Special Feature: Products Sally Recommends

Professional Cooking Schools in the United States

by Nancy Freeman


CEC Phoenix College Culinary Studies Program
1202 West Thomas Road
Phoenix, Arizona 85013
Phone: (602) 264-2492
Fax: (602) 285-7700

Phoenix College offers Associate degrees or certificates of completion in Culinary Studies or Food Service Administration. Classes include; Principles and skills for cooking, French cuisine, Garde Manger, American regional cuisine, International cuisine, Baking I & II, Purchasing, Nutrition and Menu planning. The program follows a traditional 16 week semester structure with open entry. Costs approximately $3300.00 US.


Scottsdale Culinary Institute
8100 E. Camelback Road
Scottsdale, Arizona 85251
(800) 848-2433
Fax (602) 990-0351

If studying cooking in the middle of a resort community is up your alley, Scottsdale Culinary Institute may be for you. Accredited by both the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology (ACCSCT) and the American Culinary Education Institute (ACFEI), Scottsdale offers associate degrees in culinary arts and restaurant management in an intensive 15-month curriculum. Classes begin eight times a year. Most Scottsdale students work part-time, though it is recommended that they work as little as possible during their first six weeks. Ninety-seven percent of graduates find employment.


California Culinary Academy
625 Polk Street
San Francisco, California 94102
(800) BAY-CHEF
Fax (415) 771-2194

Most in the culinary world agree that, among US-based institutions, the CCA is second only to New York's Culinary Institute of America (CIA). One of the earliest schools of its kind in the west, CCA was founded in 1977 and today has over 700 students at any one time. CCA offers a 16-month course which begins three times a year that leads to an associate degree in culinary arts. There is also a 30-week certificate course in baking and pastry arts. The school is accredited by ACCSCT and the ACFEI. Due to the intensity of the program, CCA discourages students from working more than 20 hours a week, if at all. Two restaurants attached to the Academy, the formal Careme Room and the more casual Academy Grill provide opportunities for student training and have achieved fine reputations among San Francisco diners. Ninety-three percent of students obtain employment within six months of graduation.


Cooking School of the Rockies
637 So. Broadway, #H
Boulder, CO 80303
(303) 494-7988
(303) 494-7999 FAX
Email: jbrett3768@aol.com

Cooking School of the Rockies has a unique 6-month in-depth Professional Culinary Arts Program. Five months are spent learning to cook in their new, fully-equipped kitchen in beautiful Boulder, Colorado. Then students travel to Carpentras, Provence, France for a one-month stay to continue the learning and cultural experience. In France, students cook and also immerse themselves in the culture, local products and traditions of the region. Their hands-on training is highly personalized and intimate. Nationally and internationally acclaimed chefs and teachers form the core faculty. The course is certified by the Department of Higher Education, State of Colorado. 90 percent of the graduates find jobs in the food industry.

Johnson & Wales University
(see Rhode Island)


Florida Culinary Institute
A Division of New England Institute of Technology
2400 Metrocentre Boulevard
West Palm Beach, Florida 33407
(800) 826-9986

The Florida Culinary Institute was founded in 1982 by the New England Institute of Technology, a vocational college in Rhode Island. In 1984, it cut its ties with the NEIT. In an 18-month program, FCI offers associate degrees in culinary arts and international baking and pastry arts. FCI's annual student population is 450. Ninety-five percent of its graduates find employment.

Johnson & Wales University
(see Rhode Island)


The Cooking & Hospitality Institute of Chicago, Inc.
361 W. Chestnut
Chicago, Illinois 60610
(312) 944-0882

Established in 1983, the Cooking & Hospitality Institute of Chicago today offers a two-year associate degree in culinary arts as well as six-month programs in professional cooking, pastry and restaurant management. CHIC is licensed by the ACCSCT and draws younger students out of high school and career change students from all walks of life. Both day and evening classes are offered. Advanced students operate the CHIC cafe, where diners can purchase a three-course prix fixe lunch for $12.00. Ninety-five percent of CHIC's graduates obtain jobs in their fields.

