Online ExpertTrack in Creative Arts & Media

Become a Successful Baker with BBC Good Food

Improve your home baking skills as you learn the techniques to master tasty recipes and understand the science behind baking.

Created by

BBC Good FoodBBC Good Food

Learn more

Learn how to bake at home alongside baking experts

With baking equipment readily available, specialist ingredients offered in home baking quantities, and countless recipes online, it’s easier than ever to learn to bake. However, the art of some specialist baking methods continues to intimidate even the best home cooks.

On this ExpertTrack, you’ll gather essential baking skills to build your confidence in the kitchen and conquer different baking methods.

You’ll discover techniques and tips from BBC Good Food, baking experts with over 30 years of experience, to learn how to create everything from sweet and savoury pastry to mouthwatering macarons.

Rather than simply follow a set of instructions, you’ll learn how to read and amend recipes to suit your style of baking, how to pick the right ingredients, and the specialist equipment you might need.

Build skills to succeed with sourdough recipes

Starting with nothing more than flour, water, and salt you’ll learn to make and care for your own sourdough starter that you will go on to use for breads, rolls, and pizza bases.

You’ll learn about autolyse, how to prove successfully, why shaping correctly is essential, how to score, and what works when baking in a domestic oven.

You’ll also discover how to change your flours, add flavourings, and develop your artistic talents. Plus– to ensure no food is wasted, you’ll learn how to turn any leftover mix into pancakes, flatbreads, and cookies to expand your baking skills even further.

Learn how to perfect your pastry

The baking science behind pastry making is key to avoid the dreaded soggy bottom! The course will help you master a series of savoury and sweet pastry-based dishes, exploring techniques for making shortcrust, puff, rough-puff, flaky, and hot water crust pastries. You’ll also learn about decorating with pastry and adding flavour.

Discover the secrets to a spiffing afternoon tea

Served at many of the finest hotels and restaurants in the world, afternoon tea is a benchmark of fine baking.

This ExpertTrack will teach you five different kinds of bakes often found within a classic afternoon tea. You’ll discover how to perfect the simplicity of scones, delicate sugar biscuits, and fresh-baked madeleines as well as colourful eclairs and macarons.

Take your cake making to the next level

Nothing builds excitement at an occasion like the appearance of an amazing cake. You’ll learn how to evaluate the structural design of cakes, investigate textures and flavours that match well, and interrogate edibility versus appearance.

You’ll also learn techniques such as crumb coating, frosting, and patterning cakes, as well as how to make perfect drips and build gravity-defying cakes.

By the end of this ExpertTrack, you’ll have the confidence and amazing tasting bakes to show off your new baking skills to friends and family.

Key skills you will learn

  • Interpretation and understanding of instructions
  • Choice of raw materials
  • Evaluating equipment
  • Understanding the science of cooking
  • Decorative techniques
  • Research and collection of recipes
  • Testing and modification of techniques

Learning outcomes

By the end of the ExpertTrack, you’ll be able to...

  • Learners will be taught to describe the mechanics of cooking, and in particular baking.
  • They will be encouraged to investigate the behaviours that they will create around them as they cook, the cultural role that baking plays in life and how to become better cooks.
  • Learners will be able to research and collect recipes that they want to try based on being able to evaluate the written instructions.
  • They will learn how to ‘read’ or interpret a recipe to see if it is workable, and to annotate it, to improve it
  • Learners will be encouraged to be brave when cooking, to explore new flavours and experiment with different ingredients.
  • hey will be taught how to reflect on failure if it happens, assess possible causes and modify techniques.

Experience required

This ExpertTrack is designed for anyone looking to improve their baking skills.

It will suit any level, whether you’re already a baker and looking to take your skills up a notch or you’re starting from scratch, as there is no prior experience needed. All you need is a functioning oven and some baking equipment.

Getting started

You may be studying and wanting to build your skills for work in the food industry, or you may want to perfect your home baking.

This ExpertTrack is suitable for anyone wanting to learn different baking techniques from top home baking specialists.

