A food preparer or food preparation worker is the person who executes routine tasks under the supervision of chefs, food service managers, and cooks. Food preparation workers slice meat, cut vegetables, and prepare cold foods. They prepare ingredients of food for recipes as they assist cooks and chefs. Their duties and responsibilities include sifting, marinating, food safety, grating, and knife skills. They are also expected to weigh and measure dry and liquid ingredients.

Food Preparer Responsibilities

Here are examples of responsibilities from real food preparer resumes representing typical tasks they are likely to perform in their roles.

  • Maintain cleanliness, organization and time management of order preparation, customer service
  • Follow closing procedures and maintain cleanliness of food preparation area and bathrooms.
  • Operate on a POS system, and would prep and serve food.
  • Clean fryers daily, closing shop with overhaul of cleaning routines and stocking freezers.
  • Operate a variety of commercial cooking equipment including grills, deep fryers, and ovens.
  • Clean and sanitize workstations, utensils and equipment according to sanitation guidelines.
  • Preform equipment maintenance to ensure proper tolerances for precise mowing conditions.

Food Preparer Skills and Personality Traits

We calculated that 20% of Food Preparers are proficient in Food Handling, Work Ethic, and Food Products. They’re also known for soft skills such as Communication skills, Customer-service skills, and Physical strength.

We break down the percentage of Food Preparers that have these skills listed on their resume here:

  • Food Handling, 20%

    Gained a solid understanding of sanitation requirements for equipment and food handling.

  • Work Ethic, 13%

    Demonstrate good work ethics and dependability.

  • Food Products, 11%

    Provided quality food products and customer service at a food market based pizza shop averaging $20,000 in sales per week.

  • Kitchen Utensils, 8%

    Maintained cleanliness of restaurant kitchen/ Wash dishes and kitchen utensils.

  • Safety Standards, 7%

    Followed all industrialized safety standards.

  • Customer Service, 6%

    Handled monetary transactions Provided exceptional customer service

Most food preparers list "food handling," "work ethic," and "food products" as skills on their resumes. We go into more details on the most important food preparer responsibilities here:

  • The most important skills for a food preparer to have in this position are communication skills. In this excerpt that we gathered from a food preparer resume, you'll understand why: "food and beverage serving and related workers must listen carefully to their customers’ orders and relay them correctly to the kitchen staff so that the orders are prepared to the customers’ request." According to resumes we found, communication skills can be used by a food preparer in order to "staff communication and customer service relations. "
  • While it may not be the most important skill, we found that many food preparer duties rely on customer-service skills. This example from a food preparer explains why: "food service establishments rely on good food and customer service to keep customers and succeed in a competitive industry." This resume example is just one of many ways food preparers are able to utilize customer-service skills: "take food and drink orders and receive payment by cash, credit cards, or atm debit cards from customers. "
  • Physical strength is also an important skill for food preparers to have. This example of how food preparers use this skill comes from a food preparer resume, "food and beverage serving and related workers need to be able to lift and carry stock and equipment that can weigh up to 50 pounds." Read this excerpt from a resume to understand how vital it is to their everyday roles and responsibilities, "restrained violent and potentially violent patients as necessary to prevent injury to self and/or others using both verbal and physical means. "
  • See the full list of food preparer skills.

    The three companies that hire the most prestigious food preparers are:

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    What Cafe Associates Do

    A cafe associate performs various support tasks to help maintain the smooth flow of operations at a cafe and ensure customer satisfaction. They ensure that the shelves are stocked with fresh and high-quality products by conducting regular evaluations and inspections, disposing of expired goods, and adding new products as necessary. They may also prepare or serve orders, make drinks using machines, and assist customers by answering inquiries or processing their payments. Moreover, a cafe associate must maintain an open communication line with co-workers and report to managers regularly.

    In this section, we take a look at the annual salaries of other professions. Take cafe associate for example. On average, the cafe associates annual salary is $2,364 higher than what food preparers make on average every year.

    Even though food preparers and cafe associates have vast differences in their careers, a few of the skills required to do both jobs are similar. For example, both careers require food handling, food products, and safety standards in the day-to-day roles.

