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Taking an online baking class has the advantage that you can choose from a wide range of topics by professional baking instructors from around the world. And because most classes are recorded and on-demand, you can take the class any time when it fits your schedule. The downside of online classes is lack of interaction with the instructor; you cannot ask questions although some classes have communities and groups that you can join.
Because there are baking classes covering all types of baked goods, from bread, cakes, cookies, sweet and savory pastries, to gluten-free baking, as well as classes teaching techniques, it can be difficult to make a choice about which class is right for you. Here, we picked the best online baking classes for you.
Best Online Baking Classes of 2023
- Best Overall: The Butter Book
- Best for Bread: Craftsy - Peter Reinhart
- Best for Pastries: MasterClass - Dominique Ansel Teaches Pastry Fundamentals
- Best for Beginners: Baker Bettie's Baking Fundamentals
- Best Gluten-Free: Gluten-Free Baking From America's Test Kitchen
- Best Free Class: Christina Tosi's Bake Club
- Best for Kids and Families: Bake for Good, by King Arthur Flour
Best Overall : The Butter Book
- Syllabus/Topics Covered: More than 200 instructional videos explaining fundamental European baking techniques and recipe videos for all types of sweet and savory baked goods
- Subscription/Cost: $25 monthly membership, $200 annual membership
- Length: Varying
We chose The Butter Book as the best overall online baking class because it covers a vast range of both techniques and recipes, including numerous classics. Coming from the founders of the renowned French Pastry School, the videos give you access to European baking at its best.
Comprehensive range of baking topics
10-day free trial
Members-only Facebook group
Requires a precise metric conversion scale
If you're serious about baking and looking for something other than cooking courses, then The Butter Book is for you. Founded by a pair of highly decorated French bakers, the online school has a vast lesson library covering topics like pastries, bread, cake (baking and decorating), pie, cookies, petit fours, and more.
In addition to learning recipes, you will also be schooled in fundamental, time-tested techniques. The European approach to baking draws on centuries of knowledge, tradition, and an organized apprenticeship system dedicated to the mastery of this age-old craft. Before you know it, you'll be whipping up croissants for breakfast, bread for lunch, macarons at tea time, and soufflé for dessert.
The Butter Book is available on a subscription basis. You can join monthly or yearly. If you want to check out the goods before you commit, The Butter Book offers a 10-day free trial. The cost is around $25 for the monthly membership or about $200 for the year.
Best for Bread : Craftsy - Peter Reinhart
- Syllabus/Topics Covered: 10 sessions covering different types of classic breads, from baguette to babka
- Subscription/Cost: $40 for a single class, approx. $97 for annual membership
- Length: 5.5 hours
Thousands of home bakers have learned how to bake artisan bread from Peter Reinhart’s seminal books so it’s only natural to draw upon his expertise for the online baking classes offered by Craftsy. His classes cover individual breads as well as fundamental and advanced techniques, supplies, definitions, and steps.
Option to select individual breads
Access to class Q&A
High cost of a single class
Whether you are a novice or an experienced bread baker, the odds are you can benefit from spending a few hours advancing your craft under the tutelage of Peter Reinhart.
As one of the most respected baking instructors in America, Reinhart teaches at the renowned Johnson & Wales University College of Culinary Arts and is the author of several acclaimed books on bread, pastries, and pizza. Rest assured, the man knows what he's doing.
With almost two and a half hours of video instruction, Reinhart's Artisan Bread Making class features ten lessons covering bread—from baguettes and marble rye to babka—as well as information about supplies, fundamentals, and advanced techniques.
Craftsy offers both memberships and individual classes. A subscription gives you access to all of Reinhart's courses, plus the remainder of Craftsy's content on a monthly or yearly basis.
For a single class, Reinhart's Artisan Bread Making lesson is around $40. A subscription to Craftsy, which hosts the course, is about $10 per month, or approximately $97 per year.
Best for Pastries : MasterClass - Dominique Ansel Teaches Pastry Fundamentals
- Syllabus/Topics Covered: 17 lessons for sweet baked goods, covering fruit tarts, chocolate cake, bonbons, and croissants
- Subscription/Cost: $180 yearly Masterclass subscription
- Length: 3.5 hours
Producing delectable dessert pastries requires not only mastering the techniques but also creativity, and Dominique Ansel has a reputation for both. We chose his Pastry Fundamentals Master Class because videos combine sound instruction with insights into his creative process.
Learn about The Cronut directly from its creator
Inspiration to create your own desserts
No option to ask questions
Dominique Ansel has been dubbed a dessert genius, with some comparing him to Willy Wonka.
His most famous invention, the trademarked Cronut, took the world by storm in 2013. Today, his whimsical sweets are the driving force behind a growing empire of bakeries in Los Angeles, New York, London, and Hong Kong.
