Chef Facts
Chef Facts

22 Amazingly Delicious Chef Facts

James Israelsen
By James Israelsen, Associate Writer
Published November 15, 2022
  • French chef Georges Auguste Escoffier (1846–1935) developed "The Kitchen Brigade System," a system of roles designed to streamline work in the kitchen. Forms of this system are used around the world.[11]
  • A sous chef is the chef who is second-in-command and works directly under the head chef in a kitchen.[11]
  • According to the Culinary Institute of America, one of the first steps a chef must take on the way to becoming a professional is to assemble a collection of culinary knives.[11]
  • In the Middle Ages in Europe, it was common for large households to employ a chef to prepare the family's meals.[5]
  • The oldest surviving recipes are over 4,000 years old and were written by ancient Mesopotamians.[5]
  • Perhaps the first animal "chef" to be observed by scientists was a monkey in Japan that began soaking her sweet potatoes in seawater before eating them. Before long, her entire troop was soaking their potatoes, even moving to live closer to the shore.[5]
  • Formal training at some kind of culinary school isn't actually necessary for someone to become a professional chef, although it is recommended by most experts in the field.[10]
  • Educational cooking facts
    Culinary school can last from six months to four or five years
  • The main difference between a professional cook and a chef is that a chef has a leadership role in the kitchen.[10]
  • Experts predict that in the years between 2020 and 2030, there will be over 563,000 jobs for restaurant cooks opening up in the United States.[8]
  • The median salary of a chef in the United States is around $50,000 a year, and the top 10% of chefs make over $84,000.[2]
  • On average, chefs working in recreation industries, such as resorts and casinos, make more than chefs working in restaurants.[2]
  • Early peoples likely began creating complex culinary dishes in the Middle East during the Paleolithic period of human development.[5]
  • With a net worth of $70 million in 2020, celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay is the highest-paid chef in the world, and the only chef to make it onto Forbes' list of the top 100 best-paid celebrities for that year.[7]
  • The first non-chef hired by the Food Network to host their own cooking show was Rachel Ray.[9]
  • Celebrity chefs who aren't actually trained chefs include Gordon Ramsay, Martha Stewart, Mario Batali, Rachel Ray, Paula Deen, and Guy Fieri.[9]
  • Julia Child Facts
    Child sold roughly 1.5 million copies of her cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking
  • Celebrity chef Julia Child, whose 1960s television show The French Chef was a surprise hit, had a major influence on the American public's willingness to try to cook French food at home.[12]
  • Michelin Stars, the most prestigious award a chef can be given, are given by the French company Michelin, which trains former chefs as anonymous restaurant critics for their travel guides.[6]
  • The chef who earned the most Michelin stars was French chef Joël Robuchon; he earned 32 stars before his death in 2018.[6]
  • Not only is Gordon Ramsay the highest-paid celebrity chef in the world, but he is also the celebrity chef to earn the most Michelin stars, having earned 16 as of 2021.[6][7]
  • In 2021, the Food Network gave Guy Fieri, the host of Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives, a 3-year contract worth $80 million dollars.[4]
  • The two culinary schools generally considered to be the best in the world are Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, France, and the Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts, located in Boulder, Colorado.[1]
  • Popular films about chefs include Ratatouille (2007), Julie and Julia (2009), and Chef (2014).[3]
  • Tasty Chef Facts INFOGRAPHIC
    Chef Infographic Thumbnail

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