How to become a pastry chef: from student to professional

Baking may have started as a hobby when you were a child, perhaps with your mum or grandmother. But who could have known that all these years later, you’d be here wanting to turn that hobby into a career!

Whether baking is an old skill or a new love you have just discovered, one thing’s for certain: you love creating something new out of the ordinary and applying your creative flair. Seems like becoming a pastry chef will give you this opportunity!

A pastry course in Brisbane will teach you practical skills and in-depth theory needed to succeed in a career in any patisserie, so if you want to learn how to become a good pastry chef, read on to find out how Academia can help!

Is being a pastry chef a good career objective?

A patissier’s role is more than just decorating pastries, creating articulate desserts, and baking bread.

Baking is a process that needs training, experience, and knowledge of health and safety measures to succeed.

If you want to become a manager at a patisserie or another high tier role, you’ll need to master additional managing skills, such as managing money, the business reputation, and staff.

Before you become a baker, it will help in the long term if you complete a patisserie course that will help you advance your skills and learn critical aspects of the hospitality and baking industry in order to be qualified to work for cruises, five-star restaurants, or just the small local bakery down the street. 

Unlike a lot of other industries, there is plenty of work for pastry chefs because people will always have a croissant craving or need to make sandwiches for school lunches.

Pastry chefs also have a lot of work opportunities and flexibility such as the option to work at a patisserie, coffee shop, or chain bakery. Bakers can also choose if they want to work casually, part time, or full time. 

How hard is it to become a pastry chef?

A pastry course will challenge you; you will learn many valuable skills and information that you will eventually apply to your new career.

The hospitality and food industry puts a high premium on safe food handling practices, money management, staff management, and baking techniques in order to protect the business reputation.

These are some of the key skills you’ll learn and apply:

Baking

Bakers need dedication, and they work really hard to be able to enjoy their rewards!

Bakers need to keep up with customers’ demands which are ever changing. For example, in the last decade alone, there has been an increase in ‘customised’ options, such as gluten-free, to appeal to those who have allergies or intolerances.

The difficult thing about bakeries compared to other hospitality industries, is that for health and safety reasons, all products that haven’t been sold by the end of the day need to be discarded.

It takes time to figure out how much product you’re selling on each day of the week, and ensuring you can create as close to the perfect amount of goods to bridge the gap between selling out too quickly and being left with too much stock at the end of the day. 

Food safety and hygiene

Work is at stake if bakers don’t do their job delivering goods prepared in hygienic environments.

Maintaining a healthy kitchen starts by ensuring that every area of your kitchen is free from bacteria, dirt, and other contaminants that can affect the taste, quality, and safety of your products.

Hygienic standards are met when bakers and pastry chefs:

  • Store ingredients safely and under the right conditions
  • Sanitise every working surface
  • Wash equipment properly
  • Use signage to communicate important safety messages
  • Are aware of the expiration dates of products
  • Keep track of how long products have been in the fridge, oven, and on the shelf

Management

Profitability, staff accountability, and maintaining culture will always be a part of managing any business.

Bakers in managerial positions need to have an understanding on business expenses, employment and customer demand.

The key to effective management and budgeting, includes aspects like:

  • Keeping record of what’s selling and what’s not
  • Purchasing ingredients in bulk
  • Make sure staff are implementing health and safety standards
  • Reducing waste, in terms of money and products
  • Having resolutions for conflicts

Leadership skills are especially important if you plan on working for larger establishments like hotels or catering companies or if you want to know how to start a bread bakery business from the ground up.

What qualifications do you need to be a pastry chef?

Enroll in our patisserie courses in Brisbane with Academia!

Before you get started as a skilled and talented pastry chef, qualifications (as well as the included placement component) are a must! 

The right career starts with the right education: turn your passion into a career when you enrol in Academia’s patisserie courses. 

Certificate III in Patisserie

In addition to theoretical learning, you’ll create cakes, pastries, desserts, and yeast-based bakery products within the confines of a practical setting at Academia’s on-campus facilities that mimic a real-life commercial kitchen.

Learn practical skills in communication, teamwork, and hygiene when you enroll in the Certificate III in Patisserie.

Your Certificate III also includes a placement component. Academia will help organise this for you, and you will enjoy real-world experience in one of Brisbane or Melbourne’s top hotels or hospitality facilities. 

Certificate IV in Patisserie

Prepare for a leadership role in the kitchen when you enrol in our Certificate IV in Patisserie in Brisbane or Melbourne.

Learn more about leading and mentoring a team when you enrol in this course. Gain knowledge in:

  • Finance
  • Marketing
  • Management
  • Leadership

Once you complete the Certificate III you have the option to proceed with the Certificate IV, where you will extend your skills into sugar and chocolate creations. 

After completing your Certificate IV, you then have the option to continue once again and obtain your Diploma of Hospitality Management (Patisserie Stream) which is based on technical applications and reflects leadership roles such as manager or chef.

Learn more about our patisserie courses at Academia!

Are you interested in starting but not sure how to begin?

We’d love to talk to you about your passion and career aspirations! Get in touch with our friendly course advisors today. 

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