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Become A Pizza Cook

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Working As A Pizza Cook

  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates
  • Getting Information
  • Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings
  • Performing General Physical Activities
  • Outdoors/walking/standing

  • $16,786

    Average Salary

What Does A Pizza Cook Do

Cooks prepare, season, and cook a wide range of foods, which may include soups, salads, entrees, and desserts.

Duties

Cooks typically do the following:

  • Ensure the freshness of food and ingredients
  • Weigh, measure, and mix ingredients according to recipes
  • Bake, grill, or fry meats, fish, vegetables, and other foods
  • Boil and steam meats, fish, vegetables, and other foods
  • Arrange, garnish, and sometimes serve food
  • Clean work areas, equipment, utensils, and dishes
  • Cook, handle, and store food or ingredients

Cooks usually work under the direction of chefs, head cooks, or food service managers. Large restaurants and food service establishments often have multiple menus and large kitchen staffs. Teams of restaurant cooks, sometimes called assistant cooks or line cooks, work at assigned stations equipped with the necessary types of stoves, grills, pans, and ingredients.

Job titles often reflect the principal ingredient cooks prepare or the type of cooking they do—vegetable cook, fry cook, or grill cook, for example.

Cooks use a variety of kitchen equipment, including broilers, grills, slicers, grinders, and blenders.

The responsibilities of cooks vary depending on where they work, the size of the facility, and the level of service offered. However, in all establishments, they follow established sanitation procedures when handling food. For example, they store food and ingredients at the correct temperatures to prevent bacterial growth.

The following are examples of types of cooks:

Restaurant cooks prepare a wide selection of dishes and cook most orders individually. Some restaurant cooks may order supplies, set menu prices, and plan the daily menu.

Fast-food cooks prepare a limited selection of menu items in fast-food restaurants. They cook and package food, such as hamburgers and fried chicken, to be kept warm until served. For more information on workers who prepare and serve items in fast-food restaurants, see the profiles on food preparation workers and food and beverage serving and related workers.

Institution and cafeteria cooks work in the kitchens of schools, cafeterias, businesses, hospitals, and other institutions. For each meal, they prepare a large quantity of a limited number of entrees, vegetables, and desserts, according to preset menus. These cooks usually prepare meals in advance and seldom take special orders.

Short-order cooks prepare foods in restaurants and coffee shops that emphasize fast service and quick food preparation. They usually prepare sandwiches, fry eggs, and cook french fries, often working on several orders at the same time.

Private household cooks, sometimes called personal chefs, plan and prepare meals in private homes, according to the client’s tastes and dietary needs. They order groceries and supplies, clean the kitchen, and wash dishes and utensils. They also may cater parties, holiday meals, luncheons, and other social events. Private household cooks typically work for one full-time client, although some are self-employed or employed by an agency, regularly making meals for multiple clients.

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How To Become A Pizza Cook

Most cooks learn their skills through on-the-job training and work-related experience. Although no formal education is required, some restaurant cooks and private household cooks attend culinary schools. Others attend vocational or apprenticeship programs.

Education

Vocational cooking schools, professional culinary institutes, and some colleges offer culinary programs for aspiring cooks. These programs generally last from a few months to 2 years and may offer courses in advanced cooking techniques, international cuisines, and various cooking styles. To enter these programs, candidates may be required to have a high school diploma or equivalent. Depending on the type and length of the program, graduates generally qualify for entry-level positions as a restaurant cook.

Training

Most cooks learn their skills through on-the-job training, usually lasting a few weeks. Trainees generally first learn kitchen basics and workplace safety and then learn how to handle and cook food.

Some cooks learn through an apprenticeship program. Professional culinary institutes, industry associations, and trade unions may sponsor such programs for cooks. Typical apprenticeships last 1 year and combine technical training and work experience. Apprentices complete courses in food sanitation and safety, basic knife skills, and equipment operation. They also learn practical cooking skills under the supervision of an experienced chef.

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

  • Minimum age of 17
  • High school education or equivalent
  • Pass substance abuse screening

Some hotels, a number of restaurants, and the Armed Forces have their own training programs.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Many cooks learn their skills through work-related experience. They typically start as a kitchen helper or food preparation worker, learning basic cooking skills before they advance to assistant cook or line cook positions. Some learn by working under the guidance of a more experienced cook.

