Grill cooks prepare and present meat, vegetables and fish using grill equipment such as grills and rotisseries.
The duties of a grill cook include, but are not limited to:
- Preparing ingredients such as chopping vegetables, dicing meat, or shredding cheese, depending on the type of restaurant where they work
- Checking food temperatures to ensure that meats have been fully cooked and are safe to eat
- Preparing the grill by cleaning it of grease and debris, and heating it to the appropriate temperature for cooking
- Checking the status of food orders, including their time in the oven or on the grill and their temperature to ensure that they are being prepared correctly
- Preparing specialty items such as seafood, pizza, or other foods that are not part of a standard menu
- Following specific preparation procedures for different types of food items, such as steaks, chicken breasts, and burgers
- Monitoring the condition of the grill to ensure that it does not overheat or catch fire
- Monitoring the inventory of food items and ordering new supplies as needed to ensure adequate supply
- Communicating with kitchen staff regarding meal preparation, food orders, and other issues related to food service operations
The following job titles also refer to grill cook:
grill section chef
grill station chef
grill station cook
grill section cook
Grill cooks work in the kitchen of a restaurant, where they are responsible for cooking food on a grill. They typically work the lunch or dinner shift, although some restaurants are open 24 hours a day and grill cooks may be required to work overnight shifts.
Grill cooks typically work 40 hours per week, but they may work more during busy periods, such as weekends and holidays. The work can be physically demanding, as grill cooks must stand for long periods of time and lift heavy pots and pans. The work environment is often hot and noisy, and grill cooks must be able to tolerate the heat and the constant activity in the kitchen.
A high school diploma is generally the minimum required to work as a grill cook. However, some employers may prefer an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in culinary arts. Courses in culinary arts include food preparation, baking, nutrition, sanitation and business management.
Most grill cooks learn the specific skills and techniques they need for their role while on the job. Training may include safety and health regulations, proper handling and storage of food, cleaning and maintenance of the grill and utensils, and cooking techniques. Training may last a few days to a week, depending on the establishment’s policies and the complexity of the role.
Some employers may require employees to pass an industry-specific certification to show their general understanding of the field.
ISCO skill level
ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:
- the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
- the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
- the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.
Grill cook is a Skill level 2 occupation.
Grill cook career path
These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to grill cook.
Long term prospects
These occupations require some skills and knowledge of grill cook. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of grill cook with a significant experience and/or extensive training.
Essential skills and competences
These skills are necessary for the role of grill cook.
- Comply with food safety and hygiene: Respect optimal food safety and hygiene during preparation, manufacturing, processing, storage, distribution and delivery of food products.
- Order supplies: Command products from relevant suppliers to get convenient and profitable products to purchase.
- Store raw food materials: Keep in reserve raw materials and other food supplies, following stock control procedures.
- Receive kitchen supplies: Accept the delivery of ordered kitchen supplies and make sure everything is included and in good condition.
- Use food preparation techniques: Apply food preparation techniques including the selecting, washing, cooling, peeling, marinating, preparing of dressings and cutting of ingredients.
- Dispose waste: Dispose waste in accordance with legislation, thereby respecting environmental and company responsibilities.
- Work in a hospitality team: Function confidently within a group in hospitality services, in which each has his own responsibility in reaching a common goal which is a good interaction with the customers, guests or collaborators and their contentment.
- Handover the food preparation area: Leave the kitchen area in conditions which follow safe and secure procedures, so that it is ready for the next shift.
- Use reheating techniques: Apply reheating techniques including steaming, boiling or bain marie.
- Use culinary finishing techniques: Apply culinary finishing techniques including garnishing, decorating, plating, glazing, presenting and portioning.
- Use food cutting tools: Trim, peel and slice products with knives, paring or food cutting tools or equipment according to guidelines.
- Ensure cleanliness of food preparation area: Guarantee the continuous cleanliness of kitchen preparation, production and storage areas according to hygiene, safety and health regulations.
- Maintain a safe, hygienic and secure working environment: Preserve health, hygiene, safety and security in the workplace in accordance with relevant regulations.
- Maintain kitchen equipment at correct temperature: Keep the refrigeration and storage of equipment at the correct temperature.
- Use cooking techniques: Apply cooking techniques including grilling, frying, boiling, braising, poaching, baking or roasting.
Optional skills and competences
These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of grill cook. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.
- Prepare dairy products for use in a dish: Make dairy products for use in a dish by cleaning, cutting or using other methods.
- Prepare meat products for use in a dish: Make meat products for use in a dish by cleaning, cutting or using other methods.
- Prepare saucier products for use in a dish: Make saucier products for use in a dish by cleaning, cutting or using other methods.
- Comply with standard portion sizes: Adhere to set portion sizes by cooking meals according to standard food portion sizes and recipe specifications.
- Prepare sandwiches: Make filled and open sandwiches, paninis and kebabs.
- Prepare salad dressings: Make salad dressings by mixing desired ingredients.
- Handle chemical cleaning agents: Ensure proper handling, storage and disposal of cleaning chemicals in accordance with regulations.
- Cook vegetable products: Prepare dishes based on vegetables in combination with other ingredients if necessary.
- Plan menus: Organise menus taking into account the nature and style of the establishment, client feedback, cost and the seasonality of ingredients.
- Cook sauce products: Prepare soups, hot sauces, cold sauces and dressings.
- Execute chilling processes to food products: Carry out chilling, freezing and cooling operation processes to food products such as fruit and vegetables, fish, meat, catering food. Prepare food products for extended periods of storage or half prepared food. Ensure safety and nutrition qualities of frozen goods and preserve products in accordance with specified temperatures.
- Prepare vegetable products for use in a dish: Make vegetable products, such as vegetables, pulses, fruits, grains and mushrooms for further use in dishes.
- Store kitchen supplies: Keep delivered kitchen supplies for future use safely and hygienically according to guidelines.
- Control of expenses: Monitoring and maintaining effective cost controls, in regards to efficiencies, waste, overtime and staffing. Assessing excesses and strives for efficiency and productivity.
- Train employees: Lead and guide employees through a process in which they are taught the necessary skills for the perspective job. Organise activities aimed at introducing the work and systems or improving the performance of individuals and groups in organisational settings.
- Cook dairy products: Prepare eggs, cheese and other dairy products, combined with other products if necessary.
- Cook meat dishes: Prepare meat dishes, including poultry and game. The complexity of the dishes depend on the type of meat, the cuts being used and how they are combined with other ingredients in their preparation and cooking.
- Check deliveries on receipt: Control that all order details are recorded, that faulty items are reported and returned and that all paperwork is received and processed, according to the purchasing procedures.
- Prepare egg products for use in a dish: Make egg products for use in a dish by cleaning, cutting or using other methods.
ISCO group and title
5120 – Cooks
- Grill cook – ESCO
- Grill Cook Job Description: Salary, Duties, & More – Climb the Ladder
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