From bulky pieces of equipment to towering storage racks, it doesn’t take much to fill the space in your kitchen. But, what if you run a commercial kitchen that’s smaller than the norm? Or even a kitchen on wheels? Our list of top products for small kitchens is sure to help! We cover the equipment you need for the most important areas of your kitchen, so you can start optimizing space and stop bumping into your employees.
Since each restaurant is different, there is no typical size for a commercial kitchen. Most kitchens range from 500 to 2,000 square feet in size, so anything that is less than 500 square feet can be considered a small commercial kitchen.
The products listed below can be used not only for cramped restaurant kitchens, but for the following businesses:
The best way to learn about how to choose equipment for a small commercial kitchen is to talk to someone who works in one. We chatted with Michael Sirianni, manager and operator of the walk-up window restaurant, Buzz, located in Lancaster City, Pennsylvania. “The kitchen is 9' x 11', so about 100 square feet total," explained Sirianni. To put this into perspective, the average food truck size is about 16' x 5', which is about 80 square feet.
“It’s pretty close quarters with the other employees, but the biggest challenge of working in a space this small is how often we have to order our ingredients,” says Sirianni. Since Buzz specializes in making food with fresh ingredients and are limited on refrigeration space, they have to order their supplies more frequently and in smaller amounts, which can be more costly than ordering in bulk.
When choosing the equipment he would need, Sirianni had to ask himself, “How do we cook things?” While this may seem like an obvious question, it’s one of the most important starting points to opening up any kind of foodservice establishment.
From here, he was able to figure out what equipment was necessary and what he could do without. “It would be really nice to have a real prep station or a real line, sort of like what Subway has, but there’s just no room for it”, stated Sirianni. To deal with the lack of space, the equipment he uses has to be multipurpose. For example, not only do his fridges provide him with a place to keep ingredients cool and within easy reach, but they also double as a worktable for assembling sandwiches and flatbreads.
Since this fridge has a full length, 10 1/2" deep cutting board, it provides you with both storage and prep space. This fridge also features a topping rail that can hold up to (6) 1/6 pans and (2) 1/9 pans, making it great for trucks and stands that make sandwiches, wraps, and pizzas.
This product helps you take advantage of vertical storage space, which is great for any tiny kitchen. This stainless steel shelf also features two support brackets and a 150 lb. capacity, so you can even store your bulkier ingredients and supplies.
This food warmer is designed to hold foods at safe temperatures, making it quick and convenient to serve your guests warm meals. This product also preheats in under 30 minutes, so you can set it up while you're preparing your food.
With (6) 30,000 BTU burners and a 30" standard oven, this compact range is perfect for cooking signature dishes in your small kitchen. Best of all, this range comes with a 5" retractable ledge that provides you and your employees with usable work space.
This commercial sink provides you with (3) 12" compartments to rinse, wash, and sanitize all of your dishes, which is a requirement in any size commercial kitchen. The 39" length of this product makes it compact and ideal for cramped kitchens.