His Pastry Fundamentals course on the MasterClass platform is made up of 17 lessons, totaling more than three and a half hours of instruction. It covers four items in-depth: the fruit tart, chocolate cake, bonbons, and "The Perfect Croissant." By delving into these topics, Ansel showcases his creative process, revealing how basic elements and a little imagination can lead to greatness.
The masterclass is only available through a yearly subscription. Currently priced at around $180, you will receive two passes for all of the platform's content. Pro-tip: Keep one for yourself and gift one to a friend.
Best for Beginners : Baker Bettie's Baking Fundamentals
- Syllabus/Topics Covered: Course about baking fundamentals, divided into baking basics in five lessons and ingredients and how they work in seven lessons
- Subscription/Cost: Free of charge
- Length: 3 hours
This course is a great toolbox for beginning bakers. It covers the basics but it also helps you understand why things are done a certain way, and how ingredients work. The fact that the course is free makes it attractive if you are not quite ready to commit to a paid online class.
Videos are complemented by text, photos, and recipe links
Free of charge
Lifetime access to classes
Community baking group on Facebook
Enrollment is required
If this is the beginning of your baking journey and you want to go a little deeper than the back of the box of brownie mix, check out the Baking Fundamentals course from Kristin "Baker Bettie" Hoffman.
A former musician, Hoffman's "Baker Bettie" alter ego embodies her lifelong, passionate pursuit of baking skills and knowledge. Her Fundamentals course, (which she offers free of charge) has two parts: Baking Basics and How Ingredients Function in Baking.
Baking Basics comprises five lessons, covering terminology, equipment, and basic processes like mise en place ("everything in its place" in French) and reading a recipe. How Ingredients Function in Baking offers seven lessons on the science behind the magic, describing the roles played by flour, sugar, butter, eggs, and the specific contributions they make to the final product's qualities.
Each course is free and includes a video, clear explanatory text, photos, and links to recipes for the assigned homework—now all you need is someone to grade them.
Best Gluten-Free : Gluten-Free Baking From America's Test Kitchen
- Syllabus/Topics Covered: Seven-part class about gluten-free baking techniques and ingredients, including three guided recipe lessons
- Subscription/Cost: $20 per month
- Length: Varying
We chose this modular class because it breaks down the challenges of gluten-free baking. Lessons about how gluten-free baking works, as well as core techniques, are followed by recipe lessons for yellow layer cake, sugar cookies, and blueberry pie. Also covered are pitfalls when developing gluten-free versions of your favorite baking recipes.
Teaches you how to make gluten-free flour
Assessment quizzes to review what you learned
Does not cover savory gluten-free baking
You may have seen the TV show, but did you know that "America's Test Kitchen" also has an online cooking school? Among the more than 300 courses is an in-depth lesson in gluten-free baking. The seven-part class will teach you the principles behind gluten-free techniques and ingredients.
You'll learn about the various flour blends on the market and how to create your own. Then you'll put your knowledge to work with three guided recipe lessons: Yellow Layer Cake, Chewy Sugar Cookies, and Blueberry Pie.
The cooking school offers two tiers of membership. For around $20 per month, you get access to all of the content available. For approximately $40 per month, you'll have access to the full library, plus interactive guidance from America's Test Kitchen instructors.
Best Free Class : Christina Tosi's Bake Club
- Syllabus/Topics Covered: The Bake Club features a dozens of recipes from Christina Tosi’s repertoire, from speedy mug cakes to more time-consuming brioche
- Subscription/cost: Free of charge
- Length: Varying
Christina Tosi’s Bake Club is the closest you can get to a live baking class, that’s why we chose it. Every Monday at 2 p.m., you can follow her along on Instagram whipping up something new. The ingredients for the Monday Bake Club session are shared with members on Sunday so you can bake along if you like.
Lively community feel
Recipes on the website
New creative recipes with a surprise factor
Instagram account required to watch live session
In March 2020, Christina Tosi, a four-time James Beard Award recipient and Milk Bar bakery founder, started teaching lessons through her personal Instagram account.
Calling the project #bakeclub LIVE, Tosi appears on Instagram Live with a new recipe tutorial every week. Her lessons are informal, freewheeling, and full of energy as she explains her process and the creative thinking behind her baking.
Tosi teaches her followers how to make things like oat cookie bars, brown butter Nilla Wafers, mug cakes, and strawberry cereal squares. Tosi posts the ingredients the day before, so you can pick them up if you want to bake along with her.
If you miss the live broadcast, not to worry. All the recipes are posted on her website, and the videos are live on her IGTV page for anyone to watch. Best of all, it's totally free.
