French Bakery
Professional Certificate

School certificate
Duration: 6 months + 2-month internship
Taught in
100% French or 100% English

Next available session: October 13th, 2020

With just over 30,000 businesses—one bakery for every 1800 inhabitants—bakeries and pastry shops are at the forefront of food retail in France. With 340 visits per day on average, they are also the leaders in French food businesses in terms of number of visits.*

Within this positive context, Institut Culinaire de France offers short, intensive, high-standard training courses enabling students to access employment in this continually evolving and dynamic industry.

This training is aimed at those with no previous baking experience. The teaching implemented combines technical skills with the highest standards in order to ensure students find employment quickly and effectively, and also offer them the possibility to establish or take over a bakery and bring their individual identity to it.

Pace of Study

The training implemented in this six-month programme is an English and an innovative version of the traditional French Foundation program (CAP- Certificate of Professional Competence) a vocational qualification. Trainees are immersed in intensive practice every day (seven hours per day in the lab) and coached by talented chef-instructors who encourage them to give it their best.

The course is enriched by renowned visiting bakers (master bakers, Meilleurs Ouvriers de France bakers) who contribute to the candidates’ success in the final exam.

Course advantages

  • High-end facilities: two baking labs, entirely equipped with material made in France, hosting up to 16 students at a time, ergonomically designed to facilitate exchanges between students and chef-instructors
  • Intensive training: seven hours of classes per day in the lab
  • Motivated and acclaimed teaching staff
  • Cross-curricular teaching (management, food design, nutrition, hygiene) enabling students to become experienced and autonomous professionals of their time
  • Two-month obligatory work placement with an artisan


  • Jobseekers
  • Career switchers
  • Students

*Sources: Confédération Nationale de la Boulangerie Pâtisserie Française, Chambre Professionnelle des Artisans Boulangers-Pâtissiers de Paris, Fédération des Entreprises de Boulangerie.

cap reconversion boulangerie


  • Intensive practical training in the lab (455 hours)
  • Bakery technology (48 hours)
  • Applied technology in the lab (45 hours)
  • Communications (24 hours)
  • Business knowledge (20 hours)
  • Environmental Health and Safety (PSE) and First Aid (SST) (15 hours)
  • Health and food safety (12 hours)
  • Professional work placement (280 hours)

Theoretical & practical knowledge

  • Development of practical skills: supply, receipt of goods, detecting quantitative and qualitative anomalies, storage
  • Production/Manufacturing: putting a workstation in place, calculating raw materials, implementing various methods of kneading, weighing and shaping, monitoring various fermentation methods, putting in the oven and controlling cooking and cooling, identifying defects and presenting products for sale
  • Baking and other products: French sourdough, wholemeal bread and rye bread, making rolled puff pastry products, croissants, chocolate croissants, two-colour breads, making leavened dough products, pain au lait, brioche, pastries, etc.
  • Maintenance and security: cleaning and disinfecting premises, equipment and materials, checking the correct operation of equipment and safety devices
  • Quality control: checking the conformity of raw materials and products throughout the manufacturing process, checking weights and quantities, checking the appearance of finished products
  • Technology: history of baking, professional vocabulary, personnel and workstations, equipment, organisation methods, supply, preservation methods and inventory management
  • Raw materials: manufacturing techniques and finished products, sensory education, hygiene and food safety
  • Know-how: organising, kneading, adding water or flour to dough, conducting fermentations, dividing and shaping dough pieces, forming various shaped dough pieces, multiple scoring, putting in the oven using a baking mat and spatula, managing cooking and cooling, selling and displaying products for sale

Our teaching team

zakari benkhadra
Zakari Benkhadra
Managing Director
zakari benkhadra
A graduate of Assas and Georgetown University (Washington), Zakari Benkhadra has worked for internationally renowned companies such as Générale des Eaux, Vivendi and Unibail-Rodamco. In 2007, Alain Ducasse entrusted Zakari with the general management of his education division, which included ENSP - École Nationale Supérieure de Pâtisserie. He created the first CAP professional retraining qualification in Pastry in French and English, followed by the first Bachelor’s course as well as various intensive short bilingual programmes. In 2018, thanks to his collaborations with the greatest chefs, he founded the Salon de la Pâtisserie in Paris.

Damien Baccon
Baker Chef - Trainer
Born into a family of bakers for four generations, Damien Baccon trained in baking at INBP. He worked for Joël Robuchon's Michelin-starred restaurants in Las Vegas and then worked as an international consultant in China and the Middle East. He then turned his hand to teaching at ENSP alongside Jean-Marc Guillot, Meilleur Ouvrier de France (Best Artisan of France) in 1997 and World Pastry Champion in 1993. He is now a bakery consultant mainly in Asia and Europe and is a member of the Ambassadeur du Pain association.


Admission école de pâtisserie


This program is open to candidates that have completed secondary education (French Bac level). Strong motivation is paramount.


Programs eligible for financial support through French services (OPCA / OPCO, CPF, etc.).


An application request must be made through the website. Within the next 48 hours, the candidate will receive an invitation for an interview, either in person or video-conference (Skype). The candidate will be informed about the results following the interview.


A registration form will be sent to successful applicants. The form must be filled and returned to Institut Culinaire de France within 30 days, along with required documentation.

Visa application

Once his admission is confirmed, the candidate will be issued an acceptance letter. This letter is required for his visa application in the French consulate in the applicant’s respective country. According to French law, any stay longer than 90 days requires a long-term visa. However, depending on his nationality, a visa may be required for any length of stay. This procedure might take a considerable amount of time. Therefore, we advise the future students to start their visa application upon the receipt of their acceptance letter.


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