Here's How Much Golden Corral Employees Really Make

Prior to the onset of the ongoing pandemic, if you were looking for a good buffet to head to after church on Sundays, Golden Corral was the place to go. Opening its first set of doors in 1973, the restaurant — as according to its official website — has grown to become "America's #1 buffet and grill." And with its homemade-style dishes pleasing fans for almost five decades, it makes sense why it would hold that spot. 

It's not just the company itself that feels it should hold the highest honor in the heart's of Americans everywhere though. According to Restaurant News, Golden Corral also found its way to the top spot of Entrepreneur Magazine's "Buffet Restaurant Category" for its 2013 Franchise 500 list. And Forbes even has it listed as one of the lucky companies to land on its 2021 list of "America's Best Employers." 

Even with 2020's re-openings not including buffet-style dining, it seems as if the popular restaurant is still finding a way to keep loyalists and fans of good, home-cooked reminiscent food happy (via Restaurant Business). But with the aforementioned accolades under its belt — and a number of more that are not listed — does the pay that its employees receive mirror that?

The average pay for a server is less than minimum wage

If you've ever wondered what pay for Golden Corral employees looked like, you may be disappointed to find out that it's not as great as you may have assumed. According to Payscale, the beloved buffet restaurant delivers an average hourly pay of $5 for those that are servers, while cashiers make an average of $9 per hour. Bakers and cooks receive around the same amount with their pay being $11 and $12 an hour, respectively.

Restaurant managers on the other hand have an estimated range of $9 to $17 per hour and kitchen managers have a shorter range of $10 to $15 per hour. The estimated range for restaurant assistant managers is $9 to $14, while assistant general managers are bringing in anywhere between $14 and $23 an hour and hospitality managers just $12 to $21, according to Payscale.

If you were looking for more of a yearly breakdown for some of those managerial positions though, Indeed has restaurant managers listed as making roughly $49,593 per year and assistant managers at $36,998. And for hospitality managers, you can look forward to making around $47,007 per year. Let's just hope that free food comes with the job for servers though to make up for the lack of hourly pay.