All About Chefs and Head Cooks
Job Description & Duties Direct and may participate in the preparation, seasoning, and cooking of salads, soups, fish, meats, vegetables, desserts, or other foods. May plan and price menu items, order supplies, and keep records and accounts.
List of Chef Job Duties
- Record production or operational data on specified forms.
- Determine how food should be presented and create decorative food displays.
- Check the quality of raw or cooked food products to ensure that standards are met.
- Meet with customers to discuss menus for special occasions, such as weddings, parties, or banquets.
- Inspect supplies, equipment, or work areas to ensure conformance to established standards.
- Demonstrate new cooking techniques or equipment to staff.
What Every Chef Should Know
These are the skills Chefs and Head Cooks say are the most useful in their careers:
Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.
Coordination: Adjusting actions in relation to others’ actions.
Management of Personnel Resources: Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.
Time Management: Managing one’s own time and the time of others.
Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others’ reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
Related Job Titles
- School Cafeteria Head Cook
- Sushi Chef
- Sous Chef
- Chef de Cuisine
- Executive Chef (Ex Chef)
Chef Employment Estimates
In the United States, there were 146,500 jobs for Chef or Head Cook in 2016. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 9.6% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 14,100 new jobs for Chef or Head Cook by 2026. There will be an estimated 20,300 positions for Chef per year.
The states with the most job growth for Chef are Utah, Arizona, and Washington. Watch out if you plan on working in West Virginia, Maine, or Vermont. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.
Chef Average Salary
Chefs and Head Cooks make between $26,320 and $81,150 a year.
Chefs and Head Cooks who work in New Jersey, Hawaii, or District of Columbia, make the highest salaries.
Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Chefs and Head Cooks in different U.S. states.
|State||Annual Mean Salary|
|District of Columbia||$65,780|
Tools & Technologies Used by Chefs and Head Cooks
Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Chefs and Head Cooks may use on a daily basis:
- Microsoft Excel
- Microsoft Word
- Microsoft Office
- Microsoft PowerPoint
- Email software
- Delphi Technology
- Internet browser software
- Culinary Software Services ChefTec
- Axxya Systems Nutritionist Pro
- SoftCafe MenuPro
- EGS CALCMENU
- ADP eTIME
- Menu planning software
- ReServe Interactive
- Sage MAS 90 ERP
- GNOME Gnutrition
- IPro Restaurant Inventory, Recipe & Menu Software
- Barrington Software CookenPro Commercial
How to Become a Chef
Learn what Chef or Head Cook education requirements there are.
How many years of work experience do I need?
Where Chefs and Head Cooks Are Employed
The table below shows the approximate number of Chefs and Head Cooks employed by various industries.
Career changers with experience as a Chef or Head Cook sometimes find work in one of the following fields:
More about our data sources and methodologies.
|Request Info||Southern New Hampshire University You have goals. Southern New Hampshire University can help you get there. Whether you need a bachelor's degree to get into a career or want a master's degree to move up in your current career, SNHU has an online program for you. Find your degree from over 200 online programs. Learn More >|