Welcome to our latest guide, where we’ll explore the most recent trends in commercial kitchen design. We’ll delve into six key trends shaping the future of commercial kitchen design, accompanied by a brief description.

Sustainable and Eco-friendly Design

Sustainability has become a top priority for many businesses, and commercial kitchens are no exception. Commercial kitchens can reduce environmental impact by adopting eco-friendly design principles while saving energy and resource costs. Some of the latest trends in sustainable kitchen design include:

Energy-Efficient Appliances

In the modern hospitality industry, energy-efficient appliances have become essential for commercial kitchens. These appliances not only aid businesses in reducing their environmental impact but also contribute to significant cost savings over time. Commercial kitchens can achieve sustainability and operational efficiency by utilising Energy Star-rated equipment, high-efficiency ovens and burners, and low-energy refrigeration systems.

Energy Star-rated equipment is designed to consume less energy than traditional appliances, lowering utility bills while maintaining performance standards. High-efficiency ovens and burners deliver optimal cooking results with reduced fuel consumption, making them an excellent choice for eco-conscious establishments.

Low-energy refrigeration systems utilise advanced technology such as variable-speed compressors, high-efficiency fans, and improved insulation to minimise energy usage without compromising temperature control and food safety. By adopting these environmentally friendly solutions. Commercial kitchens can demonstrate their commitment to sustainability while enjoying lower operating costs.

Sustainable Materials and Finishes

Selecting sustainable materials and finishes is another vital aspect of eco-friendly commercial kitchen design. By opting for environmentally friendly alternatives, businesses can reduce their carbon footprint and contribute to a greener future.

Using sustainable building materials such as reclaimed wood, recycled metal, and biodegradable composites for countertops, cabinets, and flooring adds character and charm to the kitchen and minimises the environmental impact. These materials can often be sourced locally, supporting local economies and reducing transportation emissions.

Choosing low-VOC (volatile organic compounds) paints and finishes is equally essential, as they emit fewer harmful chemicals into the air, improving indoor air quality and ensuring a healthier working environment. Additionally, non-toxic sealants and adhesives can be used to enhance the eco-friendliness of the kitchen further.

Waste Reduction and Recycling

Implementing waste reduction and recycling practices in commercial kitchens is essential for promoting sustainability and reducing environmental impact. By adopting effective strategies, businesses can minimise waste generation, maximise resource utilisation, and contribute to a circular economy.

One effective method is implementing a comprehensive waste management plan that properly segregates waste into recyclable, compostable, and non-recyclable categories. This helps ensure that materials are processed correctly, reducing waste volume sent to landfills.

Another approach is to embrace innovative food waste reduction technologies such as intelligent food storage systems, waste tracking software, and anaerobic digesters. These solutions can help businesses monitor and manage their food waste more effectively, enabling them to identify areas for improvement and implement targeted waste reduction strategies.

Waste reduction and recycling practices are crucial to sustainable commercial kitchen design. By implementing a comprehensive waste management plan, embracing food waste reduction technologies, and encouraging proper waste segregation, businesses can minimise their environmental impact and stay competitive in the hospitality industry.

Open-plan Kitchens and Dining Areas

The open-plan kitchen trend is gaining popularity in commercial spaces, allowing customers to see and engage with the chefs preparing their meals. This transparency fosters trust and enhances the overall dining experience. Critical elements of open-plan kitchens include:

Seamless Integration of Cooking and Dining Areas

The integration of cooking and dining areas in commercial kitchen design has become increasingly popular, offering customers a more engaging and interactive experience. This open-plan concept creates a visually appealing and spacious environment and allows diners to witness the culinary process, enhancing their overall dining experience.

One approach to achieving seamless integration is to incorporate open kitchens with chef’s tables or counter seating, allowing customers to observe chefs at work while enjoying their meals. This setup fosters a sense of transparency and trust, as diners can see the level of care and attention given to food preparation.

Another benefit of integrated cooking and dining areas is improved communication between kitchen staff and front-of-house personnel, which can result in enhanced customer service and a more cohesive dining experience.

Chef Interaction and Entertainment

Incorporating chef interaction and entertainment into commercial kitchen design can significantly enhance the overall dining experience for customers. By providing opportunities for diners to engage with chefs and observe their culinary skills, businesses can create a memorable and unique atmosphere that sets them apart in the competitive hospitality industry.

