CHEM 100

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Credit Hours

(3-2) 4 Cr. Hrs.

Section Start Dates

Currently no sections of this class being offered.

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Introduction to the Chemistry of Food for Culinary Arts

Course Description

This course is designed to familiarize the culinary arts student with a basic understanding of scientific principles as they apply to foods and culinary processes. The course will include a basic introduction to various aspects of chemistry. Classes of foodstuffs will be examined on a molecular level to ascertain an understanding of the interactions that occur in culinary applications. The laboratory portion of the course will emphasize the relationships between chemical principles/techniques and food preparation.


(A requirement that must be completed before taking this course.)

  • None.


(A course to be taken in the same semester as this course.)

  • Students must be enrolled in 100 level or above core culinary classes.

Course Competencies

Upon successful completion of the course, the student should be able to:

  • Explain atomic structure and composition.
  • Classify various types of matter by state, chemical composition and in accordance with general classification schemes.
  • Predict characteristic properties and changes for the various classifications of matter.
  • Explain basic bonding models and the types of bonds found in the substances commonly encountered in the kitchen.
  • Explain the characteristic properties of matter based on chemical bonding principles and forces between particles.
  • Distinguish between chemical and physical changes with specific applications to culinary systems.
  • Identify energy changes that occur in physical and chemical processes.
  • Explain the relationships between heat, temperature and related topics.
  • Compare various cooking processes as to heat transfer methods, applicable temperature ranges, and other related information.
  • Identify characteristic properties of water and relationships of those properties to changing conditions.
  • Identify the impact of water and water content on culinary endeavors.
  • Identify the characteristic structures and properties of acids, bases and salts.
  • Identify the physical and chemical changes involved in leavening processes.
  • Compare various leavening agents used in recipes.
  • Differentiate between the main classes and subclasses of biochemical compounds including carbohydrates, lipids, and proteins.
  • Characterize biochemical compounds based on chemical and physical properties and changes.
  • Predict the effect of various biochemical compounds on the taste and texture of foodstuffs.
  • Characterize biochemical materials based on their chemical structures and changes that occur in structure during a chemical change.
  • Relate the Maillard reaction sequence and caramelization processes to observed effects in various foodstuffs.
  • Explain the various aspects of flavor.
  • Distinguish between the basic taste categories, typical substances in each category and structural similarities.
  • Demonstrate effects of various materials on basic tastes.
  • Characterize a basic taste.
  • Identify the characteristics of the various types of mixtures including solutions, colloidal dispersions and suspensions.
  • Predict the effect of the various types of mixtures on culinary products.
  • Identify the characteristics and functions of common emulsifiers.
  • Summarize the effects of cooking conditions and additives on the texture of fruits and vegetables and on the pigments found in fruits and vegetables.
  • Distinguish structural characteristics and nutritional value of various components of fruits and vegetables.
  • Relate chemical and scientific principles to culinary processes.
  • Apply measurements common in culinary applications.
  • Demonstrate the proper use of equipment commonly found in culinary kitchens.
  • Perform procedures in the kitchen that involve scientific principles.
  • Demonstrate interpersonal communication and group work skills while cooperating with other students to complete laboratory experiments.
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