Catering and professional chefs apprenticeship

Catering and professional chefs apprenticeship

The Catering and Professional Chefs apprenticeship covers a range of occupations within one of the largest industries in the country.

The catering industry covers work in restaurants, hotels and holiday accommodation, cafés and pubs. It also supplies other industries with food and drink. Schools, colleges, hospitals and large businesses nearly always have canteens and catering staff too.

Chef skills are in short supply, with customers increasingly demanding meals that are cooked from scratch using fresh ingredients in mainstream restaurants and pubs. If you are interested in cookery, you could either train as a chef in a restaurant, or learn how to cook on a large scale for institutions such as the NHS or armed forces. You could work in all sorts of kitchens, from fine-dining to chain restaurants through to gastro-pubs.

At Intermediate level you could work as a kitchen assistant helping with food preparation and keeping the working area clean and tidy, or as a school cook, preparing, cooking and serving nutritious meals in large volumes. Alternatively you might work in a role that requires you to specialise in Asian, Oriental or other cuisines.

Successful completion of an Advanced Level apprenticeship could lead to more senior roles as a sous chef or senior chef, preparing and finishing food from scratch for a wide variety of dishes and ingredients. Or you might choose to specialise in patisserie and confectionery and become a pastry chef.

Whatever pathway you choose you will need to have a positive, hard-working attitude and excellent standards of personal hygiene. Most roles in catering will require you to work shifts, which could include evening and weekend work.


Intermediate (Level 2), Advanced (Level 3)

Starting salary (once qualified):

£11,000–£23,000, but higher for specialist roles such as pastry chef

Job roles:

Intermediate Level – School cook, cook, team member or chef, Kitchen assistant

Advanced Level – Sous chef or senior, Chef/cook, Pastry chef

Issuing Authority:

People 1st –