Jul 21, 2016
Teaching Vikings to Cook

The Minnesota Vikings recently held a cooking class to help players learn how to make foods that provide them the nutrition that they need to perform well. According to the Vikings’ website, Rasa Troup, the team’s nutritionist, taught the class alongside Geji Mckinney-Banks, the team’s director of food services, and seven rookies and three veterans attended. Albert Padilla, an assistant athletic trainer, came up with the idea to help players learn about eating healthy food.

“We want to make sure they understand that nutrition doesn’t have to be rocket science. We don’t want it to seem overwhelming,” Troup said. “A lot of them may not feel like cooking until they actually see that it can just be putting a few ingredients together and whipping something up—it doesn’t have to be a 5-star meal to meet their nutritional needs.

The class taught players how to make low-prep meals, such as grilled chicken breast, crab-and-shrimp salad with avocado, and pasta with herbs, among others. It also taught the players tips on cooking their foods, about various foods’ nutritional value, and how to prepare food safely.

“There were actually a lot of new things [I learned],” Terence Newman, a veteran player, said. “Most people get in the kitchen and kind of tinker around, but we learned some important things tonight, especially to make sure you’re cooking chicken to a certain temperature and not to finish until it’s at that temperature. I don’t think a lot of people know that – I definitely didn’t.”

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