If you are starting a new food service business, you’ll need to consider the type of kitchen you require. This will be one of the biggest investments you make, along with your team, your location and of course, your ingredients to create the foods you sell.
A commercial kitchen isn’t like a home kitchen. Instead, it requires industrial-grade equipment that can withstand busy restaurant use. Here we offer a general checklist of must-have equipment for an efficient kitchen, in hand with tips to run your kitchen with safety and profits in mind.
In order to provide fresh, safe food to your customers, you require a commercial-grade refrigerator. A high-quality commercial fridge will provide ample storage and prevent food from perishing. In order to keep your business profitable, you need a commercial fridge with the right size and capacity.
This will, of course, be based on the size and nature of your business. A sandwich shop, for example, would not require as big a fridge as a full-service restaurant. A coffee shop would not require as big a fridge as a full-service café.
You want to consider the different features of the fridge to find something suitable for the types of perishables you need to store. For example, a coffee shop might just need to store dairy and creamer products which can all be stored together, while a sandwich shop would need to combine meats, produce, dairy and more. Understanding your needs will help you choose the fridge with the right capacity and features.
Unless you are committed to serving 100% fresh foods at your establishment, a commercial freezer is also a must. The commercial freezer provides ample space to accommodate a larger amount of perishables than the average freezer used at home.
They are more flexible and use a more organized layout which makes it easier for you to keep track of your food. This helps the first in, first out method of food inventory management. It reduces waste and ensures you are serving food that won’t taste bad or make people sick. The commercial freezer plays an important role in the food industry.
You need to choose a freezer as you would your fridge, ensuring you have enough space and easy organization that allows you to easily find the food you need. You also want to consider the compressor and whether your freezer will be on display, such as an ice cream freezer.
Stainless steel fridges are an excellent option as they are resistant to scratches and easy to clean. In addition, the commercial ice cream freezer is a specialty freezer that can provide a boost to your business and improve productivity. You want your ice cream freezer to be from a reputable brand to ensure customer satisfaction and safety.
Your commercial oven provides a wide range of uses, from baking up fresh goods for bakeries and cafés to roasting mouthwatering dishes for first class restaurants. Whether you need full baking and roasting capacity, or simply need to heat the food you serve, you need a dependable commercial oven that is efficient and that ensures you comply with safety regulations. You also need to comply with installation regulations to keep your premises safe.
Choose a commercial oven not only based on your current use but also bear in mind any future plans that might include different uses. Plus, you need to consider restaurant capacity to determine the size along with the size of your kitchen.
The range is often the most important piece of equipment in your restaurant. It is the spot where the meals are prepared fresh and also serves to provide a long list of cooking methods. You want a range that suits your needs whether it’s gas or electric.
Your choice must accommodate your method of cooking and the setup of your kitchen. Size is also a consideration as you can’t service a large dining space with just a few burners. You also don’t want to take up too much kitchen space with a large range in a restaurant with limited customer capacity.
You’ll probably need more than one commercial sink. There are many different types of commercial sinks available to assist several different tasks in a busy commercial kitchen including:
- Compartment sinks: To allow you to create the right configuration for kitchen efficiency with side-by-side sinks each with a specific purpose
- Disposal sinks: For safe disposal of solid food waste
- Handwashing sinks: To ensure safe food handling compliance
- Portable sinks: Ideal for additional handwashing sinks in tight quarters
Consider the types of sinks that make the most sense for your commercial business so you have all bases covered.
The Heart of Your Business
If you run a restaurant or café, the kitchen is the heart and soul of your business. This is where your food is prepared to create a unique experience for your customers. Without a well-equipped commercial kitchen, you won’t be able to maintain the high standards required for both customer satisfaction and customer/staff safety.
Considerations for Your Equipment for Restaurant Kitchens
Before you make a decision on your restaurant equipment consider the following factors:
- Total cost of ownership (TCO)
- Warranties and maintenance agreements
- Functionality and size
- Shipping and delivery
- Energy efficiency
- Ways to manage restaurant kitchen
- Listen to your employees’ feedback
- Streamline your menu
- Set up an efficient inventory system
- Create specific workstations in the kitchen
- Food and safety hygiene
- Invest in your staff
All in all, the most important thing to consider when creating your kitchen equipment checklist, is your menu. What you serve and how you serve, is what will make the difference between success and failure. As a result, you want your kitchen to provide everything you need to provide the high-quality food your customers expect. And remember, you can create a kitchen that is scalable to grow with your business over time.