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Become A Corporate Executive Chef

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Working As A Corporate Executive Chef

  • Training and Teaching Others
  • Thinking Creatively
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Coaching and Developing Others
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Deal with People

  • Unpleasant/Angry People

  • Outdoors/walking/standing

  • Repetitive

  • Make Decisions

  • Stressful

  • $40,248

    Average Salary

What Does A Corporate Executive Chef Do

Chefs and head cooks oversee the daily food preparation at restaurants and other places where food is served. They direct kitchen staff and handle any food-related concerns.

Duties

Chefs and head cooks typically do the following:

  • Check the freshness of food and ingredients
  • Supervise and coordinate activities of cooks and other food preparation workers
  • Develop recipes and determine how to present dishes
  • Plan menus and ensure the quality of meals
  • Inspect supplies, equipment, and work areas for cleanliness and functionality
  • Hire, train, and supervise cooks and other food preparation workers
  • Order and maintain an inventory of food and supplies
  • Monitor sanitation practices and follow kitchen safety standards

Chefs and head cooks use a variety of kitchen and cooking equipment, including step-in coolers, high-quality knives, meat slicers, and grinders. They also have access to large quantities of meats, spices, and produce. Some chefs use scheduling and purchasing software to help them in their administrative tasks.

Chefs who run their own restaurant or catering business are often busy with kitchen and office work. Some chefs use social media to promote their business by advertising new menu items or addressing customer reviews.

The following are examples of types of chefs and head cooks:

Executive chefs, head cooks, and chefs de cuisine are responsible primarily for overseeing the operation of a kitchen. They coordinate the work of sous chefs and other cooks, who prepare most of the meals. Executive chefs also have many duties beyond the kitchen. They design the menu, review food and beverage purchases, and often train cooks and other food preparation workers. Some executive chefs primarily handle administrative tasks and may spend less time in the kitchen.

Sous chefs are a kitchen’s second-in-command. They supervise the restaurant’s cooks, prepare meals, and report results to the head chefs. In the absence of the head chef, sous chefs run the kitchen.

Private household chefs typically work full time for one client, such as a corporate executive, university president, or diplomat, who regularly entertains as part of his or her official duties.

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How To Become A Corporate Executive Chef

Most chefs and head cooks learn their skills through work experience. Others receive training at a community college, technical school, culinary arts school, or 4-year college. A small number learn through apprenticeship programs or in the Armed Forces.

Education

Although postsecondary education is not required for chefs and head cooks, many attend programs at community colleges, technical schools, culinary arts schools, and 4-year colleges. Candidates are typically required to have a high school diploma or equivalent to enter these programs.

Students in culinary programs spend most of their time in kitchens, practicing their cooking skills. Programs cover all aspects of kitchen work, including menu planning, food sanitation procedures, and purchasing and inventory methods. Most training programs also require students to gain experience in a commercial kitchen through an internship or apprenticeship program.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Most chefs and head cooks start working in other positions, such as line cooks, learning cooking skills from the chefs they work for. Many spend years working in kitchens before gaining enough experience to be promoted to chef or head cook positions.

Training

Some chefs and head cooks train on the job, where they learn the same skills as in a formal education program. Some train in mentorship programs, where they work under the direction of an experienced chef. Executive chefs, head cooks, and sous chefs who work in upscale restaurants often have many years of training and experience.

Some chefs and head cooks learn through apprenticeship programs sponsored by professional culinary institutes, industry associations, or trade unions in coordination with the U.S. Department of Labor. Apprenticeship programs generally last 2 years and combine instructions and on-the-job training. Apprentices must complete at least 1,000 hours of both instructions and paid on-the-job training. Courses typically cover food sanitation and safety, basic knife skills, and equipment operation. Apprentices spend the rest of their training learning practical skills in a commercial kitchen under a chef's supervision.

The American Culinary Federation accredits more than 200 academic training programs at postsecondary schools and sponsors apprenticeships around the country. The basic qualifications required for entering an apprenticeship program are as follows:

  • Minimum age of 17
  • High school education or equivalent
  • Passing grade in substance abuse screening

Some chefs and head cooks receive formal training in the Armed Forces or from individual hotel or restaurant chains.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Although not required, certification can show competence and lead to advancement and higher pay. The American Culinary Federation certifies personal chefs, in addition to various levels of chefs, such as certified sous chefs or certified executive chefs. Certification standards are based primarily on work-related experience and formal training. Minimum work experience for certification can range from 6 months to 5 years, depending on the level of certification.

Important Qualities

Business skills. Executive chefs and chefs who run their own restaurant need to understand the restaurant business. They should know how to budget for supplies, set prices, and manage workers so that the restaurant is profitable.

Communication skills. Chefs must communicate their instructions clearly and effectively to staff so that customers’ orders are prepared correctly.

Creativity. Chefs and head cooks need to be creative in order to develop and prepare interesting and innovative recipes. They should be able to use various ingredients to create appealing meals for their customers.

Dexterity. Chefs and head cooks need excellent manual dexterity, including proper knife techniques for cutting, chopping, and dicing.

Leadership skills. Chefs and head cooks must have the ability to motivate kitchen staff and develop constructive and cooperative working relationships with them.

Physical stamina. Chefs and head cooks often work long shifts and sometimes spend entire evenings on their feet, overseeing the preparation and serving of meals.

