Kitchen Training Checklist for Cooks

An essential element of a successful business is a robust training plan. Proper documentation of employee training is admittedly a nuisance, but the process is worth the tedium. A thorough kitchen training checklist makes a Chef or Kitchen Manager’s life easier by giving an “at a glance” picture of who has been trained on each station or piece of equipment, and who still needs training in specific tasks. A detailed training checklist also works as a training program because it sets a template or road map for everything which you expect team members to know. This can include tasks as well as aptitude or expected interpersonal skills.

And if you end up with a “bad apple” who is not following proper procedures and who therefore requires disciplinary action, you have documentation which clearly shows what tasks that person has been properly trained to do, along with their initials indicating that they have been properly trained. This kind of documentation can make your interactions with the Human Resources Department more clear cut and less troublesome.

Training Checklist Styles

The following Excel kitchen training checklist features multiple tabs for multiple stations and can be easily modified to fit your needs. You can keep it very generic so that it applies to all cooks in training, or you can make it very specific, with different cook training expectations based upon kitchen station (Grill, Saute’, Breakfast, Dinner, etc). You can pair this with the Kitchen Closing Checklist to make a detailed expectation of closing routines. The image below shows an example of how you can keep the training checklist generic so it applies to all cooks. This format would work well in a kitchen where all cooks do the same work, or perhaps one version for Breakfast cooks and one for Dinner cooks.

Kitchen Training Checklist for Cooks


And this image (below) gives an example of how you can make the form very specific. Instead of simply saying that a cook has been trained on all recipes, you can specify each recipe by name for both procedure and plate presentation. Also notice the existing tabs at the bottom of the sheet for various stations. You can edit the names, delete unneeded stations, or add additional stations.

Kitchen Training Checklist by Station

Properly trained staff are better employees, they work together better, deliver more consistent results to your guests, and make your life easier as a Chef or manager.

Checklist Input Variations

The Master tab has a blank template so you can completely enter all of your own expectations. Or you can edit/modify one of the existing station templates. Some of the differences between a Generic version for all cooks and a more detailed Station version could include some of the following:

Generic Checklist Specific Checklist
Properly Cuts/Portions Fish Properly Cuts/Portions Halibut at 7 oz
Properly Demonstrates How To Prepare All Recipes Properly Demonstrates How To Prepare Crab Cakes (list all recipes)
Properly Sets Up Kitchen for Service Properly Sets Up Saute Station for Service


Kitchen Training Checklist in Excel
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