Is a private chef worth it?

It's not as expensive as before.

Private chefs

are often former restaurants looking for healthier hours, better salaries and a less exhausting work experience. But not everyone in the field comes from a professional restaurant environment these days, many passionate home cooks make their way into the private and personal chef business, often starting with an apprenticeship or some time in cooking school. No matter what your experience, if you're considering getting into this line of work, you'll want to know the good, the bad, and the uncomfortably uncomfortable.

One of the main reasons to hire a personal chef is because of the convenience they offer when it comes to meal planning. Chefs take the hassle out of planning and preparing quick and healthy meals, such as breakfast, lunch and dinner, and it's invaluable for today's busy lifestyles. This is how many of our clients justify the cost of hiring a Personal Chef Service because it saves time and money. As each dish is completed, chefs will introduce the dish and tell the story of its unique flavor profile, ingredients, and culinary history.

As a private chef, I usually fly solo, although I will work with a second chef or a waiter to organize larger dinners. The complexity of the menu you select will affect the prices of private chefs, as well as the seasonality and availability of ingredients. Some private chefs work for many clients throughout the year, like me, while others work exclusively for a family. He is the personal chef that the Marcus family hired to make life easier for Sara, a 35-year-old web entrepreneur who works from home; her husband, film editor Dave, also 35; and their son, Gabriel, 16 months old.

When you're a private chef, you're your own boss, but that comes with city, state, and federal taxes, business licensing, website maintenance, billing, scheduling, shopping, lifting heavy objects, transportation, unpacking, lots and lots of dishes, and the next day, another round of dishes. Cozymeal chefs will take care of all the pots and pans used to prepare your gourmet meal, leaving your kitchen clean and shiny, and you will have the freedom to continue enjoying your guests. The Greenwich Village trained chef has been building her list of middle-class clients steadily over the past few years and notices growing demand due to frustration over poor diet and lack of time to cook. Between managing grocery shopping at home, planning the menu, and preparing meals, many working parents are surprised at how much a personal chef saves them in time and stress.

Once you understand the pros and cons of both the personal chef and the private chef's work, it's easy to see why so many chefs are throwing titles out the window. If working as a private or personal chef, or a combination of both, is a stepping stone to your ultimate career goals, I applaud that. The discipline I learned in restaurants helped shape me as a chef, and learning to perfect another person's vision helps you find a vision of your own. So, if you like cheese enchiladas but your kids don't like onions and your husband prefers enchilada sauce on the side, a personal chef can solve that problem in an instant by paying attention to detail.

To build a world where independent chefs are paid what they deserve, each of us must be an example of safety, cleanliness, communication, uniform (please, no chili clown pants), professionalism and skills.

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