Find The Best Cooking Chef Jobs For You

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Average Salary
$30,972
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
11%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
36,646
Job Openings

Cooking Chef Careers

Also known as a restaurant cook, a cooking chef is a key employee in the kitchen. Their main duty is to prepare delicious meals for guests, and this comes with preparing ingredients, cooking dishes, plating, and keeping their work area tidy.

If you want to pursue the career of a cooking chef, you first need to be in love with food and cooking. Aside from that, you need to have adequate knowledge of how a restaurant kitchen operates, as well as basic to intermediate cooking techniques, depending on the menu of the restaurant you're applying for. Soft skills such as communication, time management, teamwork, and stress management are also crucial for a fast-paced environment such as a restaurant.

Culinary school education is preferred by many restaurants, but it is not a requirement. In many cases, work experience is much more important, so if you don't have culinary school education, garner more work experience to become a more attractive candidate.

Like many restaurant workers, the average salary of a cooking chef is around $11.68 per hour or $24,290 a year. If you pursue this job, you have the potential to increase your income by getting promoted to a higher level, such as a commis chef or sous chef.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a cooking chef. For example, did you know that they make an average of $14.89 an hour? That's $30,972 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 11% and produce 15,400 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Cooking Chef Do

There are certain skills that many cooking chefs have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed business skills, communication skills and creativity.

When it comes to the most important skills required to be a cooking chef, we found that a lot of resumes listed 32.6% of cooking chefs included food service, while 23.7% of resumes included kitchen equipment, and 9.8% of resumes included dishwasher. Hard skills like these are helpful to have when it comes to performing essential job responsibilities.

When it comes to searching for a job, many search for a key term or phrase. Instead, it might be more helpful to search by industry, as you might be missing jobs that you never thought about in industries that you didn't even think offered positions related to the cooking chef job title. But what industry to start with? Most cooking chefs actually find jobs in the hospitality and retail industries.

How To Become a Cooking Chef

If you're interested in becoming a cooking chef, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 13.8% of cooking chefs have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 2.5% of cooking chefs have master's degrees. Even though some cooking chefs have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a cooking chef. When we researched the most common majors for a cooking chef, we found that they most commonly earn associate degree degrees or high school diploma degrees. Other degrees that we often see on cooking chef resumes include bachelor's degree degrees or diploma degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a cooking chef. In fact, many cooking chef jobs require experience in a role such as cook. Meanwhile, many cooking chefs also have previous career experience in roles such as chef or line cook.

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Average Salary
$30,972
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
11%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
36,646
Job Openings

Cooking Chef Career Paths

Top Careers Before Cooking Chef

Cook
20.4 %
Chef
12.5 %
Line Cook
12.0 %

Top Careers After Cooking Chef

Cook
19.1 %
Chef
13.7 %

Cooking Chef Jobs You Might Like

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Average Salary for a Cooking Chef

Cooking Chefs in America make an average salary of $30,972 per year or $15 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $42,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $22,000 per year.
Average Salary
$30,972
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Best Paying Cities

City
ascdesc
Average Salarydesc
New York, NY
Salary Range33k - 55k$43k$43,367
Mount Laurel, NJ
Salary Range32k - 53k$42k$41,601
Shelton, CT
Salary Range30k - 49k$39k$38,969
Barnstable Town, MA
Salary Range30k - 48k$38k$38,172
San Francisco, CA
Salary Range29k - 45k$36k$36,483
Portland, OR
Salary Range24k - 35k$29k$29,265
$21k
$55k

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyascdescCompanyascdescStart DateascdescSalaryascdesc
Cooks and Chef's-Great Work Environment, PAY, and Creative Opportunities
Cooks and Chef's-Great Work Environment, PAY, and Creative Opportunities
North Side Tavern Restaurant
North Side Tavern Restaurant
06/30/2021
06/30/2021
$35,47906/30/2021
$35,479
Chef/Cook +
Chef/Cook +
Provision Living
Provision Living
06/28/2021
06/28/2021
$25,04406/28/2021
$25,044
Cook/Chef
Cook/Chef
XXX
XXX
06/21/2021
06/21/2021
$39,65306/21/2021
$39,653
Skilled Cook/Chef for Beach Resort
Skilled Cook/Chef for Beach Resort
XXX
XXX
06/18/2021
06/18/2021
$39,65306/18/2021
$39,653
Skilled Cook/Chef for Beach Resort
Skilled Cook/Chef for Beach Resort
XXX
XXX
06/18/2021
06/18/2021
$39,65306/18/2021
$39,653
See More Recent Salaries

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Cooking Chef Resumes

Designing and figuring out what to include on your resume can be tough, not to mention time-consuming. That's why we put together a guide that is designed to help you craft the perfect resume for becoming a Cooking Chef. If you're needing extra inspiration, take a look through our selection of templates that are specific to your job.

