Britain is in danger of losing basic cooking skills as almost a quarter of parents polled on Mumsnet admit they lacked the confidence to use leftovers to make another meal without a recipe.
That's according to research carried out in partnership with the Love Food Hate Waste campaign, which is seeking to tackle the £12.5b of good food and drinks that gets thrown away in UK homes each year.
The good news is more than 90% of parents rate cooking skills as an important part of their children's general education, but over 60% of parents (with children over the age of three) spend three hours or less a month cooking with their child.
Busy lifestyles could be to blame, with nearly 40% of survey respondents saying that the speed of preparation is amongst the most important things they consider when preparing a meal, which could often mean foregoing homemade meals.
A further three in five said a priority they consider when preparing a meal is the likelihood of it being eaten.
The research also revealed that the two top skills that parents want to pass onto their children to help them make the most of their food are planning meals in advance and how to make use of leftovers.
The Love Food Hate Waste has launched Save More kitchen skills packs in a bid to encourage more home cooking. Available to download at www.lovefoodhatewaste.com, the packs offer help with budgeting, planning, and portioning in the kitchen along with money saving tools and tips.
Free cookery classes will be launched in the New Year, available in 10 UK cities to help people with the basics of cookery and learn new ways to get creative in the kitchen.
The campaign aims to raise awareness of the need to reduce food waste and help the average family not waste up to £700 a year buying and then throwing away what was once good food and drink by taking some easy practical everyday things in the home.
Emma Marsh, head of Love Food Hate Waste, commented: "Cooking skills are a key life skill for all of us. But most of us lack the time to build these up, leading to a lack of confidence in the kitchen.
"Our range of tools and guidance on lovefoodhatewaste.com now enhanced by our new Save More initiative are designed to increase everyone's skills, knowledge and confidence and enable these to be passed onto the next generation."