R&D Culinary Lead at Sensient Natural Ingredients

Organization: Sensient Natural Ingredients 
Job Position: R&D Culinary Lead
Job Location: Turlock, CA

Job Summary:
The Research & Development Culinary Lead will facilitate project work as directed by the Technical Director and Sales Director utilizing real-time, hands-on cooking in the Culinary Center and will be responsible for creative product development in the form of paper concepts as well as tangible prototypes, on-site and on-location product demonstrations, and all task associated with these activities.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Research, source, and prepare high-quality, tangible food concepts for appropriate channels of business as directed by and in conjunction with the Technical Director and Sales Director.
  • Organize the Test Kitchen (including perishable inventory, pantry items, cleaning materials, and sundries) and oversee the Test kitchen's day-to-day operations in conjunction with project work.
  • Work collaboratively and develop relationships with Sales, Marketing, Finance, and Research & Development to provide the delivery of innovative product concepts in a timely and fiscally responsible manner.
  • Write, test, edit, and improve proprietary, commercial formulas and home-cook recipes for use by customers (both internal and external) and ensure formula/recipe integrity.
  • Plan, prepare and execute customer presentations independently as a key account team member.
  • Collaborate with other R&D team members to create, sample and test gold standard products.
  • Explain, teach, and train basic cooking methods and skills that highlight Sensient products.
  • Coordinate food products for tradeshows and large-scale formats, and attend such events as appropriate.
  • Forecast flavor trends and create prototypes to highlight these trends.
  • Must maintain the highest standards of data management by creating consistent, reliable data, which will ensure accuracy and in turn, maximize the use of data and confidence in decision-making. Maintain scientific notebook to record data and experiments in electronic format as directed.
  • Global Culinary Support: Leads targeted company culinary-based activities which require coordination with chefs and culinarians from key accounts and/or trade organizations. Activities may include training, cuisine presentations, product demonstrations, etc.
  • Culinary Events: Responsible for organizing &/or assisting and executing targeted industry and/or customer events. Demonstrates culinary savvy and excellence in the food prepared and offered.
  • Post Covid-19 travel will be up to 50%.
  • Other duties may be assigned.


  • Bachelor of Arts in Culinary Arts/Culinary Nutrition or AA/or AAS in Culinary Arts or technical school with a concentration in Culinary Arts
  • Two years related experience and/or in foodservice kitchens
  • Four to six years of food product development experience while working for a food manufacturer or ingredient supplier is required
  • Certification from an accredited organization (ACF, RCA, etc.)

Skills & Abilities:

  • Must understand basic food science principles including preservative systems, gums, starches, emulsifiers, flavors and sweeteners. Basic Chemistry proficiency is required
  • Must have proficient in Microsoft Office Programs
  • Must be proficient with electronic formulary software systems
  • Must be proficient in using internet software and navigating social media sites. Excellent cooking skills and professional cooking experience
  • Minimum of three years of food product development experience having working in a multiple project environment. Experience should include work with manufactured products from raw ingredients to consumer packaged finished goods
  • Ability to be resourceful to quickly and economically find solutions
  • Confident and effective communicating with all levels of organizations in an honest, open and constructive fashion
  • Must have a passion for food and cooking and takes pleasure in food, feeding people, demonstrating cooking and being the consummate “party host”
  • Basic understanding of science and the scientific method of experimentation
  • Creative food product development skills
  • Ability influence others without authority
  • Good written and verbal communication and presentation skills
  • Familiarity with Foodservice and Retail products
  • Willing to take realistic personal and business risk
  • A team player with strong interpersonal and team building skills

Preferred Designations: CRC - Certified Research Chef

Compensation: Depending on experience

Company Overview:

Relocation Program: Negotiable

Apply online at


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