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Culinary Schools By State

Becoming a Chef or Executive Chef

For our visitors interested in a career at the helm of a commercial kitchen, from a small locally owned restaurant to a large, 5-start downtown or resort based establishment, a degree in culinary arts may be right for you. A degree or certificate in a natural chef training program will prepare graduates for a career in a variety of positions including an executive chef, a therapeutic, natural or personal chef, cooking consultant or natural foods cooking instructor.

What Is A Chef?

Professional chefs are people with a sensitive, experienced palate who wish to create complex art out of simple ingredients. Chefs enjoy creating food that will be enjoyed immensely by others. For those who wish to make a living using the highest quality ingredients in the healthiest possible manner to supply people with the nutrients and nourishment they need, there may be no er career than that of an executive chef. There is a reason chefs are so renowned throughout every culture worldwide. Through food, they are able to inspire us, fulfill us, reminding us of why we enjoy eating food in the first place. A chef can fill the needs of our palate and our bodies at the same time, designing meals to provide our bodies with optimal energy and performance.

The Culinary Schools listed on Nutritionist World provide the specific training to nourish your natural talents in the kitchen. Taught by renowned professional chefs, each area of expertise of a culinary career is covered throughout the duration of classroom instruction and any continuing internships of professional work-study. Among the many focuses of culinary arts provided by today's schools, the following are among the most prominent:

  • Vegetarian & Vegan Cooking
  • Raw Food Diet Preparation
  • French Cooking
  • Italian Cooking
  • Japanese Cooking
  • Southwest Cooking

Chef Job Duties

The executive chef is the CEO of the kitchen. Everything happening behind the scenes, from food supplier to the patron's plate, is controlled and dictated by the executive chef. Job duties for an executive chef, regardless of the type of establishment, typically involve creating the restaurant's theme and establishing the menu to complement this theme. Day to day operations include food preparation, managing the employees throughout the kitchen including other chefs, line cooks, prep cooks, waiters am dishwashers. In many situations, the executive chef will source and maintain contracts with vendors including food, alcohol, kitchen and dining equipment. Many times they will work closely with restaurant management on marketing and customer relations as well.

Chef Skills

A natural chef should possess certain skills that ow them to carry out their job at the highest level. A degree in culinary arts will focus on the improvement and development of these skills. -level executive chefs must excel in the following areas:

  • A Developed Sense of Taste & Smell: Chefs must posses the ability to recognize flavors and tastes that separate good food from . This also allows chefs to improve upon and even create new dishes to be used in their menus.
  • Creativity: Chefs must be able to exhibit creativity, not only with flavors and smells but with composition and presentation of their meals as well.
  • Teamwork: A 5-Star kitchen only runs smoothly when everyone is working together. As the executive of the kitchen, it is the chef's responsibility to keep the pieces running smoothly.
  • Organization: With the variety of different tasks to be completed in order to keep a kitchen running smoothly, organization is among the most important aspects of a chef's job. The ability to plan, prepare and execute stem from good organization.

Chef Salary & Career Outlook

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, job growth for chefs is expected to be good, propelled by the growth of urban areas where fine dining and upscale restaurants are popular, an increase in the variety of dining establishments and demand for healthier cuisines. However, competition for the finer dining establishments will be high as these are where the salaries are paid. Most executive and head chefs have experience in the restaurant industry as well as a two or four-year degree or certification from a culinary institute or hospitality management school.


The BLS does not offer information on salary or employment data for executive chefs. You may, however, find the information the BLS provides on chefs and head chefs useful in estimating the salary and employment data for executive chefs.

Source: 2015 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2014-24 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov.

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Culinary Degree Schools

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            Art of Cooking (D)
            • Program areas include Culinary Arts, Culinary Management, and more
            • Students are taught cooking styles from around the globe, including Classical European, Asian, and Latin cuisine
            • Curriculum designed to prepare students for a career as a chef, with course topics that include Culinary Techniques, Management by Menu, and Nutrition
            • Alumni have appeared in reality competition shows such as Top Chef
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Baking and Pastry Arts
            • Gives students the opportunity to earn their associate’s degree in the culinary arts field in less than 15 months
            • Located in Norfolk and Newport News, Virginia.
            • Offers externship experiences to students for experience in the field.
            • Hosts regular career fairs for employer recruitment.
            • Has student housing available.
            Culinary Arts - AS
            • Each campus features a public restaurant where culinary students work under the direction of professional chefs for real-world experience.
            • Hosts Platt College’s Food Fight, a friendly dessert competition for students held once a month.
            • Offers programs in culinary arts, nursing, and healthcare.
            • Accredited by the American Culinary Federation (AFC) and Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
            • 5 campuses in Lawton, North and Central Oklahoma City, Moore, and Tulsa, Oklahoma.
            Professional Cook Career Diploma
            Get your career started with an education from Spencerian College. Earn your certificate, diploma, or associate degree for a career in the allied health, technology, or business administration fields.
            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Associate of Science in Baking and Pastry Arts

            Since 1977, Keiser University has maintained a practical, hands-on approach to career education to help our students achieve their personal and professional goals.  Our student-centered approach remains at the foundation of the Keiser University mission and continues to attract students who prefer a more personal learning experience. 

            DIP - Pastry Arts
            Virginia College , Birmingham
            • Instructors are typically real-world professionals with many years of experience in their career fields.
            • Ranked #3 in Best for Vets: Career & Technical Colleges 2014 by Military Times.
            • Presents the full tuition cost up front. In most cases, even textbooks are included in the total price.
            • Provides career development associates to help students review their resume, provide career counseling, help with job searches, and more.
            • Has 27 campus locations across the southern United States, plus offers online degree programs.
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            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Culinary Arts
            Good for Working Adults
            • Offers career-focused programs in allied health, business, and computer technology, and more.
            • On-the-job training available through externships, internships, and clinical placements.
            • Graduates in good standing can take refresher sessions in courses at no additional cost.
            • Day and evening class options are available for flexible scheduling.
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS).
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            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            International Baking and Pastry
            • Has been training students in the culinary arts since 1946.
            • Teaches hands-on culinary training in French, Asian, Mediterranean, Latin and American cooking, along with professional baking and pastry techniques.
            • Helps students gain professional skills in culinary management.
            • Offers an Italian Culinary Arts program where students get to externship in Italy.
            • Its instructors are respected chefs who put their dedication and life experiences into their instruction.
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            • Accredited
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Culinary Arts

            Dorsey has been a trusted career training school in Michigan for over 80 years!


            We offer training programs designed to prepare our students for careers in fields such as healthcare, beauty, culinary, and skilled trades

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            • Financial Aid
            Diploma in Pastry Arts
            • Culinary Arts program includes the 3-week Farm To Table® Experience, where students gain a direct, in-depth look at where food comes from.
            • Numerous scholarship opportunities and financial aid are available to students who qualify.
            • Accreditation from the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET), and the Council on Occupational Education (COE).
            • 2 campuses located in Boulder, Colorado and Austin, Texas.
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            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            Baking & Pastry Arts
            Get the experience you need to succeed in the exciting and fast growing culinary field at Keiser University - Center for Culinary Arts. We offer the flexibility of day or evening classes, experienced faculty, and small class sizes for plenty of personalized attention. Internship opportunities and financial aid are available for students who qualify.