We all love food, don’t we? As a kid, did you try to imitate your parent’s cooking? When was the first time you cooked something on your own? How satisfying was it? It must have made you really happy. 

But did you know you could pursue this as a profession? Well, if food excites you so much, you must consider pursuing a career as a Chef. 

In this blog, we shall discuss everything you need to know about how to establish a career as a Chef, what you need to study, where you can work, and a lot more. Read on! 

What does a Chef do?

  • A chef is in charge of the kitchen in restaurants and other establishments where food is served.
  • They keep an eye on the food’s preparation to ensure that it is garnished, presented, and has the right amount of seasoning for a delicious meal. 
  • A chef orders food or kitchen supplies and estimates costs to the employer. 
  • To ensure that services are provided on time, they keep an eye on staffing needs and production schedules.
  • A chef or head cook needs to be knowledgeable about food production, processing, and preparation. To achieve customer satisfaction, they must understand the customer and provide personalized service.
  • To help other kitchen staff develop their abilities, a chef would coach and mentor them. 

Job Roles

It is crucial for someone who wants to pursue a career as a chef to be aware of the various types of chefs, some of which we have listed below.

  1. Commis Chef: A trainee who learns the shortcuts to master the techniques is a Commis Chef. Commis chefs study the fundamentals of food preparation in close collaboration with their mentors. During the first phase of learning, they cut vegetables, sharpen knives, get measuring cups, and clean up the mess.
  1. Chef de Partie: A chef of this kind excels in the preparatory work of a specific kind of food. They will only prepare fish until they are experts at it. Once they become specialized in it, then they move to the next.
  1. Sous Chef: The Sous Chef is the Head Chef’s assistant and is in charge of running the kitchen. Senior chef is another name for a sous chef. He or she is knowledgeable about every facet of food preparation.
  1. Executive Chef: The executive chef is in charge of managing all aspects of the kitchen, including menu planning, food preparation, and hiring and managing kitchen staff.
  1. Chef: A restaurant’s distinguishing style establishes its reputation. In order to maintain this distinctive style in the dishes being served, the head chef introduces it to the establishment and oversees the staff. With his or her vision, the head chef is accountable for the restaurant’s success.
  1. Travelling Chef: A travelling chef is a person who operates a food truck or works in one while visiting various locations, cities, and nations. After graduating from culinary school, many students want to start their own businesses, such as a restaurant or mobile food trucks.

Career Path to be a Chef

To establish a career as a Chef, you can follow this path.

Path 1:

Complete your 10+2 in any stream from a recognized board. You can attend a reputable university to earn a degree in hotel management and catering technology or culinary arts. You can also opt for a master’s degree followed by your bachelor’s degree. 

Salary in different career stages of a Chef

Entry-levelRs.1,80,000 to Rs.3,00,000
AverageRs.6,00,000  to Rs.9,00,000
Senior-LevelRs.12,00,000 to Rs.24,00,000

Skills to become a Chef

To establish a career as a Chef, these are a few skills you need to acquire.

  1.  Teamwork
    A successful chef profession requires the ability to collaborate and get along with your team. Every person has a part to play in the success of the service, therefore being a chef in a kitchen is similar to being a cog in a machine. 
  1. Possibility of Learning
    You must become an expert in the flavours and preparation methods of many foods, which might take a lot of time and effort. You must be willing to learn new things all the time if you want to become a great chef.
  1. Leadership Talent
    The Head Chef is in charge of the kitchen, thus they must be able to deliver instructions and have them swiftly carried out. They must simultaneously keep the kitchen’s ambience positive. Along with ensuring everything runs smoothly, they might also need to mentor and coach junior staff members during service.
  1. Creativity
    Following a recipe is only one part of being a chef. A chef will be imaginative when it comes to creating a menu, how the food appears on the plate, and how the dish tastes to the patrons. They’ll use their creativity to design the kitchen’s functionality as well. 
  1. Authentic passion
    You must genuinely want to be the one who elevates others’ eating occasions. Keeping your artistic flair alive and fostering your love of all things culinary will make work more enjoyable for you.
  1. Ability to Multitask Skillfully
    To make up a whole dish, there can be several different food components on one plate. If there were starters at the table, there may have been four other dishes that need to be taken into account when putting this one dish together. It takes a lot of practice to be able to think about everything at once and comprehend and be aware of what each area of the kitchen is doing. 
  1. Resilience
    Chefs routinely get criticism on the cuisine they prepare from other chefs, coworkers, and customers, and not all of it will be favourable. You must be able to take criticism in stride, consider it objectively, and determine whether or not it is justified.
  1. Organisation
    We all know that working in a kitchen can be very hectic, so it’s crucial that you have the stamina to keep things neat and orderly at all times. To avoid feeling overwhelmed in your sector, take the time to clean your surfaces as you go. Put everything back where it belongs. 
  1. Management of time
    Victor, a classically educated chef with over fifteen years of experience before starting his own company in commercial kitchen design, contributes our sixth skill. Victor emphasizes the value of time management, saying that this ability has proven useful to him outside of the kitchen as well.
  1. Stamina
    Working long periods on your feet in hot conditions and without many breaks while working in a kitchen may be highly physically taxing. Additionally, it can take a lot of mental energy to handle the stress and maintain excellence in all areas of your sector and kitchen. 

Is becoming a Chef a good career option?

A career as a chef offers excellent career advancement from Commis Chef to Demi Chef to Chef de partie to Sous Chef to Chef de cuisine to Executive Chef, in addition to job satisfaction. You can also pursue your career in various settings, such as eateries, inns, resorts, catering services, and corporate gatherings.

People will continue to desire to eat out, and since the hospitality sector is steadily expanding year over year, there will always be plenty of exciting job opportunities available.

