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How to become a Prep Cook

A prep cook is a manual job and anyone interested in the position can get a job in the field at a restaurant or hotel where they can receive on the job training in the kitchen. Alternatively, one can be trained at a community college, vocational college, or a cooking school and get a prep cook certification. That equips one with skills on food preparation and handling.

How to become: Cook · Line Cook · Line Cook/Prep Cook · Kitchen Team Member · Chef
These qualifications are required: Food Handler Certification · Driver's License · ServSafe
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What skills help Prep Cooks find jobs?

  • Baking
  • Basic math
  • Catering
  • Ceridian
  • Communication skills
  • Computer literacy
  • Computer skills
  • Cooking
  • Culinary experience
  • Customer service
  • Dayforce
  • English
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Career progression for Prep Cook

Education levels for Prep Cooks

Based on the requirements of Prep Cook job openings on Indeed in the United States within the last three years.
required level of educationpercent of job openings
High school diploma or GED84.6%
Associate's degree8.5%
Bachelor's degree4.7%
Middle school education1.7%
Master's degree0.4%
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Expected salary by experience

Based on resume data from Indeed users who reported working as a Prep Cook in the United States within the last three years.
Years of experienceAnnual salary in USD
0 - 4$20,100
4 - 8$21,900
8 - 12$22,900
12 - 16$22,900
16 - 20$23,000
20 - 24$21,900
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Common qualifications for Prep Cooks

Explore popular schools to earn these qualifications


Craven Community College
144 reviews
Explore other and more common qualifications
  • certificationFood Handler Certification
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Common questions about career advices for a Prep Cook

What other positions are similar to a prep cook?

Positions similar to a prep cook are:

  • Short order cooks which work in fast-food restaurants, cafes and diners and make foods that require fewer culinary skills to prepare, like sandwiches. fries and burgers.
  • Line cooks which work at a single workstation in restaurants and are divided according to types of foods prepared.
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How can a prep cook advance their career?

A prep cook can advance their career by completing further education such as a bachelor's or associate's degree. Before continuing further education, they should ensure the American Culinary Federation certifies them and verifies the courses as high-quality culinary education.

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What skills should a prep cook have?

Skills required to be a prep cook:

  • Possess knowledge of the health and safety rules in the kitchen
  • Have the ability to stay calm under stress
  • Be manually dexterous to operate tools in the kitchen
  • Have excellent communication skills and be a team player
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What should a prep cook know?

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