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Culinary Resume: Sample and Complete Writing Guide [20+ Tips]

Culinary Resume: Sample and Complete Writing Guide [20+ Tips]

You’re not a “cook.” Cooks make food. You design creative and exciting experiences for your patrons. Prove you’ve earned your cutlets with this umami-level sample culinary resume.

Tom Gerencer
Tom Gerencer
Career Writer

Culinary Resume Sample

 

Martin Brandao, Head Chef

martin.q.brandao@gmail.com

linkedin.com/in/martinqbrandao

603-481-7565

 

Professional Summary

 

Talented head chef with 7+ years of experience. Skilled in staff management and creating menus. Seeking to enhance the dining experience at The Joyous Ocelot. At The Prawn Broker, received two five star reviews from Massachusetts Life Magazine for, “exciting menu, flawlessly executed.” Served a packed house 5 nights a week thanks to vibrant word of mouth.

 

Work Experience

 

Chef

The Prawn Broker

Feb 2014–May 2019

  • Served as head chef in 110-seat five-star restaurant. Presided over a sous chef, 6 junior sous chefs, and a kitchen staff of 20.
  • Maintained five-star reviews from Massachusetts Life Magazine’s head food critic. She praised my menu as exciting and flawlessly executed.
  • Served 500+ dinners per night, 5 nights a week. Built unstoppable word-of-mouth thanks to creative and intriguing menu.
  • Trained 25 chefs, sous chefs, and other kitchen staff in food safety, preparation, storage, and presentation best practices.

 

Chef

Northern Maine Outdoor Center

Jan 2012–Feb 2014

  • Ran kitchen in remote but popular year-round outdoor center.
  • Raised restaurant rating from three-star to four-star in 15 months.

 

Education

 

2012 Cambridge School of Culinary Arts

Professional Chef’s Program Graduate

  • Pursued a passion for farm-to-table cuisine.
  • Excelled in food safety and menu-creation coursework.

 

2007–2011 Boston College

Bachelor of Science in Business Administration

  • Wrote a weekly column on smoked foods preparation in student paper.
  • President, student culinary arts club.

 

Skills

 

  • Technical Skills: Staff management, menu creation, business knowledge, food safety
  • Soft Skills: Interpersonal skills, leadership, time management, collaboration

 

Activities

 

  • Wrote three cookbooks that sold 1,200 and 1,500 copies.
  • Make clam & corn chowder 1x a week at Bunker Hill Mission.

 

Do you need a certain kind of resume for culinary jobs? See our other guides:

 

 

Want to save time and have your resume ready in 5 minutes? Try our resume builder. It’s fast and easy to use. Plus, you’ll get ready-made content to add with one click. See 20+ resume templates and create your resume here.

 

sample resume templates

Sample Culinary Resume—See more templates and create your resume here.

 

Here’s how to write a culinary resume that gets jobs:

 

1. Choose the Best Culinary Resume Format

 

Culinary professionals like chefs, sous chefs, and pastry chefs have expert-level food-preparation knowledge. They create and implement menus that excite and delight their patrons. A culinary resume must show skills in food safety, kitchen management, and other chef and kitchen skills.

 

Presentation matters.

 

That’s true in a dining room and in a resume for culinary jobs.

 

So—

 

You need a well-proportioned resume.

 

That’s why the resume samples for experienced culinary pros online use the chronological resume layout.

 

It’s the best layout for resumes, just as clock-face plating is the best food presentation style. It puts things in the right order for the customer.

 

 

Pro Tip: What font should a resume be in? Pick an easy-reading font like Calibri, Cambria, Verdana, or Helvetica.

 

2. Write a Culinary Resume Objective or Resume Summary

 

The restaurant manager is busy.

 

Your culinary resume must be appetizing right away.

 

So write a short elevator speech. It’s called a professional profile or a profile summary for a resume.

 

Either way, it’s a sampler of all your finest culinary moments.

 

Here’s the recipe:

 

  • An adjective (talented, accomplished)
  • Title (Chef, Sous Chef, etc.)
  • Years of experience (7+, 5)
  • Your target (enhance the dining experience)
  • A taste of your skills (staff management, creating menus)
  • Skills proof (5-star reviews, served packed house)
  • Measures that convince (two reviews, 5 nights)

 

In a resume with no experience, you won’t have all those ingredients.

