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Basic guide to buying kitchen supplies (pots, pans, etc)

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 



I'm almost ready to open my restaurant and I'd like some professional help from all of you here, my hot kitchen is 15 sq meters and the restaurant seats 60 covers.


I'm keeping my menu small (no more than 20 line items) to start with till I get a feeler of the market and response to my restaurant. I'd like to know how many sauce pans, stock pots, fry pans, saute pans etc do I buy? Is there a rule, which decides what to buy based around my menu line items?


All help will be greatly appreciated.


Thanks, in advance.

post #2 of 6

The short answer- buy as many as you need and have money for. 

The long answer is for you to figure out. 

Are you going to make stocks? A large stockpot with a spigot is very handy. The spigot so you can drain it easily without having to lift it full of hot liquid. 

Go through the menu and write down how each item will be prepared and what pot or pan will be needed to prepare the ingredients for that item.

How many items will you sauté? Will you have a dishwasher to clean the pans during service so the cook can reuse them during service? 

Picture yourself going through the days prep. What sauces will you be preparing in advance? Will you be preparing them ala minute or holding during service? Enough sauce for a day or several days? 

Naturally you will need basic items such as cutting boards, various mixing bowls, spoons and tongs but the number and type of pots and pans will depend on your analysis of your needs. After you have been open for awhile you may find you need a bigger or smaller pan, or a different style and what you bought to begin with isn't the best for what you do. You aren't going to get it perfect right off so sit down with the menu and figure out what seems to make sense to start with. 

No one can answer for you without seeing the menu and then they are just doing the analysis you can do yourself. 

post #3 of 6

We don't really know the menu.  I would get a lot of 8" aluminum skillets.  They are about 10 USD each. 

post #4 of 6

You are better off buying as high quality stuff as you can afford as well. I would say buy less but higher quality and add later as budget allows. We are just talking small wares? I assume things like blender/robot coupe, mixer, etc has all been taken care of. 


As far as I know, there is not a set formula for expected covers vs. amount of pans. 


If we don't have the menu, a budget, etc it will be hard to help. How many stations...which type of stations (meat, fish, fry, saute, roast, veg, etc), how many cooks, how many burners, etc. 


A spigot stock pot is great...but they are costly. Your cooks will thank you, but they range from like 200-1000 dollars (you might be able to find a used one for less) depending on size. 


Hotel pans? half/3rd/nines? bain marie? 


If you could provide more info you will get better responses. 

post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 

Hi, Thanks for the detailed reply. Here are the answers, most of the electric and motorised equipment is already in place. There are some residual cook ware items left over from the previous tenant but most are in terrible condition. As far as stations go, the kitchen is small and tight so I'm trying to achieve a basic cold station for veg and salad assembly, meat/poultry and a sea food station. I have an old gas range with 6 tops and an oven. I also have a lava grill, deep fat fryer and another electric griddle. That takes care of the thermal equipment. I won't have more than 3 cooks and less than 2 at any given time.


I'm keeping a limited menu to start with till I get a better feel of the kitchen, so, soups (from the gas range), grilled meats and sea food (lava grill and electric griddle), sauces, stir fries and curries (gas range), slow cooked meats (gas fired under range oven), small amount of fried food mostly as starters or accompaniments (deep fat fryer).


I have another kitchen of a similar size, which is off property but only a few steps away and that will be used as the prep room.


To start with, I will check what inventory I was left with and match it or scale it down a little.


Your thoughts?

post #6 of 6

 Have you thought about a water bath and vac packer?

 I would consider these basic kitchen tools these days, and in a small kitchen they can really help with the speed of service.

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