Culinary Arts

Culinary Arts

About the Program

The Culinary Arts program successfully equips graduates to fulfill their career aspirations through its commitment to teach a standard of skill and professionalism necessary for advancement in the dynamic and diverse culinary field within the communities we serve.

AWARD TYPES: Associate of Applied Science, Certificate Level 1, Certificate Level 2

AREA OF STUDY: Public Safety, Transportation & Consumer Services

Degrees and Certificates

Learn more about the Degrees and Certificates offered by this program by visiting the HCC Catalog.

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Program Outcomes


Apply methods of food and beverage preparation and service that illustrate a high level of skill and professionalism needed for advancement in the dynamic culinary industry.


Demonstrate proper sanitation and safety procedures in areas of personal hygiene, proper attire, food handling and storage and chemical and equipment use.


Analyze food and beverage costs and identify necessary controls to efficiently manage and ensure profitability in a food service establishment.


Evaluate and select appropriate sustainability principles and practices necessary for responsible management of operations within a community.

Program Information

General Requirements

Specialized classroom and practical laboratory work experiences in the preparation and cooking of a variety of foods are included in the Culinary Arts program. Emphasis is placed on the use and care of commercial equipment used in food preparation, sanitation in food handling, cooking and baking methods, preparation of special dishes, food standards, aspects of nutrition, and gourmet cooking.

Since this program is designed to prepare graduates for a career in Culinary Arts, tools and materials are expected to be purchased by students in order to perform routine class and laboratory assignments.

Upon completion of CHEF 1305, Safety and Sanitation, students are eligible to take the National Restaurant Association Education Foundation ServSafe Certification exam. After receiving a passing grade on the exam, students are awarded the ServSafe Health Certificate that is valid for five years.

In addition, please note that a student may only earn one Occupational Skills Award (OSA) per academic year.

TSI testing required prior to first enrollment for all AAS degrees and Level II certificates.



The Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts degree and the Associate of Applied Science Pastry Arts degree are accredited by the American Culinary Federation Education Foundation Accrediting Commission (ACFEFAC).

For more information »

Program Outcomes and Success Measurement Data

AAS Culinary Arts— Graduation Rate At 150% Of Normal Time (3 years)

Academic Year


Academic Year


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Job Placement Rates for Culinary Arts & Pastry Arts AAS

Academic Year

(17-18 to 19-20)


Source: Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board (THECB)


ACFEF Certification Rates

Academic Year





Program Goals

The Culinary Arts, AAS program is designed to equip graduates for leadership positions in the food industry. The program provides students with the necessary theoretical knowledge and technical skills to become successful culinary professionals. Students develop competencies in food preparation, fundamental cooking and baking methods, cold kitchen preparation, and ala carte kitchen operations and cooking. Concepts of healthy cooking and nutrition, food safety and sanitation, food service operations, food and beverage cost control, supervision skills, and general education courses focus on professional and management skills development necessary for success in the workplace.



There are 2,221 Chefs and Head Cooks employed in the Greater Houston Area. This number is expected to increase by 10.0% over the next four years.

The estimated annual job openings is 106 jobs a year.
Median Wages - $18.70 hourly, $39,000 annually


Texas Education Association (TEA) Industry Based Certification Resource


Certification Name TEA Resource Link  Third-Party Certification Agency Third-Party Certification Agency Website

Certified Fundamentals Cook



American Culinary Federation (ACF)


Certification Name TEA Resource Link  Third-Party Certification Agency Third-Party Certification Agency Website

ServSafe Manager Certification

ServSafe/National Restaurant Association




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Marketable Skills

Learn more about the marketable skills—skills valued by employers that can be applied in variety of work settings—so you can communicate these to potential employers. Click on the relevant award title below to see descriptions of marketable skills for that area.

Culinary Arts, A.A.S.

Culinary Arts, C2

Prep Cook, C1

Career Opportunities

Explore real-time labor market data on occupations you may pursue post-graduation, offering insight into career opportunities, potential earnings, and job demand in the Greater Houston region.

For more in-depth information about this career and other career pathways, visit Career Coach.


Search for a Culinary Arts Professor or request more information

Get in touch

Christy J. Sykes

Culinary Arts


Hours of Operation: Mon. - Fri. 9am-5pm