Salary and Outlook
According to the US Department of Labor, there are 1,153,200 people employed as cooks, restaurant in
the United States.
The median annual salary is $28,800.
Entry level employees earn approximately $20,100 per year and senior employees earn approximately $39,840
Estimates do not include other potential benefits such as health insurance, overtime pay, or retirement benefits that may be offered by employers.
- Weigh, measure, and mix ingredients according to recipes or personal judgment, using various kitchen utensils and equipment.
- Bake, roast, broil, and steam meats, fish, vegetables, and other foods.
- Wash, peel, cut, and seed fruits and vegetables to prepare them for consumption.
- Coordinate and supervise work of kitchen staff.
- Estimate expected food consumption, requisition or purchase supplies, or procure food from storage.
- Substitute for or assist other cooks during emergencies or rush periods.
- Consult with supervisory staff to plan menus, taking into consideration factors such as costs and special event needs.
- Prepare relishes and hors d'oeuvres.
- Carve and trim meats such as beef, veal, ham, pork, and lamb for hot or cold service, or for sandwiches.
- Bake breads, rolls, cakes, and pastries.
- Butcher and dress animals, fowl, or shellfish, or cut and bone meat prior to cooking.
- 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 freshness of food and ingredients by checking for quality, keeping track of old and new items, and rotating stock.
- Ensure food is stored and cooked at correct temperature by regulating temperature of ovens, broilers, grills, and roasters.
- Season and cook food according to recipes or personal judgment and experience.
- Turn or stir foods to ensure even cooking.
- Observe and test foods to determine if they have been cooked sufficiently, using methods such as tasting, smelling, or piercing them with utensils.
- Portion, arrange, and garnish food, and serve food to waiters or patrons.