Maria Tinoco took cooking classes through the Sustainable Food Center years ago. Now she helps teach the classes.
"New ingredients, new spices, new ways to cook," Tinoco said. “I'm still eating Mexican food, but in a different way. You know, less fat, more vegetables."
Healthy eating habits are just one goal of the center.
"We really envision a food-secure community where all children and adults in Central Texas can grow, share and prepare healthy local foods," said Ronda Rutledge of the Sustain Food Center.
"People have gotten away from cooking their own foods, they've certainly, in urban areas, gotten away from growing their own foods,” said Earl Maxwell of the St. David’s Foundation. “The Sustainable Food Center is about reintroducing some of those concepts."
It's about more than just meals.
"It's a lasting economic, cultural, environmental and healthy way to live our lives," Rutledge said. "When you're eating food-like substances, which is pretty much what agribusiness produce for us now, you're not getting the nutrients that you need."
"The epidemic of childhood obesity -- we've really got to do something to change our habits," Maxwell said.
It's also about reconnecting with the community and each other through food.
"Learning what dirt smells like and watching things grow,” Maxwell said. “Because it's just psychologically a great thing to be around things that are growing."
Food center leaders say the knowledge and skills they provide lead to better food choices.
"And I have two daughters and they love their food. So right now it's good for me," Tinoco said.
Better choices lead to life-long health. To try your hand in the kitchen or put that green thumb to work in your own garden, head to sustainablefoodcenter.org for more information on their classes and programs.