What’s the difference between a private chef and a personal chef?

Private chefs are employed exclusively by an individual or family. A personal chef typically keeps several clients and may also do catering and events. Both personal and private chefs provide an array of services, custom-designed for the client’s particular needs, desires and dietary requirements.

Is having a private chef or personal chef right for me?

We all have to eat; it’s just a question of how. How important is it to have freshly prepared, custom-made meals ready at your convenience? How would you like to allocate your money and time? To searching, shopping, and preparing food? Most people hire a personal chef because they don’t have the time or desire to cook. The personal chef may either drop off a few days’ worth of food or come to your home and cook a few meals. A private chef is a great fit if you’d like someone cooking fresh food for you in your home anywhere from 2–5+ days a week. Typically, a private chef is employed full time and works exclusively for one client. This isn’t just for celebrities! Business professionals, expecting parents, people with dietary concerns and everyday working families all benefit from personalized chef services. If you’re tired of take-out, consider how a chef would be a great investment for you and your health.

How does it work?

Private Chef (Full Time Chef Hire)
Personal Chef (Part Time Chef Hire)
Drop Off Chef (services) / Delivery Meal Services
Cooking Classes
Private Chef Consulting (Career Knowledge, Hiring Advice, Job Advice)

Who does the cooking when I hire a private or personal chef?

Once you’ve chosen your local, vetted, professional chef, she will cook your meals from start to finish.

What areas do you serve?

Private Chef Consulting services Los Angeles, New York, and international markets. Hire vetted private or personal chefs serving Malibu, Agoura Hills, Calabasas, West Hills, Topanga Canyon, Canoga Park, Sherman Oaks, Encino, Tarzana, Studio City, Burbank, Northridge, Van Nuys, Hollywood Hills, Pacific Palisades, Santa Monica, Bel Air, Brentwood, Beverly Hills, Culver City, San Francisco, Orange County, San Diego, Miami and New York.

Do you deliver meals?

Yes! Personal chefs are available for drop-off meal services. See pricing and policy here.

How far in advance should I book?

To ensure quality and timely service, we recommend you reserve a private or personal chef as far in advance as you can.

Will my chef travel with me?

Yes. However, a small travel surcharge will be added to your bill.


How does a chef know what to cook?

Your diet is the chef’s first order of business. In the initial consultation, you and the chef will go over what you would like from your personal chef service. He will consider your likes, dislikes, preferences, dietary restrictions and allergies in planning your menu. To ensure best chef-client fit, we ask that you complete a chef-client questionnaire; this allows us to match you with the chef that’s best equipped to handle your specific situation and menu requests.

Can I choose what I want to eat from a menu?

Of course! Choose from dishes here.

What kind of ingredients do you use?

Private Chef Consulting strives to use only the highest-quality ingredients for your meals. All ingredients are sourced from local farms, markets and specialty stores.

Is there anything I can do before your visit?

Have your kitchen counters free of clutter, your sink cleared, and space made in your refrigerator and freezer.


Do you have your food handler’s card?

PCC chefs are fully insured and ServSafe Certified.

Are your private chef services insured?

All PCC chefs are insured and vetted by our organization.

Can I see the resume or references of my private chef?

Yes! When you hire a PCC private or personal chef, you’re guaranteed a quality professional. You can hire with confidence because all PCC chefs pass a full background check.


Do you offer education or certification for private chefs?

Yes! Chef Nate is an experienced instructor who tutors private and personal chefs on how to develop their businesses.

Do you offer in-home cooking classes?

Yes! Details are available here.


New Client:

A 50% deposit is due before each new client’s first service date. This payment locks in the cook-date and ensures that the chef has the funds provided to purchase groceries and other expenses. For future services, payment can be arranged prior to or on the day of the client’s service, at the chef’s discretion. Check, Venmo and cash are accepted for first-time clients, and service will not be confirmed until deposit is received.


We understand that things happen, and sometimes clients need to cancel. All cancellations must be made at least 72 hours prior to the service date to receive a full refund. If the client cancels within 72 hours prior to their service, half of their service total will be forfeited to cover any incidentals or materials already purchased. The remaining half of the service total will be refunded to the client.


If a client needs to re-schedule, it must be done at least five (5) days prior to the scheduled service date and may result in a service charge. The chef will do her best to accommodate your new cook-date within current availability.


It is the client’s responsibility to make sure someone is home to greet the chef and introduce him to the kitchen. If nobody will be home when the chef arrives, please make sure you’ve discussed entry instructions with the chef prior to his arrival. If the chef arrives at the client’s home and the client is not home, does not answer, and/or is unresponsive via phone/email, the chef reserves the right to cancel the service and any deposit made by the client will be forfeited. To help prevent this situation, the chef will confirm the service date and time prior to the scheduled date.

Menu Requests and Edits:

All final menu edits or submissions should be made three (3) days prior to the client’s service date, so the chef has the proper time to plan, prepare, and shop. Last-minute requests are subject to timing and the nature of the request, and will be honored when possible.

Personal Chef Services (Part Time and Temporary)

What’s included when hiring a personal chef?

Initial consultation, multiple courses or entrees customized to your preferences, grocery shopping, advancing, cooking, kitchen clean-up, packaging, labeling, storage, and follow-up.

