Chefs make a median wage of $42,480 a year, or $20.42 an hour, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data as of May 2012. However, chefs' pay can vary widely depending on the area and employer. It is usually higher at upscale establishments or resorts and in major urban areas.
The upper 10 percent of chefs make more than $74,120 yearly. The bottom 10 percent make less than $24,530. The median pay for chefs who work in traveler accommodation is $48,210 yearly. For chefs who work in restaurants, it is $39,790.
Chefs are likely to work full time, and work during evenings, early mornings, holidays and weekends is common.