Sr. Head Cook

  • Orange County, CA
  • Orange County, California
  • Jul 01, 2020
Full Time Nutrition and Food Services
  • Salary: $49,441.60 - $66,227.20 Annually USD

Job Description

Sr. Head Cook

Incumbents will be periodically rotated through assignments, shifts, including nights, weekends, holidays and correctional facilities.

This recruitment is open to the public and being held to establish an open eligible list to fill vacancies in this class until the next recruitment. The established eligible list will be used to fill vacancies in this class, as well as lower-level classes within the same occupational series. The current vacancies are within the Orange County Sheriff's Department; however, the eligible list may also be used by other County of Orange agencies or departments to fill their vacancies.

Orange County is a desirable place to live and is one of the premier employers in the region, as well as the third largest county in California. At the County you will find variety, individual opportunity, job satisfaction, and the pleasure of working with colleagues who are dedicated to making a positive difference. Over the years, Orange County has established a reputation as an innovative leader among local governments and services over 3,000,000 people who live within its 34 cities. Residents enjoy over 42 miles of pristine beaches, 3 harbors, vast wilderness parks, beautiful nature preserves, and 250 miles of riding and hiking trails. Orange County has top-rated attractions from Disneyland to several major professional sports teams, a wide range of cultural arts as well as some of the highest quality public and private schools in the nation. There is no doubt that Orange County is a great place to work, live, and play. These positions are utilized throughout the County. To read more about the different departments that utilize Sr. Head Cooks, please click on the links below: Click here for more information on Sheriff's Department. Click here for more information on Social Services Agency. Click here for more information on Probation Department.

Orange County Sheriff's Food Services operates multiple kitchens, inmate dining halls, and warehouses. Food Services provides three nutritionally balanced meals daily to each inmate housed in the County's jail facilities. These meals must meet or exceed the requirements set forth by the California Board of Corrections, National Academy of Sciences Recommended Daily Allowances, and the California Daily Food Guide. Food Services also prepares special dietary meals ordered by Correctional Health Services for inmates with special dietary needs as well as religious diets and hot and cold meals including sack lunches for inmates scheduled for court, inmate work crews, and/or emergency operational issues.

  • Supervises and coordinates the work of employees engaged in the preparation, cooking, and serving of food for a large population (regular, medical and religious meals)
  • Writes and administer accurate performance evaluations
  • Assists the Chief Cook in preparing menus and estimating food quantity requirements for a large institution
  • Inspects food preparation areas to ensure sanitary procedures are being observed, adequate supplies are available, kitchen equipment is in operating order, and that personnel involved in food preparation and cooking are using the most efficient and effective methods and techniques
  • Ensures high quality food preparation and meal service
  • Coordinates the distribution of meals, ensuring meals are served timely and in an orderly manner
  • Prepares records and reports concerning food preparation activities
  • May assist Chief Cooks in the planning of kitchen activities
  • May perform baking, cooking and other duties as assigned


The ideal candidate would possess considerable:
  • Experience working in the institutional food service industry (e.g. corrections, military, schools, hospital, airline feeding)
  • Knowledge of various computer software programs, food service management information systems
  • Experience in a food service supervisory/management position
  • Familiarity with County, State, and Federal health and safety regulations related to food services
  • Communicate both orally and in writing in the English language as to procedures, recipes, labels, and instructions for food preparation
  • ServSafe certificate


Thorough knowledge of:
  • Practices, methods and equipment used in preparing, cooking, serving, and storing large quantities of food
  • Menu planning, quantity ordering, and inventory control
  • Principles of supervision
  • Common weights and measures used in preparation and cooking of food

Ability to:
  • Supervise the preparation, cooking, and serving of large quantities of food, which may include special diets
  • Coordinate cooking processes so that meals are prepared and served on time
  • Supervise leadworkers engaged in seven-day-a-week food preparation and cooking activities
  • Add, subtract, multiply, and divide up to five digit numbers, including fractions in some assignments
  • Read and understand administrative procedures as well as recipes, labels, and instructions for food preparation
  • Keep detailed records of food service activities and costs, and prepare written reports

Considerable experience directing the preparation and cooking of food for a large number of persons, or any equivalent combination of education or experience which provides the required knowledge and abilities.

