OSU Athletes–Who Made It Best? Team Building Cook-Off

Competition was fierce. The teams were in a heated battle for victory. They were focused, earnest and motivated. The eight teams were really just one team though, and it showed in the way that they shared ingredients, cleaned equipment carefully for other teams’ use, answered each other’s questions, and laughed at each team’s bizarre hilarious team names. Leave it to a group of college guys to have inside jokes that make absolutely no sense at all to someone outside the team. Why did team names “35 is a Nemo” and “Jed’s Tab” get huge laughs when they were announced?! I have no idea, but they sure had a good time.

Teaching the OSU Men’s Lacrosse team to make a delicious meal from scratch was as much fun for me as it was for them. They learned so quickly and used great creativity incorporating secret ingredients to spice up their dishes and presentation.

First they learned to wash their hands properly, then about knife and kitchen safety. We gathered and learned how to make salsa from scratch in five minutes. If that’s not a skill that you can use your whole life, what is?!



Not all team building exercises are competitions, but when you put together a group of seriously competitive athletes, they want to be the best at everything.


The team learned about how to safely handle and store raw chicken and how to be sure it’s cooked completely. They broke into teams and made baked salsa chicken with cilantro lime rice, just as they’d been taught. It was even more than that though. The teams each put their own spin on the dish and each group had a different secret ingredient. We thought they’d just dump them in and that would be that, but they were creative and not afraid to work hard and take some culinary chances.


Check out the spectacular results of their efforts!

Judging was intense, as all the dishes were exceptional, though very different. The teams worked so well together and created such delicious dishes that only a few points separated the first place team from the 8th place. The winners took home the giant whisk of glory as a trophy!

Afterward there was a little clean-up to get the kitchen back in shape, but the players cleaned as they went (one of the most difficult and important cooking skills to master) and before long we were ready for the next challenge!




Food For Thought Kitchen is a cooking school in Columbus, Ohio. We offer cooking classes to students of all ages as well as private events. Contact us to start planning your next team building event now! uakidscook@gmail.com



Meet Carrie and Olivia

Carrie Klug is the creative genius. She can turn a cake into a masterpiece and has fourteen ideas at once when you ask her what she can do with a few ingredients. She learned to cook as a child from her Grandmother, baking homemade bread, learning secret family recipes, and forming her identity in a family that cooked together. Carrie’s experience working in restaurants has given her a wide range of knowledge about many cuisines. Name your top 5 favorite fine dining restaurants in Columbus–chances are Carrie has worked at at least a few of them! Since 2007 Carrie has operated her own catering service and provided baked goods to order for the community. Carrie’s daughter is in 3rd grade and loves to bake with her mom. Carrie’s hope is to share her love and knowledge of cooking with children who will use it their whole lives.

Olivia Hickey is the organizer and child development specialist. She learned to cook while living in Italy, and has spent most of her career teaching Psychology to nursing students. She loves teaching, kids and cooking. Her goal is to design developmentally appropriate and challenging courses that blend fun and learning about cooking skills, health, science, math, art, language and culture. Olivia likes gardening and growing food, in the early summer she can be seen standing in her front yard waiting for the cherries to ripen. Olivia’s sons are in Kindergarten and 3rd grade, and are hoping for cooking classes on Pizza and Clam Bakes.

Olivia and Carrie test recipes and teaching strategies with their own children–sometimes the children take over and make pancakes.