Kitchen assistants prepare food, make sure chefs have everything they need and keep the kitchen clean.
Salary range: £11,500 to £16,500
How to become a kitchen assistant
You can get into this job through:
- a college course
- an apprenticeship
- applying directly
You may find it helps you to get work if you do a course like:
- Level 1 Award in Introduction to Employment in the Hospitality Industry
- Level 1 Certificate in General Cookery
- Level 2 Award in Food Safety
You may need:
- 2 or fewer GCSEs at grades 3 to 1 (D to G), or equivalent, for a level 1 course
- 2 or more GCSEs at grades 9 to 3 (A* to D), or equivalent, for a level 2 course
You could get into this job by taking an intermediate apprenticeship in catering.
You’ll usually need:
- some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship
You can apply directly to employers for a job as a dish washer or general kitchen hand, then train while you’re working.
What it takes
Skills and knowledge
- customer service skills
- patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
- the ability to work well with others
- to enjoy working with other people
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail
- the ability to use your initiative
- business management skills
- the ability to work well with your hands
- to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
What you’ll do
Your day-to-day duties could include:
- supporting chefs in a specific work section
- washing, peeling and preparing food items
- using a variety of kitchen equipment such as mixers, special knives and cutters
- unloading deliveries
- organising the storeroom
- washing kitchen appliances, work surfaces, floors and walls
You could work in a factory, at a restaurant or in an NHS or private hospital.
Your working environment may be noisy and hot.
You may need to wear a uniform.
Career path and progression
With experience and further training, you could become a trainee or junior chef.
You could also progress into management or move into bar work or food service.