Our Story

in-home cooking party with tall, well-outfitted clients

Jennifer Clair (center) with chef-instructors John Scoff (far left) and Sarah Huck. Flanked by 2 enthusiastic students.


Home Cooking New York (HCNY) was founded in May 2002, shortly after founder Jennifer Clair was downsized from her Food Editor position at Martha Stewart Living. After years of writing cookbooks, recipes, and food editorials, the opportunity to come together with eager culinary students in a kitchen classroom seemed like the next logical step. Back then, Jennifer was the sole chef-instructor, teaching nightly private cooking classes in students’ home kitchens all over New York City. Over the last 17 years, the company has grown to include 5 outstanding chef-instructors (meet them all here!), all ready to be dispatched into the home kitchens of the (reasonably-distanced) tri-state area.

In 2009, HCNY opened its first brick-and-mortar cooking school in Manhattan in the back kitchen of the Inn on 23rd Street in Chelsea (home of The New School’s former culinary arts program). Two years later, after the Inn decided to open a restaurant in that kitchen, so HCNY began its 3-year nomadic phase, moving from one shared kitchen to another, in order to keep the school running. Then, after 11 years in business, Home Cooking New York finally dove into the NYC commercial real estate market and built the teaching kitchen of our dreams. After an 8-month search, we found just what we were looking for right on the edge of SoHo and Chinatown, at 158 Grand Street. It is where you will find us today.

2020 UPDATE: We weathered the pandemic by moving all our teaching online, which allowed us to sustain our business and our beloved NYC teaching kitchen — with A LOT of financial help from the government and the kindness of our landlords — and we are back to teaching in-person classes in July 2021. Phew!