Top 10 Culinary Schools / List of Top Culinary Schools/ Best Culinary Schools

  1. Culinary Institute of America at Hyde Park

Founded in 1946, The Culinary Institute of America (CIA) is a highly regarded culinary school headquartered in Hyde Park, New York. CIA also has campuses in Napa and St. Helena, California, in San Antonio, Texas, and in Singapore.

Its status as private and not-for-profit makes CIA unique among schools that focus solely on culinary training (most are for-profit), and helps ensure that it provides a top-notch education to its students. It is the first school to offer an Associate degree program in culinary arts (1971), as well as a Bachelor degree program (1991)

  1. Institute of Culinary Education

The world-renowned Institute of Culinary Education (ICE) is the nation’s largest independent culinary school, with a cutting-edge campuses in both New York City and Los Angeles. Founded by Peter Kump in 1975, the school has been praised by top chefs and culinary industry leaders. The school offers diplomas in Culinary Arts, Pastry and Baking Arts, Hotel and Restaurant Management, Hospitality Management, The Techniques of Artisan Bread Baking, and The Art of Cake Decorating. The curriculum is intense and comprehensive, with most students completing their programs in six to twelve months.

  1. International Culinary Center

The International Culinary Center (ICC) is a private, for-profit culinary school headquartered in New York City.

The New York City campus is located in the famously chic and bustling Soho neighborhood, within walking distance of New York’s Chinatown, Little Italy, and the Lower East Side. Originally, named the French Culinary Institute when it was founded in 1984, ICC is known internationally as a high-caliber culinary school that produces highly qualified and skilled chefs.

  1. Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts

Taking its name from the legendary French chef, the Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts is a private, for-profit culinary school headquartered in Austin, Texas, with a second location in Boulder, Colorado; it also has distance programs for those seeking to get their chef training online.

At its Austin campus, Auguste Escoffier offers an Associate degree and Diploma programs designed to ensure you are well trained in the culinary arts, and are ready for a career in the industry. The programs culminate in externships that are designed to give students on-the-job experience and help develop professional connections. As a unique bonus, among its course listings, Auguste Escoffier has a farm to table course, keeping up with contemporary culinary trends.

  1. L’Academie de Cuisine

L’Academie de Cuisine is a private, for-profit culinary school located in the Washington D.C. area. Founded by the famous Francois Dionot in 1976, L’Academie is committed to developing high-caliber culinary professionals.

The schools focuses on quality over quantity, offering two Certificate program options to study Culinary Arts and Pastry Arts that are built on a dedicated focus to skill, knowledge, and job-readiness. The programs are structured in three phases, establishing fundamentals, advanced techniques, and culminating in a paid apprenticeship at a fine restaurant, to develop on-the-job experience and professional connections.

  1. Johnson and Wales University 

Johnson and Wales University is a private, not-for-profit university based in Providence, Rhode Island, with additional locations in North Miami, Florida, in Denver, Colorado, and Charlotte, North Carolina. It is unique because it is a full-fledged university that offers Bachelor and Associate culinary degree programs in addition to more typical degree programs, such as engineering, humanities, and social sciences.

With 10 different culinary program options to choose from, Johnson and Wales presents students with plenty of opportunities for specialization, including the options to combine culinary studies with management studies. Because of this, Johnson and Wales prepares students for a wide variety of industry positions. Their degree programs include internships, so as to give students on-the-job experience and help develop professional connections.

  1. Metropolitan Community College Nebraska

Metropolitan Community College Nebraska (MCCN) is a public, not-for-profit institution that offers several Associate degree and Certificate options to study the culinary arts and culinary industry management.

The goal of MCCN is to provide quality, low-cost educations that prepare students for careers as chefs, restaurant managers, and more. While it may not have all the perks of a private school, its four-figure tuition price tag is hard to beat; MCCN is the school with the lowest cost of tuition on this list.

  1. Kendall College of Culinary Arts

Another unique option at Kendall is the Accelerated Associate of Applied Science degree in Culinary Arts, designed for those who already have a Bachelor degree in another subject. If the Culinary Arts isn’t your first field of study, if perhaps you are coming to it later in life, this could be an attractive option for you, as it will allow you to skip the general education requirements and complete your degree faster.

Students at Kendall are offered numerous career placement and advancement opportunities, such as working in the open-to-the-public restaurant The Dining Room, as well as internships. Kendall also offers career services in the form of counseling, job fairs, workshops, networking, and more.

  1. New England Culinary Institute

The New England Culinary Institute (NECI) is a private, for-profit culinary school that offers numerous Bachelor and Associate degree and Certificate options, as well as online programs for those seeking an online chef school.

NECI offers thorough, hands-on programs that put plenty of emphasis on on-the-job experience through internships (requiring two each for its Associate and Bachelor degree programs). It’s options of study include Business Management in addition to Culinary Arts and Baking, in order to prepare students for a career in running a kitchen, not just working in one.

  1. Sullivan University National Center for Hospitality Studies

Sullivan University is a private, for-profit university. Although it offers numerous programs in other fields of study, such as pharmacy and business, Sullivan is probably best known for its culinary school division at its National Center for Hospitality Studies. Its main campus is located in Louisville, Kentucky, a city known for bourbon and a rapidly growing culinary scene; Sullivan has a second campus in nearby Lexington.

The programs at Sullivan are committed to ensuring career-readiness, with options to focus on becoming a chef, a baker, or working in management, as well as the unique option of studying to work as a personal chef. Sullivan offers Associate degree and Diploma programs. Through a year-round schedule broken into 11-week quarters, students can earn their titles on a fast track, with the option to complete an AS program in 18 months.