Can a Chef be an Introvert?


Introverts are people who are energized by spending time alone.

I don’t understand this at all because I’m an extrovert – completely the opposite.

However, my chef/husband is an introvert.

This is one area where we are nothing alike.

Looking at the definition of the word introvert, it doesn’t sound like that fits very well with the career of a chef, does it?

Not at all.

Put my chef/husband in a social situation and he’s very quiet.  He usually won’t go out of his way to talk to people.  If someone comes up and talks to him, he’s fine.  But he’s not a big fan of small talk.  (Too much to do, too little time . . .)  He would just rather be at home instead of around a group of people.  Being around a large group of people is not relaxing or energizing for him AT ALL!

While I might not understand that, that’s just who my husband is and that’s fine.

The funny thing is, put him in a chef coat and in a kitchen and he is like an entirely different person!  He’s talkative, outgoing, has lots of energy, he’s in total control of the job. . . you would never guess that being that outgoing is not his thing and that he has to work at it. 

People who only know my chef/husband professionally are always very surprised when I say that he’s an introvert.  They just don’t believe it.

But he is.

Really.can a chef be an introvert

Being around groups of people is not in any way relaxing for him.  (Not that a restaurant kitchen would be relaxing for an extrovert either, but you know what I mean.)

A few months ago he did a cooking demonstration for the women of our church.  I had multiple people come up to me afterwards saying they had never seen my husband like this.  He was very talkative, funny, not shy, making jokes . . . who was this man?  It was pretty funny.  I love seeing that side of my husband occasionally!

So can a chef be an introvert?

Obviously yes, because my husband is both an introvert and a chef.  I would guess that he’s probably not the only one . . .

Any thoughts from you other chef wives?  Is your chef/husband energized by working in the kitchen or by going out with friends after work, or is he ready to just come home to a quiet house and spend time alone after work?

From one chef wife to another,





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  1. Claudia

    Yes, yes and yes! I also have a Chef introvert at home/extrovert at the restaurant and I too couldn’t fully comprehend how these two things could co-exist within one person, but it’s true. This is my husband to a tee, he is the ultimate entertainer at work and a complete recluse at home. Usually has his nose buried in a book, almost always some kind of historical biography about 1920s writers and civil war. When he’s not reading quietly, he’s watching the history channel. Quietly. I am the extrovert in the relationship and like to consider myself the life of the party, but my Chef, not so much. When he leaves the restaurant, he leaves the “people person” behind. I wonder if this is more the norm than we realized. 🙂 Great post!

    • Jennifer

      My chef/husband loves history too! Funny! I am curious how if many chefs are like this.

  2. Alisa

    My chef loves to be around his family and friends. It’s what refills his soul and heart. Plus he doesn’t like quiet. Even if he is home alone, he has the TV going or the radio blaring.

    • Jennifer

      Interesting. Totally opposite of my husband. He LOVES quiet (which does not happen easily with 3 kids). 🙂

  3. Rups

    My chef is an extrovert and I’m an introvert so it’s the opposite for us. BUT I totally get the split personality thing as my husband at home is ultra laidback and disorganised and couldn’t find his socks if he was wearing them. But at work he is on top of everything, decisive, meticulous and has eyes in the back of his head. I have been privileged to see him in action a few times and he is a totally different person. I wonder if this work persona thing happens to everyone or only to chefs?

    • Jennifer

      Good question. I would guess it happens in other professions as well.

      • P Kellogg

        My theory is it is a Clark Kent vs Superman complex. At home they can relax not have to think. But in the kitchen that chef jackets becomes his cape. They show their super powers. I’m a nurse when I put my uniform my mind set changes. I see it with doctors too. My home trick or when we need him to actually pay attention is not to say his name but to say ” chef” it seems to get his attention better.
        Can anybody explain though how he can know how many strawberries are in the fridge what they are for and when they will be used but can’t remember to put an envelope in the mail, or seems surprised when he nearly runs out of gas

        • Jennifer

          I can see that. While as a teacher I didn’t have a uniform to put on, put me in my classroom and I had a different mindset and didn’t think about other things. (Maybe that’s why the mail or gas is forgotten about – so focused on work. It seems to be always on their minds.)

  4. Alicia

    Absolutely spot on! My husband is definitely an introvert in his personal life yet is completely in his element in the kitchen. I would say that is how he becomes comfortable socially because people starting hanging around the kitchen watching him or if we’re at someone else’s house they want to get his input. Get togethers always end up a cooking class. 🙂

    • Jennifer

      Sounds exactly like my husband! Glad he doesn’t mind talking about food. 🙂

  5. Bev

    I’m a chef and I’m an introvert. It came be difficult at times because like you said, we don’t like small talk But if it’s something we are interested in, food for example, then we can talk ur head off. So yes introverts can be chefs.

    • Jennifer

      So true! My husband does like to talk about food. 🙂


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