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Most Popular Culinary Arts Trade Schools

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2021 Most Popular Culinary Arts Trade Schools

657 Colleges
$23,822 Avg Salary
$19,004 Avg Student Debt

Finding the Best Culinary Arts School for You

In 2018-2019, 26,643 culinary arts students received their degrees and certificates, making the major the #9 most popular in the country.

Today's trade school students have lots of options to pick from when considering higher education opportunities. You can choose a traditional brick and mortar school, or with the growth of online education, you can attend a school half-way across the country without even leaving your house.

To assist you in seeing some of the education options that are available to you, Trade College Search has created its Most Popular Culinary Arts Trade Schools ranking. This report analyzed 657 schools in the United States to see which ones were the most popular programs for trade school students. To create this ranking we looked at how many students graduated from the Culinary Arts program at each school on the list.

Check out the culinary arts programs at these schools if you want to attend one of the most popular in the United States.

Our analysis found Instituto de Banca y Comercio Inc to be the most popular school for culinary arts students who want to pursue a degree in the United States. Located in the small city of Guaynabo, Instituto de Banca is a private for-profit school with a moderately-sized student population.

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A rank of #2 on this year’s list means Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts - Boulder is a great place for culinary arts students. Escoffier - Boulder is a small private for-profit school located in the midsize city of Boulder.

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You’ll be in good company if you decide to attend Culinary Institute of America. It ranked #3 on our 2021 Most Popular Culinary Arts Trade Schools list. The Culinary Institute of America is a small private not-for-profit school located in the suburb of Hyde Park.

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You’ll be in good company if you decide to attend Johnson & Wales University - Providence. It ranked #4 on our 2021 Most Popular Culinary Arts Trade Schools list. JWU Providence is a medium-sized private not-for-profit school located in the midsize city of Providence.

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A rank of #5 on this year’s list means The International Culinary Center is a great place for culinary arts students. Located in the large city of New York, The International Culinary Center is a private for-profit school with a fairly small student population.

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Institute of Culinary Education did quite well in this year’s ranking of the most popular schools for culinary arts students. It came in at #6 on the list. Institute of Culinary Education is a fairly small private for-profit school located in the large city of New York.

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#7

Lake Land College

Mattoon, IL

Lake Land College ranked #7 on this year’s Most Popular Culinary Arts Trade Schools list. Lake Land College is a small public school located in the town of Mattoon.

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Escuela Hotelera de San Juan landed the #8 spot in the 2021 rankings for the most popular culinary arts programs. Located in the large city of Hato Rey, Escuela Hotelera de San Juan is a private for-profit school with a small student population.

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Johnson & Wales University - Charlotte came in at #9 in this year’s edition of the Most Popular Culinary Arts Trade Schools ranking. Located in the city of Charlotte, JWU Charlotte is a private not-for-profit school with a small student population.

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Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts - Austin landed the #10 spot in the 2021 rankings for the most popular culinary arts programs. Located in the city of Austin, Escoffier - Austin is a private for-profit school with a fairly small student population.

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With a ranking of #11, City Colleges of Chicago - Kennedy-King College did quite well on this year’s most popular schools for culinary arts students. Kennedy-King College is a small public school located in the city of Chicago.

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#12

ECPI University

Virginia Beach, VA

With a ranking of #12, ECPI University did quite well on this year’s most popular schools for culinary arts students. Located in the large city of Virginia Beach, ECPI University is a private for-profit school with a fairly large student population.

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University of Arkansas - Pulaski Technical College landed the #13 spot in the 2021 rankings for the most popular culinary arts programs. Located in the small city of North Little Rock, UA Pulaski Tech is a public college with a medium-sized student population.

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Johnson & Wales University - Denver did quite well in this year’s ranking of the most popular schools for culinary arts students. It came in at #14 on the list. Located in the large city of Denver, JWU Denver is a private not-for-profit college with a fairly small student population.

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Atlanta Technical College landed the #15 spot in the 2021 rankings for the most popular culinary arts programs. Atlanta Area Tech is a small public school located in the city of Atlanta.

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#16

Valencia College

Orlando, FL

Valencia College ranked #16 on this year’s Most Popular Culinary Arts Trade Schools list. Located in the city of Orlando, Valencia College is a public school with a fairly large student population.

