The Pampered Chef is perhaps one of the oldest direct selling companies out there. It has been around since the '80s, and for nearly 20 years now, it has been one of Berkshire Hathaway subsidiaries.
Maybe you've heard about it before or maybe you've just learned about the Pampered Chef after attending a party hosted by a high school friend. You're intrigued. You're tempted to buy that Dutch oven and sign up to become a consultant, but you've been burned by MLMs before.
Don't worry because we've got your back. Today we're going to talk about the Pampered Chef, the products it offers, and its compensation plan. Plus, we're going to determine if it's a scam or not.
The Pampered Chef Summary
Product: The Pampered Chef
Price to join: $99–$259
Do I recommend? No!
Summary: The Pampered Chef is a direct selling company that offers high-quality kitchenware. It is based in Illinois, and it is owned by American conglomerate Berkshire Hathaway. The products are a bit on the pricey side, but the quality is impressive. Although it has an online store, it still relies on network marketing to boost its sales. But is this another scam or is it legit? Find out below.
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What Is The Pampered Chef?
The Pampered Chef is an Illinois-based company that sells specialty bakeware, kitchen tools, cookbooks, and food. It was founded by former home economics teacher Doris Christopher back in 1980, but it has since become a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway in 2002.
Currently, founder Doris Christopher serves as the company's chairman, while Tracy Britt Cool serves as its CEO. It has offices in Canada and Germany and employs around 500 people in its Addison, IL headquarters.
The Pampered Chef offers hundreds of products that can be bought online and through its independent distributors. Many of these products were developed in the company test kitchens to ensure that they are durable and that they will work well in any kitchen.
The Pampered Chef has a direct sales business model (also known as multi-level or network marketing). Distributors are called consultants, and they are eligible to earn a commission for each successful sale of any The Pampered Chef product.
They can also earn bonuses and other incentives when they personally sponsor other people to join as The Pampered Chef consultants. Distributors will start as Consultants, and climb the ranks to National Executive Director.
The Pampered Chef has a stellar reputation in the MLM world. It has been a member of the Direct Selling Association since 1986, and Ms. Christopher herself has served as a Chairperson of the Association during the '90s. The Pampered Chef, Ltd is a BBB-accredited business and has a fantastic A+ rating from the organization.
Is The Pampered Chef a Pyramid Scheme?
The Pampered Chef is a legitimate business with a direct selling business model. As mentioned, this is a large company that is a part of the American conglomerate, Berkshire Hathaway. It is not a pyramid scheme nor is it a scam.
What is The Pampered Chef's Compensation Plan?
Here are the ways you can climb the ranks and earn commissions and bonuses with The Pampered Chef.
You must have $150 in personal sales each month to qualify as a consultant. You can earn 20 to 25% on all sales you make, and another 2% after $15,000 in career sales. You will also earn 30 The Pampered Chef dollars in recruiting bonuses.
To qualify as a senior consultant, you must have at least $150 in personal sales and one active recruit every month. You will be eligible to receive a 1% override on personal sales and the sales of the persons you recruited. You will also get 30 The Pampered Chef dollars in recruiting bonuses.
To qualify as a team leader, you must have at least $750 in personal sales and two active lines every month. Your team sales should also reach $2,500.
You will be eligible to receive a 2% override on personal sales and the sales of the persons you recruited. You will also get 30 The Pampered Chef dollars in recruiting bonuses, as well as 1% override on the sales of indirect recruits.
To qualify as a director, you must have at least $750 in personal sales, while your team sales should reach $5,000. Each distributor should also have 5 active consultants in his team.
If you can't fulfill these requirements, The Pampered Chef offers a different set of requirements. You can have personal sales amounting to $75,000 in the past 12 months, plus $6,000 in personal sales in the current month.
You will be eligible to receive 3% override on personal sales and the sales of the persons you recruited. You will also get 30 The Pampered Chef dollars in recruiting bonuses, as well as 10 Activity Bonus for every active consultant in your team.
You must have one first-generation Director in your team to qualify as an Advanced Director. You should also have $750 in personal sales, while your team should have $5,000 in sales. Your organizational sales should reach $12,000.
Some of the rewards you're going to receive include 4% override on personal team sales and 4% override on first-generation consultants. Consultants are eligible to receive 3% override on 2 generation directors, and 1/2% override on the 2nd generation team.
