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What does a Cook do?

Cooks are responsible for providing a pleasurable dining experience for customers by preparing high quality food. This usually means managing all asepcts of food preparation and production in an environment that meets sanitation guidelines. Their duties can range from preparing ingredients to be cooked, to being responsible for grilling all foods.

Cooks must have a high school diploma or general education degree (GED). It is oftentimes preferred that cooks have a culinary certification or degree. The best cooks are good at teamwork, show attention to detail, and demonstrate strong communication skills.

  • Prepare food items for customers as requested, including special requests, in a timely and consistent manner
  • Determine food and supply needs based on rotating menus
  • Inspect food products and supplies as needed
  • Ensure work environment and stations are clean and sanitized
  • Check food before it is served to customers
  • Control and minimize waste
  • Comply with outlined safety regulations and procedures
  • High school diploma or general education degree (GED) required
  • Culinary certification or degree from a culinary school preferred
  • 2-3 years food service or restaurant experience required
  • Ability to lift and carry up to 30 pounds
  • Comfortable standing, stopping, squatting, twisting, and moving frequently
  • Ability to pass a food service sanitation course
  • Familiarity with general kitchen equipment and applicances
  • Strong working knowledge of food preparation techniques, cooking methods, and safety and sanitation practices
  • Ability to read, comprehend, and follow recipes

Average Years of Experience

0 - 1
43%
2 - 4
21%
5 - 7
1%
8+
35%

Common Skill Sets

Effective Communication
English Language
Positive Work Ethic
Grooming
Positive Attitude
Time Management
Urgency
Sanitize

Cook Seniority Levels

L2
Cook
$21,092/yr
L3
Cook III
$22,871/yr
L4
Line Cook
33% made the transition
Busser
19% made the transition
See Career Path

Cook Salaries

Average Base Pay

$21,092 /yr
Same as national average
Not including cash compensation
See More Insights
$17K
Median: $21K
$29K
See More Insights
Glassdoor Estimated Salary

Cook Jobs