One way to achieve this is by designing open kitchens with interactive stations where customers can watch chefs prepare dishes and ask questions about the ingredients and techniques. This adds an element of entertainment and fosters a sense of connection between the diners and the culinary team.

Another approach is to offer live cooking demonstrations or tasting events, allowing customers to learn more about the cuisine, the chef’s expertise, and the establishment’s commitment to quality. These events can generate buzz and attract new clientele, further boosting the business’s reputation and success.

Noise and Odour Control

Effective noise and odour control are essential considerations in commercial kitchen design, ensuring a comfortable and pleasant environment for customers and staff. By implementing appropriate measures, businesses can maintain high standards of cleanliness and hygiene while creating an enjoyable atmosphere for diners.

One approach to controlling noise levels is to use sound-absorbing materials such as acoustic panels or ceiling tiles, which can help dampen the sound generated by kitchen equipment and busy staff. Proper layout planning and spacing can also contribute to a quieter environment.

Odour control is equally important, as lingering cooking smells can be unpleasant for customers and staff. Installing a high-quality ventilation system with adequate extraction capabilities is crucial for removing cooking odours and maintaining good indoor air quality. Regular maintenance and cleaning of the ventilation system also play a vital role in ensuring its efficiency and effectiveness.

Modular and Flexible Kitchen Design

Modular and flexible design is becoming increasingly popular in commercial kitchens, allowing for easy reconfiguration and adaptation to changing needs. This approach maximises efficiency and minimises downtime during renovations or menu updates. Critical aspects of modular kitchen design include:

Interchangeable Equipment and Workstations

Incorporating interchangeable equipment and workstations in commercial kitchen design offers increased flexibility and adaptability, enabling businesses to respond to changing needs and demands. This versatile approach allows for efficient use of space and resources, ultimately enhancing productivity and workflow.

One way to achieve interchangeability is using modular equipment, which can be easily rearranged or replaced. This enables commercial kitchens to adapt their layout and capabilities according to seasonal menu changes, special events, or evolving customer preferences.

Similarly, designing workstations with adjustable components, such as movable countertops or storage units, allows staff to customise their workspace according to specific tasks or requirements. This flexibility improves ergonomics and encourages collaboration and teamwork among kitchen staff.

Adaptable Layout and Zoning

An adaptable layout and zoning are crucial to modern commercial kitchen design, enabling businesses to accommodate fluctuating demands and streamline operations efficiently. Establishments can optimise workflow and enhance staff productivity by creating a flexible and well-organised space.

One approach to achieve adaptability is through modular zoning, which involves dividing the kitchen into distinct areas based on function, such as food preparation, cooking, and dishwashing. This allows for a more efficient allocation of resources and personnel while facilitating a smooth workflow between different tasks.

Incorporating movable partitions or sliding doors is another effective strategy, as these features enable businesses to quickly reconfigure their layout in response to changing needs, such as hosting private events or expanding service capabilities.

Furthermore, considering ergonomics and ease of movement when designing the layout ensures that staff can work comfortably and efficiently, ultimately contributing to improved customer service and satisfaction.

Scalability and Future-Proofing

Scalability and future-proofing are essential considerations in commercial kitchen design, ensuring businesses can adapt and grow in response to changing market conditions and customer preferences. By planning for expansion and incorporating innovative technologies, establishments can stay ahead of the curve in the competitive hospitality industry.

One approach to achieving scalability is designing modular spaces that can be easily expanded or reconfigured. This allows businesses to accommodate increased demand, add new services, or update their layout with minimal disruption.

Investing in energy-efficient equipment and intelligent technologies is another critical aspect of future-proofing. Commercial kitchens can reduce operating costs, streamline processes, and improve overall efficiency by embracing sustainable practices and adopting cutting-edge innovations, such as IoT-enabled appliances and automated systems.

Finally, considering potential changes in consumer trends and regulations when designing a commercial kitchen ensures that the space remains adaptable and relevant over time. This may involve anticipating new dietary requirements, food safety standards, or environmental guidelines.