You will also receive 30 The Pampered Chef dollars recruiting bonuses, as well as other bonuses.
You must have three first-generation directors or one-second generation director to qualify as an Advanced Director. You should also have $750 in personal sales, while your team should have $5,000 in sales. Your organizational sales should reach $24,000.
Some of the incentives you're going to receive include override on personal team sales, The Pampered Chef dollars recruiting bonus, $10 activity bonus for each active distributor in your team. You will also get a $100 bonus for every qualified second-generation director in your team.
To qualify as an executive director, you need to have six first-generation directors in your team or two-second generation directors. You need to have $750 in personal sales, while your team must have $5,000 in sales. You also should have $48,000 in organizational sales.
The consultant will earn several overrides and bonuses, including 4% override on personal team sales 30 The Pampered Chef dollars recruiting bonus, $500 car allowance, and more.
Senior Executive Director
To qualify as a senior executive director, you need to have nine first-generation directors in your team or five-second generation directors. Another qualification is to have one third-generation director in your team.
You need to have $750 in personal sales, while your team must have $5,000 in sales. You also should have $100,000 in organizational sales.
The consultant will earn several overrides and bonuses, including 4% override on personal team sales 30 The Pampered Chef dollars recruiting bonus, $700 car allowance, and more.
National Executive Director
To qualify as a national executive director, you need to have twelve first-generation directors in your team or nine second-generation directors. Another qualification is to have three third-generation directors in your team.
You need to have $500 in personal sales, while your team must have $5,000 in sales. You also should have $200,000 in organizational sales.
The consultant will earn several overrides and bonuses, including 4% override on personal team sales 30 The Pampered Chef dollars recruiting bonus, $900 car allowance, and more.
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How Much Does It Cost To Join The Pampered Chef
The Pampered Chef offers three packages for would-be consultants. The first package is the Starter Kit which costs $99 (it has been slashed to $39 for the company's anniversary). This kit includes seasonal catalogs, a consultant tote, a manual food processor, and other kitchen utensils from The Pampered Chef catalog. Those who purchase the Starter Kit will also get a Rockcrok® Everyday Pan.
Consultants who purchase the Deluxe and Ultimate Kits will get additional kitchen utensils from The Pampered Chef. Purchase a Deluxe Kit to get a Rockcrok® Dutch oven. Consultants who purchase the Ultimate Kit will also get a Rockcrok®Dutch oven, plus two consultant totes.
The Deluxe Kit Costs $159 ($99 for the anniversary offer), while the Ultimate Kit costs $259 ($199 for the anniversary offer). All new consultants will receive marketing materials, including recipe cards, quick-start party cards, consultant apron, party planners, and more.
Keep in mind that you must have a sponsor to be able to enroll as a Pampered Chef consultant.
What Products Does The Pampered Chef Offer?
Pampered Chef products are divided into different categories. Check them out below.
You purchase a breakfast set that includes pancake molds, stencils, a pancake flipper, and scraper. All tools are shaped like or etched with Toy Story 4 characters, such as Woody, Buzz Lightyear, Forky, and Hamm. You can also purchase these products individually or as a set.
As the name suggests, The Pampered Chef Enrichables adds nutrition to your regular meal. The Enrichables are stored in a small packet, and you can easily sprinkle to content onto your favorite salad or stew.
Products under this category include the Enrichables™ Kale & Fiber and Pea Protein. Customers can also purchase a set of these products to save money.
These are The Pampered Chef's flagship products. As of the time of writing, there are 127 products under this category. These include your usual baking set, sheet pans, Dutch ovens, rolling pins, cookie sheets, measuring cups, and more.
The Pampered Chef products are more modern and innovative than your regular bakeware sold in stores. Some of the unique products here include a whipped cream maker, silicone snack bar maker, cookie house molds, and pancake shaker bottle. Check out The Pampered Chef website for additional information on these products.
Here you'll find can and jar openers, colanders, strainers, and cookware accessories. You can also find grater, peelers, grinders, mandoliers, and more here. Other products included in this category include measuring cups, mixing tools, serving utensils, spatulas, timers, and scales.
You'll find a wide selection of cookware, cooking blender, and stoneware here. You can also buy a microwave and nonstick cookware, as well as quick cookers, here.
You'll find a wide array of knives, cutting mats, cutting boards, and shears here.