ExpertTrack course overview

  • Course 1

    From madeleines to macarons, get the tips and techniques you need to bake the perfect afternoon tea and improve your cooking.

    1 test

    5 weeks

    6 hours per week

    • Week 1

      Introduction and scones
      • Introduction to afternoon tea
      • Kitchen kit, terminology and ingredients
      • Scones: Recipe know-how
      • What's next?
    • Week 2

      Beautiful biscuits
      • All about biscuits
      • Kitchen kit and ingredients
      • Recipe know-how
      • Decorating and flavouring
      • What's next?
    • Week 3

      Choux pastry and éclairs
      • Choux pastry and éclairs
      • Kitchen kit and ingredients
      • Recipe know-how
      • What's next?
    • Week 4

      Madeleines
      • All about madeleines
      • Kitchen kit
      • Know your ingredients
      • Recipe know-how
      • What's next?
    • Week 5

      Macarons
      • Macaron week
      • Kitchen kit and ingredients
      • Recipe know-how
      • Making macarons step-by-step
      • Fillings, flavours and decorations
  • Course 2

    Discover how to bake the perfect loaf of sourdough bread – from autolysis to scoring – alongside baking experts at BBC Good Food.

    1 test

    5 weeks

    7 hours per week

    • Week 1

      Starting sourdough
      • Introduction to sourdough
      • Making your starter
      • What you will need for making bread
      • Getting ready to make your first batch of dough
    • Week 2

      Baking a basic loaf
      • Making a dough
      • Shaping and baking
      • Basic loaf troubleshooting
      • Your second loaf
    • Week 3

      Beyond basics
      • Introducing different flours
      • Shaping and advanced scoring techniques
      • Crumb structure and evaluating your loaves
      • Baker's percentages and hydration
    • Week 4

      New shapes and focaccia
      • How to read and interpret recipes
      • Shaping bread dough
      • Next steps: Baking on trays, stencilling and flavour changes
      • Focaccia
    • Week 5

      Pizza and sweet bakes
      • Sourdough pizza
      • Enriched doughs and cinnamon buns
      • How to make a fruited sourdough
      • Sourdough recap: What we've learned in this course
  • Course 3

    Bake top tasting tarts and pies you're proud of with this pastry-making masterclass from the baking experts at BBC Good Food.

    1 test

    5 weeks

    4 hours per week

    • Week 1

      All about pastry
      • Working with pastry
      • Kitchen kit
      • Know your ingredients
      • Perfecting your technique
      • Troubleshooting pastry
    • Week 2

      Shortcrust Pastry
      • Shortcrust pastry
      • Kitchen kit and ingredients
      • Techniques and recipes for shortcrust
      • Fillings, pies, free-form tarts, free-from pastries and next steps
      • What's next?
    • Week 3

      Rough puff & flaky pastry
      • Flaky and rough puff pastries
      • Kitchen kit and ingredients
      • Basic technique and recipes
      • Troubleshooting and recipes to try
      • What's next
    • Week 4

      Puff pastry
      • Mastering puff pastry
      • Kitchen kit and ingredients
      • Basic technique, recipe and troubleshooting
      • Next steps and quiz
    • Week 5

      Hot water crust pastry
      • Hot water crust pastry
      • Kitchen kit and ingredients
      • Basic technique and recipes
      • What's next
  • Course 4

    Discover new recipes for celebration cakes, learn tips for making and decorating showstopper cakes you’re proud of.

    1 test

    5 weeks

    6 hours per week

    • Week 1

      Equipment and ingredients
      • What is a 'showstopper cake'?
      • Choosing a cake base
      • Kitchen kit
      • Recipe know-how
      • What's next?
    • Week 2

      All about icing and frosting
      • Frostings, icings and glazes
      • Kitchen kit and ingredients
      • Chocolate ganache
      • Meringue buttercream
      • Cream cheese frosting
    • Week 3

      Decorating techniques
      • Decorative techniques
      • Ingredients and a kitchen kit recap
      • Two chocolate cakes and two ways to decorate
      • Piping techniques: Ruffle cake and ombre cake
      • What's next?
    • Week 4

      Hidden centres
      • Hidden surprises
      • How to make patterns inside your cake
      • What's next?
    • Week 5

      Fault line cakes and designing your own cake
      • Fault line cakes
      • Ingredients and kitchen kit
      • Recipe know-how
      • What's next?

