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Enneagram Types in the Kitchen

Enneagram Types in the Kitchen

Image of Enneagram diagram showing, from bottom left around the circle to bottom right, Type 5: Intellectual Epicurean, Type 6: Pessimistic Chef, Type 7: Passionate Gastronome, Type 8: Champion of Cooks, Type 9: Dietary Pacifist, Type 1: Food Overachiever, Type 2: Culinary Caregiver, Type 3: Mealtime Manager, and Type 4: Gourmet Artisan

The Enneagram is a personality analysis system that consists of nine different types. Let’s have some fun by taking a look at these nine personality types from the perspective of their behavior with food and in the kitchen! We’ll include an overall description, basic needs and fears, famous examples, and specific food- and cooking-related behaviors.

Infographic for Enneagram Type 1 in the kitchen

Type 1: Food Overachiever

First, Enneagram Ones are rational, idealistic, principled, purposeful, self-controlled, perfectionistic, conscientious, ethical, and have a strong sense of right and wrong. Next, their Basic Fear is being corrupt, evil, or defective. Finally, their Basic Desire is to be good, to have integrity, and to be balanced

Famous Examples: Mahatma Gandhi, Michelle Obama, Chef Thomas Keller, and SNL’s “The Church Lady”

In the kitchen, Ones are precise, measuring with a scale. They will eyeball NOTHING. Their goal is to successfully complete the task. They may take forever, trying to make the meal perfect. In fact, you may hear them say to impatient family members, “Perfection is worth waiting for!” They like their knives sharp, their recipes organized, and their table set to the standards of Martha Stewart (who is a One, by the way). Do NOT interrupt them as they work on a recipe, criticize their cooking process, or change their kitchen system.

Infographic for Enneagram Type 2 in the kitchen

Type 2: Culinary Caregiver

First, Enneagram Twos are caring, interpersonal, generous, demonstrative, people-pleasing, possessive, empathetic, sincere, warm-hearted, friendly, generous, self-sacrificing, and sentimental. Next, their Basic Fear is being unwanted or unworthy of being loved. Finally, their Basic Desire is to feel loved.

Famous Examples: Richard Simmons, Dolly Parton, and “Dr. McCoy” (Star Trek)

In the kitchen, Twos are helpers. They’ll be the one bringing 98% of the goodies to the bake sale. If they need to cook for 2, they’ll cook for 12. Expect them to own multiple crock pots for cooking large amounts and carrying the food somewhere to share it. Sometimes they struggle to actually eat, because Twos stay busy serving everyone else. When you compliment their food, a Two will tell you, “My number one ingredient is love.”

Infographic for Enneagram Type 3 in the kitchen

Type 3: Mealtime Manager

First, Enneagram Threes are success-oriented, pragmatic, adaptable, driven, image-conscious, self-assured, attractive, charming, ambitious, competent, energetic, diplomatic, poised, and highly driven. Next, their Basic Fear is being worthless. Finally, their Basic Desire is to feel valuable and worthwhile.

Famous Examples: Oprah Winfrey, Elvis Presley, Will Smith, and Chef Daniel Boulud

In the kitchen, Threes are performers. They are hard-working, and they like to have that work acknowledged. You know those people who post photos on social media of EVERYTHING they cook? They’re probably Threes. Threes organize well, planning meals at least a week in advance and keeping a running grocery list while they cook. They cover their recipe cards in notes about how to improve the dish next time. They also set a perfect table; read about it in our blog “How to Set a Table.”

Infographic for Enneagram Type 4 in the kitchen

Type 4: Gourmet Artisan

First, Enneagram Fours are self-aware, sensitive, reserved, emotionally honest, creative, and personal. Next, they can be inspiring and highly creative and can transform ordinary experiences into something truly special. Finally, their Basic Fear is having no unique identity or personal significance. Their Basic Desire is to “find themselves” and create a distinctive identity.

Famous Examples: Edgar Allen Poe, Stevie Nicks, Winona Ryder, and Johnny Depp

In the kitchen, Fours take a romantic approach. Their goal is not to just eat, but to make and/or enjoy the art of food. So don’t expect them to do it daily or on any kind of schedule. And don’t expect them to handle the cooking process like anyone else—Fours will find a way to be different. They may need to process the emotional experience when the meal is over. They cherish kitchen tools they can use to express themselves artistically.

