What is a Sous Chef

Chefs are often considered artists, who create culinary masterpieces pleasing to vision and palate alike. Sous chefs are there at every step of the process, assisting the head chef, in a professionally run kitchen, in making the magic happen.

They contribute to creating the menu, making sure every necessary ingredient is in stock and fresh, supervise sanitation, and do everything in their power to reach the expected quality standard of the meals.

Defying stereotypical gender roles, or perhaps adhering to less obvious ones, the sous chef position is primarily filled by men, especially in high-end kitchens. With all the long hours, heat, and a high-pressure working environment, prejudice against women has them framed as not being physically and emotionally strong enough to work in kitchens, and receive fewer opportunities to hold high-status jobs as cooks.

Restaurants behind the scenes are apparently not just the site for exquisite food preparation but prove to be an excellent field for institutionalized sexism as well. Go sous chefettes, it is high time to change this demographic!

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a Sous Chef. For example, did you know that they make an average of $23.14 an hour? That's $48,132 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 11% and produce 15,400 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Sous Chef Do

There are certain skills that many Sous Chefs 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.

Learn more about what a Sous Chef does

How To Become a Sous Chef

If you're interested in becoming a Sous Chef, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 24.1% of Sous Chefs have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 1.4% of Sous Chefs have master's degrees. Even though some Sous Chefs have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a Sous Chef. When we researched the most common majors for a Sous Chef, we found that they most commonly earn Associate Degree degrees or Bachelor's Degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on Sous Chef resumes include High School Diploma degrees or Diploma degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a Sous Chef. In fact, many Sous Chef jobs require experience in a role such as Line Cook. Meanwhile, many Sous Chefs also have previous career experience in roles such as Cook or Chef.

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And if you’re looking for a job, here are the five top employers hiring now:

  1. The Walt Disney Company Jobs (86)
  2. Sodexo Operations Jobs (227)
  3. Aramark Jobs (353)
  4. Holiday Retirement Jobs (76)
  5. SAGE Dining Services Jobs (55)
Average Salary
$48,132
Average Salary
Job Growth Rate
11%
Job Growth Rate
Job Openings
20,824
Job Openings
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Average Salary for a Sous Chef

Sous Chefs in America make an average salary of $48,132 per year or $23 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $71,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $32,000 per year.
Average Salary
$48,132
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12 Sous Chef Resume Examples

Learn How To Write a Sous Chef Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Sous Chef resumes and compiled some information about how to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

View Sous Chef Resume Examples And Templates

And if you’re looking for a job, here are the five top employers hiring now:

  1. The Walt Disney Company Jobs (86)
  2. Sodexo Operations Jobs (227)
  3. Aramark Jobs (353)
  4. Holiday Retirement Jobs (76)
  5. SAGE Dining Services Jobs (55)

Choose From 10+ Customizable Sous Chef Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Sous Chef templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Sous Chef resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Sous Chef Demographics

Sous Chef Gender Statistics

male

82.1 %

female

17.9 %

Sous Chef Ethnicity Statistics

White

59.1 %

Hispanic or Latino

18.4 %

Black or African American

10.3 %

Sous Chef Foreign Languages Spoken Statistics

Spanish

48.4 %

French

18.7 %

Italian

12.5 %
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Sous Chef Education

Sous Chef Majors

Sous Chef Degrees

Associate

51.2 %

Bachelors

24.1 %

High School Diploma

13.5 %

Top Colleges for Sous Chefs

1. Drexel University

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,244
Enrollment
15,557

2. University of Cincinnati

Cincinnati, OH • Private

In-State Tuition
$11,000
Enrollment
25,973

3. Cornell University

Ithaca, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,188
Enrollment
15,105

4. University of Texas at Austin

Austin, TX • Private

In-State Tuition
$10,610
Enrollment
40,329

5. Boston University

Boston, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,948
Enrollment
17,238

6. Southwest Minnesota State University

Marshall, MN • Private

In-State Tuition
$8,612
Enrollment
2,022

7. Inter American University of Puerto Rico Ponce

Mercedita, PR • Private

In-State Tuition
$5,914
Enrollment
4,155
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Food Safety Preventive System (HACCP System) for ISO 22000...

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Top Skills For a Sous Chef

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, 10.5% of Sous Chefs listed Food Preparation on their resume, but soft skills such as Business skills and Communication skills are important as well.

  • Food Preparation, 10.5%
  • Kitchen Equipment, 9.0%
  • Customer Service, 8.3%
  • High Volume, 8.2%
  • Menu Items, 6.9%
  • Other Skills, 57.1%

Best States For a Sous Chef

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a Sous Chef. The best states for people in this position are Hawaii, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Delaware. Sous Chefs make the most in Hawaii with an average salary of $68,368. Whereas in New Jersey and Massachusetts, they would average $66,518 and $56,116, respectively. While Sous Chefs would only make an average of $55,632 in Delaware, 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.

1. Nevada

Total Sous Chef Jobs:
71
Highest 10% Earn:
$75,000
Location Quotient:
1.95
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Hawaii

Total Sous Chef Jobs:
12
Highest 10% Earn:
$86,000
Location Quotient:
0.82
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Massachusetts

Total Sous Chef Jobs:
152
Highest 10% Earn:
$79,000
Location Quotient:
0.95
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Sous Chefs

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Becoming a Sous Chef FAQs

How long does it take to become a Sous Chef?

It takes 4 years of professional experience to become a sous chef. That is the time it takes to learn specific sous chef skills, but does not account for time spent in formal education. If you include the normal education requirements to complete a college degree, then it takes 7 to 9 years years to become a sous chef.

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