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Working As a Baker/Cake Decorator

  • Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings
  • Getting Information
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work
  • Stressful

  • $30,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Baker/Cake Decorator Do

Bakers mix ingredients according to recipes to make breads, pastries, and other baked goods.

Duties

Bakers typically do the following:

  • Check the quality of baking ingredients
  • Prepare equipment for baking
  • Measure and weigh flour and other ingredients
  • Combine measured ingredients in mixers or blenders
  • Knead, roll, cut, and shape dough
  • Place dough into pans, into molds, or onto baking sheets
  • Set oven temperatures
  • Place items into ovens or onto grills
  • Observe color and state of products being baked
  • Apply glazes, icings, or other toppings

Bakers produce various types and quantities of breads, pastries, and other baked goods sold by grocers, wholesalers, restaurants, and institutional food services. Some bakers create new recipes.

The following are examples of types of bakers:

Commercial bakers work in manufacturing facilities that produce breads, pastries, and other baked products. In these facilities, bakers use high-volume mixing machines, ovens, and other equipment, which may be automated, to mass-produce standardized baked goods. They carefully follow instructions for production schedules and recipes.

Retail bakers work primarily in grocery stores and specialty shops, including bakeries. In these settings, they produce smaller quantities of baked goods for people to eat in the shop or for sale as specialty baked goods. Retail bakers may take orders from customers, prepare baked products to order, and occasionally serve customers. Although the quantities prepared and sold in these stores are often small, they usually come in a wide variety of flavors and sizes. Most retail bakers are also responsible for cleaning their work area and equipment and unloading supplies.

Some retail bakers own bakery shops or other types of businesses where they make and sell breads, pastries, pies, and other baked goods. In addition to preparing the baked goods and overseeing the entire baking process, they are also responsible for hiring, training, and supervising their staff. They must budget for and order supplies, set prices, and decide how much to produce each day.

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How To Become A Baker/Cake Decorator

Long-term on-the-job training is the most common path to gain the skills necessary to become a baker. Some bakers start their careers through an apprenticeship program or by attending a technical or culinary school. No formal education is required.

Education

Although there are no formal education requirements to become a baker, some candidates attend a technical or culinary school. Programs generally last from 1 to 2 years and cover nutrition, food safety, and basic math. To enter these programs, candidates may be required to have a high school diploma or equivalent.

Training

Most bakers learn their skills through long-term on-the-job training, typically lasting 1 to 3 years. Some employers may provide apprenticeship programs for aspiring bakers. Bakers in specialty bakery shops and grocery stores often start as apprentices or trainees and learn the basics of baking, icing, and decorating. They usually study topics such as nutrition, sanitation procedures, and basic baking. Some participate in correspondence study and may work toward a certificate in baking.

In manufacturing facilities, commercial bakers learn how to operate and maintain the industrial mixing and blending equipment that is used to produce baked goods. They also learn how to combine ingredients and how temperature and humidity affect ingredients and the baking process.

Other Experience

Some bakers learn their skills through work experience related to baking. For example, they may start as a baker’s assistant and progress into a full-fledged baker as they learn baking techniques. 

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Certification is voluntary and shows that a baker has the skills and knowledge to work at a retail baking establishment.

The Retail Bakers of America offers certification in four levels of competence, with a focus on several topics, including baking sanitation, management, retail sales, and staff training. Those who wish to become certified must satisfy a combination of education and experience requirements before taking an exam.

The education and experience requirements vary by the level of certification desired. For example, a Certified Journey Baker requires no education but must have at least 1 year of work experience. A Certified Baker must have 4 years of work experience and 30 hours of sanitation coursework, and a Certified Master Baker must have 8 years of work experience, 30 hours of sanitation coursework, and 30 hours of professional development education.

Important Qualities

Detail oriented. Bakers must closely monitor their products in the oven to keep them from burning. They also should have an eye for detail because many pastries and cakes require intricate decorations.

Math skills. Bakers must possess basic math skills, especially knowledge of fractions, in order to precisely mix recipes, weigh ingredients, or adjust mixes.

Physical stamina. Bakers stand on their feet for extended periods while they prepare dough, monitor baking, or package baked goods.

Physical strength. Bakers should be able to lift and carry heavy bags of flour and other ingredients, which may weigh up to 50 pounds.

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Baker/Cake Decorator Career Paths

Baker/Cake Decorator
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Average Length of Employment
Cake Decorator 2.6 years
Decorator 2.5 years
Deli/Bakery Clerk 2.3 years
Baker Helper 2.2 years
Pastry Baker 2.1 years
Baker 2.1 years
Bread Baker 2.0 years
Baker Apprentice 1.9 years
Bakery Worker 1.8 years
Second Baker 1.8 years
Baker's Assistant 1.7 years
Baker/Cashier 1.7 years
Bakery Associate 1.6 years
Bakery Assistant 1.6 years
Top Careers Before Baker/Cake Decorator
Cashier 15.9%
Baker 9.3%
Internship 5.4%
Server 5.4%
Manager 3.3%
Cook 3.3%
Hostess 2.4%
Line Cook 2.2%
Top Careers After Baker/Cake Decorator
Baker 12.8%
Cashier 9.5%
Server 4.8%
Cook 4.5%
Manager 4.4%
Line Cook 2.3%
Internship 2.0%
Prep Cook 1.9%

Do you work as a Baker/Cake Decorator?

