Definition of chef in English:


Pronunciation /SHef/ /ʃɛf/

See synonyms for chef

Translate chef into Spanish


  • A professional cook, typically the chief cook in a restaurant or hotel.

    ‘Their livers were then cut out and borne in triumph to a local restaurant, where the chef was ordered to cook them.’
    • ‘I thought I was writing the book for cooks and chefs and restaurant people in the New York area.’
    • ‘Cash will be the vital ingredient as celebrity chefs cook up a special fundraising treat for charity.’
    • ‘There were plenty of other chefs to help cook, so the task did not take as long as she thought it would.’
    • ‘That means the chefs cook and the wine experts pour wine and talk about it.’
    • ‘Several local companies also supported the competition by donating produce for the young chefs to cook.’
    • ‘These will be bought by patrons and the chefs will cook it according to specifications.’
    • ‘Twenty-three per cent of chefs and cooks said that they were satisfied in their jobs.’
    • ‘I have never met a chef who enjoys cooking vegetarian food, it confuses them.’
    • ‘However I would have to pity the poor chef who has to cook their pre-match and after match meals!’
    • ‘Each sous chef has four assistant chefs under him who, in turn, have trainee cooks under them.’
    • ‘But there are plenty of professional chefs who find it hard to cope when it comes to camp cooking.’
    • ‘With the experienced management team and the excellent chefs, this restaurant should do well.’
    • ‘Two other celebrity chefs have opened restaurants in Scotland recently.’
    • ‘The best way to ‘winterise’ your fish is to do what restaurant chefs do and treat it as if it were meat.’
    • ‘The restaurant employs five chefs and spends tens of thousands of pounds in training its cooks.’
    • ‘She praised the efforts of the restaurant's four chefs and five other members of staff.’
    • ‘I'd never been to a restaurant where a chef completely decides what you're going to eat and drink.’
    • ‘When you're eating in a restaurant and the chef comes over to your table you feel special.’
    • ‘The restaurant changed its chef quite recently and we haven't been able to inspect it since.’
    cook, cordon bleu cook, food preparer
    View synonyms

intransitive verbchefs, cheffing, cheffed

[no object]informal
  • Work as a chef.

    • ‘he cheffed on a yacht in the Riviera for two years’


Early 19th century French, literally ‘head’.