A step-by-step guide to writing a chef resume. 20+ actionable examples and tips from experts. Use our sample resume for chef jobs. Read more!
You're minutes away from writing the best line cook resume out there. Just picture this first:
You're standing in a crowd of line cooks. They're all wearing sweat pants.
You, by contrast, are in a crisp black double-breasted chef uniform with bright red trim.
You stand out like a folded steel Santoku in a drawer of coffee spoons.
That's what we want your line cook resume to do.
We can't do it by dipping it in wing sauce.
Instead, you'll need a resume for a line cook that gets attention on the merits.
This guide will show you:
- A line cook resume example better than 9 out of 10 other resumes.
- How to write a line cook resume that lands more interviews.
- Tips and examples of how to put skills and achievements on a line cook resume.
- How to describe your experience on a resume for a line cook to get any job you want.
Here's a sample resume for a line cook made using our resume builder.
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 Line Cook Resume—See more templates and create your resume here.
If you're considering other positions in the food service industry as well, we've got you covered. Here are some other guides for related professions:
- Barista Resume
- Bartender Resume
- Fast Food Resume
- Sous Chef Resume
- Banquet Server Resume
- Server Resume
- Waiter / Waitress Resume
What's the Best Format for a Line Cook Resume?
Meet the head cook, Joe.
His chef's whites are so spattered they look like a Jackson Pollock painting.
He hasn't got a lot of time to read the 300+ line cook resumes stored on his battered iPad.
Ready for a shock?
He only spends a few seconds with each one.
That means the way you format your cook resume really matters.
Reverse chronological is best.
Why? Because it shows your best cuts fast. That lets Joe finish up the appetizers before he moves on to the main course.
Use clean headings and crisp fonts. No comic sans.
Add white space to avoid serving up a spaghetti pile of words.
Last, save your assistant cook resume as a PDF. That'll keep your layout from turning to a roux in transit.
Pro Tip: PDFs are great, but check the job posting to make sure it doesn't rule them out. Some job openings reject line cook resume PDFs.
Feel like sampling other options for your professional line cook resume format? See our guide: 3 Resume Formats: How to Choose the Best One [Examples]
Want to make sure your resume will hook every recruiter and get you that interview? Get our free checklist and learn what makes a job-winning resume: 46 Things You Need To Do Before You Send Your Resume
How to Write a Resume Summary or Resume Objective
"This applicant looks great."
You want the restaurant manager to say those words when he first sees your resume for line cook jobs.
You can get there with a palatable line cook resume summary or resume objective.
A resume summary works for cooks with food trucks of experience. A resume objective is for those who've never plated a meal.
These two examples point the way.
Line Cook Resume Examples: Two Summaries
Look at these two very different line cook resume samples:
Line cook with four years experience seeking a new job. Highly skilled in cooking and prep work with good knife skills and food safety skills.
Not gag-worthy, but neither are the hundreds of other prep cook resumes in Joe's pile.
To wow him, you'll need to do it more like this:
Energetic line cook with 4+ years experience, seeking position at The Tousled Table. Delivered orders 98% on-time, with 95% customer satisfaction at the Melted Mermaid, thanks to expert skills in cooking, prep, knife work, and speed.
Boom. Like a teaspoonful of chopped Scotch Bonnet straight to the adrenal glands.
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.
Not quite that experienced yet? Don't fret. Check out the next two prep cook resume examples.
Two Entry-Level Line Cook Resume Objectives
If you don't have much experience, you'll need a resume objective for your line cook job resume.
Entry-level prep cook. No experience yet but eager to train on the job. I'm a very hard worker and I learn fast.
That standard resume objective blows it like ketchup on filet mignon.
But sprinkle on a few details, and even a new prep cook can look like Gordon Ramsay in the raw.
Hard-working prep cook seeking to deliver high quality food for the Tousled Table. Commended by management for volunteer work at Angel Wings Soup Kitchen. Also have prepped food at music fests and as a temp at Giguere's Market. Great cooking and knife skills.
Remember Joe? Our chef?
You just proved to him that you can do the job.
Pro Tip: Networking is king in the restaurant world. Can't get a job? Start eating at the bar on slow nights and rubbing elbows with the staff. Share your passion for food and see where it leads.