Technology Integration and Automation

Integrating technology and automation into commercial kitchens revolutionises how food service businesses operate. These advancements can significantly enhance efficiency and customer satisfaction, from streamlining processes to improving consistency and quality. Key trends in technology and automation include:

Smart Appliances and Connected Devices

Incorporating intelligent appliances and connected devices in commercial kitchen design offers numerous benefits, including improved efficiency, reduced energy consumption, and enhanced overall performance. By embracing cutting-edge technology, businesses can streamline operations and stay competitive in the fast-paced hospitality industry.

Smart appliances, such as IoT-enabled ovens and refrigerators, provide real-time data and remote monitoring capabilities, allowing staff to track inventory levels, monitor equipment performance, and minimise food waste. These devices can also be programmed to optimise energy usage, reducing operational costs and environmental impact.

Connected devices, such as tablet-based POS systems and automated order management platforms, help streamline front-of-house and kitchen staff communication, ensuring accurate order processing and faster service. Additionally, these systems can provide valuable insights into customer preferences and trends, enabling businesses to decide on menu offerings and promotional strategies.

Robotic and Automated Systems

Integrating robotic and automated systems in commercial kitchen design revolutionises the hospitality industry, offering increased efficiency, precision, and consistency in food preparation and service. By embracing these advanced technologies, businesses can reduce labour costs, streamline processes, and maintain a competitive edge.

Robotic systems, such as robotic arms or automated cooking appliances, can perform tasks quickly and accurately, ensuring consistent quality across menu items. These systems can operate continuously without fatigue, enabling businesses to meet high demand during peak hours.

Automated systems, such as conveyor belt cooking equipment or dishwashing machines, help to optimise workflow and reduce the potential for human error. By automating repetitive tasks, staff can focus on more complex or creative aspects of food preparation, ultimately enhancing the overall dining experience for customers.

Digital Ordering and Payment Systems

Implementing digital ordering and payment systems is crucial for modernising commercial kitchen design, as it streamlines operations, enhances customer experience, and supports contactless transactions. By adopting these technologies, businesses can stay competitive in the evolving hospitality landscape.

Digital ordering platforms, such as mobile apps or self-service kiosks, enable customers to easily place orders and customise menu items, reducing wait times and improving order accuracy. These systems also facilitate front-of-house and kitchen staff communication, ensuring seamless order processing and timely service.

Contactless payment options, including mobile wallets, tap-to-pay cards, or QR code scanning, offer customers a secure and convenient way to complete transactions. These methods speed up the payment process, reduce physical contact, and promote hygiene.

Health and Safety Enhancements

Health and safety have always been top priorities in commercial kitchens, but recent events have underscored their importance even more. As a result, businesses are investing in design features and equipment that promote cleanliness, hygiene, and overall safety. Critical trends in health and safety enhancements include:

Enhanced Sanitation and Cleaning Protocols

Incorporating enhanced sanitation and cleaning protocols in commercial kitchen design is essential for maintaining high hygiene standards, ensuring food safety, and boosting customer confidence. By prioritising cleanliness, businesses can protect public health and uphold their reputation in the hospitality industry.

Effective cleaning procedures involve regular deep-cleaning of all surfaces, equipment, and utensils and thorough handwashing practices by staff members. Using high-quality, food-safe cleaning products and sanitisers can help eliminate harmful bacteria and viruses, minimising the risk of contamination and foodborne illnesses.

Additionally, innovative technologies such as UV-C light disinfection or antimicrobial coatings on surfaces can further enhance sanitary measures, providing an extra layer of protection against pathogens. Staff training on proper cleaning techniques and adherence to local guidelines is crucial for maintaining a safe and hygienic environment.

Improved Ventilation and Air Quality

Optimising ventilation and air quality in commercial kitchen design is crucial for ensuring a healthy and comfortable working environment, as well as promoting food safety. By implementing effective ventilation systems and maintaining good air quality, businesses can enhance staff well-being, reduce the risk of contamination, and comply with regulatory requirements.

A well-designed ventilation system should efficiently remove smoke, heat, grease, and odours from the cooking area, preventing these pollutants from circulating throughout the establishment. This can be achieved using extractor hoods, air filtration units, and proper ductwork directing exhaust air outside the building.

Moreover, incorporating air purification technologies, such as HEPA filters or UV-C light disinfection, can help eliminate airborne contaminants like bacteria, viruses, and allergens. Regular maintenance and cleaning of the ventilation system and monitoring indoor air quality are also essential for maintaining a safe and pleasant atmosphere.