    These skill sets are where the common ground ends though. A food preparer responsibility is more likely to require skills like "work ethic," "strong work ethic," "kitchen utensils," and "basic math." Whereas a cafe associate requires skills like "sam," "taking care," "culinary," and "food orders." Just by understanding these different skills you can see how different these careers are.

    Cafe associates tend to make the most money in the retail industry by averaging a salary of $29,858. In contrast, food preparers make the biggest average salary of $29,828 in the retail industry.

    On average, cafe associates reach similar levels of education than food preparers. Cafe associates are 0.1% less likely to earn a Master's Degree and 0.0% more likely to graduate with a Doctoral Degree.

    What Are The Duties Of a Kitchen Staff?

    The kitchen staff consists of preparation workers who execute several routine tasks as directed by chefs, food service managers, and cooks. These works should have the ability to follow cooking instructions and deliver well-prepared meals. Their responsibilities include the cleanup of dishes, cooking equipment, and the working stations. They also take charge of food safety regulations, storing and sorting of ingredients, and preparing foodstuff.

    The next role we're going to look at is the kitchen staff profession. Typically, this position earns a higher pay. In fact, they earn a $2,099 higher salary than food preparers per year.

    Not everything about these jobs is different. Take their skills, for example. Food preparers and kitchen staff both include similar skills like "food handling," "food products," and "kitchen utensils" on their resumes.

    But both careers also use different skills, according to real food preparer resumes. While food preparer responsibilities can utilize skills like "work ethic," "strong work ethic," "basic math," and "beverage products," some kitchen staff use skills like "quality food," "meal preparation," "food orders," and "clean environment."

    On average, kitchen staff earn a higher salary than food preparers. There are industries that support higher salaries in each profession respectively. Interestingly enough, kitchen staff earn the most pay in the education industry with an average salary of $30,914. Whereas, food preparers have higher paychecks in the retail industry where they earn an average of $29,828.

    In general, kitchen staff study at similar levels of education than food preparers. They're 0.4% less likely to obtain a Master's Degree while being 0.0% more likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    How a Kitchen Crew Compares

    A line server is responsible for assisting the guests with their needs to ensure an overall satisfying dining experience with the highest quality service. Line servers take and verify guests' orders, provide recommendation for orders, respond to the guests' inquiries regarding the menu, manage the food preparation and serving, assist guests with additional requests, and ensure strict adherence to the sanitary standards and hygienic procedures at all times. Line servers must have excellent communication and time-management skills to interact with different guests and identify their dining needs.

    Let's now take a look at the kitchen crew profession. On average, these workers make higher salaries than food preparers with a $2,157 difference per year.

    By looking over several food preparers and kitchen crews resumes, we found that both roles utilize similar skills, such as "food handling," "food products," and "safety standards." But beyond that the careers look very different.

    There are many key differences between these two careers as shown by resumes from each profession. Some of those differences include the skills required to complete responsibilities within each role. As an example of this, a food preparer is likely to be skilled in "work ethic," "strong work ethic," "kitchen utensils," and "basic math," while a typical kitchen crew is skilled in "culinary," "food quality," "food orders," and "clean kitchen."

    Additionally, kitchen crews earn a higher salary in the retail industry compared to other industries. In this industry, they receive an average salary of $30,074. Additionally, food preparers earn an average salary of $29,828 in the retail industry.

    Kitchen crews are known to earn similar educational levels when compared to food preparers. Additionally, they're 0.8% less likely to graduate with a Master's Degree, and 0.1% less likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    Description Of a Line Server

    The fourth career we look at typically earns higher pay than food preparers. On average, line servers earn a difference of $583 higher per year.

    While both food preparers and line servers complete day-to-day tasks using similar skills like food products, kitchen utensils, and safety standards, the two careers also vary in other skills.

    Each job requires different skills like "food handling," "work ethic," "strong work ethic," and "cleanliness," which might show up on a food preparer resume. Whereas line server might include skills like "quality customer service," "exceptional guest," "excellent guest," and "food safety."

    The average resume of line servers showed that they earn similar levels of education to food preparers. So much so that the likelihood of them earning a Master's Degree is 0.7% less. Additionally, they're more likely to earn a Doctoral Degree by 0.0%.