The list of appliances needed by a restaurant differs, depending on what the restaurant will offer. Still, there are some basic equipment needed – from a kitchen to store and prepare food and deliveries, freezers and refrigerators, dishwasher, food processors, counters, sinks, grills, ovens and gas ranges. When setting up a restaurant, here are some of the appliances you should have.
1. Counters and prep tables
This will depend on the number of people you will hire to work in the kitchen at any one time. You should consider the space you have. But above all, you should have kitchen counters for food preparation that should be very easy to clean and maintain. Included here are prep tables that could be attached to other kitchen equipment or free-standing ones. Stainless steel counters and prep tables are now standard in restaurant kitchens.
2. Dishwasher and sinks
You need sinks to wash vegetables, meats, fruits and the various small appliances and tools used for food preparation. The dishwasher should be fast, efficient and large. Local health departments normally require dish and hand-washing stations. You should find an industrial restaurant dishwasher that dispenses dish washing liquid automatically. Likewise it should keep the water temperature at a constant level. There should be a hand-washing station as well.
There are health regulations concerning freezers and refrigerators so you should know them before you purchase a freezer or refrigerator. You should have a good idea of how cold food should be kept. Choose between a full walk-in type or reach-in with drawers type of refrigerator. If you are offering cocktails and has a full bar, you need an automatic ice machine. Freezers come is different types and sizes as well. Choose whether you want a walk-in freezer, a stand-up freezer or a chest freezer.
4. Small appliances
This includes food processors, bread machines and mixers. You also need a food warmer because not everything will be ready simultaneously.
5. Safety Equipment
Safety is very much a concern in restaurants. There are a variety of sharp knives. There’s the threat of scalding from hot water, burns from frozen items, fires, hot pan and sauces and extremely hot oil. Trips, slips and falls are also likely to occur. Tall shelves with pots, pans and other objects that might break also pose a threat, thus safety equipment is required. You need to purchase restaurant first-aid kits containing items suitable for treating injuries that commonly happen in kitchens. There should be fire extinguishers in the correct size, configuration and quantity.
6. Front house of house equipment
This part of the restaurant is what will be seen by customers. Equipment you acquire here should be nice, long lasting, easy to clean, comfortable and efficient. They should also be easy to replace. Equipment include plates, stations, chairs, tables, etc. There should also be provisions for child-friendly equipment such as unbreakable plates and high chairs.
7. Commercial kitchen range
Just like the other equipment and appliances you need, the choice of a commercial kitchen gas range depends on what you will cook, the volume of food you are likely to cook in a day and the size of your kitchen. The dimensions of a restaurant range are 24″, 36″, 48″, 60″ and 72″. Common configurations include 4, 6, 8, or 10 burners and an optional charbroiler or griddle.
Another thing to look into is the BTU (British Thermal Unit) rating. A restaurant range with higher BTU rates will heat things quicker, has faster heat recovery times but comes with a higher energy consumption. A range with a lower BTU will heat food slowly but efficiently.
You’ll need to make a choice in ovens as well. Standard ovens produce central heat from a central heater that is quickly distributed via a baffle, although they cook food slower than convection ovens. On the other hand, convention ovens have fans to distribute the heat, cook food faster and more evenly as heat circulates constantly.
A charbroiler and griddle are good options to add on, as they allow you to cook multiple foods simultaneously. Broiling meat, poultry and seafood is faster and more effective with a charbroiler.
Purchasing restaurant equipment involves a huge investment. Determine the right type of equipment you need based on before you purchase to keep your budget in check.
Also read: What Are the Must Have Kitchen Items to Prepare Great Food?