Some of the products under this category include salt and pepper grinder set, wide tumbler, cold brew pitcher, and charcuterie and cheese board accessories. You can also find serving bowls, platters, metal spoon straws, and champagne stoppers here.
The Pampered Chef doesn't just sell cookware, kitchen utensils, and other tools. It also offers a wide selection of food products, including baking mixes, infused oils, vinegar, rubs, sauces, extracts, and mixes.
The Pampered Chef customers can enjoy frozen treats with the ice cream maker, popsicle maker, and other accessories available from the store.
In this category, you'll find quick cookers, non-stick skillets, grill pans, and entertaining sets. Check the website for other gift ideas.
If one of your kids aspire to become a Junior Masterchef, then you can check out The Pampered Chef products. Here you'll find colorful measuring cups, spatulas, silicone molds, and aprons.
Love partying outdoors? Then you'll love the outdoor cookware and kitchen accessories offered by The Pampered Chef. Some of the products under this category include a portable grill, grilling toolset, serving caddy, grill gloves, barbecue basket, pitcher, and more.
The Pampered Chef also offers replacement parts blenders, quick cookers, lids, gaskets, and blades. You will also find piping tips, couplers, trays, and more here.
If you frequently bake, then The Pampered Chef has some products for you. You can purchase some stoneware here, such as shallow platters, bakers with lids, and baking stones.
Storage and Cleaning
Products under this category include a salad spinner, mixing bowls, utensil holders, and silicone lids. You can also purchase glass containers, mason jars, and batter bowls here.
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What I Like About The Pampered Chef
The wide selection of products available
Just browse The Pampered Chef website and you'll see an impressive array of specialty kitchen tools and bakeware. Want to make Thanksgiving dinner extra special? Then check out the Pampered Chef's Entertaining section. You'll find the perfect cocktail set, charcuterie and cheese board, bowls, platters, and wine accessories here.
If you're a baker or you're obsessed with kitchen tools and kitchenware, then you'll enjoy being a Pampered Chef customer or distributor. It has a wide array of baking pans, racks, cookie sheets, and Dutch ovens. It also has regular kitchen tools, such as measuring cups and spoons,
You can shop online as a customer or opt to join as a consultant
If you want to stay as a customer because you're not interested in earning extra income, then you can do so. You can shop online, but keep in mind that you will have to pay the retail price and not the wholesale price.
But if you're interested in earning some extra cash and other incentives, then go ahead and join the company as a consultant.
Great marketing strategies
The Pampered Chef is a master at marketing. It has a lot of recipes on its website where its products are seamlessly incorporated. It also has a YouTube channel where you can get a demo on how the Pampered Chef products are used, as well as some recipes from the company's kitchen.
Then there's the 'Host a Party' event where Pampered Chef consultants can invite friends over to showcase some products. The Pampered Chef already has party ideas consultants can use. These include Cooking Party, Virtual Party, Catalog Party, and more.
It's not a fly-by-night company
The Pampered Chef has been around since 1980. That and its acquisition by Berkshire Hathaway are a testament that this is not a scam or a pyramid scheme.
What I Don't Like About The Pampered Chef
Product quality issues
There have been some customer complaints about product quality in recent years. Some of the most common complaints were about the stone bakeware that eventually cracks even though the customer has taken the utmost care with it. Other items customers have complained about include tongs and nonstick pans.
The products are expensive
The Pampered Chef products are expensive. But it seems that pricey products are common when it comes to MLM. If you're looking for cheaper kitchenware with the same quality, then there's always Amazon or your local store.
The MLM business model
The Pampered Chef was founded in the '80s, a time when Tupperware, Amway, and Mary Kay were all the rage. Apart from the business model, these companies also share the same marketing strategy (hosting parties to sell products).
The problem is this MLM business model is already outdated. A lot of younger people are already eschewing network marketing because it involves a lot of chasing after friends and family members just to get them to sign up as consultants and/or buy products. This marketing strategy — which often ruins friendships — belongs to a bygone era and not in the era of online shopping.
Is The Pampered Chef A Scam?
The good news? No, The Pampered Chef is not a scam. The bad news, however, is it uses that much-hated MLM strategy to get people to purchase products or join the company as consultants.
The products are great and the company's reputation is fantastic, but its network marketing aspect is not worth your time.
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