Here's What It Really Means When You Dream About Cooking

If you recently woke up from a deep slumber with doubts about a dream, you're not alone. Dream analysis is becoming increasingly popular with more people taking the time to think about what their subconscious brain was up to in the wee hours of the morning. As clinical psychotherapist Jeffrey Sumber described to Psych Central, "dream analysis is a key component in the process of becoming whole as a person," allowing us to understand our hidden thoughts. As per Sumber, dreams tell us about our "deepest desires and deepest wounds," and aren't nearly as surreal as they may seem. Sure, maybe you dreamed about riding a dinosaur through a magical forest on another planet, but that may just mean you're craving adventure in your life.

As per Healthline, dream analysis is an ancient art, citing how Alexander the Great constructed Alexandria after learning about the island in deep slumber. While world figures have long used their dreams and subconscious mind to judge their intuition, following suit might help you connect to your inner self. As per the outlet, you can get started by always keeping a notebook next to your bed, jotting down the details of your dreams as soon as you wake up. As Sumber explained to Psych Central, dreams really are "the bridge that allows movement back and forth between what we think we know and what we really know." If you dreamed about cooking, your nighttime visions have a whole lot more meaning than you could imagine.

The meaning behind dreaming of cooking alone

Dreaming about making a dish from scratch by yourself has an entirely different meaning than cooking with a group of people. As per Aunty Flo, the general symbol of cooking in dreams is linked to comfort and a love of creation, as well as an interest in "overall health." So, if you fixed a plate for yourself in your dream, you might be worried about your own wellness and feel a need to care for yourself a bit more. You might have abandoned your own desires long ago, instead focusing on catering to others. This is very likely a warning sign that you need to give yourself some much-deserved TLC.

According to Dream Astro Meanings, the act of cooking in a dream may mean you're subconsciously preparing to carry out a crucial task soon, or will deal with conflict in the future. If you're cooking alone but preparing dishes for others, you might care more about your loved ones than yourself. Found yourself in your own kitchen? You might be thinking extra hard about your mundane daily routine, and are craving a change or adventure. Still, as per the outlet, cooking by yourself is a sign of independence and being comfortable in your own skin, while Aunty Flo says it usually means you're entering a stage of self-reflection. As per Check My Dream, the act of preparing a dish by yourself means you're waiting for your hard work to finally pay off.

What it means to cook with loved ones in your dream

Now, if you dreamed about cooking with other people, that has a different meaning entirely. As per The Pleasant Dream, dreaming about preparing a meal with your family is a deeply positive vision, symbolizing a deep sense of happiness and contentment in your life. If you woke up and felt nostalgic, this can also represent that you miss your loved ones, or want to go back to the moments you once spent together. If you dreamed about cooking for your family instead, this may imply you have a deep need to nourish and help others — putting their needs above yours (via Aunty Flo).

According to Dream Astro Meanings, cooking a feast for others means life will surprise you soon, and you might get that much closer to reaching your ultimate goals. Even more, cooking an intricate meal for other people in your dreams might mean you'll meet your soulmate soon and experience true joy. On the opposite end of the spectrum, cooking for others might mean you feel anxiety, especially regarding the way you are perceived by others. This especially rings true if you remember feeling nervous about whether your loved ones would like the meal or not.

As explained by Aunty Flo, if you dreamed about cooking for a significant other, you might be craving romance or are just truly in love and want the best for them. If they cooked for you, they are your safe haven.

Was your dream dish a total fail? There's a meaning for that

If you cooked a meal in your dream that can only be described as a "Pinterest fail," you probably often think about disappointing others or yourself. If you made a serious mess in your kitchen involving tons of piled up dirty plates, speckles of sauce on your counter, or an overflowing pot on the stove, you might be experiencing difficulties in your real-life relationships. Dream Astro Meanings explains that this kind of dream "symbolizes disappointments," and that you often think about your trust being broken. You fear opening up and have likely been hurt in the past, either by a romantic partner, a friend, or family member. You might trust others too much as well, and should take this kind of dream as a warning signal to put up much-needed boundaries.

What if your cooking didn't taste good? Aunty Flo says that this kind of dream means you're terrified of failure or are insecure about your "nurturing skills." Similarly, you might feel like your efforts to help loved ones are taken for granted, or you feel like a doormat others walk all over. Think about how you felt within the dream: Were you disappointed in yourself or were you scared about others' reaction to your meal? The outlet also explains that not being able to finish cooking a meal may signify you feel unfulfilled. In short, analyzing these dreams is crucial in making the life changes you need.

Dreaming about cooking in a restaurant

While dreaming about cooking in your kitchen is the most common kind of culinary dream, you might have lived out a full-on fantasy as a professional chef working in a restaurant. If this is the case, The Pleasant Dream explains that you probably have a deep, ingrained desire to help others including people you don't know personally. Even if you've never realized it, you have a charitable streak that wants to make a difference in the world, providing comfort and nourishment to strangers. 

As per the outlet, you should take this as a sign to open yourself up to "charitable activities," such as volunteering at a shelter. This might just end up giving you a whole new perspective on life and help you practice gratitude. Aunty Flo concurs, saying that this kind of dream means you have felt selfish as of late, and want a lifestyle shift in raising up others instead.

Aunty Flo also touches on the fact that a chef is the most important member of a restaurant's kitchen, meaning you might crave the spotlight or a leadership role in your career or at home. Have you felt underappreciated or taken advantage of lately? You might even feel like you deserve a raise or promotion at work. If you reveled in being a chef in your dream, giving orders to others and noticing how they followed your command, there might be a very powerful side to you that's waiting to come out.

