Dr. Ryan Whibbs

Ryan Whibbs image


Ryan Whibbs is a chef, professor, and food studies scholar working at the Chef School, George Brown College, Toronto. He currently teaches both theoretical and practical culinary courses. Ryan has been teaching at George Brown College since 2014, and previously taught at Stratford Chefs School, York University, and Ryerson University. He is a past Member of the Board of Directors of the Canadian Association for Food Studies (2014-2017); a subject matter expert advising the Cook's Trade Board at the Ontario College of Trades (OCT); a member of the provincial Cook Apprenticeship Curriculum Committee (OCT); and he is a current Member of the Board of the Culinary Historians of Canada (2018-2020).

Ryan completed his Red Seal (Cook) in 2002, spending time working in Canada, France, England, Scotland, and Ireland. He holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in History, completing his doctoral dissertation at York University focusing on the history of European food habits and cooks’ guilds. Ryan has published his research through the Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery, Oxford University, and at various conferences and invited lectures held at York University, Ryerson University, the University of Toronto, Western Michigan University, Walnut Hill College Restaurant School, the Chemical Heritage Foundation, Culinaria Research Centre, and the Toronto Renaissance & Reformation Colloquium.


Academic Credentials

RSE, Cook, Ontario College of Trades, 2002BA (hons), History, Trent University, 2006MA, History (Food History), York University, 2007PhD, History (Food History), York University, 2015

Areas Of Specialization

Chef Training Certificate Program 
Culinary Management Diploma Program
Bachelor of Commerce (Culinary Management) Program

Areas Of Expertise

Food history
French and English gastronomy
Food evolution
Food studies
Food writing
Sociology of food
Anthropology of food

Career Highlights

Chatsworth House (U.K.)Chateau de la Flocelliere (Fr.)Floors Castle (U.K.)Kylemore Abbey (Irl.)Fairmont Royal York Hotel

Other Activities

Member, Masters thesis supervisory committee, Luciana Godoy, University of Toronto (OISE), thesis entitled "Teaching Sustainability to Culinary Students: Graduating Sustainability-Minded Chefs." Expected completion: 2019Member, Board of Directors, Culinary Historians of Canada, 2018-2020Member, Board of Directors, Canadian Association for Food Studies, 2014-2018Member, Provincial Cook Apprenticeship Curriculum CommitteeSubject Matter Expert, Provincial Cook Apprenticeship Trade Board


John Bosher Award in French History, York University, 2011Albert Tucker Award in British History, York University, 2011York University Doctoral Scholarship, York University, 2007York University Graduate Scholarship, York University, 2006The Douglas McCalla Essay Prize, Trent University, 2006Bagnani Award, Trent University, 2006


Ryan Whibbs and Mark Holmes. (2019). Food Network’s Food-Career Frenzy? An Examination of Students’ Motivations to Attend Culinary School. Canadian Food Studies 6(2), 101-116.

Ryan Whibbs, “Cuisiniers, Rôtisseurs, and Charters: The Legislative Environment Surrounding Private Feasts and Entertaining in Paris, 1599-1664” at Early Modern Cultures of Hospitality, a conference organized by the Toronto Renaissance and Reformation Colloquium, University of Toronto, October 26, 2018.

Ryan Whibbs, “Renaissance Repasts on the Road: Feeding Nobles During Journeys” by invitation at the Toronto Renaissance and Reformation Colloquium, January 16th, 2018.

“Food Network’s Food Career Frenzy?: An Examination of Motivations to Attend Culinary School”  at the 12th Annual Assembly of the Canadian Association of Food Studies (CAFS), Ryerson University, Toronto, May 28th, 2017.

Ryan Whibbs, “Travelling Tools and Mobile Kitchens: Great Household Cookery Arrangements During Periods of Travel, 1400-1600”, Proceedings of the Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery 2013, ed. Mark McWilliams (Totnes, UK: Prospect Books, 2014) 354-365.Ryan Whibbs & Jennifer Laurie, A History of Food (Stratford: Stratford Chefs’ School, 2013) 188pp

Ryan Whibbs. Book review in Renaissance and Reformation, 39.2 (Spring 2016) The Italian Baroque Table. Cooking and Entertaining from the Golden Age of Naples, Medieval and Renaissance Texts and Studies, Tempe, AZ: ACMRS, 2014. Pp. xii, 297

Co-Investigator, "Tasting the Global City: Multicultural Histories of Toronto's Cuisines," Principal Investigator: Prof. Jeffrey Pilcher, University of Toronto Scarborough, SSHRC Insight Grant, Spring 2016-Spring 2020.

“Fish, Fridays, and Fasts: Great Household Fasting Habits after the English Reformation, 1500-1670”  at On the Eve of the Reformation: A Conference an the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation, hosted by the Toronto Reformation & Renaissance Colloquium, Centre for Reformation & Renaissance Studies, Victoria College, University of Toronto, October 22, 2016.

“Food Studies while Studying Food?: Suggestions for Incorporating Food Studies Scholarship into Canadian Culinary Curricula” at Scarborough Fare: Global Foodways and Local Foods in a Transnational City, The University of Toronto, Scarborough, June 23, 2016.

“The Alchemist’s Cookbook and the Gastronomy of Taste” in conjunction with an exhibition of the manuscript Liber de secreti naturali [1438], Othmer Library of Chemical History, Chemical Heritage Foundation, Philadelphia, April 3, 2015.

“Fabulous Fricassees: A Short History of the Dish and its Evolution over the Centuries” at the Restaurant School, Walnut Hill College, Philadelphia, PA, April 2, 2015.

“Culinary Mashups: Combining Skills Training and Theoretical Learning in Ontario Post-Secondary Curricula”, a luncheon address given at the offices of the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario, Toronto, October 16, 2014.

“Travelling Tools and Mobile Kitchens: The Role of the Batterie de Cuisine in Shaping Grand Household Foodservice Organization, 1400-1600” at the Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery, “Food & Material Culture”, St. Catherine’s College, University of Oxford, July, 2013.

“Grand Cooks: Cross-Regionalism in Late Medieval and Early Modern Aristocratic Culinary Labour, 1400-1600” at Foodways: Diasporic Diners, Transnational Tables, and Culinary Connections hosted by the Centre for Diaspora and Transnational Studies, University of Toronto, October 5, 2012.