Over the past decade, the restaurant industry has changed with innovations in kitchen equipment and the advent of shadow and cloud cooking. This is the future of commercial cooking and the cooking equipment industry must be ready for it. According to Allied Market Research, the global commercial kitchen equipment market is expected to reach $12.9 billion by 2027, growing at a CAGR of 5.2% from 2021 to 2027. products and increase in the number of quick service restaurants have boosted the growth of the market.
State of current commercial kitchens
If you are even remotely connected with the restaurant business, you know that the market is driven by technological innovations and the surge in consumer demand for fast delivery. Thus, companies in the cooking equipment market have invested huge sums to launch products that no one even knew were needed. Moreover, after the launch of such innovative cooking equipment, customers cannot live without it. Like any other industry, the commercial cooking equipment industry is being transformed by innovations in automation, advanced devices, and digital sensors. All of these innovations are centered around making cooking easier and hassle-free. So what would futuristic commercial kitchens look like?
1. Innovations in commercial ovens
Heating meals and ingredients is the longest but most fundamental process in restaurant kitchens. Thus, innovation in ovens for restaurant use was essential. Multi-purpose ovens that can do the job of kettle, steamer, fryers, dehydrator and smoker will attract attention in the future. In addition, commercial ovens integrated with digital technology to provide flexibility to chefs will come to market. This equipment will allow chefs to cook to perfection.
2. Automation of dishwashers
Currently, restaurants use automated conveyor belt dishwashers for the convenience they provide. However, in the future, dishwashers will save labor and time. In fact, many cooking equipment manufacturing companies have launched smart dishwashers that use water and energy wisely, with the goal of achieving total efficiency.
3. 3D printing and food
This might be the most original idea for the commercial kitchen. Food printing is the latest innovation that allows chefs to print food with the ability to customize flavor and nutritional content and perfectly meet customer expectations. This could be a game changer in the restaurant industry as the customer will receive exactly what they ordered within minutes.
4. Internet of Things (IoT) and kitchen equipment
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that the IoT is going to seep into restaurants and commercial kitchens. Adding a few sensors to conventional cooking equipment could save a lot of time and energy. The opportunities and benefits of IoT-based cooking equipment are limitless and amazing. Chefs can remotely monitor food, save electricity, fuel and cooking time for a dish. Plus, restaurants can save a ton of food waste with such kitchen equipment.
5. Flexible cooking equipment
The restaurant industry has always been more adaptable. Thus, chefs are more inclined to use cooking equipment that offers maximum flexibility. Additionally, the growing awareness of sustainability and utility costs has made flexibility more important than ever.
Although such innovations have appeared in the market, the most difficult aspect is the cost of these new cooking equipment. The high cost of kitchen equipment has hampered the market. However, cooking equipment manufacturers have worked hard to address this issue by developing new financing programs, interest-free packages, and leases to increase the use of state-of-the-art cooking equipment. The COVID-19 pandemic has hit the restaurant industry hard, and from kitchen equipment manufacturers to restaurateurs and chefs, they’re looking for new ways to reconnect.
Moreover, there is also a drastic change in shopping habits. More and more restaurateurs are more willing to invest in a new kitchen if the financial options are affordable and available. The leasing system has proven profitable in the case of manufacturers of refrigeration appliances. So other cooking equipment manufacturers are now following the same path to reach more customers, regardless of their financial status and size.
Overall, the commercial cooking equipment trends to watch focus on reducing labor, energy, food waste, and space in the kitchen. These trends will follow food and beverage trends and evolve to meet ever-changing customer expectations and demands. However, smarter technology will surely continue to change commercial kitchens and their cooking equipment.