Dreaming about cooking with animal products

While cooking in a dream has a plethora of possible meanings attached to it, the meal you make is equally as important. Sure, cooking alone rather than with a large group of people may speak to your thoughts on solitude or devotion to others, but cooking animal products over fruits and vegetables does, too. As per Dream Astro Meanings, cooking red meat may mean you're in a power struggle with someone else and it's "every man for himself," so to speak. 

Aunty Flo concurs, explaining that cooking raw meat in dreams means you're battling different demons at the moment, but have the strength to carry on and achieve your goals. Red meat in dreams also symbolizes the need to look within, either at your primal instincts or deepest emotions. Meanwhile, making fish means you might soon deal with tension in your life, particularly when it comes to figuring out your next steps. This dream is a signal to trust your intuition.

If you cooked eggs in your dream, your life is about to take a major turn, so expect a "rebirth." Cooking chicken means you might experience a boost in fertility soon, feel content, or should expect a boom in business soon. As a symbol, chicken usually means good signs, so prepare for some serious good luck soon. Cooking with milk means you're likely to fall in love, while sausages mean upcoming riches (via The Pleasant Dream).

Symbols behind cooking with plant-based ingredients

As per Aunty Flo, serving up a nutritious veggie-based dish means you're entering a period of stability and contentment. Making a broth or soup means you feel a need to comfort yourself lately, possibly after heartbreak, sickness, or any kind of difficult situation. If you dreamed you used herbs in your dish, you might just be giving a magic touch to your life — either granting yourself good health or a dose of luck. If you chopped up fruit in your dream or assembled any kind of fruit-based dish, you're in for some sweetness soon.

Meanwhile, according to Dream Astro Meanings, mixing a sauce symbolizes you're expecting a special visitor soon who might change your life, while making rice usually means feeling a sense of more responsibility lately. According to Aunty Flo, rice in a dream also means you're constructing the building blocks for your future and will welcome a new opportunity. Be wary of making bread in your dream. As explained by The Pleasant Dream, cooking with yeast means someone you trust is sending you negative energy behind your back. Yams mean new beginnings, okra means you're on the right path to success, and using flour in your cooking is a good omen. Meanwhile, making oatmeal is a sign you feel happy — aka life is like a warm hug for you right now.

Whether breakfast or dinner, the time of day matters, too

Think back to your dream: Were you cooking up pancakes and bacon for your family in the morning? Or were you pouring a glass of wine and pan-frying salmon for dinner? The time of day you cooked in your dream is crucial, lending serious significance to its symbols.

Let's start with breakfast. As per Dream Astro Meanings, while this kind of vision might seem sweet, positive, and downright-sunny, it's not a good sign at all. Cooking breakfast in a dream may mean there are people in your inner circle who are "plotting" against you. This may sound very Julius Caesar, but as per the outlet, this kind of dream usually means so-called friends are envious of you and want to take what's yours. However, The Pleasant Dream says cooking breakfast might mean you just have to look inward and are craving spiritual growth.

If you were cooking dinner in your dream — the more common of the two — the darkness of the night sky is significant. Dream Astro Meanings says this dream may mean you feel a sense of "depression," while The Pleasant Dream explains it may signify future conflicts down the road.

The most positive time to cook in a dream is lunchtime, which signifies that life will smile back at you very soon. The outlet explains that dreaming about cooking for hours on end might mean you feel trapped in a vicious cycle.

Dreaming about cooking alongside someone who has passed away

One of the most special cooking dreams you can have is making a dish with a person in your life who has passed away, reconnecting you to them for at least a little while. While this kind of dream is clearly extremely emotional, it may mean more than just missing that loved one.

Overall, as per Aunty Flo, cooking with family in a dream usually means that aspect of your life is important to you, provides you a sense of daily comfort, and you might have a bout of luck soon. However, as explained by The Pleasant Dream, dreaming about cooking food for someone who has died may signify anxiety and difficulty accepting the situation. Think back to the dream: Did you feel a sense of stress or were you perfectly content? Your emotions towards them are just as significant. If the person who has passed is doing the cooking, you are most probably spiritually protected by them up above or are giving others too much control over your life's decisions.

If your dream is about cooking with your grandmother who has passed, The Pleasant Dream says this may mean you're craving comfort and an embrace that tells you everything will be okay. Cooking with your mother is different, symbolizing a need for more spirituality in your life. If your mother is doing the cooking for you, this just means how much she will always mean to you.

All the possible meanings attached to cooking in dreams

There are a few more details to remember when analyzing any dream about cooking. For one, if you followed a recipe, both Dream Astro Meanings and The Pleasant Dream say this may mean people in your circle are talking behind your back. On the other hand, this may also mean your life has drifted to the boring side and opening yourself up to new adventures might be just what the doctor ordered.

Do you remember tasting your food as you cooked it? According to Dream Astro Meanings, this is a good omen that indicates future success. As per the outlet, dreaming about making several kinds of meals at once means you're soon in for a big get-together with old friends from all walks of life. If your cooking was rushed, you might experience heartbreak or loss. According to The Pleasant Dream, burning your food isn't the best omen. It may mean losing someone important to you. Still, Dream Astro Meanings says this can also mean pregnancy.

If you dreamed you were making cocktails while cooking, your friends might not be who you think they are. If you suddenly had to make coffee and interrupt your cooking experience, someone might be trying to get in the way of your goals. The act of serving food indicates stress, while baking desserts is a great sign, indicating an abundance of love, happiness, and sugary-sweetness in your life.