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#17

El Centro College

Dallas, TX

El Centro College came in at #17 in this year’s edition of the Most Popular Culinary Arts Trade Schools ranking. El Centro College is a large public school located in the large city of Dallas.

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#18

St Philip's College

San Antonio, TX

St Philip’s College did quite well in this year’s ranking of the most popular schools for culinary arts students. It came in at #18 on the list. Located in the city of San Antonio, St Philip's College is a public school with a large student population.

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#19

Ivy Tech Community College

Indianapolis, IN

Ivy Tech Community College ranked #19 on this year’s Most Popular Culinary Arts Trade Schools list. Ivy Tech Community College is a fairly large public school located in the large city of Indianapolis.

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#20

Stratford University

Fairfax, VA

With a ranking of #20, Stratford University did quite well on this year’s most popular schools for culinary arts students. Located in the suburb of Fairfax, Stratford University is a private for-profit college with a small student population.

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Los Angeles Mission College came in at #21 in this year’s edition of the Most Popular Culinary Arts Trade Schools ranking. Los Angeles Mission College is a fairly large public school located in the large city of Sylmar.

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#22

Culinary Institute Inc

Houston, TX

Culinary Institute Inc did quite well in this year’s ranking of the most popular schools for culinary arts students. It came in at #22 on the list. Culinary Institute LeNotre is a small private for-profit school located in the large city of Houston.

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Sinclair Community College did quite well in this year’s ranking of the most popular schools for culinary arts students. It came in at #23 on the list. Sinclair Community College is a fairly large public school located in the midsize city of Dayton.

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#24

Cypress College

Cypress, CA

Cypress College ranked #24 on this year’s Most Popular Culinary Arts Trade Schools list. Located in the large suburb of Cypress, Cypress College is a public college with a large student population.

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#25

Sullivan University

Louisville, KY

Sullivan University landed the #25 spot in the 2021 rankings for the most popular culinary arts programs. Sullivan University is a small private for-profit school located in the large city of Louisville.

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#26

Hinds Community College

Raymond, MS
#29

Culinary Tech Center

New York, NY
#34

Miami Dade College

Miami, FL
#36

Savannah Technical College

Savannah, GA
#37

Pikes Peak Community College

Colorado Springs, CO
#40

Universidad del Este

Carolina, PR
#42

Arizona Culinary Institute

Scottsdale, AZ
#45

Trident Technical College

Charleston, SC
#47

Monroe College

Bronx, NY
#49

Lee College

Baytown, TX
#50

Pioneer Pacific College

Wilsonville, OR

Additional Award Winners

This list shows the rest of the colleges awarded a Most Popular Culinary Arts Trade Schools badge. Showing in this list means the school was ranked in the top 15% of the 657 different United States culinary arts schools we analyzed.

Rank College Location
51 Grossmont College El Cajon, CA
52 SOWELA Technical Community College Lake Charles, LA
52 Central Georgia Technical College Warner Robins, GA
54 Florida Technical College Orlando, FL
54 El Paso Community College El Paso, TX
56 Madison Area Technical College Madison, WI
57 Milwaukee Area Technical College Milwaukee, WI
57 Lincoln Technical Institute - Shelton Shelton, CT
59 Helms College Macon, GA
59 San Jacinto Community College Pasadena, TX
61 Gateway Technical College Kenosha, WI
61 Santa Rosa Junior College Santa Rosa, CA
61 Santiago Canyon College Orange, CA
64 College of Lake County Grayslake, IL
65 The Art Institute of Atlanta Atlanta, GA
65 Ozarks Technical Community College Springfield, MO
67 ICPR Junior College - Manati Manatí, PR
67 Ashland Community and Technical College Ashland, KY
69 Cuyahoga Community College District Cleveland, OH
70 Cincinnati State Technical and Community College Cincinnati, OH
71 Bradford School Columbus, OH
72 Crescent City Bartending School New Orleans, LA
73 Orange Coast College Costa Mesa, CA
74 Leeward Community College Pearl City, HI
74 West Kentucky Community and Technical College Paducah, KY
74 Grand Rapids Community College Grand Rapids, MI
77 Baker College Flint, MI
77 Richland Community College Decatur, IL
77 The Culinary School of Fort Worth Fort Worth, TX
77 Fox Valley Technical College Appleton, WI
77 Texas State Technical College Waco, TX
77 Macomb Community College Warren, MI
83 Saint Paul College Saint Paul, MN
83 The Restaurant School at Walnut Hill College Philadelphia, PA
83 Southern Crescent Technical College Griffin, GA
86 Academia Serrant Inc Ponce, PR
87 Baton Rouge Community College Baton Rouge, LA
87 Platt College - North OKC Oklahoma City, OK
89 NorthWest Arkansas Community College Bentonville, AR
89 The Art Institute of Houston Houston, TX
91 Francis Tuttle Technology Center Oklahoma City, OK
91 Niagara County Community College Sanborn, NY
91 Augusta Technical College Augusta, GA
91 Schoolcraft College Livonia, MI
95 Riverside City College Riverside, CA
95 Seattle Central College Seattle, WA
95 Institute of Technology Clovis, CA
98 Tidewater Community College Norfolk, VA
98 Houston Community College Houston, TX

