How to Get a Cooking Job With No Experience?

Last Updated on May 31, 2023 by Lauren Beck

Having been in the culinary world for years, I understand the challenges of breaking into the industry without prior experience. 

But fear not! I’m here to share some tried-and-true methods to help you land a cooking job, even if you’re starting from scratch. 

So let’s dive in and explore how you can turn your passion for cooking into a rewarding career with no experience required.

Ways to Get a Cooking Job With No Experience

  • Start as a Kitchen Assistant or Prep Cook: Many restaurants and catering companies hire kitchen assistants or prep cooks who assist with basic food preparation tasks. It’s a great way to learn the ropes, gain experience, and familiarize yourself with the fast-paced kitchen environment.
  • Volunteer or Intern: Consider volunteering at local community events, food festivals, or charity organizations. This lets you showcase your skills, network with industry professionals, and gain valuable hands-on experience. Additionally, internships at restaurants or culinary schools can provide practical training and exposure to the culinary field.
  • Take Cooking Classes: Enroll in cooking classes or workshops to learn essential culinary techniques and expand your knowledge. Not only will this enhance your skills, but it also demonstrates your dedication and eagerness to learn to potential employers.

What Are Jobs for a Cook With No Experience?

  • Line Cook: Entry-level positions as line cooks are often available in restaurants. These roles involve prepping ingredients, assembling dishes, and working alongside experienced chefs. It’s an opportunity to learn from seasoned professionals and gradually develop your culinary skills.
  • Catering Assistant: Catering companies hire individuals to assist with food preparation and event setup. These positions offer hands-on experience in a dynamic environment and provide exposure to various cuisines.

Can You Work as a Chef Without Experience?

Becoming a chef without prior experience can be challenging, but it’s not impossible. Consider the following steps:

  • Start from the Bottom: Begin as a kitchen assistant or line cook, where you can learn the basics and gradually work your way up. Gain experience, hone your skills, and prove your dedication to the culinary craft.
  • Pursue Culinary Education: While formal culinary education is not a requirement, attending a culinary school or completing a culinary program can provide you with comprehensive training and a solid foundation.

How Can I Get Paid to Cook at Home?

If you prefer working from the comfort of your kitchen, there are opportunities to get paid for your culinary skills:

  • Offer Personal Chef Services: Provide personalized cooking services to individuals or families looking for convenient, home-cooked meals. This can be a rewarding way to monetize your passion for cooking.
  • Start a Food Delivery or Catering Business: Launch a small-scale delivery or catering venture from your home kitchen. Develop a menu, promote your services, and offer delicious meals to customers in your local area.

Can Cooking Be a Side Hustle?

Person Putting Dish on a Plate

Absolutely! Cooking can be a fulfilling and profitable side hustle. Consider the following ideas:

  • Start a Food Blog or YouTube Channel: Share your culinary adventures, recipes, and cooking tips through a food blog or YouTube channel [1]. You can earn income through advertising, sponsored content, or even digital product creation.
  • Teach Cooking Classes: Leverage your culinary skills by offering cooking classes in your community. Teach others how to prepare their favorite dishes or introduce them to new cuisines.


With determination and the right approach, you can absolutely get a cooking job without prior experience. Start by gaining practical experience as a kitchen assistant or through volunteering. 

Consider taking cooking classes to enhance your skills. Embrace entry-level positions like line cook or catering assistant to learn and grow. And don’t forget the power of networking and showcasing your passion. 

Remember, everyone starts somewhere, and with perseverance, you can turn your love for cooking into a fulfilling career. So put on that apron, sharpen those knives, and prepare to embark on an exciting culinary journey.


Lauren Beck
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