French Pastry School
1153 W. Grand
Chicago, IL 60622
phone: (312) 243-3808
fax: (312) 243-1430
Email: Jpfeif0927@aol.com

The official opening of The French Pastry School in Chicago is scheduled for the fall of 1998. A complete 20-week pastry program will be taught by Chefs Pfeiffer and Canonne in a new state-of-the-art teaching facility. Prior to the opening, the school is offering several three day hands-on courses including: chocolate candies, ice creams, sugar decorations, plated desserts and wedding cakes. Classes are small (never more than 10 students) and offer personalized instruction. Three day course: $450.00.


Culinary Arts Institute of Louisiana
427 Lafayette Street
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
(800) 9270-839
Fax (504) 336-4880

Only seven years old, the Culinary Arts Institute of Louisiana offers a 60-week associate degree program in professional cooking and food service management. CAILA is proud to be the first degree-granting culinary institution in the deep South and is accredited by ACCSCT. Fifty percent of student time is spent running and cooking for CAILA's Fine Cuisine, a full-service restaurant. Ninety-nine percent of its graduates obtain jobs in their field.


Baltimore International Culinary College
17 Commerce Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21202-3230
(800) 624-9926

The Baltimore International Culinary College, a private, non-profit, two-year college, was founded in 1972 to provide theoretical and technical skills education for individuals seeking careers as hospitality professional. The College is committed to providing students with the knowledge and ability necessary for employment and success in the hospitality industry. BICC offers several associate degrees and certificates in Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management. Degree-seeking culinary students take at least one course at the College's European Educational Center located outside Dublin, Ireland in County Cavan. Other courses may be added, and all students can add the Ireland experience as an option. Day, evening or weekend studies are offered. The College is regionally accredited by Middle States.

International School of Confectionery Arts
9209 Gaither Road
Gaithersburg, Maryland 20877
Tel. (301) 963-9077
Fax (301) 869-7669

Founded by Ewald and Susan Notter, the International School of Confectionery Arts provides advanced instruction to chefs and other food professionals in the handling of sugar, chocolate, and all forms of confections. Classes range from one-day workshops to two-day classes in pulled and blown sugar, sugar flowers and Swiss candy making to five-day courses in basic and advanced sugar techniques and chocolate decoration.


The Cambridge School of Culinary Arts
2020 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, Massachusetts 02140
(617) 354-3836
Fax (617) 567-1963

The Cambridge School of Culinary Arts opened in 1974 as a continuing education facility. In 1981, it became a full culinary school and in 1989 was licensed by the ACCSCT. CSCA offers an intensive 10-month program leading to a professional chef's degree. By attending classes three days a week, students can hold part-time jobs. CSCA accepts students directly out of high school, but prefers individuals with some culinary experience. Ninety percent of graduates obtain employment.

New York

Culinary Institute of America
433 Albany Post Road
Hyde Park, New York 12538-1499
(800) 285-4627

The granddaddy of the US schools, the Culinary Institute of America was founded in 1946 in New Haven, Connecticut. As it grew beyond its bounds, it moved to its current site, a former Jesuit seminary on the Hudson River. The CIA boasts 36 kitchens and bakeshops and four restaurants open to the public with more than 100 chef/instructors from over 20 different countries. The CIA offers associate degrees in culinary arts and pastry arts and bachelors degrees in culinary arts management and baking and pastry arts management. All bachelors students complete a six-week seminar on wine and food in a wine producing region and write a senior thesis before graduating. Each year CIA trains more than 2000 undergraduates and offers continuing education to 4000 professionals. In order to make the best use of facilities, a new class of undergraduates begins every three weeks. Recognized by the ACCSCT, CIA also awards a certificate in baking and pastry arts and offers classes in adult education. Eighty percent of CIA undergraduates receive some form of financial aid. 92% of CIA graduates are employed within six months of graduation. Surveys show that the remaining 8 percent are in graduate or continuing education programs.

