challenge!!! This course far exceeded my expectations."
"Before this class, I was not comfortable about relying only on my vegan cooking to survive! This course forced me to experiment with seasonings and flavorings. I learned from you how to sauté with little or no oil, encouraged to pressure cook and use the blender for sauces. This course has made me excited about cooking vegan. My favorite part is about flavoring; because it intrigues me. I have always wondered how chefs come up with such amazing flavors in their dishes. You put an amazing course together; I did not expect to learn so much. This course is labor intensive as well as mentally challenging. I learned a lot about cooking in general as well as vegan cooking. And, I did not expect to have so much fun reading the comments from all of the students."
"I've learned a lot about cooking since becoming vegan 4.5 years ago, but almost all recipe based. In this class, I learned how to start from scratch with seasonal vegetables, come up with a cooking style and plan, use flavor matching to flavor the dish and balance the flavors, and how to make a sauce and appropriate garnish. I love how the knowledge I gained has extended my meal prep abilities. I loved the feedback and new ideas from Sassy and my classmates. I loved the way Sassy structured the course and built upon our knowledge gained in previous lessons."
La Mesa, California
Questions about Cooking With Sass!
Q: Is this course appropriate for new Vegans?
A: This is an advanced vegan cooking course. You should have a solid idea of the basics of a vegan diet such as how to cook beans or how to cook veggies. We'll simply show you in THIS course how we pull it all together into everyday recipe-free dishes.
Q: "I have taken many courses from others, some quite expensive, and have not made much progress. How will your class be different?"
A: It's hard for me to answer that, quite honestly, because I don't know which courses you have taken or what they included in their Lessons. In Cooking With Sass!, we'll cover every step of creating a recipe-free vegan meal, from selecting the ingredients to plating and garnishing. We'll also cover seasoning and flavoring at length so you can begin to get a really solid idea of this MOST important aspect of cooking without recipes. If you've ever taken any of our courses before where we cover flavoring just know that this course will go above and beyond anything else we've taught.
Each week brings a new cooking challenge, too! So you can put what you're learning into practice, post your homework (edible!) and get feedback from myself and the rest of the class.
Each week also includes a video showing me hopping into my kitchen to make a recipe-free meal on the spot with what I have on hand. These are NOT scripted or rehearsed. Simply showing you what I found in my local market on my last shopping trip and how I incorporated it into my meal. I can promise you this: Every video will be completely different because I'll have different ingredients on hand each week so there will never be the same meal shown twice.
This is a living, breathing course so our students can tell us what they need to help them move forward and we can do our best to deliver in a future Lesson -- within reason. ;)
Q: What time of day will the cooking classes start?
A: The class will be held in our online classroom just as all of our other courses are. Each course begins whenever it's convenient for you after you've completed your enrollment. New content – whether text, audio, video, downloadable documents or discussions – will be available each week. I’ll notify you by e-mail when new lessons are ready, and you can follow the links directly into our online space.
Q: Will I be able to access the class any time?
A: You can participate at any time you wish, when it's convenient for you! No worries about scheduling, or living in different time zones.
Q: How do I know if this course will fit into my schedule?
A: Each week you will receive an email to notify you that a new Lesson is ready to be viewed. You can simply visit our virtual classroom whenever you have the time (and the head space!) to concentrate and get the most out of each Lesson.
Q: How long will I have access to the course?
A: You will own the course and can access it at any time. There is no expiration date.
Q: I have some questions about the course. Is there anyone I can talk to?
A: Yes! Ask below in our Facebook commenting section or shoot me an email through our Contact form. Or you can click here to Chat w/the Coach. Sign up for an available 20-minute time slot, and I'll give you a call to answer any questions you have about the class OR help you determine which of our courses would be a better fit for your current needs and plant-based skill level. Thanks!
I think you're going to love this fun and unique recipe-free vegan cooking adventure.
Are you ready?
It's time to start Cooking With Sass!
Patty "Sassy" Knutson
Chief Cook and Bottle Washer :)
p.s. Remember, you can retake the course at any time at no charge. And as with all of our courses you have my personal guarantee so you have nothing to lose: If you participate fully in the program but you haven’t achieved the progress you were hoping for, I will work with you personally to help you move forward with your freestyle cooking goals. Thanks and I hope to see you in class!