Private or Personal Chefs...

Joined Nov 29, 2001
Hubby has been researching PC's because it is a career that appeals to him. He's done the frenetic professional kitchen thing and although he enjoys it, he'd like to explore PC as a career possibility.

I did a search to try and find an organization that shares resources, does placement, etc., and all I can find are companies peddling their "training program." Anyone out there had positive experiences with any PC association that is not a ripoff? I wish I could remember the name of the one I used to see in Fine Cooking years ago when the PC trade was just getting started.

Any input (including insight) would be appreciated.
Joined May 26, 2001
Chiff, did you look back at the thread I started, "Personal Chef panel report" in The Inside Scoop (page 2)? As I recall, people added a number of references and really good discussion. And just recently Foodnfoto posted about her experience re: private cheffing. I'll check on some other boards for references for you.
Joined Apr 19, 2001

The one you used to see in FC is the one who's 'just peddling their training program'. A friend of mine went, and said they actually only spent 3-4 hours in the kitchen the entire time (I think it was a week long program). The rest of it was all about marketing. Not a whole lot about things I would want to know, such as packaging premade meals, pricing out costs, dietary concerns, etc. She was very disappointed.
Joined Feb 6, 2002
Ive been doing research on the PC biz for months too. If you have a computer, printer and Adobe software/MS Publisher you can make your own brochure and biz cards. I did find that the USPCA did not require you to "purchase" their training supplies just to join their org. You can become a member for 299. Seemed reasonable to me since the general liability insurance that comes with it is pretty good. They also create their own accounting software that will cost you 100 bucks as a member. Offers recipe storage, nutrition info, scaling, cust invoicing/billing, cust prefs (allergies etc.) and a whole slew of stuff. They also have an online store. :rolleyes:

The training courses are expensive though and from what Ive gathered they mainly focus on marketing the biz and selling you their "tried and true" recipes. Other than that I haven't gotten much info from them. They don't seem to want to answer questions unless you have paid for the package. Im talking about all the orgs now, not just USPCA. So the only way you will get a comprehensive explanation of how the biz works you will either have to jump in with both feet and try it yourself...trial and error or pay for the information where you only want the single blue sheet in the pile of pink. Its all up to you.

They also have a suggested pricing guide that they give to you which I personally find confusing. I thought it would be a good idea to cost out a set of seasonal recipes, let them pick from things you know how to make, charge em a price based on the cost of their selections and add that to your fee (which includes labor and containers). I noticed that the containers can be found in the supermarket now. Glad actually has some that you can take from the freezer to microwave to oven. You should test your recipes at the good cook you are :) ....before adding them to the menu. Makes sense right? That way you get a feeling of what the cust. may go through thawing and reheating.

I also had an idea to give them an introductory brochure that includes the menu, what i do and dont do, and a brief summary on Food Safety. Dont know if thats the thing to do...

I hope you find more information regarding this. Id love to hear what youve found.
Joined Nov 29, 2001
I sat down and visited Suzanne's thread on PC's. Talk about the motherlode of information! Between her initial post, then the back-and-forth between Shawty and Shroom...I saved the whole file for hubby to look over.

Thanks again for steering me in the direction of that thread. I'm afraid I suffer from "first page-itis" and tend to forget there is information stored beyond page one of any folder.

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