Creative Cooks Contest Registration Open

Plan a full menu, create a place setting, cook an item from the menu, and wow the judges! The Creative Cooks Contest helps 4-H members build important life skills. All 4-H members are welcome to enter. The registration deadline is May 27th.


Plan a full menu, create a place setting, cook an item from the menu, and wow the judges! 

The Creative Cooks Contest helps 4-H members build important life skills, including: 

  • Research and planning
  • Creativity
  • Public speaking
  • Time management
  • Cooking
  • Meal planning
A Larimer County 4-H Member at the State Creative Cooks Competition.  Her display is spread out in front of hear and is bunny/ carrot themed.

Get Started by:

  • Choosing a theme for your meal.
  • Plan a menu and a place setting. Remember, the menu and place setting should match the theme. You will need to prepare one food from the menu. Please remember, commercially prepared food items are not allowed unless you're using it as an ingredient in a larger recipe. 
  • Don't forget about the specialty food! Some categories require that the specialty food is a significant part of the prepared dish. 
  • Study up on your whole meal, including what are the nutritional values.

The Day of the Contest:

    Remember to bring with you:

    • A table
    • Decorations for theme
    • One place setting and a non-edible centerpiece
    • Costume to go with the theme
    • Your prepared menu item
      • Food safety is part of the judging. If the menu item is hot - keep it hot. If the menu item is cold - keep it cold.
    • A way to serve the judge safely (gloves, tongs, disposable bowl or plate, disposable utensil)
    A Larimer County 4-H Member at Creative Cooks. His display is spread-out in front of him.  It is a  builder/construction themed picnic.

    Interested in participating?

    2023 Creative Cooks Contest Information - May 27th Registration Deadline

    Date: Saturday, June 3rd
    Check-in: 9am
    Set-up: 9am - 9:30am
    Judging starts: 9:30am
    Location: Timnath & LaPorte rooms in the McKee Building at The Ranch
    Specialty Food: Apples
    Full Contest Rules and Requirements

    Please sign up here

    For Questions regarding the Creative Cooks Contest, please contact Kara Rudnick.   

    Want to learn about the Creative Cooks Contest and other opportunities? Be sure to attend your 4-H Club Meetings and subscribe to the Clover Connections Newsletter


    1. Creative Cooks is open to all Larimer County 4-H Members. It is not limited to those enrolled in a 4-H foods project. 

    2. The 4-H member must:

      • Do all the cooking
      • Set up their own table and display

      Parents can:

      • Parents can help give directions and tips for cooking. Again, the 4-H member must do the cooking themselves. Any help or instructions from parents, must be verbal.
      • Help clean up
      • Help carry items into the contest. Again, the 4-H member is responsible for setting up their table and display themselves.
      • Yes! Members can choose to participate alone or form a team of 2 members. Cloverbuds can form a team of more than 2 members. 

      Non-Discrimination Statement

      Colorado State University Extension is an equal opportunity provider. Colorado State University does not discriminate on the basis of disability and is committed to providing reasonable accommodations. CSU’s Office of Engagement and Extension ensures meaningful access and equal opportunities to participate to individuals whose first language is not English. Colorado State University Extension es un proveedor que ofrece igualdad de oportunidades.

      Colorado State University no discrimina por motivos de discapacidad y se compromete a proporcionar adaptaciones razonables. Office of Engagement and Extension de CSU garantiza acceso significativo e igualdad de oportunidades para participar a las personas quienes su primer idioma no es el inglés.

      Larimer County Office of Colorado State University Extension

      Send email

      1525 Blue Spruce Dr.
      Fort Collins, CO 80524-2004

      Phone: (970) 498-6000 | Fax: (970) 498-6025

      Office Hours
      7:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
      Monday - Friday

      Our office follows the Larimer County Holiday Calendar for office closures. 

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