A kitchen manager is a back-of-house supervisor at a restaurant. Restaurants that offer a more casual fare and atmosphere are typical employers for kitchen managers (versus fine dining restaurants, which generally hire chefs). Kitchen managers are in charge of executing pre-existing recipes and preparations, as well as overseeing schedules, cleaning, and maintenance in accordance with the guidance of the restaurant’s owner or general manager. This is typically a salaried position; however, in smaller, independent operations, the kitchen manager may be an elevated hourly employee.
Kitchen managers typically work with an established menu and ensure these menu items are prepared in a proper, timely manner. When new items are added to the menu, the kitchen manager helps execute new items and makes sure other staff are trained. These managers also oversee scheduling and execution of prep work during the workday. They schedule employees based upon expected business levels, order products, perform inventory, and supervise and inspect all cleaning, sanitation, and maintenance in the back-of-house area to ensure safe food preparation and overall workplace safety.
A kitchen manager typically has at least a high school degree or equivalent, as well as significant commercial kitchen experience. Many restaurants that hire kitchen managers prefer to hire from within, given the familiarity that existing employees will have with recipes and operations. Kitchen managers typically work in a hot environment in the kitchen during restaurant operating hours. The manager should expect to spend most of their workday walking or standing, and they should expect a typical work week of 45 to 50 hours.
Kitchen Manager, Restaurant Tasks
Supervise kitchen workers, providing training, scheduling, and standards enforcement.
Verify, review, and ensure freshness, quality, and hygiene of food.
Develop and enforce opening and closing procedures.
Control costs and inventory, reducing waste, and conducting repairs to reduce impact on operations.