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Chef Cover Letter Examples [Sous, Executive, Pastry]

Chef Cover Letter Examples [Sous, Executive, Pastry]

Prep: 40 mins. Cook: 120 mins. Servings: 1. Yield: One French Laundry-level chef cover letter guaranteed to land you the job of your dreams. Let’s get cooking!

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Being a chef is a tough career path. It takes incredible determination and skill (and a fair bit of luck) to succeed. And even then, you might still find yourself unable to get the job you want. 

 

After months of job hunting, is it time to hang up your apron? Were all those years, those cuts and burns and long hours, those Thanksgivings and Christmases away from your family really for nothing? 

 

No way! 

 

If you're serving one job application after another to no effect, it just means it’s time to refresh the menu. You can get your dream job at that Michelin-starred restaurant: 

 

You just need to cook up an irresistible cover letter that’s the crème de la crème of job applications. Don’t worry—it’s easier than you think, and you’re about to learn the secret recipe. 

 

This guide will show you: 

 

  • A chef cover letter sample better than 9 out of 10 others.
  • How to write a cover letter for a chef that will get you hired. 
  • Chef cover letter techniques that will make your best skills shine. 

 

Want to write your cover letter fast? Use our cover letter builder. Choose from 20+ professional cover letter templates that match your resume. See actionable examples and get expert tips along the way.

 

Create your resume now

 

chef resume and cover letter set

Chef Cover Letter for a Resume—See more cover letter templates and create your cover letter here.

 

Considering applying for other jobs? Check out these guides: 

 

 

Want to explore your options further? See our full selection of cover letter examples for every career:Best Cover Letter Examples

 

Executive Chef Cover Letter Sample

 

Your Name

Your Job Title

Mailing Address

Phone Number

Email Address

 

Date

 

Hiring Manager Name

Job Title

Company Name

Mailing Address

 

Dear [Hiring Manager Name],

 

As an executive chef with 7+ years of experience, I was happy to learn of the job opportunity at Faux Nom. At Lieu Imaginaire, my new additions to the menu increased revenue by approximately $1,800/week and placed the restaurant on the Food Network’s Best in Chicago list. It would be an honor to apply my skills and expertise towards providing fine dining experiences at Faux Nom, all while driving revenue and maintaining your restaurant’s excellent standards. 

 

Your values of teamwork and ownership must require your executive chef to be adaptable and proactive, demonstrating exceptional leadership skills. I believe that some of my past achievements demonstrate just how quickly I would excel in this position: 

 

  • Reorganized back-of-house operations to reduce the order-to-table time by 20% and increase profit by 15%. 
  • Introduced a new system for costing recipes and tracking menu profits, cutting unnecessary expenses and securing savings of over $3,000/week.
  • Led a back-of-house team of 20 and trained 7 new line/prep cooks.
  • Initiated regular team-building activities for back- and front-of-house, promoting efficient communication and reducing employee turnover by 40%.

 

I first visited Faux Nom in 2017, during the Natural Products Expo, and it’s been my favorite dining spot in Philadelphia ever since—your cheese soufflé is second to none! I’m all the more excited about this opportunity since one of your waiters, Paul, told me that you’re looking to add more vegan options to your menu. As a chef experienced in creating vegan fine dining recipes, I’d love to contribute to your menu expansion and make Faux Nom the go-to restaurant for vegan diners. 

 

It would be a pleasure to discuss in greater detail how my skills and experience could become an asset to Faux Nom’s continuous development and success and help the restaurant achieve its ingredient sustainability goals. 

 

Best regards, 

 

[Your name], Executive chef

 

P.S.: I’d love to tell you more about how my twist on the classic shrimp Provençal earned 5-star reviews from 6 regional critics! 

 

Who needs Hell’s Kitchen when you can simply write an executive chef cover letter like that and land the job the easy way? And hey—

 

You know what goes well with a superb cover letter? An equally enticing resume. Read more: How to Write a Chef Resume: Guide and Examples

 

Here’s how to write a job-winning chef cover letter: 

 

1. Use the Best Chef Cover Letter Template

 

Imagine a recipe that starts with the cooking instructions, ends with the prep, and features a list of ingredients without quantities for each product. 

 

You wouldn’t trust it, would you? 

 

Just like a good recipe, your cover letter needs to be presented in a way that’s immediately familiar and understandable to the reader. If the recruiter can’t make sense of your cover letter within a couple of seconds, they’ll discard it without a second look. 

 

So, here’s what your cover letter should look like, boiled down to the essentials: 

 

Cover Letter for a Chef [Checklist]

 

  1. Cover letter header

 

  • Your contact information, including your name, job title, phone number, and email. Your mailing address is only necessary if you’re applying by post. 
  • (Optional) Include relevant social media if you’re something of a foodie influencer
  • The date of your application. 
  • The addressee’s (hiring manager’s) contact information. 

