College women may be losing their fundamental food preparation ability. The study reported here identified specific foods that college women could or could not prepare and the reason(s) they did not prepare these foods. The two dominant reasons for being unable to prepare most foods were they had never been taught and they had no interest in learning. Insufficient time and inadequate kitchens were contributing, but minor, reasons for their inability to prepare certain foods. Extension professionals have access to young people and are thus in a favorable position to influence the youth regarding the importance of acquiring food preparation abilities.

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