The French Culinary Institute
462 Broadway
New York, New York 10013-2618
(212) 219-8890
Fax (212) 219-9292

The French Culinary Institute was founded in 1984 in cooperation with Le Ferrandi, the official professional schools of the city of Paris. Its goal then and now was to provide a classical French culinary education for students who could apply those rules to any cuisine of their choice. Renowned chefs Alain Sailhac and Jacques Pepin serve respectively as Dean of Culinary Studies and Dean of Special programs. The FCI offers a 600-hour diploma program arranged either full- or part-time to accommodate working students. Ninety-seven percent of FCI graduates find jobs in their field

Le Cordon Bleu
404 Airport Executive Park
Nanuet, New York 10954
(800) 457-CHEF, Fax: (914) 426-0104

New School Culinary Arts
127 Wst 24th Street, 4th Floor
New York, N.Y. 10011
(212) 255-4141
email: nscularts@aol.com

The New School has been a leader in adult education since 1919. Each semester, more than 1500 courses are offered in a broad range of subjects. One such area is Culinary Arts.

The New School Culinary Arts curriculum is comprehensive including cooking and baking, wine appreciation, culinary history, career training and culinary events. Over 150 courses are offered by professionals per semester representing a wide range of culinary experience and cuisines. Classes are held seven days a week during morning, afternoon and evening hours.

Professional programs are designed primarily for adults changing careers. These include short, intensive certificate programs in cooking, baking, catering, cake decorating, and restaurant management; as well as Saturday workshops in food entrepreneurship.

Recently relocated to The Inn on 23rd, a charming bed-and-breakfast filled with antiques and art in Manhattan's hip Chelsea area. Only one class takes place at a time.

New York Restaurant School
75 Varick Street
New York, New York 10013
(800) 654-CHEF
Fax (212) 226-5644

The New York Restaurant School started in 1981 as a division of the New School for Social Research. It received independent licensing in 1987 and now offers associate degrees in culinary arts and restaurant management and certificates in pastry arts and culinary skills. Classes run around the clock and students can attend full or part-time. NYRS recently established an exchange program with the city of Moscow and HLF Krems, a culinary school in Austria in an effort to provide training in foodservice to Russian students. The agreement also allows students from NYRS to train at Krems. NYRS is accredited by the ACCSCT and 93 percent of NYRS students find jobs in their field.

The Instutute of Culinary Education
50 West 23rd Street, 5th Floor
New York, New York 10010
Voice (212) 847-0700 ext.203
Fax (212) 847-0722

In 2001, after 26 years, New York City's landmark school for cooking, baking and culinary arts changed its name from the Peter Kump's New York Cooking School to The Institute of Culinary Education.

"The school has grown tremendously over the last five years," says its President, Rick Smilow. "We feel strongly that the new name better describes what we have become." Today, the school offers highly developed programs for career training, professional development, recreational cooking, wine education and special events.

"We also believe that the new name provides a better match with the school's current focus, and will be as enduring as the old name," says Smilow. In years past, Peter Kump's was best known for its recreational program. While the recreational program is still the most extensive in the nation, today the career programs are the centerpiece of the school's programming.

The name change is the culmination of a series of significant developments that The Institute of Culinary Education has accomplished in recent years, including physical relocation. After many years on East 92nd Street in Manhattan, in mid-1999 the school expanded and moved to 50 West 23rd Street. With 26,000 square feet of space spread over four floors and nine teaching kitchens operating day and night seven days a week, The Institute of Culinary Education has a unique profile.


North Carolina

Johnson & Wales University
(see Rhode Island)


Pennsylvania Institute of Culinary Arts
717 Liberty Avenue
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15222
(800) 432-2433

Established in 1986, PICA awards associate degrees in culinary arts and restaurant management in 16-month courses. Students can choose full or part-time; ninety-five percent receive some sort of financial aid. PICA accommodates 700 to 800 students at a time in sessions that begin every three months. As part of their training, students staff a school-owned restaurant. PICA is accredited by ACCSCT and ACFEI and 100 percent of its graduates are placed.


