How Much Does A Personal Chef Cost in 2020 ?

Find out the cost to bring a Private Chef into your home.

Updated January 08, 2020

 
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In 2020, a Private Chef cost on average $ 50.65 per person, plus tip. This price includes:

  • Chef's time
  • Transportation
  • Grocery shopping
  • Food items
  • Preparation
  • Cooking
  • Service
  • Cleaning
  • Taxes

 
 
 

Personal Chef Cost 2020 | How do we know?

We launched MiumMium.com on Dec. 12, 2015. Since day one, we have served thousands of meals across the world, from Personal Chefs in Miami to Private Chefs in Montreal, Professional Chefs in Rome to Skilled Cooks in Cancun. Our policy is clear; the price of our chefs must be fully transparent. 

The quote given by a MiumMium Chef includes all costs: Chef's time, transportation, grocery shopping, food costs, preparation, cooking, service, cleaning, and taxes. Only the tip remains discretionary and is never requested. The price quoted to the client by the private chef is what needs to be paid.

To get to $50.65 as the average cost for a personal chef, we calculated the price of all the bookings made on the site and divided the sum by the number of clients we have served since day one. The cheapest meals were priced between $20 and $30 p.p. and consisted of brunches (around 5% of our business) and light lunch. The maximum cost observed on 7-course meals served was in the largest US and European cities. 

On average we entertained 8.7 guests for a total cost of $440.66, and this is how we get to the national average cost of $50.65 per person for a meal prepared by a personal chef. 

What's interesting is to realize that the price of a chef cooking for you at home is similar, if not lower, than the cost of a three-course meal in a good restaurant...and remember, this amount doesn’t take into consideration the savings realized on wine, parking, and the babysitter!

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Why did you believe that hiring a Personal Chef was more expensive than $50 p.p.?

Simply because you mixed up what is a Personal Chef with what is a Caterer. A Personal Cook is usually a cook, or a chef, who works in a restaurant and offers his cooking services at a cost during his free time to generate additional income and meet new and interesting people. Believe me, it is much more fun and personal to have a glass of wine with the guests of a bachelorette party for 3 hours, then working in an overheated kitchen for 10 for less money. A caterer is not a personal chef, it is a professional who owns a catering business. 

If the Private Chef is the Airbnb, well the Caterer is the Hotel. Like everyone running a business, the Caterer faces fixed costs such as rent and payroll. For the same reasons a hotel room is more expensive than renting an Airbnb, a caterer services will be pricier than a personal chef. 

Historically caterers care for large events, such as weddings or big corporate functions. With the rise of the demand for Personal Chefs, the catering industry saw an opportunity to increase its revenues by entering this emerging market. However, the caterers continue to carry the same heavy cost structure; which explains the price difference between the two. 

A search of the most popular Catering companies operating in Montreal (MiumMium largest market with close to 200 chefs servicing the city) shows the following price structure:

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The price difference between a Personal Chef and a Caterer at home.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 DINNER PARTY- 8 GUESTS

 miummium-food-service-at-home-for-clients

 $460

 MiumMium Chef

 Price p.p.: $50  x 8

 Cost for the Chef: Included

 Transportation: Included

 Taxes: Included

 Tip: 15% 

  DINNER PARTY- 8 GUESTS

     caterer-price-guide-for-meals

 $838

Caterer

 Price p.p.: $48  x 8

 Cost for the Chef: $200 

 Transportation: $50 

 Taxes: 10%

 Tip: 15%

 
 
 
 
 

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Caterers are at least 50% more expensive than Personal Chefs! 

 
 
 
 

The good news is that we expect the spread between both providers to shrink as time passes and the Catering industry adapts to the emergence of chef marketplace platforms like MiumMium. Like hotels gradually evolved to compete against Airbnb.com by dropping their prices and offering rooms on vacation rental platforms, Caterers are adjusting their offers and have started listing their services on marketplaces. Remember also that a personal cook in your home will deliver a more personal experience to you and your guest than someone showing up with an already prepared meal.

Today, it may be difficult to differentiate a Private Chef's website from a caterer's website. To avoid any surprises, always ask for the complete detailed price of your dining experience in writing before entering into an agreement.

 
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What factors impact the cost of a personal chef?

Cost of living:
The price of ingredients to prepare your meals will depend a lot on where the meal is taking place. The cost of an A1 steak in New York will be different than a similar piece of meat in Dallas. Demand, taxes, proximity to distribution centers and other factors can all influence the price of the ingredient used for your meal. Likewise, the more expensive it is to live in a city, the more our cooks will need to charge to make a living.