 

  1. Appropriate cover letter greeting

 

 

  1. Cover letter body—3 paragraphs: 

 

  • An introduction, including your years of experience, an eye-catching professional achievement, and an offer to the restaurant. 
  • A section outlining your biggest accomplishments as a chef and highlighting your suitability for the role. 
  • A description of why you want this particular job, showing that you share the restaurant’s values and goals. 

 

  1. Closing paragraph: 

 

  • An offer to discuss your suitability further and a deliverable that you could provide for the restaurant if hired. 

 

  1. Signature:

 

  • Best regards,
  • Your name and title

 

  1. (Optional) P.S.:

 

  • An additional key skill or achievement to make your cover letter stand out like Bobby Flay in a Wendy’s. 

 

That’s all! See how it’s already starting to look pretty easy? 

 

Anyway—

 

Your mise en place is all set and waiting, so let’s get to writing! 

Looking for more examples of proper formatting? See here: How to Format a Cover Letter

2. Start Your Chef Cover Letter the Right Way

 

The first paragraph of your chef cover letter is like an appetizer (or amuse bouche, if you want to get fancy). 

 

Its purpose is to give the reader a taste of your skills and make them eager for more. You only have a few seconds of their time, so you need to make an immediate impression to get them to read on. 

 

Like so: 

 

Sous Chef Cover Letter Examples [First Paragraph]

RIGHT

Catherine Taylor

Sous chef

687 Platinum Drive

Philadelphia, PA 19108

724-741-9716

catherinexyztaylor@gmail.com

 

03/10/2021

 

Patricia Jackson

Hiring Manager

Faux Nom

4103 Wakefield Street

Philadelphia, PA 19106

 

Dear Mrs. Jackson,

 

During my time at Lieu Imaginaire, I saved $600/week in unnecessary ingredient expenses while maintaining 100% positive reviews. As a sous chef with 5+ years of experience, I’d be honored to apply my cooking skills and thoughtful leadership towards Faux Nom’s continued success and strategic menu expansion. 

Comes out perfect every time! 

 

Here are the key ingredients: 

 

  • A mention of your job title and years of experience. 
  • A measurable achievement, backed up by specific numbers. 
  • A promise to achieve the same and more for the new employer. 

 

How you combine these is up to you—just make sure they all appear in the first paragraph. 

 

Conversely, you don’t want to end up with something like this: 

WRONG

To whom it may concern, 

 

I’m writing in response to your job advertisement for the position of sous chef, as listed on siteforjobs.com. I’m an experienced chef who’s skilled both in cooking and in kitchen management, seeking to continue developing my skills in a fast-paced, dynamic environment. 

Two words: dead plate. 

 

This cover letter’s flying into the trash can faster than a burnt piece of cod. 

 

You can’t serve something so bland and unoriginal and expect a positive response. Recruiters have dozens (if not hundreds) of cover letters to read for each chef job—if you don’t wow them with your intro, they’ll just move on to the next one. 

Need another demo? Check here: How to Write the Best Cover Letter Introduction

3. Write a Great Chef Cover Letter Middle

 

Good job! 

 

Your starter went down really well, and you have the recruiter’s attention. Now you need to continue impressing them with your next courses. 

 

Here’s how to prepare a job-winning chef cover letter middle: 

 

  1. Show that you understand the role of a chef in this particular restaurant. 
  2. Prove that you have the right skills to succeed. Use bullet points and numbers (e.g. percentages and specific amounts) for maximum impact. 
  3. Explain why you want to work in this restaurant more than any other. 

 

Easy, right? Remember that you’re going to prove that you’re the right person for the job using specific examples, rather than simply stating you’re a good candidate. 

 

Let’s see what it looks like all plated up and ready to serve: 

 

Chef Cover Letter Examples [Middle]

RIGHT

Your values of teamwork and ownership must require your executive chef to be adaptable and proactive, demonstrating exceptional leadership skills. I believe that some of my past achievements demonstrate just how quickly I would excel in this position: 

 

  • Reorganized back-of-house operations to reduce the order-to-table time by 20% and increase profit by 15%. 
  • Introduced a new system for costing recipes and tracking menu profits, cutting unnecessary expenses and securing savings of over $3,000/week.
  • Led a back-of-house team of 20 and trained 7 new line/prep cooks.
  • Initiated regular team-building activities for back- and front-of-house, promoting efficient communication and reducing employee turnover by 40%.

 

I first visited Faux Nom in 2017, during the Natural Products Expo, and it’s been my favorite dining spot in Philadelphia ever since—your cheese soufflé is second to none! I’m all the more excited about this opportunity since one of your waiters, Paul, told me that you’re looking to add more vegan options to your menu. As a chef experienced in creating vegan fine dining recipes, I’d love to contribute to your menu expansion and make Faux Nom the go-to restaurant for vegan diners.

Huh.

 

If Michelin handed out stars for cover letters, this candidate would get 3 on the spot. 

