What's it like to be a Head Chef?
A Head Chef is a senior chef who is the leader of a kitchen, usually in a small to medium-sized business.
Tasks and duties
- Plan, design and cost menus, liaise with supplier and manage kitchen budgets.
- Supervise kitchen staff and resolve issues as they arise.
- Work closely with restaurant manager, chef team and customer service to ensure the business runs smoothly.
Head Chefs usually take on a supervisory role within the kitchen, which means that they have significant duties beyond food preparation.
A Head Chef is similar to an Executive Chef, and it is unlikely that a Head Chef and an Executive Chef would be working within the same kitchen.
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How to become a Head Chef
- Complete an apprenticeship or traineeship. Full-time apprenticeships usually last for 36 months. Concurrently, complete a qualification in cooking, such as a Certificate III in Commercial Cookery (or equivalent).
- Once you’ve gained your qualification, ensure you have a food safety supervisor certificate.
- Work your way up the kitchen ladder to become a Commis Chef, then Chef de Partie, Sous Chef and then a Head Chef.