Food Safety and Temperature Control

Ensuring food safety and temperature control in commercial kitchen design is vital for preventing foodborne illnesses, maintaining product quality, and complying with regulatory standards. By implementing effective temperature management systems and adhering to best practices, businesses can safeguard public health and maintain high customer satisfaction.

Proper temperature control involves maintaining separate storage areas for raw and cooked ingredients and providing adequate refrigeration and freezer units to keep perishable items at the correct temperature. Digital temperature monitoring systems and alarms can help staff monitor and maintain optimal storage conditions, reducing the risk of spoilage or contamination.

Additionally, cooking equipment should be designed and calibrated to accurately achieve and maintain desired cooking temperatures, ensuring that food is cooked thoroughly and safely. Staff training on safe food handling practices, including correct cooking times and temperatures, is also essential for upholding food safety standards.

Ergonomic and Employee-focused Design

An ergonomic and employee-focused design not only improves the well-being and productivity of kitchen staff but also helps to attract and retain top talent. By incorporating elements that prioritise comfort, efficiency, and accessibility, businesses can create a more positive work environment. Critical trends in ergonomic and employee-focused design include:

Efficient Workflow and Layout Planning

Developing an efficient workflow and layout plan is a critical aspect of commercial kitchen design, as it directly impacts productivity, staff satisfaction, and overall operational effectiveness. By carefully considering the placement of equipment, storage, and workstations, businesses can create a streamlined and ergonomic workspace that maximises output and minimises wasted time.

A well-planned layout should consider the flow of food preparation, cooking, and service, ensuring that each stage of the process is logically connected and easily accessible. This can be achieved by implementing dedicated zones for various tasks, such as food preparation, cooking, dishwashing, and storage.

Incorporating ergonomic principles in the design, such as adjustable work surfaces or strategically placed equipment, can also reduce strain on staff and enhance overall efficiency. Additionally, providing adequate space for movement and communication between team members facilitates collaboration and reduces bottlenecks.

Focusing on efficient workflow and layout planning in commercial kitchen design is crucial for optimising productivity, staff well-being, and operational success. By carefully considering the placement of equipment and workstations, establishments can create a functional and harmonious environment that supports their business objectives.

Comfortable and Accessible Work Areas

Creating comfortable and accessible work areas in commercial kitchen design is essential for promoting staff well-being, enhancing productivity, and ensuring compliance with accessibility regulations. By considering the needs of all employees, businesses can foster a more inclusive and supportive working environment.

A key aspect of designing comfortable work areas involves incorporating ergonomic principles, such as adjustable work surfaces, non-slip flooring, and proper lighting. These features can help minimise strain on staff, reduce fatigue, and prevent workplace injuries.

Accessibility should also be a priority in commercial kitchen design, ensuring that employees with varying physical abilities can easily use workstations, equipment, and facilities. This may involve installing wheelchair-accessible work surfaces, lever-operated taps, and clear signage to accommodate individuals with visual impairments.

Additionally, providing ample space for movement and collaboration is crucial for facilitating efficient workflows and a pleasant working atmosphere. This can be achieved by carefully planning the kitchen layout and considering the food preparation, cooking, and service flow.

Staff Amenities and Break Areas

Providing suitable staff amenities and break areas in commercial kitchen design is essential for promoting employee well-being, job satisfaction, and overall productivity. By offering comfortable spaces for staff to unwind, businesses can show their commitment to employee welfare and create a more supportive working environment.

A well-designed break area should be separate from the main kitchen workspace, providing a quiet and relaxing space for staff to recharge during their breaks. This area should have comfortable seating, tables, and access to a refrigerator, microwave, and hot drink-making equipment.

In addition to break areas, adequate facilities for personal hygiene, such as accessible washrooms and changing rooms, should be provided for staff. These amenities play a crucial role in maintaining health and safety standards and ensuring staff feel valued and comfortable at work.


In conclusion, the commercial kitchen design landscape is constantly evolving, with new trends and innovations driving change in the industry. By embracing sustainable and eco-friendly principles, creating open-plan spaces that engage customers, incorporating modular and flexible designs, integrating technology and automation, prioritising health and safety, and focusing on ergonomics and employee well-being, your business can stay ahead of the competition and deliver exceptional dining experiences.

If you want to update your commercial kitchen, don’t hesitate to contact our expert team for advice and support tailored to your specific needs.