Baking Certification and Certificate Program Information

The principles of bread baking, cake decorating and basic customer service are taught in a baking certificate program. Graduates of these programs can enter the hospitality industry as entry-level cake decorators, bakers and chefs.

Essential Information

Through a baking certificate program, students gain introductory and intermediate skills in baking and pastry arts. Students work in classrooms and kitchens while learning to create breads, cakes, pies and other baked goods. Proper food safety and sanitation techniques will be emphasized, as will personal grooming and cleanliness practices. Some programs incorporate internships, allowing students to gain firsthand work experience while they complete their studies. Baking certificate programs typically take one year or less to complete.

Certificates in Baking

Students master several forms of baked goods through graduated classes. These are complemented by courses that teach hospitality business skills. Common topics include:

  • Principles of baking
  • Pies and pastries
  • Cookies and other desserts
  • Cake decorating techniques
  • Basic breads and yeasts
  • Customer service skills

Popular Career Options

Graduates of baking certificate programs are qualified for entry-level positions in pastry shops, restaurants and catering businesses. With adequate work experience, prospective chefs may be considered for advanced or supervisory roles such as the following:

  • Pastry cook
  • Cake decorator
  • Executive pastry chef
  • Wholesale baker
  • Baking production supervisor

Certification and Continuing Education

The American Culinary Foundation offers several certifications for baking and pastry professionals, including Certified Pastry Culinarian. Though completing a baking certificate program won't automatically qualify you for this designation, it can lessen the minimum required job experience from two years to one. As you gain additional experience and education, more certifications will be available to you, including Certified Working Pastry Chef, Certified Executive Pastry Chef and Certified Master Pastry Chef.

After completing a baking certificate program, graduates might opt to continue their education in a baking and pastry arts associate's degree program. Widely available, these programs offer advanced training in baking coupled with general education units. Bachelor's and master's programs also are available in related fields, such as culinary arts and hospitality management.

Baking certificate programs teach an intermediate level of baking and pastry skills, as well as the basic customer service skills needed for the hospitality industry. Upon graduation, and with additional work experience, bakers are eligible for additional baking and pastry certifications or can go on to bachelor's and master's programs with a culinary arts or hospitality management focus.

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