If you’re considering setting up a commercial kitchen then you’re going to need an array of equipment.
Of course, the exact list will vary depending on the type of cooking you intend to do, but the below items are almost certain to be required.
New or Used?
The first question you’re going to have to ask yourself is whether to buy new or used equipment. New equipment is obviously more expensive, but, it is likely to come with warranties and a guarantee that it’s going to work.
Buying used means taking the risk that the equipment will break down when you need it the most, and you won’t have any warranties.
Of course, you can choose to purchase refurbished equipment that does have some warranty, or you can also choose to lease the essential items. The choice will depend on the budget you have available.
The Equipment You’ll Need
These are not in a specific order as all items are important. Just remember that you need all of them and fitting out a commercial kitchen can be an expensive proposition.
Food Processing Items
This may not seem like the top contender but this is the thing that is often overlooked until the last minute. Food processing equipment includes your mixers, meat processing machines, and even utensils.
These are the items that your kitchen cannot survive without and yet are often left to the last minute to order.
Your burner is essential for most dishes, whether boiling, steaming, or even marinating, you’ll want a free-standing burner unit that allows you to get food ready and keep it hot. The number of burners will depend on the size of your restaurant.
Complementing the burners you need an oven. Most commercial kitchens choose to have a range oven as the size is important. You’ll need to decide if the restaurant range is appropriate as it is cheaper but can’t deal with high volumes of food. The heavy-duty range is designed for large scale food production and usually slots into part of a bank of equipment.
Both are good, you’ll have to decide according to your needs.
The griddle is an essential part of any commercial kitchen. The flat iron pan will heat up and allow you to cook an array of meats, omelets, patties, and even pancakes. The best part is that you can cook multiple orders at the same time.
Just remember you’ll need to wipe excess grease off periodically and you’ll need somewhere to put it.
Fridges & Freezers
You can’t store food without a refrigerator and a freezer. The normal approach is to use walk-in options but, if this is not possible, then stand-alone units can be just as effective.
The number and size of the units will depend on the amount of food you’re going to cook and need to have stored beforehand.
Pan & Cooking Utensils
You can’t cook without pots and pans, a fact that was touched on in the food processing equipment section. You’ll have to get more pots and pans than you think you need. This helps you to deal with unforeseen issues and still provide delicious meals for your customers.
Of course, cooking and serving spoons will make it possible for you and your team to prepare the dishes!
You’ll need to chop vegetables and meat. You may even need to cut pizzas, depending on the menu you’ve set. Having the right chopping equipment won’t just make the process faster. It will also ensure your customers get well-presented food that is still hot.
You’ll need an area where the dishes can be washed, ready to be reused by chefs and customers. The easiest way to do this, especially if you’re limited on staff, is to purchase a dishwasher. They will generally get dishes cleaner than washing by hand, they’ll be faster, and they’ll need less manpower.
Another thing that is often overlooked is the cleaning equipment. If you’re using a commercial kitchen you need to be able to clean it down thoroughly throughout the cooking session and afterward. To do this you need an array of cleaning equipment, including mops, cloths, and disinfectant spray.
Of course, you also need to make sure your staff is trained to clean properly.