Food Preparation and Serving Occupations

The most recent data of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (2019) states the following about food preparation and serving occupations:

Employment in food preparation and serving related occupations is projected to grow 7 percent from 2019 to 2029, faster than the average for all occupations, and gain about 1 million jobs. Population and income growth are expected to result in greater consumer demand for food at a variety of dining places, including restaurants and grocery stores.

Food preparation and serving related occupations are the lowest-paid occupational group, with a median annual wage of $24,220 in May 2019.


Food Preparation and Serving Jobs

Below you find a list of positions with a job summary, entry-level education, and median pay level. Each link brings you to a specific job page where you can find more information about the position, and commonly asked interview questions and answers for that job.

OccupationJob SummaryEntry-Level Education2019 Median Pay
BartendersBartenders mix drinks and serve them directly to customers or through wait staff.No formal educational credential$23,680
Chefs and Head CooksChefs and head cooks oversee the daily food preparation at restaurants and other places where food is served.High school diploma or equivalent$51,530
CooksCooks prepare, season, and cook a wide range of foods.See How to Become One$26,360
Food and Beverage Serving and Related WorkersFood and beverage serving and related workers perform a variety of customer service, food preparation, and cleaning duties in eating and drinking establishments.No formal educational credential$23,000
Food Preparation WorkersFood preparation workers perform many routine tasks under the direction of cooks, chefs, or food service managers.No formal educational credential$24,800
Waiters and WaitressesWaiters and waitresses take orders and serve food and beverages to customers in dining establishments.No formal educational credential$22,890


Job Interview Topics – Common Job Interview Questions & Answers

Below you can find a list of common job interview topics. Each link will direct you to an article regarding the specific topics that discuss commonly asked interview questions. Furthermore, each article discusses why the interviewer asks these questions and how you answer them!

  1. Accomplishments
  2. Adaptability
  3. Admission
  4. Behavioral
  5. Career Change
  6. Career Goals
  7. Communication
  8. Competency
  9. Conflict Resolution
  10. Creative Thinking
  11. Cultural Fit
  12. Customer Service
  13. Direct
  14. Experience
  15. Government
  16. Graduate
  17. Growth Potential
  18. Honesty & Integrity
  19. Illegal
  20. Inappropriate
  21. Job Satisfaction
  22. Leadership
  23. Management
  24. Entry-Level & No experience
  25. Performance-Based
  26. Personal
  27. Prioritization & Time Management
  28. Problem-solving
  29. Salary
  30. Situational & Scenario-based
  31. Stress Management
  32. Teamwork
  33. Telephone Interview
  34. Tough
  35. Uncomfortable
  36. Work Ethic