Advancement

The American Culinary Federation certifies chefs, personal chefs, pastry chefs, and culinary administrators, among others. For cooks seeking advancement to higher level chef positions, certification can show accomplishment and lead to higher paying positions.

Advancement opportunities for cooks often depend on training, work experience, and the ability to prepare more complex dishes. Those who learn new cooking skills and who handle greater responsibility, such as supervising kitchen staff in the absence of a chef, often advance. Some cooks may train or supervise kitchen staff, and some may become head cooks, chefs, or food service managers.

Important Qualities

Comprehension. Cooks need to understand orders and follow recipes to prepare dishes correctly.

Customer-service skills. Restaurant and short-order cooks must be able to interact effectively with customers and handle special requests.

Dexterity. Cooks should have excellent hand–eye coordination. For example, they need to use proper knife techniques for cutting, chopping, and dicing.

Physical stamina. Cooks spend a lot of time standing in one place, cooking food over hot stoves, and cleaning work areas.

Sense of taste and smell. Cooks must have a keen sense of taste and smell to prepare meals that customers enjoy.

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Pizza Cook jobs

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Pizza Cook Typical Career Paths

Average Length of Employment
Head Cook 3.0 years
Cook/Baker 2.8 years
Cook/Trainer 2.8 years
Short Order Cook 2.1 years
Cook/Server 2.0 years
Line Cook 2.0 years
Assistant Cook 2.0 years
Cook 1.9 years
Kitchen Cook 1.8 years
Grill Cook/Prep 1.8 years
Breakfast Cook 1.8 years
Deli Cook 1.7 years
Mexican Food Cook 1.7 years
Prep Cook 1.6 years
Cook/Dishwasher 1.6 years
Back Line Cook 1.6 years
Grill Cook 1.6 years
Pizza Chef 1.5 years
Fast Food Cook 1.5 years
Cook/Team Member 1.4 years
Pizza Maker 1.3 years
Fry Cook 1.1 years
Pizza Cook 1.0 years
Top Employers Before
Line Cook 13.7%
Cook 11.9%
Cashier 11.9%
Prep Cook 9.1%
Waitress 3.7%
Fry Cook 2.9%
Grill Cook 2.8%
Manager 2.8%
Server 2.7%
Internship 2.4%
Top Employers After
Line Cook 12.6%
Cook 11.9%
Cashier 9.6%
Prep Cook 8.5%
Server 5.0%
Sous Chef 2.9%
Grill Cook 2.7%
Manager 2.7%
Chef 2.5%

