Guide to Cloud Kitchens and their Equipment
Cloud kitchens have been the newest culinary concept that helps restaurant owners quickly grow and scale their food business through delivery. In simple words, we can say that these are commercial kitchens optimized for food delivery. Cloud kitchens are also known as dark kitchens, virtual restaurants, ghost kitchens, and more. Instead of a physical location, the presence is digital, allowing you to reach more customers than you ever could with just a physical location.
Once you set up with the commercial kitchen equipment you need to operate, you will start your restaurant brand online across top delivery apps. After that, you will wait for the incoming orders and prepare food in your delivery-only kitchen space.
With the model of third-party services through mobile ordering, you are cutting the cost of operating a restaurant and then the cost of the staff and others. However, the benefits of opening a ghost kitchen are that you get to lower your cost, the expansion will be easier, more profits, quick delivery, and more. These establishments built have been tremendously benefitting during the coronavirus crisis.
Dubai-based cloud kitchen/ghost kitchen called KITOPI has raised $415 million during the funding round led by SOFTBANK. This helps them to expand their business in the middle east and in South Asia as the demand for online food delivery is increasing due to the pandemic. Now they have more than 60 cloud kitchens across UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Bahrain.
Also, the delivery companies in UAE, mainly TALABAT and DELIVEROO have been in such establishments for the past years. In fact, Deliveroo will be launching the world’s largest cloud kitchen space in the UAE. At Cloud Kitchens, each one comes equipped with the exclusive software needed to track orders and decrease delivery time, meaning more happy customers leaving astonishing reviews.
Equipment needed for cloud kitchen
Exhaust Hood: The exhaust hood serves an important purpose, by venting smoke and odors out of your kitchen. They are a major purchase for all the commercial foodservice facilities.
Counters: While creating your food preparation area in the cloud kitchen, prefer counters that are made from stainless steel. They are strong, resistant to corrosion and bacteria growth. They are simple to maintain and can withstand the harsh cleaning products that are usually used in commercial kitchens.
Cooking Lines/Range: The cooking range is the most essential/basic equipment of a cloud kitchen. You can pick either electric or gas ranges, depending on your choices and kitchen setup. You need to analyze the type of cooking line in terms of model and size that fits their kitchen appropriately. Industrial gas ranges are usually the recommended solution as they give accurate temperature regulation. However, electric ranges are also a great choice if the electricity is more affordable or more abundant than gas in your town.
Commercial Reach–in Refrigerators and freezers: They are one of the most essential pieces of equipment for cloud kitchens. They keep foods at the temperatures you want them and prolong the life of fresh foods and can also store products that are prepared and ready-made, like burgers, fish fillets, and even soup.
Ovens: If your cloud kitchen caters to bakery products or focuses on pizza delivery services or others, ovens are a must-have for your kitchen. Combi ovens are also worth when investing in cloud kitchens. It uses three methods of cooking in one appliance – convection, steam, and a combination of convection and steam. At buyhoreca.com, we have a selection of both gas and electric ovens which may seem a wise decision for your cloud kitchens.
Mixers and Slicers: Commercial Mixers and slicers are essential equipment in any cloud kitchen establishment. Mixers are used to make food preparation tasks, like mixing batters, whipping eggs, kneading dough, and making icing, much easier. Different types of commercial mixers are Planetary mixers, Dough Mixers, and Vertical Cutter Mixers. Whereas electric meat slicers can easily cut through processed meats to fill your customers’ orders in cloud kitchen establishments. Beyond strength and ease of use, they are incredibly easy to manage and maintain.
Commercial Fryer: It is one of the kitchen appliances used for heating a large quantity of cooking oil for deep frying a large amount of food and one of the essential tools used in cloud kitchen establishments. It works on either gas or electricity. It comes in different forms and varies according to size, orientation, style, and performance metrics.
Sinks: Commercial sinks are vital for cloud kitchen establishments to meet proper sanitation codes. You can install one, two, three, or four compartment sinks along with a dishwashing unit in your kitchen.
Commercial Worktables and Stations: It is important to outfit your cloud kitchen with proper commercial work tables and stations. It will help in your food prep tasks and can reduce cross-contamination and increase efficiency.
Operational equipment such as Kitchen Display System (KDS) and POS software is necessary for a cloud kitchen to automate and streamline the process. Installing a display system in the kitchen enables the staff to view all the delivery orders in a flash. KDS is integrated with the POS system and directly accepts orders from multiple mediums.