 

So—prove transferable abilities from non-culinary roles in an objective on your resume.

 

Example: if you managed a team of hotel valets, that proves leadership.

 

Pro Tip: How long should a professional resume be for culinary jobs? One page, unless your many food service accomplishments would rival Paul Bocuse’s.

 

3. Pair Your Resume with the Culinary Job Description

 

You’re a culinary pro, not a resume-writing pro.

 

Don’t make this rookie mistake:

 

Don’t whip up a generic culinary resume for every job opening.

 

Knowing how to write experience in a resume means knowing how to tailor your resume to each position.

 

  • Match your job titles to the online opening. If they say, “Head Chef,” that’s you. If they say, “Executive Chef,” use that.
  • You also need accomplishments for resume for culinary roles. Pick your proudest moments when you used the skills they’re asking for.
  • As with your summary, add numbers. “500+” works better than “a lot.”

 

Pro Tip: Spice things up by using the right verbs for resumes, like “served, trained, raised.” Never settle for the bland “responsible for” or “handled.”

 

4. Elevate Your Culinary Resume Education Section

 

Most resume education sections are as alike as canned food.

 

Make yours sizzle.

 

Don’t stop with your school name, dates of attendance, and degree.

 

Show off your culinary skills with more achievements.

 

Did you lead a culinary club? That proves leadership. Did you excel in food safety classes? That’s another plus.

 

Pro Tip: Definitely list cum laude on your resume for culinary jobs if you scored that high. Was your GPA more in the McDonald’s zone? Then leave it off unless you graduated this year.

 

5. List More Than Culinary Skills in Your Resume

 

List these work skills in your culinary resume:

 

Culinary Resume Skills

 

This technical skills list gives the basics:

 

  • Business knowledge
  • Kitchen management
  • Menu creation
  • Food safety
  • Presentation
  • Food quality
  • Cost control
  • Infrared Salamander Broiler
  • Vulcan 70in. Gas Range
  • Working with suppliers
  • Sourcing food and kitchen supplies

 

Of course you’ll need some soft skills too:

 

 

Pro Tip: Use a good mix of hard skills vs soft skills in your culinary arts resume. But don’t list too many. Go heavy on the few abilities the job ad holds in high regard.

 

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.

 

6. Add “Other” Sections to Your Culinary Resume

 

You can’t stop after “education.”

 

That’s as boring as a dry, plain chicken breast.

 

Add one or two of these:

 

 

Pro Tip: Listing certifications on a resume is easy. If they matter for the job, make a “Certifications” section under “Education.” If they’re “extra,” add them to “Activities.”

 

7. Send a Cover Letter With Your Culinary Resume

 

Should I submit a cover letter with my culinary resume?

 

It’ll boost your chance of getting hired.

 

But—

 

Don’t make an over-processed culinary cover letter.

 

  • Of the different cover letter formats, the three-paragraph style is your friend.
  • When starting a cover letter, mention something memorable like your biggest culinary “win.”
  • In your culinary cover letter middle, show you’re the perfect choice. If they have a Vulcan Broiler and you made 200 meals a night with one, say so.
  • When you’re closing a cover letter, offer something tasty. Example: “I’d be glad to share why Massachusetts Life Magazine called me the best chef in the state.”
  • How long are cover letters? They should be half a page.

 

Unsure how to follow up on a job application? Send a short, polite note once a week, with a brief reminder of the most memorable fact in your cover letter.

 

That’s it!

 

That’s how to write a culinary resume.

 

Will they be more impressed with your culinary arts resume or your cooking? Can you think of a way to make a resume for culinary jobs reflect your skills so they “get it?” Give us a shout in the comments. We’d love to talk!

 

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Tom Gerencer
Tom Gerencer
Tom Gerencer is a career expert who has published over 200 in-depth articles on Zety. Since 2016, he has been sharing advice on all things recruitment from writing winning resumes and cover letters to getting a promotion.
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