What's Cookin, Chicago

Chicago, IL

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About this pro

How does your business stand out?

Joelen Kenny of What's Cookin' Chicago? is an avid food enthusiast with years of experience as a culinary instructor, food blogger and former professional restaurant chef. Although she has a culinary background, she also works in the pharmaceutical industry involved with specialty medications for oncology, rheumatology, dermatology and gynocology therapies. Combining her upbringing as a child to retired caterers, science education, extensive experience in the culinary arts, and being a mom to first grader, Joelen has a unique perspective on food where she makes learning in the kitchen fun, easy, educational and approachable. Joelen loves focusing on cuisine and culture, often teaching classes that combine both with a hands on and interactive approach for her students. Joelen Tan is also behind the 'What's Cookin, Chicago?' website. Joelen has been recognized in both local and national media and has worked with celebrity chefs including Rick Bayless, Spike Mendelsohn, and Marcela Valladolid. Since 2007, she has been teaching culinary classes, hosting culinary events in Chicagoland and does recipe development work with major food brands including Sara Lee, Pepperidge Farms, Campbell's, Kraft, Frito Lay and Starbucks to name a few.

What do you enjoy about the work you do?

I enjoy sharing tips and tricks of the trade as well as learning from others. Coming up with cohesive and delicious menus is one my favorite parts of being a chef!
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Chicago, IL 60612

Years in business


Number of employees



3 Reviews
  • Kathy G. Sep 3, 2016
    Joelen Tan - Excellent Chef and Food Expert
    Joelen is a prime example of talent, class, and professionalism! I had the opportunity to host several cooking classes with Joelen as the chef. Joelen goes through every detail of the recipe and gives you alternative options. The food is amazing and fresh and there is always plenty to take home! I can't wait to plan my next event!!!
  • Dawn P. Mar 22, 2011
    Joelen is a fantastic cook and a great instructor. She is passionate about people and food and that makes her events always fun. Best wishes, D!
  • Megan C. Mar 22, 2011
    Joelen is more than a cooking instructor- she is a cooking coach! I wanted to expand my cooking horizons and learn more about other cultures and their foods. Joelen guided me every step of the way. In our Filipino classes she had the kitchen and prep area perfectly prepared so the lesson was seamless from prep work to cooking and eating after. My friends couldn't believe that I had prepared the chicken adobo! Incredible! I was a little clumsy at first but she gave me some great hints and tips. I feel so much more at home in the kitchen. I've experienced her instruction in group and in the one on one format and she excels at both. Even in a larger group she still gives folks just the right amount of attention to let them flourish in their own way. I highly recommend working with Joelen!