A kitchen is as much a workshop as it is a workplace. For people who have careers built around preparing food, it’s especially important that all their needs and even quirks are met by their kitchens. That’s why those who are planning on opening their own restaurant or starting a business centered on food, should build their own kitchen.
The task may seem overwhelming, but once the essentials have been ironed out, everything will come easier. This article will discuss how to design your own commercial kitchen.
Parts of a Commercial Kitchen
The first step is to identify what exactly makes a commercial kitchen. Apart from the equipment and the personnel, a good commercial kitchen is made up of systems that work seamlessly together. The following are the systems of a commercial kitchen.
- Food Preparation – This system involves sinks for washing produce. It also has cutting and mixing areas. It would make sense to place this area near the storage system for easier access to ingredients. Many kitchens also separate sections for processing food like cutting meat and for sorting ingredients into batches for cooking.
- Meal Cooking – This system has the ranges, fryers, ovens, and other equipment for cooking food. This is usually located near the service area. Like the food preparation system, this can further be broken down into smaller subsections including one for baking, for grilling, for frying, and others.
- Service – This is the front section of the commercial kitchen. Here, finished dishes are placed to be sent out to tables. If you run a buffet-style place, freshly cooked food will be displayed here over warmers. If you have a serving staff, this is where they will pick up the food. For maximum efficiency, and to minimize the time between cooking and serving, this area is located next to the meal cooking section.
- Cleaning/Washing – The cleaning and washing section of a commercial kitchen can easily be overlooked, but it is highly important because it directly impacts the continuity of the flow in the kitchen. It is usually located near the storage area so chefs can easily access clean dishes. This is where sinks, drying racks, dishwashers, and other similar fixtures are located.
- Storage – Another potentially underrated system in the kitchen is the storage section. This can be further split into non-food storage, dry storage, and cold storage subsections. Oftentimes, the success of dishes can be attributed to the quality of the ingredients. Without an excellent storage system, the kitchen staff may have some trouble keeping track of the freshest ingredients and contamination may occur.
Commercial Kitchen Layout
As alluded to earlier, the layout of a commercial kitchen directly impacts the efficiency of the entire process and the success of every dish. There are several kitchen layouts that have been proven to maximize the productivity of kitchens. Unlike kitchens in residential properties, those in commercial ones have more to consider including equipment, land area, and the kind of dishes that are being served.
Here’s The Balance Small Business’ guide to designing the commercial kitchen layout that’s right for your needs.
Depending on the size of the kitchen area and the overall budget allotted to building it, you may consider custom kitchen equipment. These tailor-made fixtures may offer solutions especially if you’re working on tighter spaces. It can also be a cost-saving measure. If you’re building custom hoods for your commercial kitchen, for example, you may want to work with stainless steel coil suppliers directly to bring down prices.
Take Away (Pun Intended)
If you want the best commercial kitchen for your food business, designing and building it may be the best path forward. Take note of the essentials mentioned here and do your research well. Good luck!