Best for Kids and Families : Bake for Good, by King Arthur Flour
- Syllabus/Topics Covered: Four episodes showing how one basic dough is used for breads, pastries, and pizza
- Subscription/Cost: Free of charge
- Length: 50 minutes
These classes not only teach students in grades 4 through 12 how to turn dough into bread, but they also covers the math and science behind baking bread. The class is online and can be followed as a self-directed video for a small group, or used for groups of 50 or more students led by a Bake for Good instructor via Zoom or in person.
Geared towards children
Free of charge
Virtual or in person for groups of 50 or more
For groups of 10 or more students
The King Arthur Baking Company has produced a trove of educational content over the years. King Arthur is helping bakers everywhere improve their craft, from its "Baker's Hotline" and online recipe guides to its videos and brick-and-mortar schools.
Bake for Good is King Arthur's longstanding effort to help young people grow into good citizens by teaching math, science, reading, and community through the medium of bread, and the company has condensed this program into an online class.
Hosted by Paula Gray, the class unfolds in four episodes, revealing how one basic dough can be used to create different types of breads, pastries, or even pizza. You can watch all the videos for free.
We chose The Butter Book as the best overall online baking class because it offers the broadest spectrum of instruction for home bakers of all levels. It covers both basic and more intricate baking techniques as well as a large repertoire of sweet and savory baked goods. As you might be unsure how long you might want to take classes, the option to change your subscription, in addition to the 10-day free trial, is another plus.
The Butter Book is the best overall company, but if you are looking for gluten-free baking lessons, check out Gluten-Free Baking from America's Test Kitchen.
Compare the Best Online Baking Classes
|Online Baking Class||Topics||Lessons/ Units||Cost||Membership Required|
|The Butter Book Best Overall||Savory and sweet baked goods and techniques||200 videos||$25/monthly||Yes|
|Peter Reinhart (Craftsy) Best for Bread||Breads||10 sessions||$40/class||No|
|Dominique Ansel (MasterClass) Best for Pastries||Sweet baked goods||17 lessons||$180/annual||Yes|
|Baker Bettie Best for Beginners||Baking fundamentals||5 lessons||Free||Yes|
|America's Test Kitchen Best Gluten-Free||Gluten-free sweet baked goods||7 parts||$20/month||Yes|
|Christina Tosi's Bake Club Best Free Class||Various||Weekly||Free||No|
|King Arthur Flour Bake for Good Best for Kids and Families||Bread||4 episodes||Free||No|
Guide to Choosing an Online Baking Class
Because the material covered in baking classes and their focus varies greatly, carefully read the class description to make sure it fits your needs and skill level. Also, some classes are modular and build on each other, others require a certain knowledge level to follow the class.
If you are unsure about your skill level, it’s usually better to start with baking basics and gradually move up. Even if the material covered in a class is already familiar to you, refreshers never hurt. That way you can dive into more sophisticated and elaborate topics with confidence.
Most baking class instructors are professionals and highly skilled but whether you enjoy the class also depends on the instructor’s personality and style. Some instructors are no-nonsense, very matter-of-fact while others are more chatty and conversational. Try to watch a promotional video clip with the instructors to get a better feel for their teaching style.
Self-Guided or Supervised
The classes listed above are all on-demand. While this gives you utmost flexibility because you can watch the classes when it fits your schedule, the drawback of non-supervised classes is that you are not able to ask questions. To help you out, some classes have communities or Facebook groups where you can seek advice.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is an Online Baking Class?
Online baking classes are a way to learn to bake from the comfort of your own kitchen. The classes we choose focus on a broad variety of baking skills, rather than a single aspect.
Do I Need Baking Experience to Take an Online Baking Class?
While most of the classes are designed for the beginner, some, such as those offered by The Butter Book, offer more advanced classes.
How Much Does an Online Baking Class Cost?
Prices vary for each course. For example, The Butter Book costs about $25 per month, others charge annual rates, and Reinhart's Artisan Bread Making has a single course option for $20.
What Should a Beginner Bake First?
Muffins, quickbreads, and simple cookies are usually the best for beginning bakers. If you are unsure if you can handle a recipe, read through the ingredient list and the instructions first. Red flags are long lists of ingredients and unfamiliar techniques, such as rolling out a pie crust. In the beginning, also stay away from recipes with yeast and go for those with baking powder or baking soda as the leaving agent.
How Long Will It Take to Learn Baking?
That depends on how ambitious you are. If you start out with short, straightforward but reliable recipes that you follow precisely, you can build a nice little baking repertoire within a few months. Keep in mind that professional bakers train for years and even experienced home bakers fail sometimes.
We researched more than 30 different sites and looked over hundreds of customer reviews to find the online baking classes with the most comprehensive resources. We looked for courses that would address broad categories of baking knowledge rather than those that focus on a single item. As baking classes are covering such a wide range of categories, which are often not comparable, we broke down the list of best classes into categories and selected a winner for each.