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Culinary Arts Characteristics

A love of cooking is a good place to start for a successful career in the culinary arts. To rise to the top, add business sense, creativity, a lot of hard work, and an innate understanding of food.

Entry-level jobs for cooks can require a lot of food preparation. Often, you’ll cook menus that other chefs have designed. Entry-level cooks must understand how to use all of the tools in a kitchen. Sometimes, they may be assigned to a single station, such as assembling salads or frying hamburgers.

If you aspire to rise to the height of a star chef, you will need to bring originality and ingenuity to the job. These chefs share a solid foundation in the basics of cooking. They use their excellent culinary skills to put together unique menus and meal plans, often with their own recipes.

To reach this status in their careers, chefs often attend a culinary institute, such as Le Cordon Bleu International. They paid their own dues by putting in many hours cooking in fine restaurants. Top chefs also must be able to estimate how much food their restaurant will need each day. They place orders, oversee a kitchen staff, and market their restaurants.

Cooking is a demanding job that brings more pressure, and more hours, as you progress through the ranks. A cook’s hours are centered on meal times, not a nine-to-five workday, and many cooks work late into the night until a restaurant closes. Many head chefs work twelve hour days, starting with the delivery of that day’s ingredients.


Related Career Resources

Culinary Arts Colleges and Schools

Culinary Arts Career Information

Culinary Arts Outlook & Salary Information

How to Become a Chef


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