What Does a Typical Culinary Arts Curriculum Cover?

by Chad Agrawal

5532760914_3468741c57_nThough most people can do at least a little cooking, the truth is that cooking is a skill like any other. Some people have a natural knack for it, some people are amazing at it, but everyone can get better than they are. Culinary school is intended to help people who have a professional interest in cooking, whether they want to work in the restaurant industry or they want to go into business on their own. What does one learn in a culinary class?


A culinary arts education is first designed to help you acquire the techniques that you need to prepare food. For example, you will learn how to correctly and efficiently chop up ingredients, you will learn about the heat necessary to cook items, and you will simply learn the right ways to do things in a kitchen. Though anyone can cut up an onion, for example, it takes skill to cut an onion into uniform pieces and then to transfer it to a pot or pan without spilling.


You will also learn how to handle the ingredients that you use on a regular basis in a kitchen. This ranges from figuring out what ingredients work with other ingredients to learning about the history of the food that you are cooking. You will also learn how to keep these ingredients safe for consumption. This means, for instance, that you will be looking at the various ways meat can be prepared, how to keep meat at safe temperatures, and the best way to seal in the flavors depending on the need.

Theories and Science

A culinary arts education reinforces the science behind cooking. For example, the chemical composition of celery means that you will not be able to caramelize it, no matter how long you cook it. There is simply not enough sugar in this vegetable Not only will you learn this fact in culinary arts you will also learn the science behind it. Cooks and chefs are expected to be problem solvers, and they are also intended to be creative with the food that they create. Knowing the rules allows them to stretch the boundaries of culinary practice without causing something disastrous.

Cultural Lessons

Depending on the school that you attend, you will be introduced to foods that are outside of your cultural expectations. There has been a prevailing theory that states if you want to learn to cook a certain country's food that the best way to do so is in the country in question. Today, culinary schools understand the appeal of foreign cuisines and bring in teachers from all over the world. This is something that can make a huge difference to the experience you get.

The Business of Cooking

Not all culinary schools are business-minded, but a fair number are. These schools understand that the students are looking to go on and eventually run their own restaurants, and because of this they add a business education to the curricula. This includes some basic accounting, health regulations, and management courses. This is a great way to get a well-rounded education as you pursue your passion.

Culinary arts school is an important step for anyone who wants a career in restaurants. Consider what a culinary arts degree can do for you and how it might change the way that you move forward. The right program can help you grow and excel in your own kitchen as well as in those of restaurants across the world.

About The Author

Timothy Barthes is a freelance writer based in Louisville, Kentucky. Those looking to locate further information on becoming a culinary professional should view the resources at culinaryschoolsconnection.com.

This post was written by Chad Agrawal

Chad Agrawal is the founder of CCTS, helping students transfer from community college to Ivy League, tier 1 or anywhere else by following this community college guide.

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