Cooking Job Interview Questions

Cooks work in diners and restaurants often in busy fast-paced environments.  Not only do cooks need to be able to cook delicious food, but they need to be organized and work well under pressure.  Cooks prepare all meals for breakfast lunch and dinners in addition when they’re not cooking the preparing the kitchen for the busy rush-hour.  There is an administrative component to the job such as doing inventory ordering and purchasing food supplies and in some cases senior cooks will do scheduling and even hiring in some cases.

Below we will discuss job interview answering tips for the job of a cook.  Also you will notice we’ve included a couple of articles to cover the actual job interview questions providing a couple of samples of the kind of questions you’ll be asked in your interview.  You can find these sample interview questions under the related posts widget on the site located on the margin or you can use the search bar and search for queries such as “short order cook job interview question”.

Your Presentation Is As Important As Food Presentation

It’s not just how you answer in your job interview but how you look when you answer.  In just the same way that a good cook cares about food presentation, so too should you care about your own presentation when it comes to the job interview.  Employers want clean kitchens that pass food and health and safety inspections.  Successful Diners and restaurants know that messy cooks equals messy kitchens which ultimately results in health and safety issues.  So make sure that you come to your job interview looking clean and neat in appearance.  I cannot stress this point more, you may cook the most delicious food but if you look like a slob your I get the job.  This means making sure that you clean under your nails, your hands must be clean, shave and have your hair me kept, preferably short.  Remember you’re working in the kitchen, not on a fashion runway.  Should you decide to grow out your hair to sport the rastafarian and look, that the battle you can take on with your boss after you get hired.

Kitchen And Cooking Training

Most employers prefer cooks who have some formal training related to cooking or food preparation.  Red seal endorsements, vocational school cooking programs are excellent ways to get your resume noticed.  Of course if you don’t have any formal training but you have lots of experience this also helps get the attention of popular restaurants and diners.  Even if you haven’t completed a formal training program make sure you mentioned on your resume near the top the courses you took for instance in high school such as foods or home economics and so forth.  So incorporate the training you have received into your answers during your job interview and you will be sure to succeed.

In this site we have included sample job interview questions for various cooking jobs. Review these questions and prepare your answers to ace your interview and land your next job as a cook.

What changes have you tried to implement in your area of responsibility? What have you done to get them under way?

Tell me about some challenging situations in which you had to arrange work schedule.

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Bonus Questions


  • Organizations differ in their pay structure, ranging from complete salary to complete commission. Which do you prefer and why? What is your experience working under this pay structure?
  • Describe the most satisfying troubleshooting you have done. Contrast this with a time when you were stumped.
  • How do you stay aware of potential equipment problems? Tell me about a potential problem you noticed.

Daily Interview Tip

Prepare your interview outfit: shine the shoes and plan grooming things like getting a haircut. Dressing well can increase your confidence as well as boosting your professional image. If asked if you consider yourself successful, be candid without sounding arrogant. Mention observations other people have made about your work strengths or talents. Reflect on your interview and consider what parts went well and did not, what you feel worked and what did not, what you would say or do differently the next time to help you learn from each interview.