The Program

The core program at Matthew Kenney Culinary focuses on the Fundamentals of Raw Cuisine, which offers students comprehensive training in the principles behind the art of raw food. We also offer Advanced Raw Cuisine curriculum focusing on the modern, creative approach to living foods. These programs are structured in such a way that students build on the techniques learned, enabling them to execute and innovate raw cuisine at the highest level. Our programs are designed for those interested in the culinary art of raw foods at the home entertainment level, while using professional-style techniques. We welcome students from around the world into our interactive culinary courses. Our extensive, refined living cuisine instruction is based on structured and classic building blocks of culinary programs.

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When learning from our culinary academy, we want to ensure that after completing the program, you have the training and techniques to create healthy, aesthetically refined and flavorful cuisine. Matthew Kenney, our founder and namesake, is a classically trained professional chef who studied at French Culinary Institute (presently, International Culinary Center) and designed our courses in line with his classical background. Most plant-based culinary academy founders and educators are either self-taught or mentored by other “chefs” that have not been educated under professional culinary programs. Our Academies provide the first and only classically structured plant-based culinary courses in the world and include knife skills, flavor and texture balancing, as well as artful plating. This foundation, together with our cutting-edge equipment and innovative techniques, is reflected and apparent in the captivating work our students execute.


Many plant-based culinary academies teach recipes with pre-measured and limited ingredients. While we feel recipes are a critical foundation, we encourage students to explore their creativity and the real-world applications of designing menus and writing recipes from scratch. Because it’s important for us not to stifle your ideas, our instructors encourage students to measure and utilize local ingredients of their choice on hand at the academy, local and seasonal produce from Santa Monica Farmers Market and adjusted for your food allergies or personal preference. Chefs often run out of a specific produce, spice or ingredient or are restricted by their geographic region or access to purveyors so it’s crucial to know how to substitute.


Traditional culinary programs typically require multiple students to share workstations. It’s not uncommon for 4 – 7 students to sharing the same overcrowded space and equipment. We designed our classrooms with individual workstations and limit class sizes so as not to compromise their educational experience. We have found that this enhances comfort, creativity, and allows for hands on learning. vegan cooking


In order for innovation to occur, it’s essential to understand advanced tools, techniques and equipment. Many culinary schools do not prioritize an investment in the highest quality equipment and tools for their students. Everything we do is chef-driven. Much of our innovation begins in Plant Lab, our experimental test kitchen in Belfast, Maine, where chefs work to advance culinary arts. Our dishes are then taught in our Academies, sold in our restaurants, reflected in our products, presented through our services, and expressed through our media. Our students have access to the same equipment our company chefs use; the paco jet, sous vide, anti-griddle, smoking gun, high-powered blenders, turning slicers, dehydrators, food processors, juicers, and other machines and tools students will work with as part of the curriculum.


Many of our students want to become chefs or start their own plant-based cafes or restaurants, some are searching for their next step, and others are looking to change their lifestyle. Chefs attend to enhance their existing training in order to bridge the gap between culinary art and nutrition. The majority of culinary schools guide you through their programs in a classroom or commissary setting that lack the opportunity for you to experience innovative restaurants. Our physical academies are adjacent to our award winning restaurants, giving students a priceless “behind the scenes” real-world perspective. Students often feel inspired to work in the restaurant or apply for internships after attending our courses.


There are many schools that offer a certificate of completion for attending their programs. Although you may have a certificate of completion, what is that academy’s reputation in the culinary industry? Food & Wine magazine recently ranked our West Los Angeles location as, “the #1 culinary academy in the world,” and many of the industry leaders have reached out to us for inspiration. Upon completion of each course, students will receive the highly admired, Matthew Kenney Certificate. The certificate confirms you have fully completed each of the four, one-week long courses under each level. This is widely regarded as the most prestigious certificate of culinary completion in the plant-based foods culinary world for avocational and recreational purposes. While we do not provide job placement, career services, or vocational training of any kind at this time, the skill set gained is unparalleled to any other culinary academy in the plant-based world.


After graduating the Matthew Kenney Academy Level I, Level II or Level IIIl, you will be given a seal to use on your website, marketing materials or resume to validate your education.


One of the most cherished aspects of attending the Matthew Kenney Academy is gaining access to our exclusive alumni network. We attract everyone from the most advanced to beginning culinary students including: world renown and private chefs, health coaches, start-up and experienced entrepreneurs, vegan’s/vegetarians, mom’s and those committed to living a plant-based lifestyle. After graduating the Matthew Kenney Academy Level I, Level II or Level IIIl, you will be given a seal to use on your website, marketing materials or resume to validate your education. Continue to access our social/culinary platform as an alumni to correspond with colleagues around the world.