Chop, Cook, Chat

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Chop, Cook, Chat

Older men in Portsmouth are picking up cookery skills and making new friends, thanks to a new course.

Chop Cook Chat is a course for men aged 60 and up who have had a big change in their lives. For instance, they might have lost a loved one or become a carer.

The course teaches them to cook simple, healthy, low-cost meals in a friendly environment. They feel more confident in the kitchen, and meet others in a similar situation.

Fred’s Story

91 year old Fred from Copnor is a widower. When his wife was alive, she did the majority of the cooking. Fred started to do some very basic cooking with his son, then he heard about Chop, Cook, Chat through an exercise class that he goes to. He attended the pilot of Chop, Cook, Chat and has been attending the group ever since, he said:

“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the course. I’ve learnt how to make lots of dishes and have been surprised at how simple most of them are. The meal always tastes much nicer when you’ve cooked it from scratch, and you know what’s gone in it. I also liked learning about the nutrients we need and how much is in different foods.

“It would be so easy for me to stay in the chair at home but I always feel refreshed and stimulated when I’ve been to the group. I’ve really enjoyed chatting with the other men there. I would recommend other older men by themselves give it a go. It might feel daunting going along at first but it’s really friendly and you get lots out of it.”

Fred said he now cooks more meals from scratch and is eating better since attending the course. He also continues to benefit from the social aspect of the group.

More about Chop, Cook, Chat

Chop, Cook, Chat is a group teaching basic cooking skills to men over 60 who have experienced a change in circumstances, for example bereavement. The course aims to improve health and wellbeing by reducing social isolation. Participants meet other men in similar situations to themselves as well as learning the skills needed to prepare healthy meals.

The initial fortnightly course starts with different ways to cook eggs and progresses to casseroles, cottage pie, bolognese and making a cheese sauce. Alongside the cooking, information is provided on kitchen hygiene, portion sizing, healthy eating and batch cooking.

Following this, the group continue to meet fortnightly with the support of volunteers.

How to take part

If you think that you would like to take part in Chop, Cook, Chat then contact Jayne Gentle using the contact details below to see when the next course is available.

The fortnightly sessions are £5 per session – this covers all of your ingredients, the meal that you cook to take home and eating what is made in the session with other gentlemen.

You can also search independence and wellbeing at for details of other cooking groups, including ones for carers and cardiac outpatients.

Contact Us

If you’re interested in finding out more about other Chop, Cook, Chat groups we’re looking to set up across the city, or supporting these as a volunteer then:


or call 023 9284 1762.

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