The number of servings:

A seven-course meal is much more expensive than a three-course meal, not only because it requires more ingredients and usually in larger quantities but also because the chef will need more than twice the time to prepare the feast.  The Cooks will take this into account and will adjust their bill accordingly. If you get twice the food, you’ll have to pay twice the cost.   

Specialty menus:

Large groups with a lot of dietary restrictions may require more time and effort for planning than those with none, so it normal that some chefs charge more to accommodate the multiple demands. It is all about personal restrictions. Creating a diverse set of menus for a single meal with dietary restrictions and allergies may add hours to the work required to deliver the perfect dinner party.

Groceries:
High-quality or specialty or rare ingredients will have a direct impact on the cost of your meal. Caviar and champagne are delightful and sadly costly. If your party requires higher-end ingredients, such as farm to table organic food, you should expect to pay the chef more for the meal he is preparing for you. 

Location:

If a Cook needs to travel a long distance to come and cook for your party, you should be expecting the cost of hos traveling to be included in the final bill.

Structure:

A single chef working independently will likely charge less than a catering company. Independent personal chefs are usually offering this type of services to monetize their free time and don’t have to carry the cost of staff and offices.

Experience of the chef:

Like any other specialist, a well-known chef, one that has worked in Michelin Star restaurant, will command higher rates than a newcomer fresh out of culinary school.

Competition:

To get the best ratio quality/price, it’s important to ask more than one chef for a quotation, a service where chefs compete against each other create an environment that forces the participants to offer the best value for your money if they want to win your contract.

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in generalCaterers prices are at least 50% more expensive than the price of a true Personal Cook

guide of Personal Chef Cost for food service
 

What’s included in the price of a personal chef?

Households spent a lot of time in the kitchen every week to prepare meals for themselves and their families. For many, hiring a private chef to gain some extra time sounds like an unattainable dream - but the reality is different from what they imagine. In fact, hiring a personal chef usually costs less than going out to the restaurant. 

If you value your free time, are too busy to prepare healthy quality meals or spend a good amount of your earnings on eating out, then hiring a chef at home is the right choice for you. The obvious benefit is that your chef will prepare you delicious meals tailored to your needs but there are a lot of other elements that go into this preparation. 

Here is a break down of the value-added services included in the price of a Personal Chef: 

Meal Planning:

One of the private cook’s responsibilities is to elaborate a meal plan or a menu that meets you and your family’s dietary needs. This is particularly helpful if you have limitations regarding what you can and cannot eat. All you have to do is share your food restrictions with your home chef. This can include religious dietary restrictions, food allergies or general preferences and dislikes. 

Grocery Shopping:

Once you’re happy with your meal plan, your Miummium chef will take care of procuring the ingredients needed to prepare your meals. If you have strong food preferences (organic food, grass-fed meats, etc.), your chef will follow your guidelines and take them into consideration when grocery shopping. The cost of the ingredients and the time needed to buy the groceries are included in the price of hiring a culinary professional with Miummium. 

Food Preparation:

It’s no surprise that a big chunk of the cost of a personal chef goes into food and planning. However, the best part of this service is without a doubt the expertise the personal chef brings into your kitchen.  Your home chef will come to your home or vacation rental to cook. They will do all the chopping, peeling, marinating and baking needed to prepare your delicious meals. You’ll be able to chat with your chef and learn some useful tips. 

Meal Storage:

If you want meals on a regular basis, your personal chef will prepare and cook all the dishes at your home and safely package them so that they can easily be stored and eaten at a later time. 

Cleaning:

Forget about cleaning up after your personal chef. He will take care of doing the dishes and leaving your kitchen spick and span. There will be no dirty pots in sight.

be certain to discuss with the chef if plates, utensils and glasses are included

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MiumMium's recommendations:

    1. Communicate with more than one chef.
    2. Read independent reviews from past clients when available.
    3. Never give more than a 50% deposit ahead.
    4. State from start the dietary restrictions and food allergies of your guests. The chef will design his menu around it.
    5. Establish a directing line for your meal, are you looking for local flavors? A seafood feast or some steaks on the b.b.q? Then, let the chef present a menu.
    6. Avoid all surprises by asking what is included in the price in writing.


Hiring a Private Chef is truly something unique. Having a chef to come and cook for you in the comfort of your home or when traveling abroad is all about the experience. It gives you the opportunity to share a special moment with your guests without having to spend time cooking or cleaning. You can learn a few cooking techniques or ask for a full-blown cooking class while having a glass of wine with your friends and the best: you have nothing to worry about; the chef takes care of everything.

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always ask the details of the price quoted

 
 
Cook preparing a salad
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Personal Cook setting a plate
 
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