Cooks, Restaurant
SOC: 35-2014.00


Prepare, season, and cook dishes such as soups, meats, vegetables, or desserts in restaurants. May order supplies, keep records and accounts, price items on menu, or plan menu.

National Salary Information:

Hourly Statistics:

Annual Statistics:

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 wage data.

Employment Projections:

Employment (2014):
1,109,700 employed

Projected (2024):
1,268,700 employed

Projected growth (2014-2024)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 2014-2024 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2014-2024). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

Alternate Titles:

  • Assistant Cook
  • Back Line Cook
  • Banquet Chef
  • Banquet Cook
  • Breakfast Cook
  • Broiler Chef or Cook
  • Chef
  • Chef de Froid
  • Chef De Partie
  • Cook
  • Cook Apprentice
  • Dinner Cook
  • Executive Chef
  • Food Service Worker
  • Foreign Food Specialty Cook
  • Fry Cook
  • Garde Manger
  • Grill Cook
  • Ice Cream Chef
  • Larder Cook
  • Line Cook
  • Lunch Cook
  • Pastry Baker
  • Prep Cook (Preparation Cook)
  • Prep Person
  • Railroad Cook
  • Roundsman
  • Sandwich Artist
  • Saucier
  • Sous Chef
  • Specialty Cook
  • Specialty Foods Cook
  • Station Cook
  • Vegetable Cook

  • Job Zone Two: Some Preparation Needed


    Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.


    These occupations usually require a high school diploma.

    Job Training:

    Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.

    Required Skills:

  • Reading Comprehension
  • Active Listening
  • Writing
  • Speaking
  • Mathematics
  • Critical Thinking
  • Active Learning
  • Learning Strategies
  • Monitoring
  • Social Perceptiveness
  • Coordination
  • Persuasion
  • Negotiation
  • Instructing
  • Service Orientation
  • Complex Problem Solving
  • Operations Analysis
  • Technology Design
  • Equipment Selection
  • Operation Monitoring
  • Operation and Control
  • Troubleshooting
  • Quality Control Analysis
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Systems Analysis
  • Systems Evaluation
  • Time Management
  • Management of Financial Resources
  • Management of Material Resources
  • Management of Personnel Resources

  • Knowledge Used:

  • Administration and Management
  • Clerical
  • Economics and Accounting
  • Sales and Marketing
  • Customer and Personal Service
  • Personnel and Human Resources
  • Production and Processing
  • Food Production
  • Computers and Electronics
  • Engineering and Technology
  • Design
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanical
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Biology
  • Psychology
  • Sociology and Anthropology
  • Geography
  • Therapy and Counseling
  • Education and Training
  • English Language
  • Foreign Language
  • Philosophy and Theology
  • Public Safety and Security
  • Law and Government
  • Telecommunications
  • Communications and Media
  • Transportation

  • Tasks:

  • Turn or stir foods to ensure even cooking.
  • Season and cook food according to recipes or personal judgment and experience.
  • Observe and test foods to determine if they have been cooked sufficiently, using methods such as tasting, smelling, or piercing them with utensils.
  • Weigh, measure, and mix ingredients according to recipes or personal judgment, using various kitchen utensils and equipment.
  • Portion, arrange, and garnish food, and serve food to waiters or patrons.
  • Substitute for or assist other cooks during emergencies or rush periods.
  • Bake, roast, broil, and steam meats, fish, vegetables, and other foods.
  • Wash, peel, cut, and seed fruits and vegetables to prepare them for consumption.
  • Estimate expected food consumption, requisition or purchase supplies, or procure food from storage.
  • Carve and trim meats such as beef, veal, ham, pork, and lamb for hot or cold service, or for sandwiches.
  • Coordinate and supervise work of kitchen staff.
  • Consult with supervisory staff to plan menus, taking into consideration factors such as costs and special event needs.
  • Butcher and dress animals, fowl, or shellfish, or cut and bone meat prior to cooking.
  • Bake breads, rolls, cakes, and pastries.
  • Prepare relishes and hors d'oeuvres.
  • Keep records and accounts.
  • Plan and price menu items.
  • Inspect and clean food preparation areas, such as equipment and work surfaces, or serving areas to ensure safe and sanitary food-handling practices.
  • Ensure food is stored and cooked at correct temperature by regulating temperature of ovens, broilers, grills, and roasters.
  • Ensure freshness of food and ingredients by checking for quality, keeping track of old and new items, and rotating stock.

  • Tools & Technology:

  • Blenders
  • Boning knives
  • Charbroilers
  • Chefs' knives
  • Cimeter knives
  • Commercial microwave ovens
  • Convection ovens
  • Conveyor ovens
  • Filet knives
  • Food slicing machines
  • Food steamers
  • Fryers
  • Gas grills
  • Griddles
  • Grinders
  • Meat and cheese slicing machines
  • Meat saws
  • Paring knives
  • Pasta cookers
  • Personal computers
  • Pizza ovens
  • Point of sale POS computer terminals
  • Rotating rack ovens
  • Rotisserie ovens
  • Salamander ovens
  • Smoking cabinets
  • Utility cutlery
  • Wok ranges
  • Food safety labeling systems
  • Inventory management software
  • Menu planning software
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Point of sale POS restaurant software
  • Recipe cost control software

  • food preparation and serving related

    industry stats

    SOC: 35-0000

    Total Employed: 12,577,080

    Average Annual Salary: $22,850