\ˈshef \

Definition of chef 

1 : a skilled cook who manages the kitchen (as of a restaurant)

2 : cook

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Other Words from chef

chef intransitive verb
chefdom \ -​dəm \ noun

Synonyms for chef


cook, cooker

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Examples of chef in a Sentence

The hotel's chef trained at the finest culinary institutes in Europe. He's the head chef at a five-star restaurant. a celebrity chef with her own TV show My friend is an excellent chef.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The owners are interviewing candidates to take the helm as chef. Anna Muckerman,, "Owners of Delia Foley's and Smaltimore to open new restaurant in Federal Hill," 13 July 2018 More than a decade ago, the Alain Ducasse disciple made his name as the executive chef of the Fifth Floor in San Francisco. Justin Phillips,, "Saison adds a star chef: Laurent Gras," 10 July 2018 His Facebook pages, which have since been taken down, listed his occupation as a chef. NBC News, "Demetrius Pitts charged in Cleveland bomb plot after FBI sting," 2 July 2018 Organizers say the goal is to help the refugees succeed as chefs and raise awareness about the plight of refugees worldwide. Lorin Eleni Gill, The Christian Science Monitor, "US restaurants host refugee chefs as part of worldwide festival," 26 June 2018 Organizers say the goal is to help the refugees succeed as chefs and raise awareness about the plight of refugees worldwide. Washington Post, "US restaurants host refugee chefs who offer a taste of home," 25 June 2018 Bourdain was born in New York and raised in New Jersey, graduated from the Culinary Institute of America and rose to nationwide prominence as executive chef at New York's Brasserie Les Halles. Jayme Deerwester, USA TODAY, "Anthony Bourdain's death: There were no narcotics in his system at time of death, report says," 22 June 2018 Tim De’Ath, who has worked as Team England’s head chef for 10 years, told The Sun. Janine Puhak, Fox News, "English World Cup team refusing food from Russian room service over poisoning fears, source claims," 19 June 2018 On this afternoon, John is performing his primary role as Amon-ra’s personal chef. J. Brady Mccollough,, "Meet 'the LaVar Ball of college football', whose youngest son is determined to live up to the hype at USC," 18 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'chef.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of chef

1826, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for chef

French, short for chef de cuisine head of the kitchen

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Statistics for chef

Last Updated

10 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for chef

The first known use of chef was in 1826

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More Definitions for chef



English Language Learners Definition of chef

: a professional cook who usually is in charge of a kitchen in a restaurant

: a person who prepares food for people to eat


\ˈshef \

Kids Definition of chef

1 : a professional cook who is usually in charge of a kitchen in a restaurant

2 : cook entry 1 My mom is a great chef.

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Comments on chef

What made you want to look up chef? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


obstinately defiant of authority

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