The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

working in a bakery

localfruitandveg's picture

working in a bakery

I have been baking for awhile now, and seem to be getting the hang of it; although I have so much more to learn when it comes to understanding everything about baking all sorts of breads.  I have been wanting to work in a bakery for soo long, and there seems to be an on going problem: I need to have experience!!  What am i suppose to do?   How am I ever going to get a job in a bakery if no one ever gives me a chance?  Was everyone else just born with a few years under their belt?  I'm really just venting, and I apologize...but any advice would be great.  All I want to know is what to do?  How do I get a job in a bakery, when I have no actual bakery experience?


Thanks so much everyone...



dcbakerman's picture

do what I did, go to a bakery and say that you would like to do an apprenticeship.  Bad news is no pay, good news is you have a job at a bakery.  If they were like the bakery I was in soon they will give you a job, might be a month might be a year though.

breadnerd's picture

I too wanted to get my start in a bakery, but had a hard time even getting an interview without professional experience-they just didn't buy that baking at home counted--and in some ways they were right.

I did the school route--we have a technical school with a great baking/pastry program. It did two things--I got to "play" with the big equipment (which is part of the reason I wanted to work at a bakery) and I also got great experience with larger quantities AND speed, which is what you need.

So I'd encourage it--I learned a lot and had fun, and I've not had trouble getting hired since. But, I've also met plenty of great bakers who were hired and trained on the job. You also might have luck just getting a job, depending on the scene where you live. Get to know some bakers, and let them know you're wishes, and you'd have a better chance than just applying to a random job opening. Good luck!


ElaineW's picture

You might try getting a job in a bakery department of a large supermarket. Granted, it is not a stand alone bakery but you will learn a number of new things. You most likely will not get a job as a baker but in the department you can move up. If it is a small store where you can get a job, it is easier to go someplace after that, with some experience behind you.

I was a manager in a local store where I live. I was hired because I had other food and baking experience. I did hiring when I became manager. We were always looking for help. Anyone who was willing to work could get a job there but to move up you had to show that you were willing to learn new things. We would send people to different schools for classes in baking, cake decorating and things like that.

Not knowing what type of area you are in and what kind of stores you have, all I can say is if you don't get a job in the biggest place, take what you can get and then try the bigger store. That might give you the experience you need to get a job at a local bakery if that is still what you want.

Good luck.


tattooedtonka's picture

Up here in Upstate NY.  Our only true local bread bakery is Heidelbergs Bakery.  And I had the opportunity to meet with the owner of the facility.  I happened to have a bunch of photos in my vehicle of my breads and bagels, so after talking for a while I went out and brought them in.  The owner was impressed with the passion I shown in trying to make great bread.  He wanted to know if I wanted a job.  Now, I dont know how sincere the offer was, or if it was just a kind jesture.  But he had mentioned that he has a hard time finding people truly passionate about bread.  He said most of his folks just were there for a job.  With only a few truly into bread.

You may try taking some of the photos of your work, like a little portfolio to show the owner of where you go.  If may help.


localfruitandveg's picture

I was going to do that exact thing!!  Some friends of mine told me to do that about a month ago, going as far as saying bring in some of the breads that I bake and have him/her try them.


Thanks for all your kind words!!!


strattor's picture

I just got my first baking job about 3 months ago. I didn't go to culinary school, and I had no commercial baking experience. However, I was able to explain how much I love to bake, what it means to me, and the owners hired me based on passion alone. I wouldn't start sending in any applicationss just now--wait till the holiday hustle and bustle are over. January is a common time for people to move to different jobs, though, so you might have some luck there.

 When I was looking for jobs I also took a bit of time--about 3 months--to find a job that really suited me. I ended up in a very small bakery where 5 days a week I am the only bread baker, so I cover all aspects of production, from mixing to shaping to baking. It's the ideal job for someone just starting out. I encourage you to be patient and find a job you really want.

 Be persistent! It might take a bit of time and work, but if you find someone to take you under their wing, then you'll get all the experience you need.

localfruitandveg's picture

How great is it that you get to bake alone about 5 days a week?  Can I come and work and learn from you???  Hee.....I appreciate everything you said, and will be persistent and patient when it comes to finding a job; however making even a little bit of money now would be great.  


Again, thanks a lot!!!!


JNTBES's picture

I agree with the above posts.

Be able and ready to work on your feet all day.  Mke sure your back is up to it.   Make sure you aren't allergic to flour or other bakery foods.  Bakery production / line work can be boring without good company and music!   Good luck ~




boomerang's picture


Did you ever get work in a bakery?  I hope you didn't give up on your desire.  I know it has been awhile since you first posted this but I thought I'd check in.



lauracancherini's picture

I am having a similar problem. I'm a graduate student from MIT and my hobby is to bake (all sorts of breads) - I just love it!

I love it so much that I want to open a bakery myself one day in Europe (where I am from). I want to find a job in a Bakery or Pastry shop in Atlanta/GA (where I am moving very soon), but I am having a lot of trouble since I don't have any professional experience and my CV is misleading (I am an Engineer and management consultant). I am not sure on how to better approach the bakeries - should I just show up with my CV? should I try to contact the manager/owner and explain my situation? 

Thanks a lot!