What Do School Cafeteria Cooks Do: Job Description, Responsibilities and Duties

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daily life of an Institution and Cafeteria Cook
are Institution and Cafeteria Cooks happy with their job

Institution and Cafeteria Cooks

Other names for this job might include Boarding House Cook, Cafeteria Cook, Camp Cook, Cook, Cook (Dinner), Cook (Elementary School), Cook at School, Cook, Cashier, Food Prep (Cafeteria Worker), Culinary Specialist, Diet Kitchen Cook

  • $25560
  • 61%
    Job satisfaction
  • Easy
    Becoming one
  • Medium
    Job growth
OwlGuru Rank


Being A School Cafeteria Cook: What You Really Do

In this job description guide, you will find out what do Institution and Cafeteria Cooks do and what is their typical work day like.

After reading this, you will have a much better idea on whether you will like working as an Institution and Cafeteria Cook or not.

Job summary

School Cafeteria Cooks prepare and cook large quantities of food for institutions, such as schools, hospitals, or cafeterias.

We asked School Cafeteria Cooks how satisfied they are with their job. Here is what they said.

Job satisfaction


How meaningful is this job


61% of them said they were satisfied with their job and 59% said they find that their job makes the world a better place or helps to make someone else’s life better.

Become one

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Typical day

On a daily basis, School Cafeteria Cooks Clean and inspect galley equipment, kitchen appliances, and work areas to ensure cleanliness and functional operation. They Apportion and serve food to facility residents, employees, or patrons.

1 of the main responsibilities as A School Cafeteria Cook is to Cook foodstuffs according to menus, special dietary or nutritional restrictions, or numbers of portions to be served.

Some may also Clean, cut, and cook meat, fish, or poultry.

In a normal work day, another thing that School Cafeteria Cooks do is they Monitor use of government food commodities to ensure that proper procedures are followed.

In addition to that, they Wash pots, pans, dishes, utensils, and other cooking equipment..

A typical day for A School Cafeteria Cook look like this:

Inspect facilities, equipment or supplies to ensure conformance to standards.
Clean food preparation areas, facilities, or equipment.
Serve food or beverages.
Cook foods.

We asked some School Cafeteria Cooks a few questions to find out what else does their work day look like. Here is what we found.

Do you have telephone conversations everyday in this job?33% said yes
Do you have to use email everyday in this job?17% said yes
How important is it to work in a team in this job?67% said very important
Do you have group discussions everyday in this job?55% said yes
Do you have to meet strict deadlines everyday in this job?83% said yes
Do you talk or work with customers everyday in this job?53% said yes
Do you have to deal with angry customers everyday in this job?42% said yes
Do you have to make decisions everyday in this job?50% said yes

Other responsibilities

Besides the “typical day” things that School Cafeteria Cooks do, they Determine meal prices, based on calculations of ingredient prices.

A typical week or month for them might include:

Determine prices for menu items.

Working life

Working hours

Less than 40 hours per week

Working schedule

Regular (Set schedule and routine)

In a typical work week as A School Cafeteria Cook, you can expect to work Less than 40 hours per week.

Do School Cafeteria Cooks work in an office-style work environment?


Once a week

Once a month

Once a year


Do School Cafeteria Cooks work in a warehouse-style work environment?


Once a week

Once a month

Once a year


Do School Cafeteria Cooks work outdoors?


Once a week

Once a month

Once a year


Is this right for me

Best personality for this career

The Builders and The Organizers

You can read more about these career personality types here.

You will like this career if you are someone who likes work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They like working with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the careers require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

You also like following set procedures and routines. They like working with data and details more than with ideas.

How we can help

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Rank: D
Salary: $23700

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Rank: D
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They directly supervise and coordinate activities of workers engaged in preparing and serving food.

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Career type

Food and Hospitality
Life Sciences
Support Services
Restaurants and Food/Beverage Services

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Related to Institution and Cafeteria Cooks Job Description

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Additional resources

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