COOK in sign language

Printable for COOK with a doodle

Ya hungry?

ASL sign for COOK

How to sign "cook" in American Sign Language (ASL)?

Meaning: To prepare (food) by the use of heat, as by boiling, baking, or roasting.

Pronunciation (sign description): Dominant flat hand (handshape) with the palm down (orientation) moves down on the non-dominant palm-up flat hand and then flip the dominant palm up and taps on the non-dominant, non-moving palm (location and movement).

Beyond basics

This is a basic sign, at least for beginners. However, observe how Deaf fluent and native signers inflect it to convey gradients of meaning, such as "skillful cook like a chef", "cook a lot", etc. Don't mistook these inflections of the ASL base word for variations.

Learner tip: Sometimes some Deaf signers sign PANCAKE that looks similar to COOK. Context as always.

Kid signing "cook"

The time-lapse video shows how the bilingual ASL-speaking toddler signed "cook" in the early language acquisition.

The bilingual ASL-speaking toddler uttered "cook", which emerged at about age 1;3 during the blooming one-word stage. While the handshape is one of few unmarked which is not hard for toddlers to form, but movement takes a bit longer to develop as toddlers learn how to finely control the motor from shoulder to fingers and knuckles over time (proximalization).

How she uttered it in term of the movement at this age during the one-word stage is similar to "book" and maybe other few signs. However, mother would know their kid best and context helps too.


Related signs: BEAT/MIX, STIR, BAKE, FRY, BOIL.

Of course, FOOD.

ASL/Deaf Anecdotes

"Lol, I remember working for this diner. The owner said he hired me simply because he saw a blind woman doing well on Hell's Kitchen, and figured if blind can do it, then deaf can! I was flabbergasted." -- Estefania Pena [Sept. 9, 2020 @ Marcus Bryant FB)]


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Written ASL

[Note: ASL writing is not an official standard. This sign language writing remains in a state of open space to allow room for experiment, evolution, and improvement.]

ASL written for COOK

Written ASL digit for "COOK" contributed by Adrean Clark in the ASLwrite community, 2017.

ASL written for COOK

This ASL verb (video not available at this time) means cooking with talent or skill, or cooking a gourmet ('oo' mouth morpheme), or cooking with a lot of time and/or effort ('puff' mouth morpheme).

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