What does a Line Cook do?
A line cook, also known as chef de partie, works in a restaurant and is usually assigned a particular area of production in the kitchen, such as fish, pastry, vegetables, or grilled foods. Typically, a line cook is the only person in his or her department. In large restaurants, however, they may have their own assistants, such as a commis or a demi-chef de partie. Line cooks prepare, cook, and assemble dishes within their assigned area.
Often, a high school diploma is required to become a line cook. Most line cooks learn through on-the-job training. However, some line cooks also have a culinary degree. Line cooks need to be able to take direction and perform their tasks with speed and accuracy. They often work very early or late hours, and on weekends and holidays. Depending on the size and type of the restaurant, line cooks may be able to advance in their career and become a line supervisor, a sous-chef or a head chef.
- Prepare ingredients then cook and assemble dishes as indicated by recipes
- Perform portion control and minimize waste to keep cost within forecasted range
- Ensure that all dishes are prepared in a timely manner by restocking ingredients at work station and meeting prep times to ensure smooth delivery
- Set up and clean station according to restaurant protocol
- Maintain a clean work station area, including kitchen equipment, tables, and shelves
- Comply with applicable sanitary, health, and personal hygiene standards
- Ensure quality and freshness of ingredients and products
- Perform additional tasks as assigned by the line supervisor, sous-chef, or executive chef
- High School Diploma or equivalent required; culinary degree preferred
- 1-3 years of experience cooking in a restaurant, hotel, or resort
- Understanding of cooking methods and procedures, and knife handling skills
- Ability to perform tasks with accuracy, speed, and attention to detail
- Ability to read and follow cooking directions
- Ability to remain calm in a fast-paced environment
- Must be organized and self-motivated
- Must be able to stand, bend, stretch, and lift, and carry heavy materials
Line Cook Salaries
Average Base Pay
Line Cook Career Path
Learn how to become a Line Cook, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.
Years of Experience Distribution
Line Cook Insights
“You get good work experience there the people that work there are also really great.”
“They worked with my schedule and the job was a good start for new workers.”
“I was working there for 4 and a half years and asked for a raise and a performance review.”
“Chefs took great care to make sure I was comfortable in the kitchen and felt I was good at doing my job.”
“This location hardly ever gives raises and doesn't provide you much opportunity to grow in your career.”
“Working here is great as long as you have a good team to work with!”
“Great group of people the best part of the job was the community you work with.”
“The staff was the best I had ever worked with in all my years of cooking.”
Line Cook Interviews
Frequently asked questions about the role and responsibilities of a Line Cook
When working as a Line Cook, the most common skills you will need to perform your job and for career success are Slicing, VERBAL Communication, Writing, Excellent Communication and Schedules.
- Prep Cook
The most common qualifications to become a Line Cook is a minimum of a Bachelor's Degree and an average of 0 - 1 of experience not including years spent in education and/or training.