 

As you can see, it’s important to fully tailor your chef or sous chef cover letter to the restaurant. Restaurant owners tend to be incredibly proud of their businesses, so don’t be afraid to wax the table—a little flattery goes a long way! 

 

For ideas on what to mention in your cover letter, visit the restaurant, try their food, and talk to the FOH staff. You can also research the place online to find out more about the restaurant’s history and values. 

WRONG

I can’t imagine my life without cooking—it’s been my passion since I was a child. I always knew I wanted to become a chef, and even though I’ve reached a good measure of success in my career, I’m still always looking for ways to continue my professional development. For example, I recently took up vegan cooking—I’ve been testing various combinations of ingredients to find appealing, meat-free alternatives to classic dishes like stews and casseroles. 

 

I feel that I’ve exhausted my possibilities at my current job and I’m ready for a positive change. I’m looking for a restaurant that will give me the freedom to try new things and continue growing as a chef. 

Well—

 

This one’s dying on the pass, and not even a quick flash in the salamander could fix it. 

 

Here’s the thing: passion is great, especially when you’re applying for an entry-level position. At a chef’s level, however, measurable achievements and proven skills are far more important. 

 

To make matters worse, the second paragraph implies that there was some kind of conflict at this person’s previous restaurant. This brings us to an important point: 

 

Flying into a Gordon Ramsey-esque fit of rage works well on TV, but not so much in a busy kitchen. Restaurant owners want their chefs to be even-tempered team players with great communication and leadership skills. You should try to present yourself as such in your cover letter, just like the candidate in the correct example. 

Make sure you get your portion size right. Read more: What's the Best Cover Letter Length?

When making a resume in our builder, drag & drop bullet points, skills, and auto-fill the boring stuff. Spell check? Check. Start building your resume here.

When you’re done, Zety’s resume builder will score your resume and tell you exactly how to make it better.

4. End Your Chef Cover Letter With an Offer

 

Ready to tackle the last chit on the rail? 

 

The ending of your chef cover letter is incredibly important. Here’s why: 

 

Imagine you’re serving a career-making meal to, say, Emeril Lagasse. Everything’s going well, Mr. Lagasse loved your appetizers and entrée, and now he’s eager to try your signature dessert—

 

And instead of serving a mind-blowing lemon crème brûlée, you hand him a mint chocolate Twinkie.

 

Yeah. 

 

To get the most flavor out of your closing paragraph, combine these two ingredients: 

 

  • An offer to discuss your skills and suitability further. It implies that you have even more achievements to share, and it’s less pushy than directly asking for an interview. 
  • A mention of how you can help the restaurant to reach a specific goal—ideally one that the place is currently chasing. 

 

Like this: 

 

Pastry Chef Cover Letter Examples [Closing Paragraph]

RIGHT

I’d cherish the opportunity to discuss how my expertise could become a valuable asset to Faux Nom. I trust that between the exceptional talent of your executive chef and my excellent desert preparation and leadership skills, Faux Nom’s first Michelin star could be just around the corner. 

 

Best regards, 

 

Timothy Ward, Pastry chef

 

P.S.: I’m looking forward to sharing the details of how I saved Lieu Imaginaire $3,200/month by negotiating contracts with different suppliers! 

Bam!

 

This closing paragraph is filled with additional value and garnished with a P.S. that stands out like cherries on a cream pie. 

 

For comparison, here’s blind baking gone wrong: 

WRONG

Thank you for taking the time to consider my application. I would be happy to attend an interview at your convenience, please feel free to contact me anytime via phone or email. 

 

Sincerely, 

T. Ward

...mint chocolate Twinkie, anyone? 

 

Let’s see—

 

We’re aiming for a Mary Berry level of communication. This is more like The Swedish Chef. It’s obvious that you want an interview—there’s no need to state it in your cover letter. Instead, you can use this paragraph to your advantage, as we saw in the correct example above. 

Not sure what to taco ‘bout in your final paragraph? Read more: How to End Your Cover Letter the Right Way

Key Takeaway

 

Here’s a recap of how to write a chef cover letter:

 

How Do I Write a Cover Letter for a Chef?

 

  • Follow the correct cover letter format. Chef cover letters should be tidy and organized like a professional mise en place
  • Open on a big professional achievement. Kicking off with an impressive starter will set you up for success. 
  • Prove yourself. Give the restaurant a taste of your abilities by listing your best accomplishments as a chef. Sprinkle in some numbers and key skills for extra flavor. 
  • End your cover letter with an offer. Don’t just ask for an interview—instead, say how you’ll contribute to the success of the restaurant if you get the job. 

 

Thanks for reading! What’s the most challenging part of writing a chef cover letter? Is it difficult to quantify your achievements as a chef? Perhaps you can offer some advice of your own? Drop us a line in the comments below, we’d love to chat!

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Hanna Wołoszyn
Hanna is a career expert dedicated to providing actionable, effective job hunting advice for a broad range of professions. In her guides, she shares job-winning resume and cover letter techniques to give readers the tools and confidence to unlock their full professional potential.

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