Initial Application | Recommended Study Materials | Final Application | ACFEF Accredited Program Graduates | Recertification
- Minimum Job Experience: Two years as an
entry level culinarian. Experience must be within the past 10 years.
Candidates with a one year Culinary Arts program certificate require one
year of entry level work experience. Candidates with an Associates
degree in Culinary Arts do not require job experience. Employment
- Minimum Educational Requirements: High
school diploma/GED. If you do not have a high school diploma/GED, 100
hours of continuing education are required. Hours earned for mandatory
courses and/or refreshers are included in the minimum CEH
In addition to the requirements
listed above, you must provide documentation of three 30-hour
courses—one in Nutrition, one in Food Safety and Sanitation, and
one in Supervisory Management. If these courses were taken more than
five years ago, an eight hour refresher course is required in each
topic. These courses are available through ACF
approved providers or any academic institution. Note: the ServSafe certificate may only be used to meet your sanitation refresher requirement.
Submit application and documentation of requirements to ACF for
E-mail (preferred): firstname.lastname@example.org
Fax: (904) 940-0742
Mail to: American Culinary Federation, Inc.
180 Center Place Way
St. Augustine, FL 32095
Once the candidate’s application is approved he or she will be
eligible to take the written and practical exams. Only after approval
may a candidate register for the written or practical exam.
The purpose of the certification examinations is to assess and
objectively measure the knowledge and skills of a candidate to determine
if they meet ACF standards.
Exam: ACF written exams are administered by Comira. The written exam fee is $75. An ACF
number is required at time of registration. To request an ACF
identification number contact email@example.com prior to
registration. You can register for the exam by calling (800) 947-4228,
option 4, Mon.–Fri. 6 a.m.–5 p.m. Pacific time, Sat. 8
a.m.–noon Pacific time, or you can register 24/7 at the ACF/Comira Online Registration Site. Please
note that you must have a credit card to register online. Written exam
scores are valid for two years.
- Candidates have one hour to complete the 100 multiple choice
- No support materials other than pens, pencils, and calculators are
- A score of seventy percent (70%) or higher is required to pass.
Exam: All levels of ACF certification require candidates to be
tested for practical skill proficiency. The CC practical exam is two and
half hours and can be taken at any ACF approved test
site. A score of 75% or higher is required to pass. Practical exam
scores are valid for one year.
To help you prepare for the Practical Exam, review the Practical
Exam Candidate Manual.
Upon successful completion of the written and practical exams, the
candidate should submit final application along with appropriate
documentation: written and practical exam passing forms and remaining
certification fee. Make sure all back-up documentation, copies only (no
originals) are included.
Opportunity for ACFEF Accredited Program Graduates
Graduates of ACFEF accredited postsecondary degree or certificate/diploma programs who are members at the time of graduation are eligible to receive either a Certified Culinarian® (CC®) or Certified Pastry Culinarian® (CPC®) certification depending on the concentration of their program without paying any fees or taking any separate exams. Non-member graduates are assessed an $85 fee. All graduates must provide a copy of their final transcript showing date of graduation and documentation of ACF membership at the time of graduation. Certificate/Diploma graduates must also document one year of entry level work experience to receive their certification. Application and documentation must be submitted within one year of graduation.
Certification is good for three years for all newly certified and recertifying Certified Culinarians and requires 48 continuing education hours (CEHs) including refreshers.
Recommended Study Materials
The ACF Education Foundation offers certification training courses
and practice certification exams on eCulinary.
Courses contain study materials in all major subjects related to the ACF
certification exams, including sanitation, nutrition, and supervisory
The following books are suggested in preparation
for the written and practical exams:
- Culinary Fundamentals, ACF: Prentice Hall BUY
- Baking Fundamentals, ACF: Prentice Hall BUY
- Supervision in the Hospitality Industry:
Applied Human Resources, 5th Ed., Miller, Walker, Drummond: John
Wiley & Sons BUY
- Nutrition for Foodservice and Culinary
Professionals, 6th Ed., Drummond, Brefere: John Wiley & Sons
- Food Safety Fundamentals: Essentials of
Food Safety & Sanitation, McSwane, Rue, Linton, Williams:
Prentice Hall BUY
- The Professional Pastry Chef: Fundamentals
of Baking Pastry, 4th Ed., Friberg: John Wiley & Sons BUY
- Escoffier: The Complete Guide to the Art
of Modern Cookery, John Wiley & Sons BUY