What Is A Private Chef?


Published on May 25, 2020

Chances are you know what a chef is. But do you know what a private chef exactly does? There are so many different types of private chefs, also at very different budgets. Making it a much more realistic and affordable option than people might think. And a very special treat for any occasion, party or event too.

So, what is a Private Chef?

Difference between a Private Chef and a Cook

Firstly, let’s establish exactly what the difference is between a private chef and a cook. We are looking at private household chefs and cooks, not restaurant or hotel staff.

So in a private household, especially large ones, it is quite common to have a housekeeper help with food prep, shopping and even some cooking. They might be there in the morning to prep breakfast, clear up, and prep simple lunches.


However a chef is a very different level from this. A private chef has had official training and qualifications and has likely worked in (high end) restaurants or hotels before their private chef days. A chef can plan your meals into the finest details and provide very high-end cuisine in the comfort of your own home. If they work for a household full time, they will fully be in charge of all the meals. As well as most of the time shopping and food prep. They will plan meals ahead taking into account flavour preferences, dietary requirements and health, and completely tailor-make a fully private dining experience.

Why People Choose to Hire

When people are hiring a private chef, it is normally for specific reasons.

Love of Great Food

It, for one, could be because of a love of high-end food. Then a private chef is an amazing investment! As they will be able to cook a restaurant, or sometimes even Michelin Star level meal, in the comfort of your own home. So if you enjoy high-quality food every day, this is a great way to get it.

Dietary Requirements

Another very popular and valid reason for hiring a Private Chef would be if there are specific dietary requirements that need to be followed. This could be anything from having certain allergies, or preferences for, for example, a vegetarian or vegan diet. Especially if you find out you are allergic or should avoid specific food groups, it can be a big challenge. Especially if you want to keep eating a very tasty and varied selection of foods and meals. This is where having a professional in your house can make an amazing difference. They will know exactly how to combine flavours and ingredients to make sure that you are still getting an amazing flavour experience. But all the while keeping you safe knowing that you are absolutely not eating anything you shouldn’t or don’t want to.


A final great reason for getting a professional chef in your household is if you have specific health reasons that makes you have to follow a (strict) diet. Many professional athletes, for example, really need to work with a chef in their home daily. The chef here also takes on the role of nutritionist, planning and executing an exact dietary plan. Making sure that you get all the nutrients and protein and giving you enough energy to perform. Food and nutrition will be one of the key factors!

For some people it might purely be health reasons. If your private chef is briefed on your calorific intake you want to achieve per day, for example, then this is a great way to make sure you hit those targets. Same goes for any type of diet you might be following – your chef can make sure all the food you are eating is staying exactly within the limitations of the diet you are following. But making sure everything is still delicious!

One-off Hire for Parties or Events

Another great way of having a Private Chef, but not having to fork out a full-time salary, is party or event hire. There are many chefs to be found who are available to hire for a day or evening. This could be a big set up, such as a large garden party or housewarming. Your chef can sort all the catering, from food shopping to prep and cooking. It can be an amazing way to elevate your party or event! But it can also be for a smaller setting. Maybe you have a special birthday that you want to celebrate just with your partner or close family. The chef can come and create an amazing meal for a small group of people – or even just you – so you can have an amazing high-end restaurant experience in the comfort of your own home.


If you are looking for a chef for a party or event, prices will differ from the ones below. However, if you are looking for hire someone full-time, the rates below give a good rough indication for the UK.

Entry level/Less experienced – 2-4 years experience. 

  • Expect a salary of £580-740 gross a week live in and £660-824 gross a week live out.
  • Yearly salary range from £28,000 gross to £42,000 gross.

Mid level/More experienced – 4-8 years experience.  

  • Expect a salary of £740-900 gross a week live in and £820-980 gross a week live out.
  • Yearly salary from £37,000 gross to £50,000 gross per year.

High level/Very experienced – 8+ years experience.  

  • Expect a salary of £820+ gross a week live in and £980+ gross a week live out.
  • Yearly salary from £51,000 gross upwards.

How Polo & Tweed can help

Whatever type of Chef you are looking to find for your home, hotel, chalet – we can help! Polo & Tweed have a very extensive database full of amazing professionals who will fit exactly what you are looking for. No matter how specific the request or set up! If you would like to get the search started, or just want to have a chat with us about the best way to find a personal chef, you are welcome to drop us a line anytime. We look forward to helping you!



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