Head Chef Salary

Head Chefs in the United States tend to be well-versed in their field, and three-fifths have more than 10 years of experience. Average salary is expected to be around $44K annually, but may range from $25K to $61K per year. Geographic location is the biggest factor affecting pay for this group, followed by years of experience. Medical benefits are awarded to just over two-fifths, and approximately one-fourth earn dental coverage. There are far more male Head Chefs survey respondents than women, making up 83 percent. Most workers in this position report high levels of job satisfaction. This report is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$29,666 - $65,807
$30K
$44K
$66K
MEDIAN: $43,688
10%
50%
90%

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$9.99 - $20.21
$10
$15
$20
MEDIAN: $15.00
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$22K$44K$66K
Salary
$29,666 - $65,807  
   
Bonus
$295.90 - $10,193  
Profit Sharing
$2,000  
Commission
$6,500  
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).
)
$25,188 - $61,111  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 549
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$11$22$33
Hourly Rate
$9.99 - $20.21  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.00 - $4.15  
Overtime
$13.59 - $31.86  
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$22K$44K$66K
Bonus
$295.90 - $10,193  
   
Commission
$6,500  
Profit Sharing
$2,000  
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).
)
$25,188 - $61,111  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 314

Find Out Exactly What You Should Be Paid

United States (change)

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Job Description for Head Chef

Head chefs work in restaurants, cafeterias, catering companies, bakeries, and many other other places which serve food. These chefs are generally expected to specialize in the particular cuisines served by their employers in order to prepare and cook food, often with the help of other chefs, and present it in an attractive manner. In some positions, head chefs may also be responsible for creating and modifying the menu or setting prices for selections.

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Head Chef Tasks

  • Manage kitchen operation including food purchases and preparation, record keeping, quality standards, and sanitation.
  • Train employees in cooking methods, plate presentations, portions, and cost control.

Common Career Paths for Head Chef


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Head Chefs often transition into Executive Chef positions, for which compensation tends to be much higher. On average, Executive Chefs earn $54K per year. Going from Head Chef to Head Chef & Cook is the transition that occurs most often in this field, and the average paycheck for Head Chefs & Cooks is $31K. Many others choose to work as Executive Sous Chefs, where pay is typically $47K.

Head Chef Job Listings

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Popular Skills for Head Chef


Head Chefs seem to exploit a large range of skills on the job. Fortunate workers who know Training can expect a significant pay bump, scoring salaries 35 percent above average. Skills that are correlated to lower pay, on the other hand, include cooking and Chef. For most people, competency in Food Preparation indicates knowledge of People Management.

Pay by Experience Level for Head Chef

Pay by Experience for a Head Chef has a positive trend. An entry-level Head Chef with less than 5 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $35,000 based on 223 salaries provided by anonymous users. Average total compensation includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay. A Head Chef with mid-career experience which includes employees with 5 to 10 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $39,000 based on 301 salaries. An experienced Head Chef which includes employees with 10 to 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $42,000 based on 429 salaries. A Head Chef with late-career experience which includes employees with greater than 20 years of experience can expect to earn an average total compensation of $43,000 based on 187 salaries.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $40,409

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

With a pay rate for Head Chefs that is 47 percent greater than the national average, New York offers a comfortable salary for those in this profession. Head Chefs can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Los Angeles (+21 percent), Seattle (+19 percent), Chicago (+16 percent), and Portland (+14 percent). Place of residence plays a huge part in a Head Chef's salary, with Miami Head Chefs earning salaries that are 23 percent less than the national average. Not at the bottom but still paying below the median are employers in Rochester and Sacramento (18 percent lower and 14 percent lower, respectively).

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Head Chef

Gender

Female
17 %
Male
83 %

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 115 votes.
Less than 1 year
1%
1-4 years
15%
5-9 years
23%
10-19 years
39%
20 years or more
22%
Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Head Chef Salaries

▲6%

▲4%

National Average
$40,000

▼3%

▼12%

Skills That Affect Head Chef Salaries

Training
▲35%

chef
▲3%

Operations Management
▲2%




Inventory Management
▼0%

Job Scheduling
▼0%

National Average
$40,000


Chef (Opscode)
▼5%

cooking
▼12%

Job Satisfaction

Extremely satisfied
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 115 votes.

Gender

Female
17 %
Male
83 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
1%
1-4 years
15%
5-9 years
23%
10-19 years
39%
20 years or more
22%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 42%
dental benefits
Dental: 24%
vision benefits
Vision: 18%
no benefits
None: 57%