How to design a commercial kitchen

Today we’re going to talk about the right kitchen layout for a commercial business.

Its design can make or break a business as a whole.

If it hasn’t been properly designed to make the kitchen run as smoothly and efficiently as possible, then poor quality food will get to your customers’ tables late, and you’ll have serious negative feedback.

And, of course, your business finances will be affected as well.

Everything has to be planned and thought through before you serve your first customer.

Key things to think about:

  • CHD
  • Cooking
  • Food preparation
  • Serving
  • Cleaning and laundry

In this article, we’ll go over everything you need to consider when you’re trying to figure out how to design a commercial kitchen for your own business.

Let’s talk about kitchen layouts

You need to make sure that you’ve cleared space between pieces of equipment on all sides, and you’ve taken things like opening doors, as well as considering where your employees can walk around the kitchen freely.

You have a few basic layout options that are common to all commercial kitchens in the world.

You’ll want to choose one and then customize it according to personal preference and how you want your kitchen to be organized:

  • Island Style.
  • Zone Style
  • Assemblage Line.
commercial kitchen

Island Style

An island style kitchen consists of one main unit in the middle of the space, where the kitchen equipment usually finds itself.

Then things like transitions for storage and from kitchen to serving are on the outside surrounding walls.

Sometimes, though, this can be changed if the available space works better that way.

Zoned style

With a zoned layout, the kitchen will be divided into unique parts.

There will be a separate section for everything; cooking, cooking, cooling and laundry.

And, of course, the transition section from kitchen to service will be away from all the action in the kitchen, so the servers can do their thing.

Assembly Line

A classic kitchen design that produces a large amount of food every hour, such as a pizza or a sandwich, is an assembly line.

As you understand it, the kitchen is planned in order of use and equipment so that it is lined up like a conveyor belt.

One employee does his thing and then passes it on to the next in line.

Make sure you understand kitchen flow

Some of the layouts mentioned are only appropriate for certain kitchen flows, so you’ll have to think about how your employees will use the kitchen in their daily lives.

The best way to do this is to think about what each employee has to do as part of their daily work and map out their intended path.

Then you can build the kitchen around those outcomes.

Spatial Planning

As we already know, commercial kitchen design is important for efficiency and safety, but, of course, what you decide to do with the design will also affect your income.

As you choose your final layout, you’ll want to evaluate the following:

  • How many employees will use the space – The number of employees will determine the amount of work and free space needed.
  • What is the menu – The menu will outline the catering equipment needed and what will be used at each dinner.
  • How much is left over after the kitchen is completed – The size of the kitchen, assuming you already have a building, will indicate how much you have left over, to the front of the house.

Questions like these will allow you to get the right balance of kitchen space and home space; you’ll know what you may not actually need, rather than what is definitely necessary for the success of your business.

If that means removing the stove to make room at the front of the house for one or two extra tables, it will help increase income and be much more beneficial to your business.

Consider the materials you’re going to use

Determining the layout of your kitchen is one thing, but deciding what materials you should use is another; because you’ll not only need to consider what it looks like, but also understand how those materials might affect the way you and your staff work.

Use materials that are easy to clean

You’ll want to make sure your kitchen is easy to clean, so choosing materials that allow you to do so will be important.

A dirty kitchen will cause you to break hygiene laws, and it will also affect the kitchen equipment that you and your staff use, which will obviously affect their performance.

In addition, you risk damaging your equipment, which in turn will put an unnecessary financial burden on you.

Surfaces that will come into contact with food should never absorb grease or water.

Stainless steel is your obvious choice, and it should be rated at least 304 for use.


The walls should also be resistant to grease and food particles, as well as smooth and free of exposed fixtures or protrusions.

Of course, hygiene is vital, so these surfaces should be easy to clean.

Another thing to think about:

  • Ceramic tiles, if used, should be coated with an antibacterial solution.
  • Fly screens should be installed where windows can be opened
  • Mesh must cover any exterior vents.
  • The joint between exterior walls and roofing must be caulked.

Kitchen Flooring

The choice of flooring is the same as for other materials, it should be very easy to maintain.

But it should also be non-slip to prevent accidents in the kitchen when your employees are trying to work.

Floor types to think about:

  • Stainless steel with a non-slip profile and welded seams
  • Epoxy ceramic tile
  • Quarry tile with an impervious sealant
  • Polyvinyl tile with head welded joints

Now you know how to design a commercial kitchen. Hopefully, this guide will be your start in the business. Grab a pen and start running your business!