Sense of taste and smell. Chefs and head cooks must have a keen sense of taste and smell in order to inspect food quality and to design meals that their customers enjoy.

Time-management skills. Chefs and head cooks must efficiently manage their time and the time of their staff. They ensure that meals are prepared correctly and that customers are served on time, especially during busy hours.

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Corporate Executive Chef Jobs

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Corporate Executive Chef Career Paths

Corporate Executive Chef
Restaurant Manager Catering Manager Executive Chef
Assistant Food Service Director
5 Yearsyrs
Culinary Arts Instructor Kitchen Manager Restaurant Manager
Beverage Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Food And Beverage Manager General Manager Food Service Director
Certified Dietary Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Operations Director Managing Partner Director Of Food And Beverage
Clubhouse Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Owner Construction Manager Chief Operating Officer
Consultant General Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Restaurant Manager Executive Chef
Culinary Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Food And Beverage Manager Catering Manager
Director Of Catering
7 Yearsyrs
Operations Director Adjunct Instructor Executive Chef
Director Of Food And Beverage
9 Yearsyrs
General Manager Food Service Director
Director Of Food And Nutrition Services
9 Yearsyrs
Owner Self-Employed Kitchen Manager
FOH Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Consultant Expert Chef
Food Production Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Manager Service Manager Food Service Director
Food Safety Director
9 Yearsyrs
Consultant Adjunct Instructor Executive Chef
Food Service Supervisor
5 Yearsyrs
General Manager Operations Director
General Manager/Director
9 Yearsyrs
Owner/Operator Sales Consultant General Sales Manager
General Manager/Partner
7 Yearsyrs
Manager Office Manager Practice Manager
Hospitality Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Director Of Food And Beverage Assistant General Manager General Manager
Multi-Unit Manager
6 Yearsyrs
Culinary Arts Instructor Food Service Director
Nutrition Director
7 Yearsyrs
Owner/Operator Director Managing Partner
Operating Partner
9 Yearsyrs
Director Of Food And Beverage General Manager
Restaurant General Manager
5 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Corporate Executive Chef?

Corporate Executive Chef Demographics

Gender

Male

89.6%

Female

9.1%

Unknown

1.3%
Ethnicity

White

63.1%

Hispanic or Latino

15.8%

Black or African American

11.2%

Asian

6.6%

Unknown

3.4%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

40.4%

Italian

22.8%

French

17.5%

Japanese

3.5%

Russian

1.8%

Irish

1.8%

Telugu

1.8%

Greek

1.8%

German

1.8%

Norwegian

1.8%

Carrier

1.8%

Dakota

1.8%

Thai

1.8%
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Corporate Executive Chef Education

Schools

Culinary Institute of America

42.9%

Johnson & Wales University

23.0%

New England Culinary Institute

3.2%

Cornell University

3.2%

The Academy

3.2%

Florida International University

2.3%

Arizona Culinary Institute

2.3%

University of Florida

1.8%

Johnson County Community College

1.8%

Delgado Community College

1.8%

Cooking and Hospitality Institute of Chicago

1.8%

Schoolcraft College

1.4%

Hudson County Community College

1.4%

University of North Dakota

1.4%

Missouri State University

1.4%

Art Institute of Atlanta

1.4%

Joliet Junior College

1.4%

Art Institute of Houston

1.4%

University of Phoenix

1.4%

Art Institute of Pittsburgh

1.4%
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Majors

Culinary Arts

52.8%

Hospitality Management

10.3%

Business

10.1%

Management

6.0%

Food And Nutrition

4.7%

Health Care Administration

3.7%

Food Science

1.4%

Education

1.4%

Liberal Arts

1.2%

Marketing

1.0%

History

1.0%

Communication

1.0%

English

0.8%

Psychology

0.6%

Entertainment Business

0.6%

Political Science

0.6%

Finance

0.6%

Fine Arts

0.6%

Military Applied Sciences

0.6%

Elementary Education

0.6%
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Degrees

Other

41.5%

Associate

26.9%

Bachelors

20.8%

Certificate

5.8%

Masters

3.2%

Diploma

1.4%

Doctorate

0.4%
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Temporary

Real Corporate Executive Chef Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Corporate Executive Chef Aqua Hospitality LLC Urban Honolulu, HI Sep 09, 2014 $128,000
Product Specialist/Corporate Executive Chef Piper Products, Inc. Wausau, WI Aug 22, 2011 $90,000
Corporate Executive Chef Quimera Restaurant Group New York, NY Sep 20, 2015 $70,000
Corporate Executive Chef Quimera Restaurant Group New York, NY Sep 25, 2015 $70,000
Corporate Executive Chef Quimera Restaurant Group New York, NY Sep 20, 2014 $70,000
Corporate Executive Chef Medcafe Westwood LLC Los Angeles, CA Oct 01, 2011 $57,000

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Top Skills for A Corporate Executive Chef

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  1. Menu Items
  2. Kitchen Equipment
  3. Restaurant Operations
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Analyzed recipes to assign prices to menu items, based on food, labor, and overhead costs.
  • Handle preparation and other safety and sanitation codes involving dining utensils, kitchen equipment and overall cleanliness.
  • Oversee all restaurant operations, locations serving over 100,000 guests per month.
  • Key contributor in procuring classically trained/experienced chefs that make best fits for respective industry kitchens.
  • Oversee food safety inspection audits ensuring adherence to local/state/federal health code requisites covering all risk categories.

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Top Corporate Executive Chef Employers

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