A Blog by International Students at Leiden University

Meet the Green Kitchen!

Who doesn’t love good food and great company? Add a good cause to the mix, and you have Leiden’s Green Kitchen! The Green Kitchen is a student initiative raising awareness about food waste, that invites you to join for delicious meals in Leiden.


Photograph provided by the Green Kitchen

Leiden’s Green Kitchen was founded almost two years ago, when a group of students was inspired by a similar project in the Hague. Every other week, they now go to the market and ask for the food that wasn’t sold and would otherwise be thrown away. Based on these ingredients, they cook a delicious vegan multi-course dinner!

How does it work?

You can sign up on Facebook to come eat and help with various tasks such as cooking, going to the market and cleaning. Especially the cooking shift is a lot of fun: Imagine a medium-sized kitchen, four to six people peacefully chopping vegetables and something in the oven just started to smell delicious.


Photograph provided by the Green Kitchen

While chatting, you pick up how to prepare some great vegan dishes, so maybe you won’t eat pasta for the next ten days (like the student you are). Also, if you’re used to cooking for one, the sheer amount of food will appear massive. Seriously, do you know how big a pot for 20 people is?

How do people at the market react?

In the beginning, they hadn’t heard of the concept and were a bit wary. Now, they already wait for the Green Kitchen to come by. Some of them even pack up the leftovers before the Green Kitchen arrives!


Photograph provided by the Green Kitchen

Is it hard running your own initiative?


Photograph provided by the Green Kitchen

The Green Kitchen’s mission is undoubtedly inspiring, but so are the people behind it. After discovering that there was nothing like the Green Kitchen in Leiden, it would have been easy to accept that. Instead, a handful of students decided to create their own initiative by founding the Green Kitchen (from scratch, mind you). Of course, it can be tough to run the Green Kitchen alongside their studies, but they are incredibly happy with the memories they created and the joy they bring to their guests.

Green Kitchen Specials

Next to the regular schedule, you should watch out for the special events! In the summer, there are special barbecue editions: After grilling some delicious veggies and tofu, everyone gathers in the Van der Werft park for a picnic. (Ps. If you’re a barbecue-pro, your expertise in lighting the coal will be very appreciated!)


Photograph provided by the Green Kitchen

Love hummus? So does the Green Kitchen! During the last sustainability week, the Green Kitchen collaborated with Leiden University’s Green Office (LUGO) by hosting a make-your-own-hummus-workshop! You’re probably craving it right now (like the student you are), so here is a picture:


Photo by Naim Benjelloun on

Get Involved

Are you a committed foodie and into sustainability? Hit up the Green Kitchen to be involved on a regular basis or to find out how you can take on even more responsibility!

Either way, make sure to check Facebook for upcoming Green Kitchen events, it’s a lot of fun and your stomach will be very, very happy!


Photograph provided by the Green Kitchen


How do you experience food waste in Leiden? Let us know in the comments!


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