How To Become A Chef and Head Cook: Degree and Education Requirements

Stanley TanLeave a Comment

what degree do you need to become a Chef and Head Cook
majors for Chefs and Head Cooks

Chefs and Head Cooks

Other names for this job might include Banquet Chef, Bread and Pastry Baker, Cake Froster, Cake Icer, Cake Maker, Cake Mixer, Certified Executive Chef (CEC), Chef, Chef de Cuisine, Chef de Froid

  • $45920
  • 65%
    Job satisfaction
  • Medium
    Becoming one
  • Low
    Job growth
OwlGuru Rank


Be A Chef and Head Cook: What You Really Need

In this requirements guide for Chefs and Head Cooks, you will find out what do you need to become a Chef and Head Cook and what it takes to become one.

After reading this, you will be able to plan for your future if you want to be a Chef and Head Cook.

Degree required

Recommended degree level

Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree)

Associates degree


High School Diploma

Bachelors degree

Some college courses

Generally, employers are looking for Chefs and Head Cooks who have a Associates degree. They also prefer someone who is good in Monitoring and Speaking.

1 common question that we always get is what major or degree do I need to become A Chef and Head Cook or what courses do I need to take.

We did a survey to ask other Chefs and Head Cooks what did they major in college or university and here are the most popular majors that came up.

Cooking and Related Culinary Arts, General
Baking and Pastry Arts/Baker/Pastry Chef
Culinary Arts/Chef Training
Restaurant, Culinary, and Catering Management/Manager
Culinary Science/Culinology

A growing number of chefs and head cooks receive formal training at community colleges, technical schools, culinary arts schools, and 4-year colleges. Programs cover all aspects of kitchen work, including menu planning, food sanitation procedures, and purchasing and inventory methods.


schools for Chefs and Head Cooks

Interested in becoming A Chef and Head Cook? Find the right schools that can help you to become one. You will need some of your details to get you matched with the right college or university. This service is free thanks to our sponsors.

Questions to ask the university or college:

  1. How many students are in the program?
  2. Is your program accredited?
  3. How many faculty members do you have? Do they hold the right credentials?
  4. What is your job placement rate?
  5. Does your school hold career fairs or other on-campus events with employers? How many employers typically attend?
  6. How many of your students have at least one internship by graduation?

Click to start becoming a Chef and Head Cook

How long does it take


You may need some previous work-related skill, knowledge or experience to be A Chef and Head Cook.

For example: An electrician must have completed three or four years of apprenticeship or several years of vocational training, and often must have passed a licensing exam, in order to perform the job.

To become A Chef and Head Cook, you will usually need 1 to 2 years of training which includes both on-the-job experience and training with experienced workers.

How long does it take
4 to 6 years

Work experience
4 to 6 years

4 to 6 years

2 to 4 years

No experience

6 to 8 years

1 to 2 years

Job training
0 to 1 month

0 to 1 month

1 to 3 months

No training

4 to 10 years

3 to 6 months

Most Chefs and Head Cooks have 4 to 6 years work experience and 0 to 1 month job training.

To increase your chances of getting a job, you can look for job training while studying to be one.

License and certifications

Do you need any license or certification
Recommended but not required

Although not required, certification can show competence and lead to advancement and higher pay. The American Culinary Federation certifies Chefs and Head Cooks, in addition to various levels of chefs. Certification standards are based primarily on work-related experience and formal training. Minimum work experience for certification can range from 6 months to 5 years, depending on the level of certification.

Skills required

We asked other Chefs and Head Cooks if they could only have 5 skills, what would they be. Here is what they said.

1. Monitoring what does this mean
2.Speaking what does this mean
3.Coordination what does this mean
4.Social Perceptiveness what does this mean
5.Time Management what does this mean
= Hot in-demand that most employers are looking for

We did some research and found that most successful Chefs and Head Cooks have these 5 common characteristics. Most of them had Dependability and Attention to Detail.

2.Attention to Detail
4.Stress Tolerance

Knowledge required

Just like any other job, you will need some know-hows to do the job. To become a successful Chefs and Head Cooks you need to acquire knowledge in these 5 key areas.

1. Food Production what does this mean
2.Production and Processing what does this mean
3.Customer and Personal Service what does this mean
4.Education and Training what does this mean
5.Mathematics what does this mean

As A Chef and Head Cook, you may also be required to know how to use certain Time accounting software, Analytical or scientific software and Data base user interface and query software tools.

ADP eTIME (Time accounting software)
Axxya Systems Nutritionist Pro software (Analytical or scientific software)
Barrington Software CookenPro Commercial (Data base user interface and query software)
CostGuard software (Data base user interface and query software)
Culinary Software Services ChefTec (Data base user interface and query software)
= Hot in-demand that most employers are looking for

How we can help

Start your journey to be A Chef and Head Cook

Get the best college for Chefs and Head Cooks

Discover the best colleges for your $$$

Find colleges have the highest earning grads

Yes, I'm sure

Trusted by over 50,000 fans

[easy-followers title=”” nofollow=”1″ total_type=”text_before” columns=”2″ template=”tinycolor”]

Career type

Food and Hospitality
Restaurants and Food/Beverage Services

Other Careers Like This

Help Others Out

Learn more about Chefs and Head Cooks

Job Description
Requirements (You are here)
Is This Right For Me

Study To Be A Chef and Head Cook

Related to Chefs and Head Cooks Requirements

Chefs and Head Cooks requirements, how to become Chefs and Head Cooks, degree required to be a Chef and Head Cook, Chefs and Head Cooks license and certifications, majors to be a Chef and Head Cook, is it hard to become a Chef and Head Cook and how long does it take

Additional resources is a career and college finder site. We help students to find a career and college that is right for them.
Chefs and Head Cooks
Written by: Stanley Tan
Chefs and Head Cooks direct and may participate in the preparation, seasoning, and cooking of salads, soups, fish, meats, vegetables, desserts, or other foods. May plan and price menu items, order supplies, and keep records and accounts.
3 / 5 stars

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *