Mise en place: here’s how you can become a chef!

become a chef

Are you looking to shift gears and enter an industry where you can:

  • Enjoy a dynamic work environment
  • Express yourself
  • Be creative every single day

Then, why not pursue your passion for cooking and head to a commercial kitchen as a head chef?

Is cooking a skill or a talent?

A question asked by many aspiring chefs, often backed up by a glimpse of hesitationCan you really learn such skills through a course? Or do you have to be lucky enough to be born with the talent?

Well, we like to think it’s a little bit of both. While you might have some talent (and passion), demonstrated through your love of heading into the kitchen at home and experimenting with recipes, finessing your signature dishes, and discovering new cuisines, honing this talent is made possible through formal education and training.

Talent is your innate ability and interest in doing something that feels like second-nature, and has often been a part of your past; perhaps you grew up with talented parents and grandparents in the kitchen!

On the other side of the coin, skill is something that you acquire and learn while investing your time, effort, and energy in training to unlock and finesse skills.

So no matter how your love of cooking came about, the good news is that formal training can help you polish your talents and master your skills!

What are the duties of being a chef?

An exciting adventure in the kitchen awaits, as no two days are the same in commercial cookery.

From menu planning and recipe testing to mentoring your team, a chef’s day (or night) is dynamic, energetic, and passionate! 

A chef takes on many duties while working in the kitchen, and as such learn valuable skills across a range of disciplines.

Responsibilities of a chef inside the kitchen varies across areas of leadership, operations, human resources, and admin, and can include:

  • Creating and planning daily food menus and specials
  • Maintaining food quality, storage, and appearance
  • Planning food costs and inventory lists
  • Delegating food preparation tasks to kitchen crew
  • Enforcing compliance with health and sanitation
  • Scheduling kitchen maintenance and cleaning schedules
  • Leading kitchen staff
  • Assisting in administration and recruitment processes

What is a potential career path for a chef?

A diverse and energetic industry, hospitality offers many opportunities and pathways to pursue.

The sky really is the limit as to how you can turn your passion into an employment opportunity for a commercial cook!

Job skills, training, and achieving your Certificate III in Commercial Cookery are some of the basic requirements if you want to become a chef. Follow the chef hierarchy and progress through the stages, from Commis Chef and Chef de Partie through to the top dog: Executive Chef.

If you’d like to learn more about the chef hierarchy, we’ve created a detailed blog on all the roles you will find in the kitchen.

How do I start a career in cooking?

So now we’ve covered the industry and all the exciting opportunities that await; now we’re taking a step backwards for a closer look at what you need to do before you enter the industry.

Whether you’re a passionate food blogger who wants to turn your business into a career, or a student wishing to study and live in Brisbane, your main question is: how do I start a career in cooking?

What qualifications do you need to become a chef?

While lots of practice in your kitchen at home can help develop skills and strengthen your passion, there is also an element of formal training and education required in order to make you stand out as an attractive candidate in the industry.

The two most important steps required to become a chef are to complete a commercial cookery course, and complete work experience or placement in a real-life commercial kitchen.

Let’s take a closer look at each step.

Step #1: Enrol in commercial cookery courses

Turn your kitchen dreams into reality and gain the training and education required to enter this exciting industry!

Your passion in the kitchen is a fantastic start, but now it’s time to enrol in our cooking school in Brisbane to learn all the essentials of working in a commercial kitchen.

Certificate in Commercial Cookery III (SIT30816) 

Discover the essentials needed to successfully work in a commercial kitchen environment.

The Certificate III in Commercial Cookery provides you with classroom-based learning and practical training with our workplace partners to prepare you for a rewarding career in the food industry. 

This course will help you turn your passion for cooking into a career by teaching various food preparation techniques and practices such as:

  • Stock, sauces, and soup preparation
  • Seafood, poultry, meat, chicken dishes
  • How to work effectively as a cook
  • Food safety and food quality
  • Safety food practices

Successful completion of this course means you can enrol in the Certificate IV.

Certificate in Commercial Cookery IV (SIT40516)

Are you aiming for a leadership or managerial position in the kitchen? 

The Certificate 4 in Commercial Cookery prepares you to know all the necessary knowledge and experience in management, finance, and marketing needed for you to succeed in leading a team and organisation.

This course will be your opportunity to continue your studies with the Diploma of Hospitality Management.

Learning outcomes from the Certificate IV include:

  • Monitoring work operations
  • Implementing work health and safety practices
  • Manage finances within the budget
  • Planning and costing of basic menus
  • Leading and managing a team

Step #2: Gain real-life experience through placement

As part of your commercial cookery course in Brisbane, you will gain real-life experience through work placement, organised for you through Academia.

A compulsory component of both the Certificate 3 and Certificate 4, practical work placement takes place in some of Brisbane and Melbourne’s most distinguished hotels, including Westin Hotel Brisbane and Grand Hyatt Melbourne.

Explore our commercial cookery courses in Brisbane

Academia is an award-winning college in Brisbane and Melbourne offering a range of accredited courses, including commercial cookery, hospitality, and patisserie. 

Our passionate educators help you reach career goals and prepare you for a rewarding career through compassionate training, education, and support.

Click here to find out more about our hospitality school, or if you’d like to speak to a course advisor, please get in touch with us using the details below.