Is the menu the same every time when hiring a personal chef?

Only if you want it to be. Your personal chef will create a new menu for you each time you see them. Some clients go months without ever having a repeat meal.

Are groceries included?

No, groceries are paid for separately from the chef’s fee. This is to ensure you receive fine, organic meats, produce and pantry ingredients.

Can I add additional dishes to what my chef suggests?

Absolutely. You can always add an extra side, salad or soup if you feel you need a little extra. Just ask!

Does a personal chef make special food for children?

Yes! Your chef will consider everyone’s tastes when menu planning. Be sure to let your chef know in advance if children will have particular needs.

Are the meals fresh or frozen?

All food is delivered fresh, and some can be frozen. Talk to your chef about your eating habits to plan the preparation that is right for you.

Do I re-heat my food?

Yes. You will be left with instructions about how to heat your meals. If meals are frozen, simply thaw them in the refrigerator the day before and follow the easy re-heat instructions for your oven or microwave.

How long do meals last?

– This depends on how many entrees you order and how many people are being served. Your meals will be labeled and dated for easy selection.
– Typically, each meal lasts about four days in a refrigerator (two for fish or seafood) and up to one month in the freezer.

How much does drop-off food delivery cost?

There are many variables and factors to consider when it comes to the pricing of drop-off food delivery. First, please know that the chefs themselves set fees based on their personal “going rate.” Second, there are costs involved that you and the chef will agree how to factor. These include food, gas and food containers. These can be calculated by adding the itemized receipts and the chef service fee, or through a flat fee that includes the cost of food, gas and food containers, and the chef service fee. You and the chef can discuss which of these approaches best suits your situation. When you hire a chef for drop-off food delivery, PCC will collect a one-time Administrative Placement Fee of $100.

What is the average cost of a personal chef meal delivery?

$250-$350. That price usually includes five meals and snacks for two people. Any grocery costs will be determined by the menu you choose – just ask.

Catering, Dinner Party and Tray Pass Questions

How do I choose between a plated dinner or a buffet?

A buffet allows the guests to help themselves to as much or as little food as they would like. Food is either served buffet-style in chafing dishes or “family-style” at the table. A plated dinner consists of multiple courses, served at the table like a restaurant.

How many courses are included with my dinner party or catering event?

A minimum of three courses will come with your event service, but you can have up to seven courses.

Can I add more courses?

Absolutely! You can add up to six courses to your event menu.

How many guests can you serve?

Chef Nate specializes in events of 2–20 guests, just ask!

Do you have servers?

Yes! I maintain a network of skilled servers and bartenders that I can staff for your event. The typical pay rate for servers is $35 per hour and for bartenders, $50 per hour.

How do you determine the budget for these events?

The budget for each party is unique depending on the guest count, style, size, and complexity of the menu. Your total will consist of a service fee and a grocery budget. The service fee is what a personal chef charges for services and labor. The average grocery budget is between $50–100 per person. Your chef can create an estimate for you once details of a menu are discussed. She will then present you with a final budget for approval, ask for a deposit, and perhaps agree to an event contract.

Cooking Class Questions

Is there a menu I can choose from?

Yes, you will be sent a sample menu to choose from.

Can I create my own custom menu and cooking class?

Yes, Chef Nate is versed in everything from Thai to comfort food. Just ask!

Are the cooking classes held in my home?

Yes. All cooking classes are held in your home kitchen to get you more comfortable cooking in your home.

How far in advance should I reserve a cooking class?

As soon as you know, reserve a date for a cooking class to ensure availability

How long do cooking classes take?

In general, a cooking class takes 2–3 hours.

Do you offer a hands-on cooking class?

Yes! Everyone in the class will receive hands-on experience, led by your chef. Feel free to ask questions and get involved.

How many people can I have in my cooking class?

The recommend maximum cooking class attendance is 8 persons. Couples cooking classes are available too!

Full Time Private Chef Questions

How do I hire a full-time Private Chef?

There’s an easy 5-step process to hire a full-time private chef.
1. Contact Chef Nate at Private Chef Consulting
We will respond promptly to either e-mail or phone inquiries:

2. Give your preferences
Tell me your food preferences and desires so that I can match you with the ideal chef. I then hand-select chefs based on their skill sets and your outlined preferences.

3. Review Résumés and pricing
You’ll receive a few chefs’ résumés to consider as well as the chefs’ potential salaries.

4. Interview or Test Cook
You may choose to conduct a traditional interview or move right to a test cook. During a test cook, it all comes down to the food and your reaction to your prospective new chef.

5. Congratulations!
Once you’ve found your ideal chef, you’re ready to make the hire. Chef Nate will help facilitate the details.

How many test cooks do I get when considering a chef candidate for a full-time job?

We recommend at least two test dinners when considering a chef candidate for a full-time position. This is important because in order to get a true sense of a chef’s abilities, you should try your favorite chefs more than once. If you continue to test or trial a chef beyond one week, it will be considered a temporary hire.

How much does a Private Chef cost?

The Administrative Placement fee for a temporary, part-time and full-time chef placement is 20% of the agreed annual pay rate.

Have more questions?

Send us a message, and we’ll quickly be in contact. If you’re looking for a specific style of food or just the right personality to fit your home, we can help!