1. Stanford University
Stanford, CA • Private
A Head Cook, aka the chef, is responsible for running a kitchen, usually in a high-end establishment. They delegate tasks and oversee the work of everyone involved in food preparation, making sure that the result is nothing but exquisite delicacies. They come up with new recipes, create the menu, and make sure the necessary ingredients are always in stock.
Head cooks are deeply passionate about cooking. They live and die for tasty food and know a lot about other countries' culinary cultures. They consider their profession art, rather than anything else, and just like a poet has a favorite pen, you will recognize an authentic head cook by the fact that he/she favors one knife over all others.
Not that salaries matter to a real artist; just for your information, head cooks in the U.S. make an average of $48,098 per year.
There are certain skills that many head cooks 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.
If you're interested in becoming a head cook, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 15.5% of head cooks have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 0.9% of head cooks have master's degrees. Even though some head cooks have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.
As you move along in your career, you may start taking on more responsibilities or notice that you've taken on a leadership role. Using our career map, a head cook can determine their career goals through the career progression. For example, they could start out with a role such as sous chef, progress to a title such as executive chef and then eventually end up with the title director of food and beverage.
What Am I Worth?
There are several types of head cook, including:
So, get this - as a cook, you'll spend a lot of your time cooking. Crazy, we know. But that's not all you'll be doing. In addition to the food actually being cooked properly, most people like it to be seasoned. Between the preparation and seasoning, this is where you get to be creative.
When you think of a cook, you probably think of a restaurant setting but in actuality, cooks are needed in a lot of different places, this includes schools, hospitals, and even private households. One thing that is consistent is the inconsistent schedule.
Sometimes you'll work a night shift, other times you'll work super early in the morning. You may even have to work on a holiday. And don't be surprised with a weekend shift. The good news is that formal education isn't really necessary. Sometimes culinary creativity comes naturally.
As a sort of in-charge person, line cooks definitely have a lot of responsibility on their shoulders. While you might think the head chef does most of the heavy lifting, think again. The majority of the food is prepared by the line cook.
Now, the head chef, or even the sous chef, give line cooks the direction they need to make the food. Typically, as a line cook, you'll have a particular place in the kitchen that you'll look after. Like, maybe you'll get assigned to the grill, and then you'll be in charge of everything at the grill. Or you might be assigned to the veggie prep area.
Wherever you are assigned, you should be prepared to work some crazy hours. Since you're preparing the food, you'll need at least an hour, if not two, to get everything ready. Once your line is prepped, then you're ready to take on your shift. With that extra 1-2 hours, you'll probably be working around 8-10 hours a shift.
Under the direction of a head chef, you'll know exactly what to prepare for as a prep cook. It is essentially your job to make sure the food and kitchen area is prepped for the creation of delicious meals.
Typically, this is a part-time job. But you might be able to find a full-time position somewhere. In your position, you'll be working in a restaurant, hotel, or another establishment that serves food.
As a prep cook, you won't need much education to get by. In fact, the position doesn't require any formal education, but you will need to go through some training, once you're hired. And when we say training, we mean several weeks of on-the-job training. By the end of it, you'll be a sharp prep cook, ready to slice and dice.
Mouse over a state to see the number of active head cook jobs in each state. The darker areas on the map show where head cooks earn the highest salaries across all 50 states.
|Rank||State||Number of Jobs||Average Salary|
High School Diploma
Stanford, CA • Private
Boston, MA • Private
Philadelphia, PA • Private
Philadelphia, PA • Private
Ithaca, NY • Private
Evanston, IL • Private
Alfred, NY • Private
Delhi, NY • Private
Charleston, WV • Private
Austin, TX • Private
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, 41.2% of head cooks listed kitchen equipment on their resume, but soft skills such as business skills and communication skills are important as well.
Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Head Cook templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Head Cook resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.
After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:
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Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a head cook. The best states for people in this position are New Jersey, Hawaii, Washington, and Texas. Head cooks make the most in New Jersey with an average salary of $71,162. Whereas in Hawaii and Washington, they would average $59,571 and $56,621, respectively. While head cooks would only make an average of $56,176 in Texas, 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.
3. New Jersey
|Rank||Company||Average Salary||Hourly Rate||Job Openings|
|1||Chili's Grill & Bar||$59,762||$28.73||29|
|2||Bob Evans Restaurants||$50,146||$24.11||28|
|4||Buffalo Wild Wings||$44,410||$21.35||69|