Relief Chef

Tomtain Recruitment
14.00 - 20.00 GBP Hourly
20 Nov 2023
30 Nov 2023
Contract Type
Full Time


We are currently recruiting relief chefs to work with hotels, restaurants, event caterers, contract caterers, resorts, visitor attractions and caf??s in Edinburgh, East & West Lothian and the surrounding areas.

Job Description

The standards of food can be anything from those expected in multi award winning kitchens with Michelin stars, AA Rosettes, and other accolades as well as more basic menus offering classic pub-grub, traditional Scottish classics and anywhere in-between. In short there are opportunities at all levels.

The most common requests are for chefs to come and support a kitchen that needs extra help due to the time of year meaning it is especially busy, a permanent member of staff being off sick, holiday cover, or to cover a vacancy they are trying to fill.

Depending on the booking, you may be asked to:

  • Run a section during service.
  • Prepare and carry out prep lists to ensure mise en place is ready.
  • Order ingredients for the kitchen.
  • Work across different sections in the kitchen.
  • Log temperature checks, keep the kitchen clean and tidy and carry out any other health & hygiene practices.
  • Take overall responsibility for running the kitchen on more senior bookings.

People this may suit

The reasons chefs choose relief work, and the type of person that takes on these roles are varied and include career relief chefs; short-term stopgaps while looking for a permanent job; fitting work around study, family, and other work; topping up hours while growing your own catering business; or simply to earn some extra money.

The most important thing is that you have a good attitude, are dependable, and are willing to work to the specs, recipes, and standards that each client requests.

What we ask of you

  • Attitude is arguably the most important aspect of being a great relief chef. We look for people who can adapt to different kitchens, and have a helpful, positive, grown-up approach to work.
  • Reliability and turning up in a timely manner to bookings.
  • Making sure that you finish bookings well - with a smile, a handshake, and the knowledge that the client would love to have you back. If you do that, you will quickly find you are offered lots of work.
  • Try and be reasonably flexible when considering bookings - the more you do well, the more you will be offered.

What we promise you

Having worked with thousands of relief chefs over a twenty-year period we understand that there are plenty of good agencies out there, and many who miss the mark. We build long-term relationships with our chefs, and our clients. We take the welfare of our candidates seriously and that is one reason why we have worked with many for such a long time. We promise we will:

  • Do our best to offer bookings that will be suitable for you based on your experience and what you have told us you are looking for.
  • Try to work with good employers who pay and treat their relief chefs well.
  • Deal with any issues promptly, seeing them through until resolved.
  • Ensure all details of bookings are communicated clearly, efficiently, and promptly.
  • If a workplace repeatedly falls short of our expectations, we will stop working with them - we want to send you to good, respectful, fair kitchens.
  • Process wages, holiday pay and other queries quickly and accurately.


Relief Chef work is paid weekly on an hourly basis, one week in hand. We pay good rates, for interesting and varied work. Depending on the booking you take on, hourly rates vary between GBP14 to GBP21 per hour.

For live-in bookings you will usually be paid your travel costs to the booking by the client, and again at the satisfactory end of the booking. Relief chefs do not get charged for their accommodation when on a booking.

For bookings where we employ and pay, you will:

  • Get paid weekly on a PAYE basis on a Friday.
  • Accrue holiday pay in addition to the quoted hourly rate for every hour worked.
  • Receive a weekly payslip.
  • Be eligible for a workplace pension after 3 months.

When you take on a booking where a client employs and pays you directly, we will always provide detailed information about their pay cycles and process.

Tomtain Recruitment offers the services of an employment agency for permanent work and an employment business for temporary work. Tomtain Recruitment is acting as an employment business in relation to this vacancy (except for any bookings where you are employed directly by the client, in which case we are acting as an employment agency).

More searches like this