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What does an Executive Chef do?

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Talent.com talent.com
Answered December 20 2021
Career Expert at Talent.com
Executive Chefs work long days, typically beginning their day supervising and managing kitchen staff. Food prep, planning, directing, and readying new dishes and daily specials must be factored into the workday, sometimes in advance. Inspecting supplies, equipment, and work areas for cleanliness and functionality are high on the importance list.  
Chefs of this caliber are responsible for building a network of vendors for the business, taking care of food inventory, and making respective orders with those handling their food and materials supply on the vendor side. That ensures that all food and ingredients meet the pre-established quality and freshness standards. Executive Chefs may have the opportunity to visit vendors’ food processing plants and labs to test new products. Attending vendor conferences is another avenue to discovering new products and state-of-the-art equipment.  
Executive Chefs are constantly applying industry-appropriate safety and hygiene standards in the kitchen. They organize, coordinate, and oversee cooking processes, tasks, and activities within the foodservice establishment. Outside of the immediate need for cooking and managing food prep, Executive Chefs assign prices to dishes and services based on production costs and cooking processes. They also keep track of financial statements and records to ensure safe-keeping.    

Roles and responsibilities of an Executive Chef
Here’s a non-exhaustive list of everyday tasks Executive Chefs are required to complete:   
  • Establish daily menus and specialties.     
  • Prepare daily specials and other customer orders as requested.   
  • Oversee the activities and duties of members of the kitchen staff.  
  • Oversee that the portions and dish standards are met before they go out to the customers.   
  • Operate various equipment, including pans, pots, cutlery, ovens, grills, slicers, boilers, grinders, and blenders.   
  • Create new recipes based on the availability of ingredients depending on seasons and recent gourmet trends.   
  • Plan and coordinate catering services, menus, and dishes for events according to customers’ demands.   
  • Oversee all activities in the kitchen.   
  • Inspect the kitchen area, the supplies, and all the kitchen equipment in use and storage areas for organization and cleanliness and ensure they meet all established standards.   
  • Consider the costs of ingredients and their storage requirements.  
  • Order the necessary food supplies and kitchen equipment repairs or purchases for the kitchen to run smoothly.   
  • Check groceries that come in daily.   
  • Ensure the highest quality standards are met for service, food quality, cleanliness, and profitability.   
  • Supervise kitchen staff.   
  • Prepare work schedules.   
  • Interview candidates for kitchen positions (e.g., Dishwasher, Cook, and Sous-Chef) and train new employees.   
  • Manage administrative operations.   
  • Keep track of ingredient and beverage stock.   
  • Use specialized software to perform administrative tasks related to running a restaurant.   
  • Manage and submit periodic reports regarding costs and expenses.   
  • Balance the accounting books as needed.   
  • Follow all the establishment’s safety, hygiene, and security policies and procedures at all times.   
  • Maintain the hygiene of the kitchen according to the health inspector’s standards.   
  • Report any incidents or injuries to the manager.   
  • Follow all safety and sanitation policies when handling food and beverages.   
  • Follow and adapt to new culinary and gourmet trends, be open to new ideas, and apply them in the kitchen.