California Occupational Guides

Summary Guide  (Printer Friendly)
Detailed Guide   (Printer Friendly)
   Summary Report-Jump to: 
         Top of Page
         What Would I Do?
         Wages and Benefits
         Job Outlook
         How Do I Qualify?
         What Employers Say...
Job Search Tips

I want to: 
   Search by Topic
   Search by Keyword

Small LMInfo Logo 

Change Your Area:

Select your county from the list:

Change Occupation:

1. Enter a keyword and click the "GO!" button:

2. Select an occupation from the results listed
below and click the "Get Information" button.

Summary Guide for

Cooks, Private Household in Los Angeles County

May also be called: Private Chefs; Personal Chefs; and Certified Personal Chefs

Specialties within this occupation include: Personal Chefs

What Would I Do?

Private Household Cooks are in charge of everything having to do with food in a private household. They prepare meals according to their employers’ recipes or tastes. They handle all meals for a single family and possibly other household staff. They also stock, organize, and clean kitchen and cooking utensils. Private Household Chefs cook all meals for a single household and may live in the home. Personal Chefs usually work for themselves and serve many families.

Private Household Cooks stand throughout their work day in a kitchen environment, which can be warm. The demand for flexibility and attention to detail required can be stressful for some. Personal Chefs’ work environments will change from customer to customer. Personal Chefs sometimes need to carry essential tools from job to job.

Will This Job Fit Me?

This job would appeal to those who prefer to work independently, are flexible, have a keen sense of taste and smell, are creative with recipes, and who can work efficiently to turn out meals rapidly.

What Wages and Benefits Can I Expect?

Some Private Household Cooks receive bonuses for completing special occasion events, working after-hours, and travel expenses. Earnings of Personal Chefs are unknown as this specialty is not surveyed by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Their earnings will be determined by what people are willing to pay them for the convenience of their service.

Private Household Cooks often reside on the property where they work since they are cooking three meals a day. Room and board benefits enhance their wages. Other benefits, such as medical and dental, depend on what the employer is willing to provide.

Personal Chefs are self-employed, as are Private Cooks who work on a contract basis. They need to factor the personal expenses needed for health insurance and retirement savings into their fees charged.

What is the Job Outlook?

Job prospects for Private Household Cooks are generally best in high-income neighborhoods or areas. While relatively few people can afford a full-time, live-in cook, many people with a lifestyle of eating most of their meals in restaurants have found the services of a Personal Chef a healthy and affordable alternative.

How Do I Qualify?

Private Household Cooks and Personal Chefs generally come to their job from related cooking or food service occupations, or through formal culinary training programs. A high school diploma is generally not required for this job; however, the best-paid jobs are given to those with years of experience and excellent references from former employers.

Finding a Job

Job leads for this occupation often come through word of mouth, although sometimes through advertisements and association postings. Those seeking employment should be ready with a portfolio of proven successes in the form of recipes and events, as well as solid references.  Online job opening systems include JobCentral at and CalJOBSSM at

To find your nearest One-Stop Career Center, go to Service Locator. View the helpful job search tips for more resources. (requires Adobe Reader).

Learn More About Cooks, Private Household