Earnings for Dietary Cooks in the United States come in at around $11.18 per hour on average. Earnings for this group are mostly affected by location, followed by the company and experience level. Men are in the minority of survey respondents, with female Dietary Cooks making up 76 percent. Most Dietary Cooks report high levels of job satisfaction. More than a third of professionals in this line of work do not receive benefits; however, the larger part report medical coverage and slightly less than one-half claim dental coverage as well. Participants in PayScale's salary questionnaire provided the particulars of this report.

$19,136 - $40,722
$19K
$26K
$41K
MEDIAN: $26,340
10%
50%
90%

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$8.84 - $15.03
$8
$11
$15
MEDIAN: $11.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$14K$28K$42K
Salary
$19,136 - $40,722  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,237  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$18,518 - $31,979  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jan 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 23
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$8$16$24
Hourly Rate
$8.84 - $15.03  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.00 - $0.00  
Overtime
$9.16 - $23.13  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$16K$32K$48K
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,237  
   
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$18,518 - $31,979  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 18 Jan 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 920

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

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Job Description for Dietary Cook

A dietary cook is generally responsible for providing meals that are nutritious and appetizing to their clients. The meals need to be carefully handled, prepared correctly, and served at the right temperature and in correct serving sizes. They are also responsible for checking their organization's menu daily and ensuring that preparation for the upcoming meals have been completed. Additionally, the dietary cook must ensure that all cooking supplies and dishware are properly cleaned, which includes making a schedule to ensure this is accomplished.

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Dietary Cook Tasks

  • Prepare and cook food for patients, employees and visitors.
  • Monitor food service for nutritional, safety, sanitation and quality standards.
  • Research food and beverage costs and assist in implementing cost control and waste management procedures.
  • Clean and inspect equipment, appliances, and work areas in order to ensure cleanliness and functional operation.
  • Prepare major meals by following recipes, determining food quantities and following meal time schedules.

Common Career Paths for Dietary Cook


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Though some Dietary Cooks move into positions like Food Service Director (where the average salary is $50K), this progression is not the norm. It is quite typical for Dietary Cooks to transition into roles as Certified Dietary Managers or Dietary Managers, where reported median earnings are $12K and $10K higher per year.

Dietary Cook Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Dietary Cook


Dietary Cooks fill the offices of leading firms Healthcare Services Group, Inc., Brookdale Senior Living Inc., Morrison Healthcare, Sodexo, Inc., and Genesis HealthCare. Brookdale offers the highest compensation with a median salary of $27K. Those in search of high salaries should also consider Genesis HealthCare, Life Care Centers of America, and Morrison Healthcare, top-paying firms where Dietary Cooks rake in a decent $25K, $25K, or $24K, respectively.

Healthcare Services Group, Inc. offers the lowest pay in the field with a median salary of just $21K, but on the other end, some employees may earn up to $34K. Sodexo, Inc., Brookdale Senior Living Inc., and Morrison Healthcare also scrape the bottom of the pay scale, with median earnings hovering around $23K, $23K, and $24K.

Pay by Experience Level for Dietary Cook

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


For many Dietary Cooks, extensive experience does not lead to significantly more money. Workers with less than five years' experience earn around $22K on average, and those who have five to 10 years under their belts see a higher median salary of $23K. Dietary Cooks claiming one to two decades of experience make an estimated median of $26K. Dietary Cooks with more than 20 years of experience report incomes that are only modestly higher; the median for these old hands hovers around $27K.

Dietary Cook Advice

Q: What do you wish you knew about your job when you first started out?

Dietary Cook in Everett:
"Don't care, because they sure don't."
Be prepared to do the impossible at all times in the shortest amount of time. Often times the food budget is small but federal rules require certain things to be followed but you will be held responsible when a food wasn't done correctly because items were not ordered. If you have any items on new food items I hope they will let you use them because most times you have to follow the same menu serving the same boring stuff all the time. Treat this job like you are in the military, just do as you are told, trying to explain yourself usually doesn't work.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Dietary Cook

Gender

Female
76 %
Male
24 %

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 133 votes.
Less than 1 year
2%
1-4 years
29%
5-9 years
24%
10-19 years
28%
20 years or more
17%
Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Dietary Cook Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 12%

Experienced
up arrow 7%

National Average
$24,000

Mid-Career
up arrow 2%

Entry-Level
up arrow 7%

Skills That Affect Dietary Cook Salaries

National Average
$24,000


Customer Service
up arrow 6%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 133 votes.

Gender

Female
76 %
Male
24 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
2%
1-4 years
29%
5-9 years
24%
10-19 years
28%
20 years or more
17%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 58%
dental benefits
Dental: 47%
vision benefits
Vision: 40%
dental benefits
None: 36%
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