My Partner Can’t Cook (Top 3 Tips)

In this brief article, we will talk about why and what to do about the fact that your partner can’t cook. 

Why can’t your partner cook?

So your partner can’t cook. Here are some of the reasons why they might lack this essential life skill. 

  • They were never taught how to
  • They are bad at it 
  • They don’t like cooking 
  • They would rather get takeout 
  • They are too preoccupied with life 
  • They don’t know how to 
  • They have been criticised for it 
  • They do not think it is their job
  • They do not feel the need to 
  • They feel pressured 
  • They can afford not to 

What do you do if your partner won’t cook?

Here’s what you can do if your partner won’t cook: 

  • Try to understand the reasons why they won’t cook
  • Offer to help prep for meals and clean up afterwards
  • Suggest cooking meals together once a day at least

How do I get my partner to cook?

You can get your partner to cook by doing the following things: 

  • Lead them into it with easy-to-do meals 
  • Offer to cook with them 
  • Try making meals you know they would enjoy

Why do some people hate cooking?

There are a lot of reasons why people hate cooking. Here are a few: 

  • It is hard work for little gratification 
  • They do not trust their skills 
  • They fear people will not like what they have made

Learning to cook is something that people should know because it is an important life skill.

Preparing our own meals gives us control over the ingredients that go into it, ensures fresh food and if done right, is healthier too. 

However, it does take time and not everyone is thrilled about cooking. 

To begin with, it could feel like a challenging task, especially for someone who has not been taught. 

If your partner can’t cook, and they are not willing to learn how to, there may be many reasons behind their decision. 

So let’s find out why they can’t or won’t cook. 

Why can’t my partner cook?

They were never taught how to

Not many are taught to cook anymore. Children grow into adults without learning this essential skill because parents either do not have the time to teach them or do not see the point. 

To add to it, the rise of food delivery apps have made ordering-in more feasible. 

The option of takeout exists, therefore, making learning how to cook seem redundant. 

If your partner can’t cook, it could be because they were never taught and do not really want to learn anymore. 

Speak to them and try to see if you can ease them into it. You never know, they may actually start to enjoy it. 

They are bad at it 

Cooking is a skill like any other and it takes time to get good at it. 

While people do master it over time, few may be downright bad cooks and give up after trying a few times. 

If your partner can’t cook, it could be because they know they are bad at it and have accepted that. 

This is not necessarily the end of the road. With a few words of encouragement, maybe even cooking together, you can nudge them into making food they actually like.

They don’t like cooking 

Yes, these people exist. Many people do not fancy cooking because it takes time and effort to create wholesome meals. 

Right from prepping to actually serving the food, it is hard work. 

These people possibly may believe that the reward of eating versus the endeavour of creating the meal is an imbalanced one. 

Then there is also the clean up afterwards, washing the dishes and so on. 

Some people may also have tried cooking and failed, which keeps them from trying again. 

You need to establish whether your partner can’t cook or just doesn’t like cooking. 

They would rather get takeout 

It is definitely easier to get takeout than cook a meal by yourself. If your partner can’t cook, they can always order in. 

For many people this reasoning keeps them from learning how to cook because all it takes is one call to get food delivered right to your doorstep. 

They may also not know how to make complicated meals that are readily available over a phone call. 

Explain to them that though the options are many, it is the most healthy choice to make. 

Home-cooked meals are much better because you actually know what is going into them and it also saves a lot of money. 

They are too preoccupied with life  

Cooking takes time. Life can get in the way, especially if other priorities take precedence. 

If your partner is too busy with work or looking after their children, it could be why they can’t cook. 

Sometimes people want to cook, but cannot find even an hour to do so. Cut them some slack and share the responsibilities instead. 

Switch up the roles where they can take up cooking and you can help them out in other areas of your home life. 

They have been criticised for it 

No one likes to be criticised for not knowing how to do something and the same applies when it comes to cooking. 

It could be that your partner has been discouraged by you or someone else in the past and hence, can’t cook. 

Re-introduce them to cooking with words of encouragement and maybe start off with uncomplicated recipes that are easier to master. 

They do not think it is their job

If seen as a chore more than an essential life skill, cooking can put people off. 

Maybe your partner can’t cook because they don’t think it is a responsibility they need to shoulder on their own. 

It is not a role that is yours alone either. Cooking together can bring couples together and can be a fun activity for both. 

Try including them with little things to begin with or making one easy dish rather than full meals. It should help.

They do not feel the need to 

Right from takeout, to food delivery apps and drive-throughs, it is so easy to get food. 

Even homemade healthy meals are readily available. 

It saves the trip to the grocery store, time to actually prepare meals and the choices are endless.  

With so many options available, if your partner can’t cook, they may not really see the point of it all. 

They feel pressured 

When people cook, they want to make sure that the ones being fed like what they have made. 

The subtle pressure is on to deliver. It is this fear of failure that can be crippling for some and could be why your partner can’t cook at all. 

If they do want to learn, try to ease them into it with simple recipes that are not overwhelming. 

They can afford not to 

People can place a very high importance on cooking, when in reality, there are just too many options available these days. 

If your partner can’t cook but can afford to buy meals from different places or to get help, is it really that much of a big deal? 

Ultimately, cooking should be enjoyed and not forced upon. 

Ask yourself why it is so important that your partner knows how to cook, especially when they can afford not to. 


Learning to cook, like adjusting in a relationship, can take time. Have a conversation with your partner, find out what is holding them back from trying again and be supportive of their needs. 

FAQs: My partner can’t cook

Is cooking important in a relationship? 

The short answer is no. While you may like eating home cooked meals, cooking is not necessarily for your relationship to work. 

Expecting your partner to know how to cook is a little silly when it is something you can do yourself. 

Having said that, you may sometimes want to come home to a warm meal after a long, tiring day. 

You can definitely suggest it to your partner but make sure it is not expected of them. 

Is cooking a life skill? 

Yes, 100% cooking is a life skill, and an essential one at that. 

Good home-cooked meals are the best way to ensure a healthy lifestyle and be sure of what you are eating. 

Reliance on fast food joints and other options can become expensive and also be fatal, if overdone. 

Should everyone know how to cook? 

Learning how to cook is definitely a plus. It helps us understand flavours, appreciate food, opens your mind to different cultures and helps you live healthily. 

It is also less expensive to eat home-cooked meals rather than ordering out daily. 

There is no hard and fast rule that says you must know how to cook, but gathering life skills is never a bad idea. 

Can someone learn to love cooking? 

While sometimes cooking does come naturally to some people, most evolve their skill over time. 

The love for cooking can only grow if done on the regular. 

One need not aim to be a chef, home cooks can make delicious food for themselves starting with recipes that need not be over the top. 


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