Edible Income: The Highest Paying Jobs in Food Service

highest paying food service jobsSome people think of food service jobs as merely a source of income while on the way to different career.  But only in some cases does a job in food service mean hard work for little pay.  If you go for the right kinds of jobs, a career in food service can be very high paying.  It all depends on the type of establishment you are working at, along with the number of customers and types of clientele you are serving.  Here are some of the highest paying jobs in food service (and some of them may surprise you):

1)  Bartender

Bartenders make and serve drinks to clientele at restaurants, bars, nightclubs and other establishments where liquor is served.  If you work at the right place, being a bartender is one of the highest paying jobs in food service.  While the reported average salary for a bartender is only $22,000 annually, since bartenders are paid in mostly tips, the sky is the limit to the earning potential.  If you work at a ritzy restaurant or resort, or a place that is just filled with paying customers constantly, you can easily bring in a few hundred dollars in a night and $1,000 to $2,000 in a week.

Bartender jobs in New York, NY

Bartender jobs in Philadelphia, PA

Bartender jobs in Chicago, IL

2)  Restaurant Manager

A restaurant manager supervises the overall operations of a restaurant, from the menu to the staff to supplies and inventory.  Commonly, restaurant managers work their way up in the food service industry to get to their high paying positions, usually working as a server or bartender beforehand for a number of years.  Also, a job as a restaurant manager requires a bachelor’s degree in some cases.  The salary of a restaurant manager depends on the type of establishment you work for.  At a fast food chain you may make around $30,000 annually, while at a full service establishment you are more likely to earn $50,000 or $60,000 annually.  At very high end restaurant, you can make closer to $80,000 per year.

Restaurant manager jobs in New York, NY

Restaurant manager jobs in Philadelphia, PA

Restaurant manager jobs in Chicago, IL

3)  Pastry Chef

Pastry chefs are responsible for any baking that is needed at a restaurant, deli, bakery, etc.  This includes preparing desserts and breads, ordering supplies, and managing staff if the baking needs are on larger scale.  They also hold one of the highest paying jobs in food service.  Most pastry chefs work their way up to where they are, starting at a lower level position in food service and gaining the skills required for a pastry chef over time.  The average annual salary for pastry chefs is about $61,000.

Pastry chef jobs in New York, NY

Pastry chef jobs in Philadelphia, PA

Pastry chef jobs in Chicago, IL

4)  Hot Dog Vendor

This job stands out from others on the list, but having the ability to serve a good hot dog in the right location can allow you to rapidly rake in the cash.  Similar to a bartender, the harder a hot dog vendor works and the more people they serve, the more money they will earn, making this one of the highest paying job in food service.  The average annual salary for a hot dog vendor is $100,000.  This is because a hot dog vendor that works in an area with a lot of hungry foot traffic can easily sell a minimum of 100 hot dogs in one day, and a couple hundred on a particularly busy day.

Hot dog vendor jobs in New York, NY

Hot dog vendor jobs in Philadelphia, PA

Hot dog vendor jobs in Chicago, IL

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Jessica Cody

Jessica Cody, a native of Fairfield County, Connecticut, has a background in online marketing and public relations. She is a graduate of the University of Connecticut, where she studied Journalism and Political Science. She is also an avid runner with a passion for the outdoors.

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