Infographic for Enneagram Type 5 in the kitchen

Type 5: Intellectual Epicurean

First, Enneagram Fives are alert, insightful, curious, focused, eccentric, independent, innovative, inventive, high-strung, and intense. Next, they thrive when able to develop complex ideas and skills. Finally, fives can see the world in entirely new ways. Their Basic Fear is being useless, helpless, or incapable. Their Basic Desire is to be capable and competent.

Famous Examples: Albert Einstein, Emily Dickinson, Mark Zuckerberg, and Dr. Gregory “House”

Fives in the kitchen are thinkers. There will usually be a lot of buildup to the cooking process, they’ll analyze every part of it, and they’ll find it exhausting. As they read recipes, Fives will theorize outcomes. They silently judge everything they eat, including their own creations.

Infographic for Enneagram Type 6 in the kitchen

Type 6: Pessimistic Chef

First, Enneagram Sixes are committed, security-oriented, reliable, hard-working, responsible, trustworthy, excellent troubleshooters, anxious, cautious, self-reliant, and courageous champions of themselves and others. Next, their Basic Fear is being without support and guidance. Finally, their Basic Desire is to have security and support.

Famous Examples: Malcolm X, Diana, Princess of Wales, J.R.R. Tolkien, and Ellen Degeneres

Sixes in the kitchen can be skeptical. They put safety first and always want to do things RIGHT. They can be indecisive about what to cook or where to eat. As they look through recipes, they’ll judge how each was written. You’ll find all the right tools for every job in their kitchen, including a first aid kit.

Infographic for Enneagram Type 7 in the kitchen

Type 7: Passionate Gastronome

First, Enneagram Sevens are extroverted, optimistic, versatile, spontaneous, playful, high-spirited, impulsive, talented, appreciative, joyous, and satisfied. Next, their Basic Fear is of being deprived and in pain. Finally, their Basic Desire is to be satisfied and content with their needs fulfilled.

Famous Examples: Thomas Jefferson, Katy Perry, Robert Downey, Jr., Paris Hilton

Sevens in the kitchen are enthusiastic. They may get excited to cook “all the things” in the moment but forget to prepare in advance by purchasing ingredients and gathering tools. You’ll find them snacking while they prepare a meal, and they don’t like to be constrained by a recipe. Their cooking goal is to enjoy the experience, so they’re willing to try new, different, and challenging culinary skills.

Infographic for Enneagram Type 8 in the kitchen

Type 8: Champion of Cooks

First, Enneagram Eights are self-confident, strong, assertive, protective, resourceful, straight-talking, decisive, powerful, dominating, willful, confrontational, strong, heroic, magnanimous, and inspiring. Next, their Basic Fear is being harmed or controlled by others. Finally, their Basic Desire is to protect themselves and be in control of their own life.

Famous Examples: Martin Luther King, Jr., Queen Latifah, John Wayne, and Barbara Walters

In the kitchen Eights are domineering, taking over no matter where they are. If you cook with an eight, he or she is likely to tell you, “That’s not how you do it.” It’s a good bet they enjoy using the mallet, because they can take out their aggression on meat. Their approach to cooking (and to life) is to conquer it!

Infographic for Enneagram Type 9 in the kitchen

Type 9: Dietary Pacifist

First, Enneagram Nines are accepting, trusting, stable, creative, optimistic, supportive, willing to go along with others to keep the peace, indomitable, and functioning as the glue that holds others together. Next, their Basic Fear is loss and separation. Finally, their Basic Desire is to have inner stability and peace of mind.

Famous Examples: Janet Jackson, Audrey Hepburn, Morgan Freeman, and “Mister Rogers”

In the kitchen, Nines are peacemakers (like they are everywhere they go). They want to know everyone’s dietary restrictions so they can cook to please. They are happy to cook others’ favorite dishes, but they may struggle to even identify their own. They’ll compliment everyone’s food, even if they hate it.

We hope you’ve had fun exploring the Enneagram types from a culinary perspective. Do you recognize yourself or a loved one? Share this with them for a conversation starter and a laugh! Let us know your Enneagram number and if you identify with these traits. If you’d like to learn more about the Enneagram (from a more serious perspective), visit the Enneagram Institute’s website for more information.

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