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Ann Holtzapple

Commercial & Restaurant Kitchen Equipment Guide

The success or failure of your restaurant largely rides on your commercial kitchen equipment. Picking professional kitchen equipment that will help you meet the preparation and cooking needs for your unique menu can help you achieve your goals in order to prosper in today’s competitive restaurant industry environment. Here’s what all restaurant owners need to know about supporting performance and productivity in the kitchen by outfitting their operations with the right new kitchen equipment.


Which Kitchen Cooking Equipment Do You Need?

There are many other different types of restaurant cooking equipment out there, but ranges, griddles, charbroilers and deep fryers are must-haves for every versatile commercial kitchen plan.

  • Ranges

When it comes to industrial cooking equipment, the range is inarguably one of the — if not THE — the most critical piece in a restaurant kitchen. Combining both oven and stove, ranges support your operators’ abilities to cook menu items simultaneously in many different ways, including everything from baking, boiling and frying to pan-searing, roasting and broiling. Depending on the size and volume of your operation, your options vary from a range with just two burners to one with as many as 12 burners.

  • Griddles

Breakfast joints, diners and other high-volume operations depend on griddles and flat-top grills to cook everything from pancakes to burgers quickly and evenly thanks to a heat source located underneath the flat plate. If you’re in the market for a new griddle, Vulcan — the leader among today’s commercial kitchen equipment manufacturers — has many models to choose from with a variety of features. Gas or electric, plate thickness, plate finish, depth and width, griddle controls and burner BTUs are all variables that impact the performance of this professional cooking equipment.

  • Charbroilers

This popular type of commercial restaurant equipment imparts meats, fish and vegetables with amazing smoky flavor as well as appetizing sear marks. Charbroilers are available in both gas and electric (infrared heat) models in a variety of sizes. Features include varying grate designs, griddle plates, overshelves, splash guards, condiment rails, plate rails, and cutting boards. Additionally, many restaurants find countertop charbroilers offer space-saving convenience.

  • Deep Fryers

Diners love fried food, and nothing supports the production of crowd-pleasing appetizers, french fries, donuts, fish and chips and other fried favorites like deep frying with commercial-grade kitchen equipment. Available in both freestanding and countertop models and with traditional ventilation systems as well as ventless, gas and electric deep fryers boast tank capacities suitable for small restaurants as well as large operations.


Other Commercial Kitchen Equipment Needs

In addition to commercial cooking equipment, restaurants also need other equipment in order to operate, including refrigeration equipment, food prep equipment, storage, smallwares and janitorial equipment.  

  • Refrigeration Equipment

Many different types of refrigeration equipment is available from brands like Traulsen, which offers a comprehensive range of refrigerators, freezers, blast chillers and more. Depending on the specific needs of your foodservice operation, other examples of refrigeration equipment include ice machines and beverage dispensers. 

  • Food Prep Equipment 

Restaurant menus vary widely. As such, so do their food prep equipment needs. Some of the most common prep equipment used by foodservice operations include food processors, commercial mixers, and slicers manufactured by brands like Hobart, while Berkel is also known for its meat slicing equipment. Prep tables, spice grinders, and blenders are also go-tos for many commercial kitchens.

  • Smallwares

Smallwares refer to the tools used by kitchen employees to prepare and cook dishes. These include knives, cutting boards, mixing bowls, pots, pans, food pans, turners, tongs, and many others. Keep in mind that when shopping for smallwares, selecting the right quantity is an essential consideration to optimize productivity. 

  • Janitorial

A clean kitchen is a must! Whether you’re outfitting a new commercial kitchen or reevaluating your current cleaning supply needs, most operations utilize a three-compartment sink, microfiber cloths and cleaning rags, scrubbers and sponges, foodservice chemicals and sanitizers, trash cans and recycling bins, mops and buckets, brooms and dustpans, restroom supplies, and wet floor signs. 

  • Storage Equipment

Storage for everything from food prep equipment to smallwares to ingredients can help your restaurant be organized, efficient and more productive. Standard pieces of commercial storage equipment include shelving, sheet pan racks, bussing and utility carts, drying racks, dunnage racks, and food storage containers. 

Click Your Way to the Right Commercial Restaurant Equipment

Not sure whether you need solid state, snap action, or manual griddle controls? Struggling with choosing a fryer that’s right for your menu? Looking to optimize your cooking line with the highest output charbroiler? Or what about the 100+ variables, such as base type and sheet pan orientation, that go into identifying the perfect electric or gas range for your operation? The takeaway is clear: Restaurant owners face many decisions along the way to outfitting their kitchens for optimal performance.

The good news? While the process of making the most educated purchases about kitchen equipment and their uses can be time-consuming and fraught with uncertainty, it doesn’t have to be thanks to the launch of a brand new digital tool designed to streamline the commercial food equipment selection process, the Vulcan Kitchen Equipment Guide. Simply navigate a series of easy questions on your operation, and our analytics will determine your perfect griddle, fryer or charbroiler.

Our Vulcan Range Customizer tool, meanwhile, will help you find the exact range model you’re looking for, or it will customize one to your ideal configuration across major inputs like range model and energy source all the way down to smaller details such as towel bars, cutting boards, and condiment rails.

Additionally, the Kitchen Equipment Guide provides a comprehensive results page which allows you to view product specs or print your results. Want to request a quote or find a sales expert in your area? With the Kitchen Equipment Guide, access is just a quick click away.

Running a restaurant isn’t easy, so why not simplify where you can? The Vulcan Kitchen Equipment Guide offers invaluable recommendations for today’s busy, bottom line-minded commercial kitchen operators by taking the guesswork out of the equipment-buying equation and putting the information you need at your fingertips.


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