What does a Institutional Cook (415D) do?

Institutional cooks prepare quality food according to budgetary requirements and using bulk-cooking methods in conventional, cook chill, or cook freeze environments. They meet individual dietary needs including health or religious requirements and ethnic preferences. Institutional cooks use approved recipes, appropriate ingredients, and specialized equipment for modification techniques to achieve the prescribed or recommended textures. They consider regular and prescribed therapeutic diets, modification of textures, and viscosity of fluids when preparing food and beverages.

Job Related Skills, Interests and Values

  • Planning a sequence of tasks to meet production requirements within specified costs
  • Organizing human and material resources within time constraints to create products
  • Performing calculations and using formulas to prepare various foods: stocks, soups, sauces, seafood, meat and poultry, fruits, vegetables, starches, grains, salads, dressings, eggs, dairy products, baked goods, pastry, desserts, sandwiches, and hors d’oeuvres
  • Working with dieticians, customers, or senior institution personnel to design meals
  • Hiring, supervising, and training other kitchen personnel
  • Performing job duties with care and creativity

What Preparation and Training Do You Need?

  • Secondary school diploma with math and English credits; co-op, related courses, or Hospitality and Tourism Specialist High Skills Major program may be assets
  • Completion of 3,960-hour apprenticeship program, including on-the-job and in-school training
  • Exam to obtain Certificate of Qualification

What's Your Future as a Institutional Cook (415D)?

  • Mix of full-time and part-time; hours can be long and irregular
  • Career path generally follows: apprentice, line cook, junior institutional cook, chef/supervisor
  • Employers include long-term care or retirement homes, hospitals, day care centres, school dining areas, and correctional facilities

Wage Rate

Apprentice wage increases with skill and experience. Fully qualified cooks can earn $30,000-$70,000 annually or more, depending on the employer.


Institutional Cook (415D)

Ask Yourself: Yes No
Are you team-oriented? Do you work well with others?
Are you detail-oriented and enjoy working with your hands?
Are you able to follow Health & Safety guidelines?
Do you have strong writing, reading, and communication skills?
Do you consider yourself a creative person?
Are you reliable, a self-starter and able to work with minimal supervision? Can you follow directions?
Are you comfortable working with different kitchen equipment?

If you checked YES to the majority of these questions, a career as an Institutional Cook (415D) may be for you!

You might want to look at these similar trades as well;

  • Baker
  • Restaurant Manager/Owner Operator
  • Institutional or Restaurant Cook
  • Food Services Instructor in high schools or colleges
  • Food Services Manager or Supervisor (Food Service Establishment

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