Restaurant kitchen equipment is expensive, and when making purchases, it’s very easy to overpay. When residential homeowners purchase their kitchen appliances, there’s always room to buy cheaper units without much concern.
But restaurant cooking equipment needs to be durable and withstand continual use without breaking.
When key commercial cooking appliances break, this can lead to lost business and revenue. You want to purchase from commercial kitchen equipment manufacturers that have a good reputation and are known for their quality products.
If you prepare a restaurant kitchen equipment list, you’ll be taking the first step to making your purchase.
Let's see the tips that you can follow when purchasing equipment for a restaurant kitchen.
1. Start by Planning Your Menu
A major mistake that owners make when they purchase kitchen equipment for a restaurant is that they fail to plan out their menu first. Your menu has a major effect on what supplies you’ll need.
It takes a lot of time and patience to plan a menu and come up with a restaurant's kitchen equipment list.
Your menu will dictate:
- Items that you’ll need
- Items that you need more or less of
- Appliances that can help streamline your kitchen
Sit down with your chef and solidify your menu before even thinking about trying to find where to buy commercial kitchen equipment in your area.
Once you’ve developed a menu, you can move on to making a list of the items that you need.
2. Create a List of Items Your Kitchen Needs
Kitchens require a lot of items to run efficiently. If you go into any retailer or look at a commercial catalog, chances are that you’ll miss a lot of the items that you need. You'll also end up purchasing items that you don’t need.
It's important to sit down and come up with a list of items that you need to operate your kitchen.
Also, come up with:
- Quantities of each item
- Budget for each item
- Extras you may need
Kitchen restaurant equipment is not something you want to go and splurge on. You need to maintain a budget that allows you to have the capital you need to stock up on supplies and also pay your employees.
When you’re developing your list, you’ll also want to measure your space.
3. Measure Your Kitchen Areas
A lot of owners, whether this is their first restaurant or they’re updating their kitchen, seem to forget to measure their kitchen area. The kitchen area may not be impacted much by bowls or silverware, but you don’t want to purchase major appliances without taking measurements.
These appliances include:
You need to have measurements of all spaces so that you know exactly how much space you have available. Returning major items because they don’t fit is going to be costly and reduce your budget.
Spend the time measuring:
- Cabinet space
- Space for appliances
If you know how much space you’re working with, you’ll be much better prepared to make the right purchases the first time.
4. Go into the Process with a Budget
Do you have a budget? If not, you need to run the numbers and learn how much you can spend. When you talk to a supplier and try to work out what items you need and how much the cost will be, you need to make sure that you’re on a budget.
A lot of the time, suppliers will work with you, offering credit or some way to finance some of the appliances you need.
Budgets may constrain your purchasing to some extent, but it’s worth the effort to buy commercial cooking equipment that you can afford.
There will always be a new, expensive grill or other high-end units that come out that you would love to own, but if it doesn’t fit into your budget, you know that you can move on.
Professionals recommend creating budgets for:
Request a restaurant kitchen equipment list with price listings so that you can compare pricing from multiple suppliers.
5. Consider Energy Efficiency
Energy efficiency may not seem like a top priority for a lot of people, but when you run a commercial kitchen, it can save you hundreds of dollars a month. You'll want to seek out appliances that are Energy Star rated.
When you see the Energy Star label or logo, you can be confident that this model meets the standards of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
The appliances must meet third-party testing standards and also standards for food safety. You'll also benefit from damaging the environment less and be able to promote that you’re an energy-efficient establishment.
When you see this label, you can be confident that the appliance is:
- Designed to reduce energy costs
While looking for equipment that is energy-efficient, you’ll also want to consider the warranty offered on the equipment.
6. Look Over the Warranties
When you buy commercial cooking equipment, you’re making a major investment in your business. The appliances and equipment can cost thousands of dollars each, and replacing these units if they break or have a defect can be very costly.
Look at the warranties for each item and see if you can purchase extended warranties for the most expensive appliances.
This information will be in the fine print, and it is worth reading through every paragraph to know what is under warranty and what is not. A warranty provides you with peace of mind that if your kitchen equipment ever has issues, you can invoke the warranty and it will be corrected.
You should also be spending time developing relationships with wholesale providers.
Suppliers will alert you to the best deals available and can often help you work out warranty or equipment issues. Another perk of these deep relationships is that these experts will assist you in choosing the right equipment for your needs.
If you follow these shopping tips, you’ll be able to purchase kitchen equipment that meets the needs and functions of your commercial kitchen.