What is the Job Outlook for Pastry Chef?
Mar 29, 2015 | 12:00 pm
The Stable Field
It’s only natural in today’s economic atmosphere, to be cautious about the degree of time, money and education you invest toward an occupation. From skilled labor to professional employment, there has been a complete shakedown in available jobs. We want to train for jobs that show stability well into the future. From the time humankind first learned to grind grains into flour, add liquid ingredients, then put it on an oven, then bake it, there they created a good job outlook for the pastry chef. It did not take long for members within any given community to realize that some bakers were more skillful, knew more secrets to perfecting the quality of their grain-based product. Their services became a preference and they were paid or given equal trade for their light, airy breads and delicately sweetened confections.
Understanding the quality of dough or batter before it has even touched the oven takes a special instinct; as well as a highly developed sense of sight and touch. When you begin adding the sauces, the glazing and fillings made through mixing sugar or honey, fruits, cocoa beans, vanilla and nuts, your finesse in the arts of pastry delights is put to the ultimate test.
There is far more than learning to follow a recipe exactly in becoming a pastry chef. It’s in feeling that exact moment when a batter has been blended perfectly, when a chocolate recipe has been stirred just enough to make it creamy instead of grainy, and when the dough has been cut or kneaded enough to perform its lighter than air magic.
Availability of Positions
At a projected six percent growth, the pastry chef job outlook has been slower than average, but it is the type of job that is always in demand. The turnover rate in the field is rapid, especially among entry-level bakers. Baking requires rising early in the morning, very long hours on your feet, and sometimes working with heavy bags, items or machinery. During the initial five years within a baking industry, however, a very large percentage drop out due to the hours, working conditions and employer demands.
Baking jobs are available at the high school graduate level, with training available at an apprenticeship level or through the armed forces. The most common route entry-level bakers employ is through commercial production for bakeries, grocers and restaurants. It takes years of practice and devotion to become a pastry chef, but despite those initial years of struggle, the pastry chef job outlook has its rewards.
A pastry chef has all the same duties and responsibilities as the head chef of the kitchen. Before becoming a pastry chef, the baker will usually be sent to a culinary arts school to learn management skills as well as cultivate more skills and technique for serving exquisite desserts. The job outlook for pastry chef is considered competitive, but this is one field where the truth is literally in the pudding. A good pastry chef with a culinary arts degree may find work with five star restaurants, in casinos, on cruise ships, or in hospitality catering to hotels, banquets, parties and other functions. They can even open their own bakery.
How much money a pastry chef makes depends largely on location. Usually, the best-paying bakery chef jobs are in metropolitan areas, but the cost of living can offset the profits. Pastry chefs who work for tourism or entertainment industry can earn an income of up to $55,000 a year, with a number of benefits, bonuses and discounts. A pastry chef in a small town might not make more than $25,000 to $35,000 a year, but enjoy a comfortable quality of life. Because of the huge turnover rate, a pastry chef job outlook is stable. Your advantage is your ability to choose the type of baking industry you wish to go into, the pastry services you wish to provide and where you choose to live, as there is always a demand for a good pastry chef.