License Required
Possession of a valid California Driver's License, Class C or higher, by date of appointment.

Click here to view the class spec/job description.

A background check consisting of employment history, professional references, criminal check, and educational verification (i.e. degree, license, or official transcript) may be conducted. For positions with the Orange County Sheriff's Department and Probation Department, candidates must pass an extensive background investigation to the satisfaction of those departments. Candidates must not have been convicted of a felony or be on any form of probation. All employment offers are contingent upon successful completion of a thorough background investigation to the satisfaction of the hiring department.

The County of Orange is committed to providing a means for applicants who may have a disability to identify areas in which they may request a reasonable accommodation. Applicants are encouraged to contact the recruiter listed for any questions or to request an accommodation during the selection process.

Physical Requirements
Ability to: sit and/or stand for prolonged periods, climb stairs, bend, stoop, and reach in order to retrieve supplies stored above head level and on lower shelves of storage units; lift and carry up to 50 pounds; push, pull, and steer food carts; handle sensitive chemicals; speak and hear well enough to conduct telephone and face to face conversations; see well enough to read standard print on recipes and other printed documents and conduct inspections of work site; detect odors and other indicators of food spoilage or unclean conditions in the working area.

Environmental Conditions
Work in a correctional facility with adult inmates or juveniles who may become violent or abusive. Exposure to extremes in temperature (hot and cold). Frequent exposure to machinery, electrical appliances, fire, heat, cleaning chemicals, sudden temperature changes, slippery surfaces, and noise/vibration, steam hot water and cramped areas.

Applications must emphasize all the areas in which the applicant has expertise and accomplishments in the specific competencies related to the position.

Application Appraisal Panel |Application Rating (Refer/Non-Refer)
An Application Appraisal Panel (AAP) of job knowledge experts will thoroughly screen all application materials and rate for job knowledge, competencies and related experience described above. The more qualified candidates will be referred to the next step. (The information you provide will be used as a scoring device, so please be descriptive in your response. "See Resume" is not a qualifying response and will not be scored in lieu of the required information.)

Qualification Appraisal Panel | Oral Interview (Weighted 100%)
Candidates will be interviewed and rated by a qualification appraisal panel of job knowledge experts. Each candidate's rating will be based on responses to a series of structured questions designed to elicit the candidates' qualifications for the job. Only the most successful candidates will be placed on the eligible list. (The panel of job knowledge experts is not granted access to the candidate's application prior to the panel interview; therefore, a candidate's responses to the structured questions should be thorough, detailed and complete.)

Based on the Department's needs, the selection procedures listed above may be modified. All candidates will be notified of any changes in the selection procedures.

After all procedures have been completed, the Sheriff Human Resources will establish an eligible list of qualified candidates.

Only on-line applications will be accepted. Resumes will not be accepted in lieu of on line applications. Application information must be current, succinct and related to the requirements in this job announcement. Please note that email is the primary form of notification during the recruitment process. Please ensure your correct email address is on your application and only use one email account. Click here for tips to complete your application.


EMAIL NOTIFICATION: Email is the primary form of notification during the recruitment process. Please ensure your correct email address is included in your application and use only one email account.

NOTE: User accounts are established for one person only and should not be shared with another person. Multiple applications with multiple users may jeopardize your status in the recruitment process for any positions for which you apply. Candidates will be notified regarding their status as the recruitment proceeds via email through the site. Please check your email folders, including spam/junk folders, and/or accept emails ending with "" and "" If your email address should change, please update your profile at .

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS: Click here for additional Frequently Asked Questions.

For specific information pertaining to this recruitment, contact Paige West at (714) 834-5859 or email at

Orange County, as an equal employment opportunity employer, encourages applicants from diverse backgrounds to apply.

Closing Date/Time:

Job Address

Orange County, California United States View Map