National » Food Preparation and Serving Related

Salary of Food Preparation and Serving Related Occupations

The average annual salary of food preparation and serving related occupations is shown in Table 1. In Table 2 we compare the median salaries of all food preparation and serving related occupations in the United States. The food preparation and serving related occupations salary statistics are from the national compensation survey published by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in April 2017 [1].

Table 1. Salary of Food Preparation and Serving Related Occupations in the United States (2016 Survey)

Percentile BracketAverage Annual Salary
10th Percentile Wage
$17,220
25th Percentile Wage
$18,600
50th Percentile Wage
$20,810
75th Percentile Wage
$25,680
90th Percentile Wage
$35,200

Table 1 shows the average annual salary for food preparation and serving related occupations. The salary is shown in 5 percentile scales. The average annual salary for the 90th percentile (the top 10 percent of the highest paid) food preparation and serving related occupations is $35,200. The median annual salary is $20,810. The average annual salary for the bottom 10 percent is $17,220.

Salary Trend (2012 to 2016)

The following table and chart show the trend of the median salary of food preparation and serving related occupations from 2012 to 2016.

YearMedian SalaryYearly Growth4-Year Growth
201620,8105.91%9.03%
201519,5802.30%-
201419,1300.58%-
201319,0200.47%-
201218,930--

Table 2. Compare Salaries of All Food Preparation and Serving Related Occupations (2016 Survey)

Table 2 shows the median annual wage of all food preparation and serving related occupations in the United States. We note that the median annual salaries vary considerably among food preparation and serving related professions and range from $19,440 to $43,180. The highest paid food preparation and serving related occupations are chefs and head cooks with a median annual salary of $43,180. The lowest paid food preparation and serving related occupations in the United States are combined food preparation and serving workers, including fast food with a median annual salary of $19,440. For more salary information about a specific food preparation and serving related profession, use the links in the table.

Occupation Group Median Annual Salary
Chefs and Head Cooks
$43,180
Supervisors of Food Preparation and Serving Workers
$32,790
Private Household Cooks
$32,060
First-Line Supervisors of Food Preparation and Serving Workers
$31,480
All Other Cooks
$27,120
Institution and Cafeteria Cooks
$24,750
Restaurant Cooks
$24,140
Cooks
$22,850
Cooks and Food Preparation Workers
$22,460
Short Order Cooks
$21,890
Food Preparation Workers
$21,440
Food Servers, Nonrestaurant
$21,240
Food Preparation and Serving Related Workers, All Other
$21,090
Bartenders
$20,800
Dishwashers
$20,800
Other Food Preparation and Serving Related Workers
$20,310
Dining Room and Cafeteria Attendants and Bartender Helpers
$20,200
Waiters and Waitresses
$19,990
Hosts and Hostesses, Restaurant, Lounge, and Coffee Shop
$19,980
Counter Attendants, Cafeteria, Food Concession, and Coffee Shop
$19,970
Fast Food Cooks
$19,860
Food and Beverage Serving Workers
$19,750
Fast Food and Counter Workers
$19,500
Combined Food Preparation and Serving Workers, Including Fast Food
$19,440