Hiring a private chef: what you need to know

chef cooking pasta in pan

When it comes to building a private household, a private chef can be an invaluable addition. However, when hiring a private chef in London or internationally, there are lots of elements to consider. From figuring out the correct salary and hours, to catering to your family’s dietary requirements, finding the right fit is essential.

Tiger Private works with a wide range of private chefs who are available for one-off events, weekends, seasons or in a permanent, full-time capacity. With varying responsibilities and experience, it’s vital to understand what you’re looking for, what you expect of your chef and the level of culinary prowess your family expects on a day-to-day basis.

Why hire a private chef?

A private chef is becoming an increasingly popular option for busy UHNW individuals and families. Hiring a private chef for the night for a dinner party can take the stress out of catering, while hiring a private chef for a weekend – perhaps during shooting season – means your family can focus on more important activities!

A private chef can also assist when catering to complex dietary requirements or eating behaviours. If your principal or a family member has allergies, eats a restricted diet or simply prefers one cuisine over another, having a private chef can make a huge difference – they can design menus, source ingredients and prepare meals with your principal’s needs in mind.

Hands baking dough with rolling pin on wooden table

How much is it to hire a private chef?

A chef’s salary or day rate (if hiring on a contract or temp placement) depends on the requirements of the role, the hours and their experience. Tiger Private’s chefs have all spent time in professional kitchens and private households and, for the most part, have at least 10 years’ experience. With this in mind, the average salary is £60,000 per annum, while the average day rate ranges from £250-£350 a day.

A candidate commanding a £40,000 salary will normally have 8-10 years’ experience in both restaurants and households. They will often be Michelin-star-trained and be comfortable with sourcing ingredients and preparing three meals a day for a large family. They are also able to cater for dinner parties, lunches and small events and can manage relevant budgets.

If you are looking to hire a private chef in the UK with a little more experience, they could command a salary between £50,000-£70,000 per annum.

At this level, they would have sole responsibility for preparing breakfast, lunch and dinner to family, confidently catering for dietary requirements including gluten free and vegan. They would also build a local suppliers list for ingredients; maintain kitchen equipment and prepare meals for young children and staff.

They will also be able to design complex menus and cater for events like Christmas dinners, birthday parties and other VIP events. At the higher end of the scale, a private chef can also work with principals on particular diets. For example, if they are an elite athlete or training for an event, or going through cancer treatment, a private chef can design and create dishes that improve performance and provide the correct nourishment.

They may, on occasion, also be able to travel with your family, working on yachts and in international properties when required.

Should I pay by the hour, day or annually?

We recommend either a day rate for temporary placements or an annual salary for permanent roles. Even if you are hiring a private chef for a dinner party, a day rate will allow for menu design, sourcing ingredients, preparation, service and clean-down.

If you are looking to hire a private chef, get in touch with Tiger Private. We have a wide range of chefs available immediately for temporary placements and permanent positions and can provide advice on how to hire a private chef.

Author Laura Glendenning Tiger Recruitment Team

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