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Culinary Careers Part II: Chef Jobs

There are three different types of chef jobs available for individuals with chef training and on-the-job experience.

The Executive Chef Job

Executive chefs may or may not be directly involved in food preparation. They often take on a more administrative role and manage several kitchens in a large hotel. They hire and fire personnel, and are responsible for the business aspects of the kitchens. The other chefs and food preparation workers report to the executive chef. Executive chef training usually involves a combination of culinary and business education.

The Chef de Cuisine

The chef de cuisine is responsible for preparing, seasoning, and cooking a variety of foods. Depending on where you work, you may make soups, salads, entrees, side dishes, and even desserts. Chefs are responsible for creating recipes and deciding, along with the establishment's manager, what will be on the menu. Chefs are also responsible for the presentation of the meal, and sometimes oversee how it is served.

The Sous Chef

The sous chef is essentially second-in-command in the kitchen. As a sous chef, you are responsible for all aspects of kitchen management in the absence of the chef de cuisine. The sous chef may also be responsible for a particular aspect of the kitchen, such as soups or salads. The sous chef must manage the food preparation workers and cooks.

Chef Training

Because the positions of executive chef, chef de cuisine, and sous chef are so competitive, candidates with the most training are the strongest. A degree from a reputable culinary institute, combined with work experience, is the best preparation for a chef job.