You can always look for a job as a chef no matter where you choose to reside. Most chefs learn by making and cooking a variety of dishes, and some are content to continue down that road. But if you develop a strong passion for Mexican, Thai, or even desserts, there are plenty of opportunities to specialize in those cuisines. If you decide to become a pastry chef, you have a lot of options to challenge yourself.

Most chefs have a great deal of passion for what they do, and many of them decide to go independent and open their own restaurants.

If you are really keen on learning about these topics, want hands-on exposure, and want to learn more about how you can pursue a career as a Chef, check out the Clever Harvey JuniorMBA- Entrepreneurship course.

Types of industries hiring a Chef

A career as a chef is fun but extremely challenging. A chef or head cook may work in restaurants, private homes, hotels, casinos, or other establishments providing food service. They put in a variety of hours, including early morning, late nights, weekends, and holidays. This job typically has full-time hours and is very fast-paced. Due to the higher wages paid in these establishments—upscale restaurants, casinos, and hotels—you should prepare for fierce competition.

Top recruiters for a Chef in India

Top Recruiters in India
Taj Hotels
Oberoi Hotels
Ginger Hotels 
ITC Hotels
Lalit Hotels
Royal Orchid Hotels
Top Recruiters in India
  1. Ginger Hotels 
  2. ITC Hotels
  3. Lalit Hotels
  4. Oberoi Hotels
  5. Royal Orchid Hotels
  6. Taj Hotels

Courses to upskill as a Chef

Course Name Duration
Certificate Course in BakeryNA
Certificate Course in Food Production1.5 years
Craft Course in Food Production1.5 years

English must have been one of the main subjects taken during the final year of the 10+2 or equivalent program in any field (Arts, Science, or Commerce) to qualify for the aforementioned courses.

If you are really keen on learning about these topics, want hands-on exposure, and want to learn more about how you can become a Chef, check out the Clever Harvey JuniorMBA- Entrepreneurship course.

Educational qualifications to become a Chef

Degrees in India

Undergraduate degrees to become a Chef in India

  1. BA in Culinary Arts
  2. Bachelor of Hotel Management (BHM) in Culinary
  3. B.Sc. in Catering Science and Hotel Management
  4. B.Sc. in Hospitality and Hotel Management

Postgraduate degrees to become a Chef in India

M.A. (Master of Arts) Culinary Arts1 year
M.H.M. (Master of Hotel Management)2 years
M.H.M.C.T. (Master of Hotel Management and Catering Technology)2 years
M.T.H.M. (Master of Tourism and Hotel Management)2 years

Degrees abroad

Undergraduate degrees to become a Chef abroad

  1. BA in Culinary Arts
  2. B.Sc. in Hospitality and Hotel Management
  3. B.Sc. in Catering Science and Hotel Management

Postgraduate degrees to become a Chef abroad

MSc Culinary Innovation and Food Product Development1 year
Higher Certificate in Arts in Culinary Arts2 years


Books to read

  • Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain 
  • Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child 
  • The Art of Simple Food by Alice Waters
  • The Making of a Chef by Michael Ruhlman
  • The Professional Chef by the Culinary Institute of America

Popular Chefs in India

  1. Vikas Khanna
  2. Sanjyot Keer
  3. Vicky Ratnani
  4. Sanjeev Kapoor
  5. Pankaj Bhadauria
  6. Vineet Bhatia
  7. Anahita Dhondy 
  8. Harpal Singh Sokhi 
  9. Ranveer Brar
  10. Shipra Khanna
  11. Ajay Chopra
  12. Kunal Kapur
  13. Pooja Dhingra 

Shows you can watch

  1. Hell’s Kitchen
  2. MasterChef
  3. Next Level Chef
  4. Top Chef
  5. Sugar Rush
  6. The Final Table
  7. Cutthroat Kitchen
  8. The Great Food Truck Race

That’s all you needed to know about your career as a Chef. We hope this blog helped you and answered all your questions about how you can become a chef, what you need to study, and where you can work. Good luck!

FAQs about the career as a Chef

Who is a Chef?

A chef is a skilled professional cook and tradesman who is educated in all aspects of food preparation, specializes in a particular cuisine and is a skilled cook. The word “chef” is derived from the term chef de cuisine, which designates the manager or head of a kitchen. Chefs have the choice of formal education from an institution or on-the-job training under a seasoned chef.

How is a chef’s life going?

Head chefs would designate significant menu items and oversee the mise en place before dinner. Chefs will learn that their tasks change significantly over the course of the dinner service in order to coordinate the kitchen staff, monitor quality, and production rates, and assist with cooking.

What does a chef do?

A chef is in charge of managing the staff in the kitchen as well as the food preparation and cooking. The chefs, who maintain contact with suppliers, may place orders for the restaurant’s weekly food supply. They could create brand-new menu items and work with the general manager to set corporate goals.

What job profiles can I explore if I become a chef?

Commis Chef
Chef de Partie
Sous Chef
Executive Chef
Travelling Chef

How long does it take to become a chef?

Depending on whether you choose to do a short-term course, a degree, or a diploma, it can vary anywhere between 6 months to 3 years.

Can you be a chef without a degree?

Although there are many different educational paths that one can take to become a chef, many students opt to finish a 3- or 4-year culinary arts program. For becoming a chef, undergraduate certificate and degree programs are the most popular. An MBA program in hotel management is also an option.

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How do I start my Career as a Chef? 10 Things students should learn before Hotel Management Best 10 Colleges to study Hotel Management in India What Jobs are Best after 12th Arts?
How do I start my Career as a Chef? 10 Things students should learn before Hotel Management Best 10 Colleges to study Hotel Management in India What Jobs are Best after 12th Arts?