How to Clean Your Commercial Restaurant Kitchen Equipment

How to Clean Your Commercial Restaurant Kitchen Equipment

It’s a given – keeping your commercial restaurant kitchen clean is one of the keys to successful food service. But it can be a daunting task, especially when you’re dealing with all sorts of equipment. Don’t worry though – in this blog post, we will give you some tips on how to properly clean and maintain your commercial restaurant kitchen equipment! So grab your gloves, and your trusty bucket, and let’s get started!


Washing and Sanitizing Dishes and Utensils

Before you begin cleaning, you’ll want to be sure your dishes and utensils are thoroughly washed, rinsed, and sanitized. Dishes should be washed, rinsed, and then soaked in a hot detergent solution or an approved sanitizing solution. You should then rinse them off with clean water and air dry them before stacking them away. Utensils may need to first soak in hot soapy water before being cleaned with a brush or scraper. Finally, all utensils should be thoroughly rinsed with clean water and stored away to sanitize them for further use.

If you don’t have time to properly clean your kitchen equipment and utensils, you may want to consider hiring professional cleaning services to help you get the job done. They have the necessary knowledge and experience to ensure that your kitchen is properly cleaned and sanitized, helping you to maintain a safe and efficient food service operation.

When washing dishes by hand:

  • Scrape off any bits of food first.
  • Fill the sink or dishwashing container with hot, soapy water and add any chemicals if indicated in the TDS (Technology Data Sheet).
  • Immerse dishes one at a time for several minutes in the detergent/sanitizer solution and scrub lightly where necessary.
  • Rinse each piece well under running hot water. Be sure to remove any food particles from crevices that can harbor bacteria growth.
  • Stack safe dishes on a tank rack if availed after they have drained completely of their rinse water before air drying them completely or let the built-in automated washer do its wonders!

Cleaning and Maintaining Cooking Equipment

Cleaning and maintaining your restaurant’s commercial kitchen equipment is vital to providing customers with safe, high-quality food. Regular cleaning and maintenance of cooking equipment can extend the life of your appliances and prevent safety issues or breakdowns. Taking a few moments to properly clean cooking appliances in the kitchen can help save you time, and money, and avoid any potential health hazards.

Cleaning Cooking Equipment

  • When cleaning commercial kitchen equipment, always unplug it from the power source before starting.
  • Clean surfaces with hot water and a mild detergent solution.
  • Rinse off any remaining soap residue with a clean damp cloth or sponge.
  • Dry off all surfaces so that no moisture remains on them.
  • Sanitize all surfaces using an approved sanitizer solution such as bleach or quaternary ammonia—or steam cleaning if available—if necessary as recommended by the appliance manual or local health codes.

Maintaining Cooking Equipment Maintaining kitchen equipment should be done regularly to reduce the possibility of breakdowns:

  • Inspect equipment for wear and tear often, looking for broken parts, corroded switches, and other issues that can cause damage or make it unsafe to use.
  • Tighten screws regularly as loosened screws will damage wiring within appliances over time or even cause fires in some cases if there are exposed wires present in the area near your appliances.
  • Clean interior surfaces whenever possible to reduce the build-up of grease which can lead to fire hazards or attract pests into your restaurant’s kitchen area.

Deep Cleaning the Dishwasher

Deep cleaning of the dishwasher is an important part of maintaining an efficient and hygienic commercial kitchen. Dishwashers are used daily and can quickly become contaminated with food particles, grease, bacteria, and other residues that can potentially cause food contamination or cross-contamination. To prevent this from occurring, it is essential to deep clean the dishwasher regularly.

To begin deep cleaning the dishwasher:

  • Turn off all power supplies to the dishwasher and disconnect them from any water sources.
  • Remove any dishes or accessories from inside of the dishwasher unit with either your hands or by using a commercial detergent to scrub away any dirt or grease that may be on these items.
  • Rinse out the interior with hot, soapy water using a soft-bristled brush if necessary to remove hard stains.
  • Open up any perforated parts such as filters and rinse them as well as remove limescale deposits if present.
  • Clean out any debris from crevices or poorly accessible areas of the unit such as hoses, gaskets, or ones under arms runs giving particular attention to areas where food contaminants may have built up over time.
  • Spray down all surfaces on the inside of the machine with an antibacterial spray making sure there are no missed spots where bacteria could grow in the future.
  • Take a damp cloth and wipe down all surfaces within arm’s reach including control panels or buttons making sure no moisture gets anywhere on electrical components.
  • Finally, replace all detachable components with their correct positions when you are done including cleaning filters and returning dishes to their proper locations.

