Advice from the Experts on Becoming a Culinary Arts Instructor

Instructors at culinary arts schools are people who enjoy teaching others how to cook almost as much as they enjoy cooking. According to instructors in the industry, becoming a culinary arts teacher can be a very rewarding experience – provided you make the right choices about your career. Among other things, they recommend finding a special niche that fits you as a chef, choosing the right age group for your teaching style, and getting plenty of real-world cooking experience before you start applying for jobs as a culinary arts instructor.

In an interview with a culinary arts school instructor, ‘Reynolds Writing’ found that the instructor enjoyed teaching and cooking, but knew to spend a lot of time in the industry before stepping into the teaching role: “I was a professional chef for 17 years, working in and owning restaurants- and was working 7 days per week, 52 weeks per year. I wanted to find a way to use my skills and interest in culinary arts, work a better schedule and be in a job that let me help others and “give back. I knew that I enjoyed teaching because I’d been a martial arts instructor for more than 15 years.” (Read the interview here.)

So how does one get into the business of culinary arts instruction?

According to, education and experience matters. They write:

Getting Some Cooking Experience Cooking instructors are needed in a variety of settings whether as paid or volunteer teachers. They may be needed to teach children after school schedules or youth and teens in summer camps, or adults in not-for-profit organization programs. To become a cooking instructor, there is no other starting point but to learn how to cook. To do so:

You can take the structured way and enroll in a cooking or culinary school for an associate or bachelor degree in culinary arts.

After taking a course in culinary, you can open your own restaurant, bar or grill or find employment as a cook.

Or, you can get a job in a restaurant, hotel, or bakery, outright, with pure talent or word-of-mouth fame (you might have cooked for relatives and friends and word of your unusual cooking prowess may have spread around).

Getting a Teaching Job as Cook – With your formal training and experience, you can try applying as a volunteer cooking instructor or paid cooking teacher in community- or government-sponsored programs for seniors, adults, teens and kids. To do so, try locating your local volunteer center or community service center… read the whole article here.

Aspiring culinary arts instructors can look to some of the things they would consider when trying to become a chef, too. Any opportunities to volunteer with youth groups, summer camps, and other non-profit events that won’t mind their teachers having little work experience are great ways to build a teaching resume. School boards post jobs for culinary arts teachers in primary and secondary schools. Of course, it is always helpful to make friends with teachers while in culinary arts school – networking is an important component to success as a profession. They can offer up resources and contacts that help students break into the teaching industry.