Western Culinary Institute
1316 SW 13th Avenue
Portland, Oregon 97201
(800) 666-0312

Beneath the grandeur of Mt. Hood lies the Western Culinary Institute. Founded in 1983, WCI is accredited by both the ACFEI and ACCSCT. Classes begin eight times a year. WCI offers a diploma in an accelerated 12-month program culminating in a six-week internship. As part of their training, students run a restaurant which offers five-course lunches and six-course dinners at remarkably reasonable prices. Ninety-seven percent of WCI students find jobs within 90 days of graduation.

Rhode Island

Johnson & Wales University
College of Culinary Arts

Providence, Rhode Island 02903
(800) 342-5598

North Miami, Florida  33181
(866) 598-3567

Denver, Colorado  80220
(877) 598-3368

Charlotte, North Carolina  28202
(866) 598-2427 

Johnson & Wales — America’s Career University® – was founded in 1914. It is a private, nonprofit, accredited institution offering undergraduate and graduate degree programs in business, food service, education, hospitality and technology to more than 16,000 students. Preparing students for successful careers is the cornerstone of the University’s educational philosophy. A benchmark of the University has been its 27 consecutive year employment record - within 60 days of graduation, 98 percent of its students from the 50 states have jobs in their chosen career field.


Students in the College of Culinary Arts begin their J&W career by entering either the Culinary Arts or Baking & Pastry Arts associate degree program. After completing their sophomore year, they can continue their studies towards a bachelor's degree in those majors, or switch over to Culinary Nutrition, Food & Beverage Management, Food Marketing, Food Service Entrepreneurship, or Food Service Management. For more information about Johnson & Wales University, visit www.jwu.edu.


And if you'd rather spend three hours in the classroom than four years, Chef's Choice classes are open to the public. The class schedules can be found at the bottom of this page: http://www.jwu.edu/culinary/res_ce.htm.



Art Institute of Houston
1900 Yorktown
Houston, Texas 77056-4115
(800) 275-4244 or (713) 623-2040
Fax (713) 966-2700

The Culinary Arts Division of the Art Institute of Houston offers a six-quarter program leading to an Associate Degree in either Culinary Arts or Food Service Management. The department is still too young to have achieved a track record, but as part of a school specializing in the arts -- visual communications, photography, interior design, fashion marketing, computer drafting/design and the music/video business -- promises a challenging environment.

Galveston College Culinary Arts Academy

4015 Avenue Q
Galveston, TX 77550
(409) 763-6551 ext. 304

Founded in 1987, the Galveston College Culinary Arts Academy is located on beautiful Galveston Island, on the Gulf of Mexico, in Texas. They offer an A.A.S. degree in Culinary Arts/Hospitality Management and one-year certificates in Culinary Arts, in Baking and Pastry and in Culinary/Hospitality Management.


New England Culinary Institute
250 Main Street
Montpelier, Vermont 05602-9720
(802) 223-6324

A relatively small school enrolling 400 students a year from all over the US and 20 countries around the world, the New England Culinary Institute boasts perhaps the best ratio of students to instructors in the business. In a program that alternates residency with internship, NECI offers an associate degree in culinary arts and a bachelor of arts in service and management. The school has two campuses 40 minutes apart in Montpelier and Essex. At both sites, students staff a fine dining restaurant, a cafe, bakeshop, cafeteria, banquet and catering facilities. While the Montpelier sites are free-standing, the Essex facilities are all located in a single modern hotel, the Inn at Essex. NECI is accredited by the ACCSCT.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the businesses in question before making your plans.

Share this article with a friend:

Free eNewsletter SignUp

Sally's Place on Facebook    Sally Bernstein on Instagram    Sally Bernstein at Linked In

Global Resources

Handmade Chocolates, Lillie Belle Farms

Food411 Food Directory