Cooks, Fast Food

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About the Job

Prepare and cook food in a fast food restaurant with a limited menu. Duties of these cooks are limited to preparation of a few basic items and normally involve operating large-volume single-purpose cooking equipment.

It is also Called

  • Specialty Cook
  • Restaurant Worker
  • Prep Cook
  • Pizza Maker
  • Pizza Cook
  • Pizza Chef
  • Pizza Baker
  • Pancake Professional
  • Line Cook
  • Grill Cook
View All

What They Do

  • Order and take delivery of supplies.
  • Prepare dough, following recipe.
  • Schedule activities and equipment use with managers, using information about daily menus to help coordinate cooking times.
  • Mix ingredients, such as pancake or waffle batters.
  • Pre-cook items, such as bacon, to prepare them for later use.
  • Prepare and serve beverages, such as coffee or fountain drinks.
  • Serve orders to customers at windows, counters, or tables.
  • Wash, cut, and prepare foods designated for cooking.
  • Cook the exact number of items ordered by each customer, working on several different orders simultaneously.
  • Clean, stock, and restock workstations and display cases.


People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: RC.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Realistic interests, but also prefer Conventional environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Relationships, but also value Support and Independence in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Food Production - Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Sales and Marketing - Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
  • Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Education Required

Some of these occupations may require a high school diploma or GED certificate.


In 2016, the average annual wage in Pennsylvania was $20,040 with most people making between $16,240 and $27,010


avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 8,760 people in Pennsylvania. It is projected that there will be 7,620 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 0 openings due to growth and about 230 replacement openings for approximately 230 total annual openings.

Pennsylvania Department of Education