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Become A Food Prep/Dishwasher

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Working As A Food Prep/Dishwasher

  • Performing General Physical Activities
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Handling and Moving Objects
  • Outdoors/walking/standing

  • $23,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Food Prep/Dishwasher Do

Food preparation workers perform many routine tasks under the direction of cooks, chefs, or food service managers. Food preparation workers prepare cold foods, slice meat, peel and cut vegetables, brew coffee or tea, and perform many other food service tasks. 

Duties

Food preparation workers typically do the following:

  • Clean and sanitize work areas, equipment, utensils, and dishes
  • Weigh or measure ingredients, such as meats and liquids
  • Prepare fruit and vegetables for cooking
  • Cut meats, poultry, and seafood and prepare them for cooking
  • Mix ingredients for salads
  • Store food in designated containers and storage areas to prevent spoilage
  • Take and record the temperature of food and food storage areas
  • Place food trays over food warmers for immediate service

Food preparation workers perform routine, repetitive tasks under the direction of cooks, chefs, or food service managers. To help cooks and other kitchen staff, they prepare ingredients for dishes by slicing and dicing vegetables and by making salads and cold food items. Other common duties include keeping salad bars and buffet tables stocked and clean.

Food preparation workers retrieve pots and pans, clean and store kitchen equipment, and unload and store food supplies. When needed, they retrieve food and equipment for cooks and chefs. In some kitchens, food preparation workers use a variety of commercial kitchen equipment, such as commercial dishwashers, blenders, slicers, or grinders.

In restaurants, workers stock and use soda machines, coffeemakers, and espresso machines to prepare beverages for customers. In fast-food restaurants, food preparation workers may take customer orders and process payments.

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How To Become A Food Prep/Dishwasher

Food preparation workers typically learn their skills through on-the-job training. No formal education or previous work experience is required.

Education

There are no formal education requirements for becoming a food preparation worker.

Training

Most food preparation workers learn their skills through short-term on-the-job training, usually lasting several weeks. Trainees typically start by working under the supervision of an experienced worker, who teaches them basic kitchen duties. Training also may include basic sanitation and workplace safety regulations, as well as instructions on how to handle and prepare food.

Important Qualities

Dexterity. Food preparation workers chop vegetables, cut meat, and perform many other tasks with sharp knives. They must have the ability to work quickly and safely with sharp objects.

Listening skills. Food preparation workers must understand customers’ orders and follow directions from cooks, chefs, or food service managers.

Physical stamina. Food preparation workers stand on their feet for long periods while they prepare food, clean work areas, or lift heavy pots from the stove.

Physical strength. Food preparation workers should be strong enough to lift and carry heavy food supply boxes, which often can weigh up to 50 pounds.

Advancement

Advancement opportunities for food preparation workers depend on their training and work experience. Many food preparation workers advance to assistant or line cook positions as they learn basic cooking skills.

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Average Length of Employment
Kitchen Worker 1.8 years
Food Handler 1.7 years
Food Prep 1.7 years
Prep Cook 1.7 years
Kitchen Helper 1.7 years
Kitchen Assistant 1.7 years
Cook/Dishwasher 1.6 years
Food Preparer 1.6 years
Kitchen Aide 1.6 years
Kitchen Staff 1.4 years
Dishwasher/Server 1.4 years
Kitchen Hand 1.4 years
Dishwasher/Busser 1.3 years
Dish Washer 1.2 years
Top Careers Before Food Prep/Dishwasher
Cashier 19.3%
Cook 5.8%
Janitor 4.5%
Server 3.9%
Prep Cook 3.7%
Stocker 3.7%
Volunteer 3.2%
Cleaner 2.7%
Busser 2.5%
Food Prep 2.5%
Top Careers After Food Prep/Dishwasher
Cashier 14.1%
Cook 7.8%
Prep Cook 5.5%
Server 5.1%
Janitor 3.9%
Line Cook 3.7%
Stocker 3.3%
Cleaner 3.3%
Driver 2.8%

Do you work as a Food Prep/Dishwasher?

Food Prep/Dishwasher Demographics

Gender

Male

69.5%

Female

19.2%

Unknown

11.3%
Ethnicity

White

63.4%

Hispanic or Latino

16.1%

Black or African American

11.1%

Asian

6.0%

Unknown

3.4%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

77.7%

French

5.7%

German

4.1%

Japanese

2.6%

Italian

1.6%

Portuguese

1.0%

Carrier

1.0%

Mandarin

1.0%

Swahili

0.5%

Vietnamese

0.5%

Romanian

0.5%

Korean

0.5%

Hebrew

0.5%

Gujarati

0.5%

Hindi

0.5%

Tagalog

0.5%

Arabic

0.5%

Thai

0.5%
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Food Prep/Dishwasher Education

Schools

The Academy

21.5%

University of Phoenix

9.9%

Full Sail University

5.3%

Cuyahoga Community College

4.6%

Tidewater Community College

4.6%

Pima Community College

4.6%

Monroe Community College

4.0%

Community College of Philadelphia

4.0%

Valencia College

4.0%

Pennsylvania State University

4.0%

Community College of Allegheny County

4.0%

Johnson & Wales University

3.6%

Wake Technical Community College

3.3%

Kent State University

3.3%

Dutchess Community College

3.3%

Everest Institute

3.3%

Ashford University

3.3%

Pikes Peak Community College

3.3%

Saint Petersburg College

3.3%

Temple University

3.0%
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Majors

Business

17.2%

General Studies

11.7%

Culinary Arts

8.0%

Criminal Justice

7.4%

Computer Science

5.5%

Psychology

5.0%

Automotive Technology

4.7%

Graphic Design

4.4%

Liberal Arts

4.3%

Medical Assisting Services

3.7%

Nursing

3.6%

Precision Metal Working

3.2%

English

2.8%

Accounting

2.8%

Biology

2.7%

Communication

2.7%

History

2.7%

Fine Arts

2.5%

Education

2.4%

Music

2.4%
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Degrees

Other

53.9%

Bachelors

18.3%

Associate

15.4%

Certificate

7.4%

Diploma

3.4%

Masters

0.9%

License

0.6%

Doctorate

0.1%
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Top Skills for A Food Prep/Dishwasher

  1. Food Safety
  2. Kitchen Equipment
  3. Dishwasher
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Followed food safety procedures according to company policies and health and sanitation regulations.
  • Operated all kitchen equipment adeptly.
  • Operated dishwasher kept kitchen clean organized and sanitized.
  • Make pizza dough, do the dishes, prep all food items, receiving trucks and rotation stocking every week.
  • Washed dishes, glassware, flatware and cooking equipment using dishwashers and by hand, and placed in storage areas.

How Would You Rate Working As a Food Prep/Dishwasher?

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Top Food Prep/Dishwasher Employers

Jobs From Top Food Prep/Dishwasher Employers

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