10+ Proven Sous Chef Interview Questions [+Answers]

Hiring the right sous chef is critical to the success of any restaurant. This complete guide includes 40 sous chef interview questions that are meant to show a range of skills, from technical know-how and creativity to leadership and stress management. You can pick the questions that work best for your restaurant and needs from this list.

Whether you’re looking for someone who can come up with new menu ideas, keep an eye on inventory costs, make sure food is safe, or lead a team under pressure, these questions will help you get to the bottom of their qualifications and see if they’re a good fit for your kitchen. Â.

Looking to hire the best sous chef for your team?

This comprehensive guide provides you with 10 essential interview questions and sample answers to help you identify the ideal candidate,

What is a Sous Chef?

A Sous Chef is the Executive Chef’s right-hand man (or woman). They are typically experienced line cooks with a deep understanding of kitchen operations, food safety, and cost management.

What are the key qualities of a great Sous Chef?

  • Strong culinary skills: A Sous Chef should be able to cook a wide variety of dishes to a high standard.
  • Leadership ability: They should be able to motivate and inspire their team, as well as delegate tasks effectively.
  • Cost management: A Sous Chef should be able to control food and labor costs without compromising quality.
  • Communication skills: They should be able to communicate clearly and effectively with both their team and the Executive Chef.
  • Teamwork: A Sous Chef should be a team player who is willing to help out wherever needed.

10 Essential Sous Chef Interview Questions:

  1. What advice would you give to someone new at being a Sous Chef?
  2. What actions have you taken to bring food and labor costs in line?
  3. What are your career goals? How does getting this job support your goals?
  4. What would you do if you caught a coworker violating food safety standards?
  5. How would you rate yourself as an instructor? What cooking techniques have you taught other line cooks?
  6. How much experience do you have with multicultural or multilingual teams?
  7. Have you ever had to discipline a coworker? What was the situation? What was the outcome?
  8. How would you control the quality of food that is being sent out to customers?
  9. What would you do if there was an emergency or safety hazard in the kitchen, like a grease fire?
  10. Describe a time a customer sent food back to the kitchen while you were in charge.

Sample Answers

  • “I would advise them to always be prepared, stay organized, and never stop learning. The kitchen is a fast-paced environment, and being a Sous Chef means you’re the backbone of the operation.”
  • “I regularly review inventory and waste logs to identify areas for improvement. I also train the team on portion control and efficient prep techniques.”
  • “My goal is to become an Executive Chef. Working as a Sous Chef will give me the managerial experience I need to achieve that.”
  • “I would immediately correct the action and report it to the Executive Chef. Food safety is non-negotiable.”
  • “I’d rate myself as an excellent instructor. I’ve taught line cooks various techniques like sous-vide cooking and advanced knife skills.”
  • “I’ve worked with multicultural teams in the past and found that clear communication and mutual respect are key.”
  • “Yes, I had to discipline a line cook for consistent tardiness. After a formal warning, their punctuality improved.”
  • “I would implement strict quality checks and taste tests before any dish leaves the kitchen.”
  • “I would follow safety protocols, use a Class K fire extinguisher, and ensure everyone’s safety before assessing the damage.”
  • “I took it as constructive feedback, corrected the dish, and sent out a complimentary item as a goodwill gesture.”

Bonus Questions:

  • How do you handle ingredient substitutions?
  • How have you accommodated special diets, such as a gluten-free diet?
  • Describe a time you went above and beyond to please a customer.

By asking these questions and carefully evaluating the answers, you can identify the Sous Chef who will be the perfect fit for your team.

Additional Tips:

  • Use a mix of open-ended and closed-ended questions.
  • Listen carefully to the candidate’s answers and ask follow-up questions.
  • Pay attention to the candidate’s body language and overall demeanor.
  • Be sure to check the candidate’s references.

By following these tips, you can be sure to hire the best Sous Chef for your restaurant.

Best of luck in your search!

PS. I’ve also included a few additional resources that you may find helpful

  • Sous Chef job description
  • Chef job description
  • Chef de Partie job description
  • Executive Chef interview questions and answers
  • Pastry Chef interview questions and answers
  • Line Cook interview questions and answers

I hope these resources help you find the perfect Sous Chef for your team!

Can you discuss your experience with kitchen equipment and technology?

Proficiency with modern kitchen equipment and technology can enhance efficiency and creativity. This question assesses the candidates adaptability and willingness to embrace new tools.

An example answer would be, “I know how to use a variety of high-tech kitchen appliances, from sous-vide machines to new combi ovens.” Ive also worked with inventory management and point-of-sale software, which streamlines operations. Staying abreast of technological advancements allows me to optimize kitchen workflows and encourage innovation within the team. “.

How do you approach the menu pricing strategy to maintain profitability?

This question tests how much the candidate knows about the money side of running a kitchen, such as how to price dishes so that they make money while still being competitive.

Example Answer: “I conduct a detailed cost analysis for each dish, considering ingredient costs, labor, and overheads. I also analyze market trends and competitor pricing to ensure our offerings are competitive yet profitable. Reviewing the menu on a regular basis lets us change the prices based on changes in supply or demand, which keeps the menu financially stable. “.

CHEF Interview Questions & Answers! (How to PASS a CHEF Job Interview!)


What questions are asked in a chef interview?

Do you have experience creating seasonal or region-specific menus? How do you approach modifying dishes for dietary restrictions? Have you ever had to include wine and spirits pairing to a menu? How do you control the quality and consistency of dishes to ensure customer satisfaction?

What is a saute chef called?

Sauté Chef (aka Saucier, Sauce Chef) Often the most respected role in the brigade system of stations, reporting directly to the head chef or sous-chef. They’re responsible for sautéing foods, but their most vital role lies within the creation of the sauces and gravies that will accompany other dishes.

Why should we hire you as a chef?

You want to hear that they are passionate about the job and that they have a desire to work in the culinary arts field. Sample Answer: I am passionate about cooking and serving great food. I have a desire to work with people and help them enjoy their dining experience.

Why should we hire you?

A: When answering, focus on your relevant skills, experience, and achievements that make you the best fit for the role.You should hire me because I am a hard worker who wants to help your company succeed. I have the skills and experience needed for the job, and I am eager to learn and grow with your team .

What skills should a saute chef have?

Knowledge of food safety guidelines: Sauté chefs should be familiar with food safety regulations and ensure that all food is prepared and stored properly. Attention to detail: Sauté chefs should be able to follow recipes and cooking instructions accurately and pay attention to detail when preparing dishes.

How many interview questions are there for chef roles?

I found a page on **Indeed.com** that lists **35 chef interview questions** with detailed sample answers . The questions are divided into several categories, including general chef interview

How do you answer a chef interview question?

The way you answer this question can provide insight to the interviewer about your determination and drive to succeed and your vision and professional ambition. Example answer: ‘My ambition as a chef is to learn as much as I can and develop experience across several cuisines and culinary styles.

What does a sauté chef do?

This involves cooking food quickly over high heat in a small amount of fat, such as oil or butter. Sauté chefs work in a variety of settings, including restaurants, hotels, and catering companies, and they play a vital role in the kitchen by ensuring that dishes are cooked to perfection.

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