Culinary Boot Camp Sample Agenda

In “Get Into Formation for Culinary Boot Camp” in the August 2016 issue of School Nutrition, Contributing Editor Kelsey Casselbury explores K-12 culinary “boot camps.” These training opportunities have proven to be an effective way of training school nutrition staff in both the art of cooking and the science of operations. The article examines what these courses entail and why they may be worth offering—and attending. 

If you’re interested in teaching a culinary boot camp in your own operation but aren’t sure where to start, the below sample agenda from Nathan Dirnberger, CEC, executive chef and assistant director for Colorado Springs (Colo.) School District 11, may prove to be a useful resource or jumping-off point. 

Day One
7-7:30 a.m. Participant check-in
7:30-8 a.m. Welcome and pre-test
8-8:45 a.m. Overview of food and employee safety: sanitation bucket, thermometer calibration, handwashing, use of sleeves, hot pods, voice for warnings
8:45 a.m. Divide into two groups: Group A goes to the Kitchen Lab and Group B goes to the classroom for presentations from 9 a.m. to noon.
9-9:30 a.m. Kitchen Lab: Basics
9:30-9:55 a.m. Kitchen Lab: Knife Skills
9:55-10:20 a.m. Kitchen Lab: Pizza
10:20-10:45 a.m. Kitchen Lab: BBQ Chicken
10:45-11:05 a.m. Kitchen Lab: Lunch Entrée Display
11:05-11:30 a.m. Kitchen Lab: Salad Bar Set-up
11:30 a.m.-Noon Kitchen Lab: Executive Chef Review
Noon-12:30 p.m. Lunch
12:45 p.m. Group B goes to the Kitchen Lab to follow similar schedule to Group A’s morning session and Group A goes to the classroom for presentations. 
12:45-1:30 p.m. Presentation: Kitchen Operations
1:30-2:30 p.m. Presentation: Food Safety
2:30-2:45 p.m. Break
2:45-3:30 p.m. Meal Components and Allergies
3:30-4 p.m. Close up cafeteria

Day Two
7:45-8:15 a.m. Check-in
8:15 a.m. Divide into two groups: Group A goes to the classroom for presentations, and Group B goes to the Kitchen Lab.
8:30-10 a.m. Presentation: Customer Service 
10-10:15 a.m. Break
10:15-11:45 a.m. Presentation: Employee Safety and ServSafe Essentials
11:45 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Lunch
12:30 p.m. Group B goes to the classroom for presentations, and Group A goes to the Kitchen Lab. 
12:35-1 p.m. Kitchen Lab: Kitchen Basics
1-1:30 p.m. Kitchen Lab: Cheese Quesadilla
1:30-2 p.m. Kitchen Lab: Sausage, Egg and Cheese Sandwich
2-2:30 p.m. Kitchen Lab: Ultimate Breakfast Bar
2:30-3 p.m. Breakfast Entrée Display
3-3:30 p.m. Kitchen Clean-up
3:40-4 p.m. Close up cafeteria and post-test

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