Want to really nail your resume? See the sample line cook resume template at the top. Also, see these articles: How To Write A Resume Summary: 21 Best Examples You Will See AND +20 Resume Objective Examples - Use Them on Your Resume (Tips)
How to Describe Your Line Cook Experience
Thor has a magic hammer that throws lightning bolts and punches holes in solid steel.
When it comes to line cook job resumes, you've got a magic weapon, too.
It's work experience.
Does it feel more like a 93-cent ball peen hammer?
We're about to upgrade it.
Show your most recent job first.
Add 3-5 measurable accomplishments. Let these line cook resume examples show you how:
Lead Line Cook Resume Examples
Spot the difference in these two lead line cook resume samples.
The Melted Mermaid Restaurant
2014 - 2017
The head chef's mouth is watering. Your delicious line cook job resume just blew his toque off.
Here's the wrong way:
The Melted Mermaid Restaurant
2014 - 2017
Wow, half-baked, right? Sadder than an empty cookie sheet.
After all, what is a line cook without measurable achievements? You might as well be month-old salmon mousse.
But what if you've accomplished nothing?
If that's you, look at these two entry-level prep cook resume examples.
How to Write a Resume for a Line Cook with no Experience
Here's the good news: Even if you're as green as grasshopper pie, you can whip up enough experience to get the job.
Look at these two entry-level resume examples for line cooks for a clue:
Two Line Cook Resume Samples [No Experience]
What's wrong with this next prep cook resume example?
Line Cook Experience: None yet, but I'm eager to learn on the job!
Ptui, right? That's as tasteless as a toast sandwich. But add some details and you've got this professional cook resume sample:
Line Cook Experience
2016 - 2017
Now you're cooking. But it only took a few days to prep all that experience. With a little oomph, almost anyone can have a line cook job resume like that.
Pro Tip: Make sure to decide whether you're writing a resume for a line cook or a dishwasher and prep cook resume. "Prep cook" is not a line cook synonym. They're one rung down the ladder and have less experience.
Need more spice for your great line cook resume? See this guide: "How to Put Achievements on a Resume - Complete Guide (+30 Examples)"
Is Your Education Section Underdone? It Might Be
Didn't go to culinary school? Then your education section doesn't matter, right?
Not so fast.
The education on a resume for a line cook can be the thing that gets you hired.
Make even a high school degree stand out like a red hot burner.
- School Name and Location.
- Years in School.
Then list bullet points that fit the job description.
Check out these two line cook resume examples.
Line Cook Resume Examples [Education]
The two cook resume examples below are for a job seeking knife skills, food safety, and physical fitness.
Colquitt High School
2009 - 2013
That's not just a line cook. It's a proto Guy Fieri. It fits the job offer like a custom-tailored Red Kap jacket.
Now look at this next sample from a resume for a line cook. It shows the hash we get without details.
Colquitt High School
2009 - 2013
That's as flavorless as month old macaroni. It could be anyone, including Curly from The Three Stooges.
But add achievements, and you're getting rave reviews again.
Pro Tip: Culinary school can take your career to the next level. Can't afford it? Consider taking online cooking classes. They're cheap, fast, and look great on a resume for a line cook.
To make your line cook resume jump out like a flaming garnish, see our guide: "How to Put Your Education on a Resume [Tips & Examples]"
How to Put Skills on a Resume for a Line Cook
Let me show you something.
We'll hide behind the head chef as he reads his pile of resumes.
He's scowling and he just ashed in his coffee.
Why? His 300+ line cook resumes all list the same skills.
Even worse, nobody proves it.
Then he reads your resume. The frown vanishes like a chocolate silk pie on a busy Friday night.
Nice. What did you do right?
You listed the skills in the job description. Then you proved them like in the first of these good line cook resume examples:
Line Cook Resume Examples [Skills]
Joe, our head chef, put speed, food quality, communication, and work ethic in the job description for line cooks.
So you listed those, then proved them in your bullet points:
- Line cook in a high-volume fast food restaurant.
- 90% customer satisfaction scores for food quality during my shifts.
- Received 99% score in annual management review. Manager cited my excellent communication skills and strong work ethic.
Poof. The skills and experience are one.
List of Skills to Put on a Line Cook Resume
Use these skills for your professional line cook resume.
