Kitchen Chef Salary
Average Kitchen Chefs in the United States make around $11.96 per hour. Geographic location and career length each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Although more than a third have medical coverage and close to a fourth have dental coverage, more than half claim no health benefits at all. The majority of Kitchen Chefs claim high levels of job satisfaction. Most people who answered the questionnaire are men; 67 percent of Kitchen Chefs are male. The information for this snapshot was generated by responses to the PayScale salary survey.
Job Description for Kitchen Chef
Kitchen chefs prepare foods for their establishment's diners. They may work for private institutions such as restaurants, entertainment venues, cruise ships and large corporations, as well as public institutions such as schools and public hospitals. Tasks performed by kitchen chefs include planning the menu, supervising kitchen assistants, waiters, and hostesses, and preparing food. Food preparation tasks may include cutting meat, vegetables and fruit; preparing stuffing, glazes and sauces; assembling plates to be sent to diners; and overseeing the food preparation tasks performed by subordinates in the kitchen. Kitchen chefs may conduct ordering and bookkeeping work for their restaurant as well.Read More...
Many kitchen chefs receive on-the-job training; however, they often attend culinary and vocational schools to learn their trade. Kitchen chefs usually begin their careers by working under the supervision of an experienced chef, and they must develop an in-depth understanding of food preparation and presentation; they often specialize in a particular type of cuisine. Many chefs are employed by their restaurant's owners, although some chefs own their own restaurants. Kitchen chefs hold a physically demanding job, and they often work long hours and may work late into the evening. They work on their feet for much of the day and are sometimes required to lift heavy objects.
Kitchen Chef Tasks
- Prepare appetizers, salads, sandwiches, sauces, stuffing, and glazes.
- May supervise pantry staff.
- Utilize extra meat in new menu items.
- Chop, slice, grind, and garnish meats, vegetables, and cheeses.
Common Career Paths for Kitchen Chef
Though hard to find, Kitchen Chefs sometimes become Executive Chefs. The role averages $54K per year. Sous Chefs or Head Chefs & Cooks are common next-step roles for Kitchen Chefs moving up in their careers; annual pay for Sous Chefs is $8K higher on average, and it's $3K higher for Head Chefs & Cooks.
Kitchen Chef Job Listings
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Popular Skills for Kitchen Chef
Survey results show that Kitchen Chefs use a fair number of skills. Most notably, skills in Order Inventory, Menu Planning, Customer Service, and Food Preparation are correlated to pay that is above average. Those listing Cleaning as a skill should be prepared for drastically lower pay. cooking and Inventory Management also typically command lower compensation. Cooking and Food Preparation are also commonly seen together.
Pay by Experience Level for Kitchen Chef
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Those in the early stages of their career can expect to make around $25K; however, individuals with five to 10 years of experience bring in $28K on average — a distinctly larger sum. The average pay reported by folks with 10 to 20 years of experience is around $31K. For some reason, Kitchen Chefs with more than two decades of experience report lower paychecks overall; the median sum in this group sits near $30K.