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Dishwasher Job Overview

You can’t serve food if there aren’t any clean plates! Dishwashers are an integral part of a restaurant kitchen team, especially in busy restaurants. These jobs tend to be flexible and can be a great entry into the kitchen for someone without a lot of experience. If you’re reliable, like working on a team, and don’t mind getting a little messy, becoming a dishwasher could be a smart option.


  • Set up dishwashing stations. There are health code standards around dishwashing. It’s your job to make sure that detergent concentrations are correct, that dishwashing machines are set to the right temperatures, and that dishes are washed and sanitized in the proper order.
  • Scrape plates, wash pots, load dishwashers. The bulk of your job will be cleaning dishes as they come in from the dining room, including flatware and glassware. Most jobs will have you operate a dishwasher and wash by hand. You’ll need to take care of the pots and pans that cooks use, too.
  • Wash work stations, sweep, and mop. The whole kitchen needs to be sanitary in order to function, and at the end of the day, you’ll clean up the surfaces where people prep and cook.


  • Attention to detail. Dishwashers are quick to spot a dish that isn’t entirely clean and can follow health and safety standards.
  • Physical strength. It can take some muscle to wrestle a pot back into tip-top cleanliness, so it’s important to be able to stand for long periods and lift around 40-50 lbs.
  • Positive attitude. They may not always look like heroes, but dishwashers are key players in a great restaurant, and they’re ready to take on challenges or lend a hand.


You can become a dishwasher without any previous experience. Employers are looking for enthusiastic people who can follow directions and be there to provide extra support in the kitchen. Dishwashers who take great care of their kitchens can move up to become line cooks or prep cooks, and may go on to other positions in a restaurant.

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