Average Yearly Salary
$30,000
Show Salaries
$28,000
Min 10%
$30,000
Median 50%
$30,000
Median 50%
$30,000
Median 50%
$30,000
Median 50%
$30,000
Median 50%
$30,000
Median 50%
$30,000
Median 50%
$33,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
Morton's The Steakhouse
Highest Paying City
Daly City, CA
Highest Paying State
Massachusetts
Avg Experience Level
2.8 years
How much does a Baker/Cake Decorator make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Baker/Cake Decorator in the United States is $31,023 per year or $15 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $28,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $33,000.

Real Baker/Cake Decorator Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Rice Cake Baker Charmsiroo, Inc. Annandale, VA Oct 15, 2015 $34,694
Rice Cake Baker Charmsiroo, Inc. Annandale, VA Oct 13, 2015 $33,530
Korean Traditional Rice Cake Baker/Cook Yedang, Inc. Ridgefield, NJ May 13, 2016 $31,346
Rice Cake Baker Oriental Noodle Co Chicago, IL Oct 13, 2015 $30,971
Rice Cake Baker NAK Won Rice Cake Inc. Duluth, GA Jan 14, 2016 $26,250
Baker, Specialty, Europ.-Mediterr. Specialty Cakes, Pastries Elysee Bakery & CAFE Los Angeles, CA Sep 15, 2015 $25,730

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Top Skills for A Baker/Cake Decorator

  1. Wedding Cakes
  2. Bakery Department
  3. Cupcakes
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Created customized special occasion cakes including wedding cakes
  • Assisted in creating the bakery department, which brought new customers and revenue to the already established business.
  • Followed recipes and expressed creativity with decorating cakes and cupcakes.
  • Decorated cakes per special orders placed *Customer service/order taking/handling of customer concerns/phone calls *Responsible for keeping stock baked/prepared/replenished without interruption
  • Moved to bakery as Baker for morning pastries, also decorated desserts and special order cakes.

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Top 10 Best States for Baker/Cake Decorators

  1. Ohio
  2. Vermont
  3. New Jersey
  4. North Dakota
  5. Montana
  6. Kentucky
  7. Louisiana
  8. South Carolina
  9. Massachusetts
  10. Hawaii
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  • (24 jobs)
  • (14 jobs)
  • (57 jobs)
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  • (108 jobs)
  • (16 jobs)

Baker/Cake Decorator Resume Examples And Tips

The average resume reviewer spends between 5 to 7 seconds looking at a single resume, which leaves the average job applier with roughly six seconds to make a killer first impression. Thanks to this, a single typo or error on your resume can disqualify you right out of the gate. At Zippia, we went through over 3,946 Baker/Cake Decorator resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

Learn How To Create A Top Notch Baker/Cake Decorator Resume

View Resume Examples

Baker/Cake Decorator Demographics

Gender

Female

76.5%

Male

12.5%

Unknown

10.9%
Ethnicity

White

62.0%

Hispanic or Latino

16.8%

Black or African American

11.5%

Asian

6.3%

Unknown

3.3%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

72.6%

French

6.0%

Italian

3.6%

Filipino

2.4%

Portuguese

2.4%

German

2.4%

Russian

2.4%

Swedish

1.2%

Danish

1.2%

Romanian

1.2%

Cantonese

1.2%

Hmong

1.2%

Arabic

1.2%

Mandarin

1.2%
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Baker/Cake Decorator Education

Schools

Johnson & Wales University

23.4%

Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts

16.4%

University of Phoenix

7.8%

Culinary Institute of America

6.4%

Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts - Pasadena

5.3%

Sullivan University

4.7%

Stratford University

3.9%

Ashford University

3.3%

Metropolitan Community College

3.1%

Art Institute of Pittsburgh

3.1%

Trident Technical College

2.8%

Oakland Community College

2.8%

Southern New Hampshire University

2.8%

The Academy

2.5%

Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts - Austin

2.2%

Atlantic Cape Community College

1.9%

Art Institute of Phoenix

1.9%

University of Pennsylvania

1.9%

Cuyahoga Community College

1.9%

Ozarks Technical Community College

1.7%
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Majors

Culinary Arts

37.7%

Business

12.4%

Health Care Administration

5.2%

Nursing

5.1%

Hospitality Management

4.2%

Medical Assisting Services

4.2%

General Studies

3.8%

Psychology

3.5%

Fine Arts

2.9%

Accounting

2.8%

Criminal Justice

2.5%

Cosmetology

2.5%

Graphic Design

2.3%

Food And Nutrition

1.9%

Management

1.9%

Biology

1.6%

English

1.4%

General Education, Specific Areas

1.4%

Medical Technician

1.4%

Liberal Arts

1.3%
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Degrees

Other

35.6%

Associate

27.1%

Bachelors

21.2%

Certificate

9.9%

Diploma

3.7%

Masters

1.9%

License

0.7%

Doctorate

0.0%
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Updated May 19, 2020