Kitchen Manager Jobs: Salary and Career Facts

Explore the career requirements for kitchen managers. Get the facts about salary, job duties, training requirements and job outlook to determine if this is the right career for you. Schools offering Hotel & Restaurant Management degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Is a Kitchen Manager?

Kitchen managers are responsible for running a kitchen in a restaurant or food service facility. They ensure orders are completed correctly. They hire, train and at times fire staff members. They make sure food preparation is done properly, along with the presentation and portion size of plated food. They make sure all equipment and supplies meet safety standards. Kitchen managers are also in charge of scheduling staff and take care of any customer concerns.

An overview of some of the career information is profiled in the table below.

Training Required On-the-job
Key Skills Leadership, organization, communication, decision-making
Job Growth (2014-2024) 5% (for all food service managers)*
Median Salary (2016) $37,562 (Entry-level), $39,585 (Mid-career), $40,240 (Experienced)**

Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **PayScale.com

What Training is Available for Kitchen Managers?

Kitchen managers usually rise to their position by accumulating work experience as part of a kitchen staff. However, earning a certificate in kitchen management or an associate's degree or bachelor's degree in food service management can accelerate the process. These programs prepare you to work in a kitchen setting and acquaint you with current trends in the food service industry. Courses cover topics in menu planning, purchasing and cost control, principles of food preparation, food quality and sanitation. Associate's degree and bachelor's degree programs will also include general education courses in composition, the social sciences and the humanities.

Where Do Professionals Work?

Career opportunities are available with any food serving operation large enough to employ a specialized kitchen staff. Restaurants, assisted living centers, nursing homes, bars and nightclubs, catering companies and school dining services are among the institutions that employ kitchen managers. Although it doesn't have figures for kitchen managers, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that there were approximately 201,370 food service managers employed in the U.S. in 2015 (www.bls.gov). Employment of food service managers was projected to grow five percent from 2014-2024. Opportunities will come primarily from the need to replace managers who retire or transfer to other occupations.

What Will My Duties Be?

Your main responsibility will be to coordinate the work of cooks, assistant cooks, pantry personnel and other kitchen staffers to make sure food is prepared and served in a clean, efficient and timely manner. In addition to monitoring food preparation, you're also likely to perform a number of kitchen and organizational support duties, including assisting with menu planning, purchasing supplies and kitchen equipment, hiring staff, evaluating staff performance, and consulting with administrators on kitchen policies and procedures.

What Can I Expect to Earn?

According to PayScale.com, as of October 2016, you could earn a median salary of $37,562 as an entry-level manager, while mid-level kitchen managers made a median annual income of $39,585. A median salary of $40,240 was earned by experienced kitchen managers, per PayScale.com.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

If a kitchen manager isn't what you see yourself doing, there are other related career options that might interest you. One option is a lodging manager, which requires a high school diploma. Lodging managers ensure that hotels are run efficiently for guests. They accommodate guests' needs and oversee employees. Another similar option is a waiter or waitress, which does not require any formal education. They take the orders and bring food to customers dining in restaurants.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Strayer University

    Strayer University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Strayer University:

    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • Purdue University Global

    Purdue University Global responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Purdue University Global:

    • Associate Programs

    Online Programs Available

  • Penn Foster High School

    Penn Foster High School responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Penn Foster High School:

    Online Programs Available

  • The University of Montana

    Campus Locations:

    • Montana: Missoula
  • Ferris State University

    Campus Locations:

    • Michigan: Big Rapids
  • Sullivan University

    Campus Locations:

    • Kentucky: Louisville
  • Milwaukee Area Technical College

    Campus Locations:

    • Wisconsin: Milwaukee
  • Johnson & Wales University

    Campus-Based Programs Available:

    View All Locations
    • Colorado: Denver
    • Florida: Denver, North Miami
    • North Carolina: Denver, North Miami, Charlotte
    • Rhode Island: Denver, North Miami, Charlotte, Providence
  • Southwestern College

    Campus Locations:

    • California: Chula Vista
  • Wiregrass Georgia Technical College

    Campus Locations:

    • Georgia: Valdosta