How to Hire a Chef

How to Hire a Chef

Hire a Chef

Does your growing business need a head chef, sous-chef, pastry chef, chef de parti or any type of professional chef? If it’s time to expand your menu, roll out new features, or bring in a new leader to organize your kitchen’s workflow, consider hiring a chef passionate about creating a dining experience customized to your business needs and vision. 

Here are some tips to help you find great chef candidates and make the right hire for your business.

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Salary Information

  • Common salary in Canada$59,110 CAD a year
  • Typical salaries range from $20,300 – $73,600 CAD a year
  • Find more information on Indeed Salary

*Indeed data (CA) – Jan 2020


Why hire a chef?

A talented chef – one who strives for perfection in every aspect – is committed to crafting the finest recipes, refining plate presentation, and delighting customers. Dedicated to producing a skilled crew and highly efficient operations, a head chef also serves as a valuable leader by training and mentoring team members.

Contributions of a great chef:

  • Create new recipes based on knowledge of ingredients and cooking methods
  • Oversee kitchen staff and provide instruction regarding meal preparation, mise en place, cooking, and delivering dishes to customers
  • Make responsible purchasing decisions while adhering to budget
  • Build and sustain positive relations with distributors and vendors
  • Resolve concerns raised by kitchen staff and customers
  • Comply with safety, food handling, and sanitation standards

Skills to look for in a great chef

The ideal chef is able to inspire and bring joy to customers by using their ability to create a unique experience. Conscious of food quality, operation costs, and food trends, a great chef candidate will have training, qualifications, and experience that reflect top chef skills.

Chef qualifications:

  • Associate’s or bachelor’s degree in culinary arts or related discipline
  • Experience in a high volume, full-service restaurant
  • Kitchen management, including hiring and training staff members
  • Creative
  • Professional
  • Detail-oriented

Writing a chef job description

A thoughtful job description is important to finding qualified head chef, sous chef or pastry chef candidates. A chef job description includes a compelling summary of the role, a detailed list of duties and responsibilities, and the required and preferred skills for the position.

Keywords to include in your chef job description:

  • Chef
  • Sous
  • Executive
  • Catering
  • Banquet
  • Pastry
  • Cook

Interviewing chef candidates

Ask targeted and thoughtful questions to learn about a job candidate’s education, training, professional experience, and ambitions. Strong candidates for chef positions will be confident when answering a variety of questions.

Topics for chef interview questions:

  • Menu creation
  • Culinary standards
  • Food preparation/cooking methods and equipment
  • Management responsibilities
  • Inventory control and food purchasing
  • Sanitation and safety

See our list of interview questions for more examples.

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