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how do i become a chef

I am in 9th grade and i want to know more about the process of become a chef. Also i want to know how difficult the job is. #chef #cooking #CEO#Greatest chef of all time

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Sheila’s Answer

Hi Tyler:

Most chefs and head cooks learn their skills through work experience. Others receive training at a community college, technical school, culinary arts school, or 4-year college. A small number learn through apprenticeship programs or in the Armed Forces.

Although post-secondary education is not required for chefs and head cooks, many attend programs at community colleges, technical schools, culinary arts schools, and 4-year colleges. Candidates are typically required to have a high school diploma or equivalent to enter these programs.

Students in culinary programs spend most of their time in kitchens, practicing their cooking skills. Programs cover all aspects of kitchen work, including menu planning, food sanitation procedures, and purchasing and inventory methods. Most training programs also require students to gain experience in a commercial kitchen through an internship or apprenticeship program.

Most chefs and head cooks start by working in other positions, such as line cooks, learning cooking skills from the chefs they work for. Many spend years working in kitchens before gaining enough experience to be promoted to chef or head cook positions.

The median annual wage for chefs and head cooks was $51,530 in May 2019. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $28,370, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $86,990.

Research the article below on "How to Become a Chef". Link is provided in checklist.

Best of luck to you! 🥨

~ Sheila

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Pratiksha’s Answer

Being a chef is a hard job! It's not just about cooking something you like. My brother decided to do a bachelors in hotel management only because he was interested in cooking when he was in school just like you. But after 1 month of internship at a huge restaurant he decided to switch paths and do management instead. Chefs work in high pressure situations. During rush hours they are on their toes to send out the orders on time. Also, its not just about the cooking, they have to plan the menu, shop and adhere to all safety precautions. One more thing to note is that, when your friends and family are enjoying a weekend or a holiday like christmas for example, its a busy time for a chef. They don't get holidays and vacations when the rest of us do.

All said, if you think you have the passion and perseverance in you, then there are tons of institutes which will help you become a chef. There are many who start courses and drop off in between, but if you have it in you to finish the course and work as a apprentice to a chef for a couple of years, the pay offs are great in the later stages of a chef's career.

Thank you very much this helped very much. Tyler P.

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Alison’s Answer

Hi Tyler,

There are a couple roads you can take to become a chef. Generally, gaining lots of kitchen-work experience is thought of as more important than getting a specific degree in this field, but there are culinary degrees you can major in if you’re interested. There are even full culinary schools you can attend after high school. There are potential benefits to studying culinary arts: chefs (especially those who are the head of the kitchen) do more than just cook. They create menus, budget/select/order ingredients, manage the kitchen staff, and some even hire (or fire!) other restaurant staff. Studying culinary arts may give you a more thorough understanding of the restaurant business overall, as well as a better understanding of - for lack of a better phrase - how food works. Cooking and baking involve a lot of chemistry, and familiarity with that kind of knowledge allows lots of innovation in the kitchen.

However, whether or not you choose a formal study program, experience is still hugely important for chefs. Kitchens are hot, fast paced, sometimes crowded places to work. They are strict and can be intense. Getting to the point where you can run one smoothly means that you have to have experience what working the jobs in one is like. First hand experience is often the best way to learn something, and many chefs have started with a simpler job, like line cook, and worked their way up. So, if you do choose to study, plan on working part time in a restaurant or finding a course that has an apprenticeship/internship component.

Like any job, working in a kitchen can be hard work. Your days might be long or you might end up working until the early hours of the morning. It can be loud, busy, and hot. But, if you LOVE creating food, it is worth it. There are 3 chefs in my extended family, and none of them want to do anything else.

May your soufflés always be superb!

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Kai’s Answer

HI Tyler, I saw on your questions and profile your interest in becoming a NBA player or The Greatest Chef of all time! I think that is AMAZING and I wish the best in either goal. My one advice (and I know a lot of people have already told you this) is never stop being curious for new knowledge (whether in basketball or cooking) and always continue to strive to be better. Even when you are the greatest NBA player of all time, never stop learning to be better! Also, always remember that you can be a great basketball player and a great chef at the same time (maybe you can't have a career in both, but that does not mean you can't become great at both skills!)

Thank you this motivated me a ton! Tyler P.