Prove you're job ready

Highlight the new, job-relevant skills you’ve gained and supplement existing qualifications with a hard-earned, industry-specific digital certificate – plus one for every course within your ExpertTrack.

  • Learn the latest in your chosen industry or subject.
  • Complete each course and pass assessments.
  • Receive certificates validated by the educating organisation.
  • Create a shareable certificate link for your CV and LinkedIn.
  • Impress employers with learning outcomes you can add to your CV.
  • Make your career dreams a reality.

Download a PDF

Share your certificate

How ExpertTracks work

Join an ExpertTrack to master new skills in your chosen specialist area. Work through a series of topic-focused courses at your own pace, and pass the final assessment to earn a digital certificate award which proves your expertise.

Join a free 7-day trial

Decide if the ExpertTrack is right for you with free access to the full suite of courses and assessments for a week.

Keep learning for $39/month

Pay a monthly subscription fee of $39 for as long as it takes you to complete the ExpertTrack. You can learn at your own pace and cancel at any time.

Earn digital certificates

Receive a certificate for every completed course and pass the final assessment to earn a digital certificate that you can share with your professional network.

Become an expert

Use your specialist training to progress further in your career or build expertise in areas you’re passionate about.

World-class learning with BBC Good Food

BBC Good Food is the no 1. food media brand in the UK comprising the monthly food magazine launched in 1987, leading food website, and bi-annual BBC Good Food Shows.

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps, but you can complete them as quickly or slowly as you like
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

Want to know more about learning on FutureLearn? Using FutureLearn

What are our learners saying?

Add a new skill or forge a new path

"I recommend Futurelearn to anyone looking to learn and upskill...If you are in the job market, you might want to add a new skill or forge a new path."

They bring the classroom right to you

"FutureLearn courses are always interesting and informative. They bring the classroom right to you and send you on a journey to explore new ideas and offer interesting topics."

Start learning today - free 7-day trial

After your free trial you can:

  • Pay $39 per month to keep learning online
  • Have complete control over your subscription; you can cancel any time
  • Work at your own pace and set your own deadlines at every stage
  • Only pay while you’re learning; the subscription will cancel automatically when you finish
  • Complete online assessments to test your knowledge and prove your skills
  • Earn digital course certificates and a final award that you can share online, with potential employers, and your professional network
  • Keep access to the content of courses you complete even after your subscription ends

FAQ

ExpertTracks are a series of online courses designed to help you master new skills in specialist areas. You pay a monthly subscription fee which includes access to all courses within the ExpertTrack, as well as assessments and the final digital certificate.

Each ExpertTrack comes with a 7-day free trial period. You may cancel your subscription at any time and your subscription will automatically cancel when you finish the courses and assessments in your chosen ExpertTrack.

Yes. All of our ExpertTracks come with a 7-day free trial. You may claim one free trial period per ExpertTrack.

You have seven days before you will be charged your first monthly subscription fee. When you join an ExpertTrack you automatically receive a 7-day free trial period. You can cancel at any time during the trial period and no payment will be taken from your account.

Please see our full refund policy here.

No, all of our ExpertTracks consist of fully online courses. This means you can take an ExpertTrack from anywhere in the world.

No. ExpertTracks are designed for you to master new skills in a specialist area. You will earn a digital certificate that proves your learning, but it does not carry accreditation.

If you’re looking for certified or accredited courses, many of our microcredentials offer university credit or professional certification.

Have more questions about ExpertTracks? Read the ExpertTracks FAQs, or contact us.