Learn How To Write a Cooking Chef Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Cooking Chef resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

View Detailed Information

Cooking Chef Demographics

Gender

male

72.6 %

female

23.8 %

unknown

3.6 %

Ethnicity

White

55.5 %

Hispanic or Latino

19.8 %

Black or African American

10.9 %

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

52.9 %

French

21.6 %

Italian

5.9 %
See More Demographics

Cooking Chef Education

Majors

Business
14.3 %

Degrees

Certificate

28.6 %

Associate

23.0 %

High School Diploma

22.4 %

Top Colleges for Cooking Chefs

1. Drexel University

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,244
Enrollment
15,557

2. University of Cincinnati

Cincinnati, OH • Private

In-State Tuition
$11,000
Enrollment
25,973

3. Cornell University

Ithaca, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,188
Enrollment
15,105

4. University of Texas at Austin

Austin, TX • Private

In-State Tuition
$10,610
Enrollment
40,329

5. Boston University

Boston, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,948
Enrollment
17,238

6. Southwest Minnesota State University

Marshall, MN • Private

In-State Tuition
$8,612
Enrollment
2,022

7. Inter American University of Puerto Rico Ponce

Mercedita, PR • Private

In-State Tuition
$5,914
Enrollment
4,155
See More Education Info

Online Courses For Cooking Chef That You May Like

Nutrition Certification: Advanced Diet & Meal Planning
udemy
4.5
(906)

Advanced Diet And Nutrition Coach Strategies Dieting Certificate For Meal Plans, Fat Loss, Health & Sports Nutrition...

Meal Planning Masterclass: Create Your Own Meal Plan
udemy
4.5
(1,389)

Save hundreds by learning how to create your own meal plan to lose fat and build muscle, while eating the food you love...

OSHA Workplace Safety (General Industry 6 Hr Class)
udemy
4.5
(1,952)

Learn the requirements and standards associated with OSHA and workplace safety. Safety best practices for the workplace...

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Top Skills For a Cooking Chef

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 32.6% of cooking chefs listed food service on their resume, but soft skills such as business skills and communication skills are important as well.

Best States For a Cooking Chef

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a cooking chef. The best states for people in this position are Delaware, Pennsylvania, New York, and New Jersey. Cooking chefs make the most in Delaware with an average salary of $44,263. Whereas in Pennsylvania and New York, they would average $43,912 and $43,089, respectively. While cooking chefs would only make an average of $42,113 in New Jersey, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Nevada

Total Cooking Chef Jobs:
355
Highest 10% Earn:
$59,000
Location Quotient:
1.13
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Pennsylvania

Total Cooking Chef Jobs:
1,806
Highest 10% Earn:
$71,000
Location Quotient:
1.03
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Texas

Total Cooking Chef Jobs:
4,221
Highest 10% Earn:
$57,000
Location Quotient:
1.38
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
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Top Cooking Chef Employers

1. Sodexo Operations
4.2
Avg. Salary: 
$27,607
Cooking Chefs Hired: 
27+
2. Ruby Tuesday
4.1
Avg. Salary: 
$63,389
Cooking Chefs Hired: 
23+
3. Aramark
4.3
Avg. Salary: 
$30,545
Cooking Chefs Hired: 
23+
4. McDonald's
4.3
Avg. Salary: 
$18,232
Cooking Chefs Hired: 
14+
5. Darden Restaurants
4.5
Avg. Salary: 
$44,173
Cooking Chefs Hired: 
10+
6. Pizza Hut
4.2
Avg. Salary: 
$30,696
Cooking Chefs Hired: 
9+

Cooking Chef Videos