Pizza Cook Demographics

Gender

Male

71.2%

Female

28.1%

Unknown

0.7%
Ethnicity

White

80.7%

Hispanic or Latino

11.7%

Asian

5.7%

Unknown

1.5%

Black or African American

0.4%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

56.8%

Japanese

11.4%

German

4.5%

Arabic

4.5%

Italian

4.5%

Portuguese

2.3%

Romanian

2.3%

Somali

2.3%

French

2.3%

Braille

2.3%

Hindi

2.3%

Bantu

2.3%

Korean

2.3%
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Pizza Cook Education

Schools

Ashford University

6.8%

University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee

6.8%

University of Phoenix

6.8%

Florida State University

5.4%

Northern Arizona University

5.4%

Johnson & Wales University

5.4%

University of Colorado at Boulder

5.4%

Full Sail University

5.4%

University of Memphis

5.4%

Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts

5.4%

Community College of Rhode Island

5.4%

Jefferson Community College

4.1%

San Diego Mesa College

4.1%

Macomb Community College

4.1%

University of Maine

4.1%

Moberly Area Community College

4.1%

California State University - Fresno

4.1%

Kirkwood Community College

4.1%

Santa Rosa Junior College

4.1%

Vatterott College - Kansas City

4.1%
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Majors

Business

15.1%

Culinary Arts

14.8%

Computer Science

7.9%

Criminal Justice

7.7%

General Studies

6.0%

Accounting

4.9%

Psychology

4.6%

Graphic Design

4.6%

Health Care Administration

4.4%

Medical Assisting Services

3.9%

Automotive Technology

3.7%

English

3.0%

Communication

3.0%

Precision Metal Working

2.6%

Liberal Arts

2.6%

Electrical Engineering Technology

2.3%

Management

2.3%

Biology

2.3%

Photography

2.1%

Political Science

2.1%
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Degrees

Other

44.0%

Bachelors

25.2%

Associate

18.4%

Certificate

7.8%

Masters

2.4%

Diploma

1.7%

License

0.3%

Doctorate

0.3%
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Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Pizza Cook Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Pizza Cook Pacpizza, LLC San Francisco, CA Jan 02, 2016 $25,566
Pizza Cook Pacpizza, LLC Oakland, CA Feb 22, 2016 $25,480
Pizza Cook Pacpizza, LLC San Francisco, CA Sep 03, 2016 $25,480
Pizza Cook Pacpizza, LLC San Jose, CA Jan 02, 2016 $21,496
Pizza Cook Pacpizza, LLC San Jose, CA Feb 29, 2016 $21,424
Pizza Cook Pacpizza, LLC San Jose, CA Jul 03, 2016 $21,424
Pizza Cook Pacpizza, LLC Sunnyvale, CA Feb 29, 2016 $21,424
Pizza Cook Pacpizza, LLC San Jose, CA May 19, 2016 $21,424
Pizza Cook Pacpizza, LLC Sunnyvale, CA Jan 03, 2016 $21,424
Pizza Cook Pacpizza, LLC San Jose, CA Jan 03, 2016 $21,424
Pizza Cook Pacpizza, LLC San Jose, CA Feb 24, 2016 $21,424
Pizza Cook Pacpizza, LLC San Jose, CA Feb 22, 2016 $21,424
Pizza Cook MUY Pizza Southeast LLC Collinsville, VA Feb 05, 2016 $16,786
Pizza Cook MUY Pizza Southeast LLC Collinsville, VA Mar 24, 2016 $16,786
Pizza Cook MUY Pizza Southeast LLC Collinsville, VA Jan 26, 2016 $16,786
Pizza Cook MUY Pizza Southeast LLC Martinsville, VA Jan 26, 2016 $16,786
Pizza Cook MUY Pizza Southeast LLC Martinsville, VA Jan 27, 2016 $16,786
Pizza Cook MUY Pizza Southeast LLC Collinsville, VA Jan 27, 2016 $16,786
Pizza Cook U & Nam, LLC. Dallas, TX Nov 23, 2015 $16,786
Pizza Cook MUY Pizza LLC Yoakum, TX Nov 01, 2016 $16,723
Pizza Cook MUY Pizza Southeast LLC Charlottesville, VA Oct 21, 2016 $16,723
Pizza Cook MUY Pizza Southeast LLC Charlottesville, VA Nov 16, 2016 $16,723
Pizza Cook MUY Pizza Tejas LLC San Antonio, TX May 10, 2015 $16,723
Pizza Cook MUY Pizza Tejas LLC Floresville, TX Aug 10, 2015 $16,723
Pizza Cook MUY Pizza Tejas LLC Floresville, TX Jul 10, 2015 $16,723
Pizza Cook MUY Pizza Tejas LLC San Antonio, TX Oct 20, 2015 $16,723

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Top Skills for A Pizza Cook

PrepDoughPizzaDoughKitchenAreaPizzaOvenCustomerServiceSkillsDeliveryDriversSpecificFoodItemsCustomerOrdersDishwasherPhoneOrdersResponsibilitiesiPizzaLineCalzonesPizzaOrdersSafetyStandardsFoodOrderSlipsPizzaStationCookingSurfacesMeatMenuItems

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Top Pizza Cook Skills

  1. Prep Dough
  2. Pizza Dough
  3. Kitchen Area
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Make pizza, prep dough, answer phones, wash dishes, clean
  • Prepare pizza dough using the correct procedures and recipe.
  • Clean and organize eating, service, and kitchen areas.
  • Worked everything from prep, to stretching the dough, topping the pizza, and baking it In a brick pizza oven
  • Measure ingredients required for specific food items being prepared.

Top Pizza Cook Employers

Pizza Cook Videos

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