Survey: Consumers Feeling More Confident In The Kitchen

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    American’s confidence level in the kitchen is on the rise but a new consumer survey reveals that retailers and product suppliers have opportunities to help today’s home chefs further enhance their cooking skills. 

    The Kitchen Confidence Report from ButcherBox found that 47% of Americans are “very confident” in the kitchen while 1 in 5 said they have little or no confidence when cooking. 

    “Having spent more time at home over the last year, it comes as no surprise that folks are confident in their overall cooking and kitchen skills,” said Mike Salguero, founder of ButcherBox. “Time always tends to be the barrier to preparing a meal or improving cooking skills, so the time people have gotten back in their day or week as a result of COVID is clearly impacting their kitchen confidence.”

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    Practice, patience and time are the key contributors of confidence for half of Americans (49%), while many noted that learning from and watching family members cook helped them gain confidence over time.

    While the stove remains the center of meal preparation efforts at home with 37% saying they feel “most comfortable” using the major appliance, the development of new countertop appliances in recent years has piqued the interest of some. 

    In the survey, 26% said they want to improve their skills with items such as air fryers, instant cookers and smokers. While these items have been in the market for several years now, many consumers are still learning about the versatility each brings to the cooking experience.

    Although many product suppliers have expanded their use of instructional videos that live on company websites, the ButcherBox survey shows there remains a strong appetite from consumers to learn more. This could provide suppliers and retailers additional opportunities to connect with consumers online or through social media. 

    Additional Insights

    • Holidays and other special occasions have an impact on kitchen confidence.
      • More than half of respondents (58%) noted that their confidence levels change at certain times of the year. Nearly half of Americans (47%) who noted a change in confidence level based on time of year noted that winter holidays, such as Christmas and Hanukkah, are where they feel little to no confidence in the kitchen.
    • Women want more inspiration, while men are looking for more basic skill development.
      • When it comes to continuing to increase confidence in the kitchen, nearly a third of women (30%) are simply looking for more inspiration for what to cook, whereas more than a third of men (35%) are looking for more guidance on basic kitchen skills, such as knife slicing and chopping.
    • The Northeast region of the U.S. has the most confident home chefs.
      • More than half of respondents (54%) who feel confident in the kitchen reside in the Northeast. When it comes to the least confident region, roughly 1 in 10 Midwesterners lack confidence in the kitchen.
    • Men say they are more often adventurous in the kitchen.
      • A third of men (35%) say they are adventurous in the kitchen more than once a week, whereas 20% of women are adventurous in the kitchen more than once a week. Experimenting with new recipes was how nearly three-quarters of respondents (69%) achieved adventure in the kitchen.