Best Culinary Schools In Raleigh, NC | Cost, Requirement & How To Apply

For students planning to attend culinary school in Raleigh, NC, take note of the things the region has to offer, known to be the birthplace of Krispy Kreme and Pepsi Cola donuts, as well as many popular recipes such as the Lady Baltimore Cake, Moravian Biscuits and Texas Pete Hot Sauce.

Students looking for culinary schools in the Raleigh, NC area have several culinary education options. Get detailed information about the programs available at the three schools, including course information and co-op experience.

Are There Culinary Schools in Raleigh, NC? 

There are 20 schools in North Carolina that offer culinary training. For many, becoming a chef requires attending culinary school, and in North Carolina, there are many educational options, as culinary school can lead to an internship or rolling up your sleeves to join a newly opened restaurant.

Culinary majors in North Carolina have four major educational and professional concentrations that you can choose from: Culinary Arts, Culinary Management, Baking and Pastry Arts, and Hospitality Management.

For example, in the Culinary Arts program, you’ll get hands-on kitchen experience while learning the business of cost control, sanitation and safety, menu and beverage management, catering and kitchen management.

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How Much Do Culinary Schools Cost in Raleigh, NC? 

Culinary schools in Raleigh, NC offer a variety of certificate and associate degree programs. The average cost of tuition in North Carolina is $5,322, partially offset by an average scholarship of $1,593.

With an average acceptance rate of 51%, you may have to put your best foot forward when applying.

Whether you choose to pursue a certificate or an associate degree, you can learn much of the same information. Instead of starting with a lot of book knowledge, you can start a culinary program with a lot of hands-on education.

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What Are The Requirements For Culinary Schools In Raleigh, NC? 

Getting into the culinary program is simple. Most only ask that you have a high school diploma or GED. But some might want to check if you really have what it takes to make the cut.

They may ask for a skills assessment or test your basic cooking knowledge, including basic kitchen skills. Work experience or other training may also be considered, so be sure to highlight any seminars and conferences attended.

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What Are The Best Culinary Schools In Raleigh, NC? 

Wake Technical College

Wake Technical Community College is the largest community college in North Carolina. The school offers more than 240 diplomas, certificates and diploma programs designed for aspiring technical professionals as well as students interested in continuing education opportunities.

The college offers diploma, associate degree and certificate programs in both culinary technology and baking and pastry arts.

This program is aimed at individuals interested in learning the basics of culinary technology and seeking immediate employment in the industry. Some of the training topics include culinary safety and sanitation. Cooking courses cover basic baking skills and cooking techniques.


Vance-Granville Community College

Vance-Granville Community College is a member of the North Carolina Community College System. Students can find associate and certificate programs in more than 40 fields of study.

The school offers a Culinary Technology degree program through the Department of Business and Applied Technology.

Vance-Granville’s Culinary Technology curriculum is designed for students interested in culinary work in hotels, restaurants, healthcare settings, and schools.

The 67-credit AAS program emphasizes the practical application of culinary theory. Courses cover food and beverage service, baking, sanitation and general cooking.


Central Carolina Community College

Central Carolina Community College is located approximately 57 miles from downtown Raleigh. Students interested in culinary courses or culinary training may be interested in the school’s associate degree program in culinary arts.

This program teaches the fundamental skills a student must use in a professional kitchen. Central Carolina’s 65-credit Culinary Arts AAS program is specifically designed for students who are interested in obtaining entry-level employment in the hospitality industry.

The curriculum includes training in food and beverage service, basic cooking techniques and sanitation. This program requires on-the-job learning experience.

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Guilford Technical Community College

This school emphasizes the application of technical skills, which can be seen in the school’s “dining room,” where students produce and serve food to the public, demonstrating a combination of hotel and restaurant management and culinary skills.

Service and refrigeration students complete laboratory hours in several required courses as part of the program.


Fayetteville Technical Community College

This college offers a program that will prepare a student to secure a culinary position upon completion of courses that include culinary techniques, recognition of a wide variety of both local and international cuisine, food presentation, supervisory skills, menu planning, and much more.


Cape Fear Community College

This school provides specialized training to prepare students to become full-fledged culinary professionals in the food and hospitality industry in a variety of settings such as hotels, restaurants, caterers, clubs, resorts and other establishments.

Courses offered as part of the program include food and beverage service, safety, sanitation, baking, food production, local and international cuisine.


How Much Do Chefs In Raleigh, NC Earn?

In North Carolina, salaries are competitive for qualified and experienced cooks. In 2017, head chefs and executive chefs in the state earned an average of $24.61 an hour or $51,190 a year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Food service managers have the highest salaries in the industry, averaging $29.30 per hour or $60,950 per year. .

Culinary jobs are growing across the board in North Carolina. With the state’s thriving restaurant, hospitality and tourism industries, chefs, chefs, cooks, managers and bakers are in constant demand.

Currently, the fastest growing jobs are restaurant chefs, cooks, chefs and head chefs, bakers and food service managers, with growth between 11 and 16 percent.

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How Do I Become A Chef In Raleigh, NC?

North Carolina is a great state to work in if you love food. The state has a strong southern food culture and is well known for its unique take on barbecue.

From rural areas to suburbs to the big cities of Charlotte, Raleigh, Greensboro, Durham, and Winston-Salem, North Carolina will offer many career opportunities for dedicated culinary professionals in the years to come.

What Are The Best Paying Culinary Arts Jobs in Raleigh, NC

North Carolina is home to many notable culinary employers, including Landry’s Restaurants, Norwegian Cruise Line and Ovations Food Services.

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If you want to become self-employed, a culinary program gives you many ways to do so. You can work as a private chef, open your own catering company or open a restaurant. Keep in mind that self-employment often requires many hours.

Most chefs work in restaurants, as the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that 46% of employed chefs work in restaurants. You can also find work as a caterer or private chef.

North Carolina offers a fair amount of freedom to cooks and chefs as the state does not require any licenses or certifications to work.

However, there are additional certification programs that can help you land a job. The American Culinary Federation is one of the most recognized certification programs in the country.

As a chef, many factors can affect your salary. Perhaps the most important factor is experience. The more experience you have, the more money you can make starting at work, and the more chances you have to increase your salary.

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Best Culinary Schools In Raleigh, NC FAQs

What Is The Requirement To Become A Chef In Raleigh, NC?

North Carolina has no general training, education, licensing, or certification requirements for cooks or chefs. You may find employers with minimum requirements, but in general, having a high school diploma or GED is an essential first step in qualifying for a culinary job. You may be able to find a job without any college degree, but expect to work your way up from the bottom. With a certificate or degree, you can jump through many positions and start as a chef, learning and working your way up to a management role.

Do You Need License To Work As A Chef In Raleigh, NC?

Although there are no state licensing requirements for chefs or cooks, if you plan to work in the culinary industry in North Carolina, you may be able to obtain national certification. The American Culinary Federation (ACF) offers certification with a written and practical exam in any of 16 areas. Certification can help you land a better job, get ahead of other job applicants, or get a better salary from your current employer.


As North Carolina continues to gain attention for its culinary industry, attract new culinary investment, and have restaurateurs pushing the proverbial boundaries, the state should be an attractive option for prospective students considering culinary school here. Although the culinary scene in Charlotte is competitive, culinary schools in Raleigh, Carolina can help students gain the necessary kitchen skills to begin exploring local food.

REFERENCES Cooking Classes in Raleigh, NC with School Overviews


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