Honorable Mentions

Here are some additional popular schools for Culinary Arts students that almost earned our Most Popular Culinary Arts Trade Schools award.

Rank College Location
100 Dorsey Schools, Roseville Culinary Academy Roseville, MI
101 Columbus Technical College Columbus, GA
102 William T McFatter Technical College Davie, FL
102 Michigan Career and Technical Institute Plainwell, MI
104 Emily Griffith Technical College Denver, CO
104 Chaffey College Rancho Cucamonga, CA
104 Erie Community College Buffalo, NY
104 Indiana University of Pennsylvania - Main Campus Indiana, PA
108 College of Southern Nevada Las Vegas, NV
108 Henry Ford College Dearborn, MI
108 Florida Education Institute Miami, FL
108 Fayetteville Technical Community College Fayetteville, NC
108 South Louisiana Community College Lafayette, LA
113 Hocking College Nelsonville, OH
113 Daytona State College Daytona Beach, FL
113 Los Angeles Harbor College Wilmington, CA
116 Delaware Technical Community College - Terry Dover, DE
116 SUNY Schenectady County Community College Schenectady, NY
118 Joliet Junior College Joliet, IL
118 Yavapai College Prescott, AZ
118 Western Iowa Tech Community College Sioux City, IA
121 Collin County Community College District McKinney, TX
121 Coastal Carolina Community College Jacksonville, NC
121 Columbia College Sonora, CA
121 Louisiana Culinary Institute Baton Rouge, LA
125 Southeast Community College Area Lincoln, NE
125 University of Hawaii Maui College Kahului, HI
125 College of DuPage Glen Ellyn, IL
125 ICPR Junior College - General Institutional Hato Rey, PR
129 ICPR Junior College - Arecibo Arecibo, PR
129 Tarrant County College District Fort Worth, TX
129 Metropolitan Community College Omaha, NE
129 YTI Career Institute-York York, PA
129 American River College Sacramento, CA
129 Guilford Technical Community College Jamestown, NC

Culinary Arts by Region

View the Most Popular Culinary Arts Trade Schools for a specific region near you.

Region
Southeast
New England
Rocky Mountains
Plains States
Middle Atlantic
Far Western US
Southwest
Great Lakes

One of 3 majors within the trade school area of study, culinary arts has other similar majors worth exploring.

Culinary Arts Focus Areas

Major Annual Graduates
Culinary Arts/Chef Training 12,205
Baking & Pastry Arts/Baker/Pastry Chef 4,964
General Cooking & Related Culinary Arts 4,765
Restaurant, Culinary, & Catering Management/Manager 1,802
Food Preparation/Professional Cooking/Kitchen Assistant 1,210
Other Culinary Arts & Related Services 734
Bartending/Bartender 289
Culinary Science/Culinology 225
Institutional Food Workers 193
Wine Steward/Sommelier 112
Food Service, Waiter/Waitress, & Dining Room Management/Manager 98
Meat Cutting/Meat Cutter 46

Related Major Annual Graduates
Cosmetology 103,674
Funeral & Mortuary Science 1,965
Other Personal & Culinary Services 320

Notes and References

*These averages are for the top 25 schools only.

  • The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a branch of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) serves as the core of the rest of our data about colleges.
  • Some other college data, including much of the graduate earnings data, comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s (College Scorecard).
  • Credit for the banner image above goes to U.S. Army Europe Images.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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