Job Prospects and Career Opportunities in Culinary Arts

What can you do with a culinary degree? Learning advanced cooking and baking skills can lead to any number of awesome jobs. Let’s take a look at the options available.

Types of Culinary Jobs

The most obvious path you can take after graduating with a degree in culinary arts is to work in a commercial kitchen. Smaller restaurants typically only have two or three food preparers working in the kitchen, but larger restaurants have entire teams. The chef is in charge, but the sous chef, saucier, pastry chef, and other team members also play an important role in the kitchen. You can also work in a bakery if you enjoy working with pastries, work for a catering company, work in a non-traditional kitchen (like on a cruise ship), become a restaurant manager, work as a personal chef, become a food stylist, or even pursue a television chef career.

Responsibilities in the Culinary Field

No matter what your job in the culinary field, your responsibility will be to ensure that your guests have the best meal experience possible. However, this job goes beyond just making sure the food tastes good (though that is a big part of it!). You must also make sure the food looks good, the environment where it is prepared is clean and safe, and the overall atmosphere is inviting to guests. In many jobs, you’ll also be tasked with talking to customers, so being a “people person” is important. Lastly, to work in top positions in this field, you must be a strong, organized leader. A working kitchen is like a well-oiled machine, and you need to be responsible for your station or for the entire team.

Find a Top Culinary Position

Becoming a restaurant’s executive chef or even opening your own business is possible, regardless of your current positions. The fastest way to advance in the culinary field is to get an education. While you can work your way up the ladder without formal education, most top restaurants and food-related businesses won’t consider applicants who have not been through a culinary program, so experience is only a piece of the equation. Keep in mind that the training doesn’t have to end when you graduate. You can take short courses and even day-long or weekend classes to continually learn new skills.