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Culinary Schools in Chicago

Students of culinary arts schools in Chicago have many opportunities at their fingertips. This city is easily considered home to some of the best food in the country: although mainly known for its signature deep-dish pizza and hot dogs, Chicago holds more AAA five-diamond restaurants than any other city in the U.S and 21 restaurants recognized by the Michelin Guide. Diners enjoy hundreds of neighborhood eateries offering authentic ethnic cuisine, including Thai, Indian, Mexican, Italian, French, Spanish, Lithuanian, Ethiopian, Cajun, soul food, and more. Known for their culinary innovation, molecular gastronomy restaurants are also located in this popular city. Furthermore, a host of specialty food stores and seasonal farmers' markets make fresh produce accessible, along with the Downtown Farmstand, an indoor farmers market open year-round.

Chicago Culinary Schools and Employment

A 2011 Zagat Survey found that diners in Chicago buy about 47 percent of their meals outside of the home. Additionally, The Bureau of Labor Statistics found that chefs and head cooks working in the greater Chicago-Naperville-Joliet metropolitan area in 2011 earned mean annual wages of $44,270. Competition for top positions is going to be strong. While bls.gov expects employment for U.S. chefs, head cooks, and food preparation and serving supervisors to slow down from 2010 to 2020, the National Restaurant Association projects a 7.4 percent job growth in Illinois' restaurant industry over the next decade.

A degree from one of the culinary schools in Chicago isn't necessary to land a job, but a degree can teach skills that may help a career. If you are thinking about pursuing a professional cooking program, there are many culinary colleges in Chicago to choose from. Training is also available in pastries and baking, hospitality and restaurant management, and more. Use the list of culinary schools in Chicago below to help you make a decision about where to go next with your career.

Additional Chicago Culinary Resources
The 2010/2011 Zagat Survey on Chicago restaurants
Explore Chicago dining information and resources
Bureau of Labor Statistics information on a culinary education and job opportunities

Check Out These Chicago Culinary Schools to Get Started!

This list also contains online schools that accept students from Chicago

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3 Program(s) Found
  • Students spend significant time in the kitchen practicing precision techniques.
  • Programs provide hands-on training from instructors who are certified, master chefs.
  • The first Le Cordon Bleu school officially opened its doors as a culinary school in Paris in 1895.
  • Offer flexible schedules and online programs.
  • 30 schools worldwide, spanning 5 continents, including 17 campuses in the U.S.
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1 Program(s) Found
  • Member of the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA), the Canadian Network for Innovation in Education (CNIE), and the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE).
  • Features a fully flexible schedule with no classes to attend, leaving the study pace up to the student.
  • Offers a high school diploma program through distance learning materials.
  • Specializes in distance learning courses to award diplomas.
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  • Online Courses
1 Program(s) Found
  • Lets undergrad students try classes before paying any tuition.
  • In a 2013 survey, 83% of students said they would recommend the university to others.
  • Most degree-seeking online and campus-based students are adult learners with families and students who work while pursuing higher education.
  • Average class sizes is 18 for undergraduate and 13 for graduate-level courses.
  • Founded in 1937 in Davenport, Iowa as the American Institute of Commerce (AIC).
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  • Online Courses
2 Program(s) Found
  • Offers a 10% scholarship to eligible active duty, active and drilling members of the Reserve and National Guard.
  • Its accelerated online courses allow students to learn new course material every 5 ½ weeks.
  • Accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE).
  • Has been training students for creative careers since 1921. 
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  • Online Courses

Find Culinary Schools in Other Cities in Illinois

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Other Chicago, Illinois Culinary Schools

School Name Programs Offered
City Colleges of Chicago - Harold Washington College Hospitality
City Colleges of Chicago - Kennedy-King College Baking and Pastry Arts
French Pastry School Pastry Arts
Lexington College Associate of Applied Science Degree - Hospitality Management
Robert Morris College - Chicago Associate Degree Culinary Arts
Roosevelt University Hospitality & Tourism Management
Westwood College of Technology Hospitality Administration