Food for Thought

My Cooking Playlist

Music makes the world go around, at least that’s what I’ve heard. I do know that it is such a powerful thing. Like food, music can take you back in time, make you cry, make you smile, or in this case, make you want to cook.

You really have to enjoy cooking for it to be therapeutic, and sometimes, even I do not feel like cooking. When I don’t feel motivated or just want to maximize my cooking experience, I listen to this cooking playlist.

There is certain genres I like to listen to, depending on what I am cooking. I just love to listen to Frank Sinatra when I am cooking Italian food and sipping some wine, or even “Hips Don’t Lie” by Shakira when I’m cooking up some Latin….whatever works right? I really do feel like the passion goes into the food and when you just relax, sit back and saute your onions to some Louis Armstrong, what could go wrong?

Mise en Place or Prep

Click here to listen to the playlist on Youtube

Most cooks will tell you that the prep work before the cooking is the most tedious. You start off strong with all this drive to cook an amazing meal and by the 3rd onion that you’ve chopped, your eyes burn so bad, that you would rather just go with take-out. I’ve found that the best way to get through your prep is with some upbeat music that keeps you going until the cook begins

Hips Don’t Lie – Shakira

This song is great for chopping onions, peeling apples, peeling potatoes, etc, etc. By the end of the song, you’re halfway through the prep and you don’t even realize it. This is also a good cook song for Latin cuisine!

Fighter – Christina Aguilera

Okay, so this is the moment that you have to fight through the prep. Get it done, and go home…just kidding…you still have a whole meal to cook. But seriously, this is a great song to get pumped too. It keeps me on track and stay energized and focus.

4 Minutes – Madonna & Justin Timberlake

Another upbeat song to get you through, but it’s coming to a close. 

Dog Days are Over – Florence and the Machine

This is the song to wrap everything up. Just from this 4 song playlist, we are already at 15 and a half minutes in, and generally home prep averages at 13-15 minutes.

The Cook

Click here to listen to the playlist on Youtube



All of these songs are relaxing, usually Italian, and keep the cooking low-key and all about the food. There isn’t really a reason behind these songs. I like to have a smooth jazz, Italian/French/Latin kind of feel in my kitchen.

and of course….

The Dreaded Clean Up

Click to Listen to Playlist on Youtube

By the end of the meal, you are probably too tired to even think about cleaning up, and luckily if you have a spouse, friends, or family, you may be able to get them to help you. But nonetheless, you are still dreading it. So when I was making this playlist, I instantly resorted to upbeat, dance-type music to push me through it. But I found the upbeat music actually made me work slower, or it got on my nerves, so I just turned it off. The next day, I tried some soulful, peaceful music to carry me through and it actually worked for me. The dishes were done, and drying and the table was cleaned off before I knew it. Also, you don’t want to send your guests out or your kids to bed with Nicki Minaj cussing in the background. These songs that I picked out also has low moments and upbeat moments so it keeps you focused and motivated, so without further ado, I present the last 5 songs of the evening.








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