Look at other job offers online for more.
|Line Cook Skills||Prep Cook Skills|
|Quality Control||Food Prep|
|Knife Skills||Knife Skills|
|Kitchen Equipment||Communication Skills|
Follow those steps, and your line cook resume will make you look like a future Anthony Bourdain or Rachael Ray.
Pro Tip: Don't just clone the skills list in the job offer. Add a few other tantalizing tidbits to round out your offering.
Need to add some zest to your line cook resume skills section? See our guide: "+30 Best Examples of What Skills to Put on a Resume (Proven Tips)"
How to Add Other Sections for an Effective Resume
The head cook wants to know you're great to work with.
How can you convince him before he gets the chance?
It's like wowing someone with piri-piri before they've even tried it.
Do it with "other" sections that make your line cook resume shimmy like you dipped it in datil pepper sauce.
Watch how that works in these two line cook resume examples:
Line Cook Resume Examples [Other Sections]
The first of these two resumes for a line cook will fail.
I love skateboarding.
I have amazing tattoos over 85% of my body.
I'm into protesting.
What's wrong with skateboarding, tattoos, and protesting?
But they don't show you fit the line cook job description.
Now feast your eyes on this (far better) cook resume example:
Those cooking classes only took a couple evenings to pull off, but they look great on a resume for a line cook.
The other entries show creativity, teamwork, physical fitness, passion, and competence. All things that restaurant manager is drooling for.
With a bit of head-scratching, anyone can cook up a resume like that.
Pro Tip: Hobbies or interests on a resume for a line cook should be active, not passive. Playing guitar in a cover band takes work. Loving creamsicles? My cat can do that.
Need more help to make your pro line cook resume pop out like a 5-star restaurant? See our guide: "+20 Best Examples of Hobbies & Interests To Put on a Resume (5 Tips)"
Here's the Most Common Myth About Cover Letters
"No one will read your line cook cover letter."
Right. And the waitstaff let those customers in at closing time "by accident."
The truth? Almost half the hiring managers won't read your line cook resume without a cover letter.
That means head cooks too.
But here's the trick: A cover letter shouldn't ask for something. It should offer something.
First, wake up the chef by using his name. It's easy enough to learn that with a visit or a phone call.
Next, mention something you like about the restaurant to show your passion for this job.
Third, show how you can help. Like this:
I've been eating at the Tousled Table for a couple months now. I love your commitment to creative and exciting cuisine, and especially your blackened salmon. You've got a great group of staff here and I'd love to be a part of it. I think my record of serving up 95% customer satisfaction at The Melted Mermaid would make me a strong addition to your team.
Last, close it with a call to action. Something like, "I'd welcome the chance to talk more with you about your needs" works great.
Pro Tip: Don't forget to follow up. A nudge by phone, email, or in person can prove your follow-through ability.
Plus, a great cover letter that matches your resume will give you an advantage over other candidates. You can write it in our cover letter builder here. Here's what it may look like:
Need a full example for your line cook cover letter? See our guide: "How To Write A Cover Letter [Complete Guide With Examples]"
How to Add Contact Info to Your Resume
You goofed your contact info.
The restaurant manager just tossed your line cook resume amid the coffee grounds and chicken bones.
Start with the basics:
- Full Name
- Updated Phone Number
- Professional Email Address
Steve Chetti, email@example.com - 432-813-4289
Then add a Twitter handle and LinkedIn profile.
A LinkedIn profile is as crucial as not serving raw pork. Make it sizzle with our guide to LinkedIn magic here.
Pro Tip: Your online presence needs a scrubbing now and then. Give it one with our guide to tidying up Facebook and other social media.
Need more help to make your professional line cook resume an orchestra of flavor? See this guide: "How to Make a Resume: A Step-by-Step Guide (+30 Examples)"
Now you know how to make a line cook resume that stands out like a Teppanyaki grill. Remember:
- To tie a resume for a line cook to the job offer, read the job description first. Highlight all the skills, responsibilities, and qualifications you see.
- At the top, just below your contact info, put a well-phrased resume summary or objective.
- Make your bullet points match the offer. Prove you've done the things the restaurant manager is looking for.
- Add other sections to a resume for a prep cook or line cook to show more depth and passion.
Got questions about how to write a great resume for a line cook? Not sure how to describe your skills or achievements? Give us a shout in the comments! We love to help!