The Best Cooking Schools in North Carolina and Beyond

Probably the Best Cooking Schools in the world are the Le Cordon Bleu culinary academies. Le Cordon Bleu degrees are recognized and respected by top chefs from all over the world.  

The Le Cordon Bleu school maintains 15 campuses across America. Although there are no Le Cordon Bleu locations in the state of North Carolina, there are a number of acclaimed culinary academies throughout the state.  

The Best Cooking Schools in North Carolina

Here's a local list of The Best Cooking Schools. These are the Top 20 accredited colleges in North Carolina offering culinary arts degrees.

  1. College of Albemarle
  2. The Art Institute of Charlotte
  3. Asheville-Buncomb Technical Community College
  4. Caldwell Community College
  5. Cape Fear Community College
  6. Carteret Community College
  7. Central Piedmont Community College
  8. Fayetteville Technical Community College
  9. Guilford Technical Community College
  10. Lenoir Community College
  11. Nash Community College
  12. Robeson Community College
  13. Sandhills Community College
  14. Southwestern Community College in Silva
  15. Alemance Community College
  16. Vance Granville Community College
  17. Wake Technical Community College
  18. Wilkes Community College
  19. Johnson & Wales University in Charlotte
  20. The Art Institute of Raleigh/Durham

Culinary arts colleges teach aspiring chefs how to use locally sourced products on a menu.  

Lexington, North Carolina, is known as the Barbecue Capital of the World, and October was officially declared 'Barbecue Month' featuring a month long Annual Barbecue Festival.

Lexington barbecue is pork shoulder basted with 'dip,' a mixture of water, vinegar, salt, and pepper. It is cooked slowly over hickory wood until it is 'fall apart tender.' One pound of pork takes about an hour to cook.

Here's tangy BBQ sauce recipe from North Carolina.



  • 2 quarts cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • 2 tablespoons cayenne pepper
  • 3 tablespoons red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon hot pepper sauce


  1. In a large bowl, mix together cider vinegar, salt, cayenne pepper, red pepper flakes, light brown sugar, and hot pepper sauce.
  2. Stir until salt and brown sugar have dissolved. Cover, and let stand at least 3 hours before using as a basting sauce, or serving on meat. 

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