Career Education - Learn about all careers, career pay salary, job outlook

What Food Preparation Workers Do

Food preparation workers perform many routine tasks under the guidance of cooks or food supervisors. They prepare cold foods, slice meat, peel and cut vegetables, brew coffee or tea, and do many other tasks. 


Food preparation workers typically do the following:

Food preparation workers perform routine, repetitive tasks under the direction of cooks or food supervisors. To help cooks and other kitchen staff, they prepare ingredients for complex dishes by slicing and dicing vegetables and by making salads and cold items.

Although most help prepare food, some are also responsible for retrieving cooking utensils, pots, and pans, or for cleaning and storing other kitchen equipment. Other common duties include keeping salad bars and buffet tables stocked and clean.

Those who work at hotels or full-service restaurants often use soda machines, coffee makers, and espresso and cappuccino machines to prepare beverages for customers. In fast food restaurants, food preparation workers may take customer orders and process payments using cash registers.

In some kitchens, food preparation workers use a variety of commercial kitchen equipment, such as commercial dishwashers, blenders, slicers, grinders, and ovens.

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13 Edition