Sanitizing Cutting Boards and Surfaces

Sanitizing cutting boards and surfaces is essential in maintaining food safety in a commercial restaurant kitchen. It is important to use the right methods to ensure that the equipment remains sanitary and properly disinfected.

The first step to sanitizing cutting boards and other surfaces is deep cleaning them with soap and water. Scrubbing with a brush or abrasive pad can help remove any grease, grease residue, or food particles. Once they are clean, inspections should be done regularly to ensure they remain clear of dirt and debris.

Next, it is important to use a bleach-based solution on the cutting board or surface. The proper concentration of bleach is one tablespoon of bleach per gallon of water (1:128). Be sure that the surface remains wet for at least 1 minute for effective sanitation. It is also a good idea to follow up with a vinegar rinse as an extra precaution due to its acidity and antimicrobial properties.

For stainless steel surfaces, follow these steps:

  • Wash with a hot detergent solution (at least 25°C)
  • Rinse thoroughly with fresh clean water
  • Rinse again for at least 30 seconds using an approved sanitizer like chlorine solution (50 ppm)
  • Allow the surface to air dry or wipe dry with a single-use cloth before using it again.

Washing and Storing Small Wares

Small wares are the various utensils, tools, and dishware found in any commercial kitchen. Properly washing and storing these items is essential for keeping them clean and hygienic for cooking and dining.

The best way to wash small wares is with hot water, a good quality detergent, a stiff brush, and sanitizing solution. Start by removing loose food particles from the item before washing it with hot water and detergent in a three-compartment sink or wash basin. Once the ware has been washed, use a sanitizer to reduce bacterial levels on the surface of the item.

After washing, all small wares should be thoroughly rinsed in clear running water and air-dried. It’s important to dry them properly as wet items can lead to bacteria growth. For any items that must remain moist like sponges, be sure to store them in an area that allows proper airflow around them so they will dry quickly and help reduce bacteria growth.

Finally, it’s important to store small wares properly by sorting them into their designated bins or containers after cleaning. This will help prevent cross-contamination of products between uses such as kitchen tongs used for raw meat mixed with vegetables when stored together in one container or drawer.

Cleaning and Maintaining Refrigeration Units

Maintaining clean and organized refrigerators is essential in any commercial kitchen. Not only do these pieces of equipment need to be cleaned regularly, but they must also be maintained properly. To keep your restaurant’s refrigeration units clean and in good working condition, here are a few tips to follow:

  • Clean the exterior of refrigeration units with a solution of warm water, detergent, and baking soda. Pay special attention to the door seals and handles to ensure they are free from dirt or grease build-up. Once finished, ensure all surfaces have been thoroughly dried with a cloth.
  • Remove any shelves which can usually be taken out easily for cleaning. Soak shelves in warm soapy water before scrubbing off any dirt residue to prevent cross-contamination. Drying with a cloth will help improve efficiency too!
  • Clean any drains or fans located on the unit; debris such as insect residues or dust can accumulate in these areas and make the unit run inefficiently if not cleaned periodically. Additionally, use damp paper towels to wipe down the interior walls and ceiling of each unit—this helps prevent mold growth due to moisture buildup caused by condensation inside the fridge walls.
  • Unplug refrigerator units before beginning any deep cleaning process to prevent electric shock hazards or other accidents while using cleaning solutions inside them. Additionally, inspect each coiled unit for signs of corrosion or other problems that may need attention before proceeding with deep cleaning steps like steam cleaning or chemical treatments (as some damage can cause health risks).

Cleaning and Maintaining the Exhaust Hood and Filters

The exhaust hood and filters are integral parts of your kitchen’s grease-removal system. Keeping them clean is essential to preventing fires and improving the efficiency of the grease-removal system.

Before cleaning, turn off all power and fuel supplies leading to the exhaust hood. Once the power is shut off, start by inspecting the filters – check for signs of damage or excessive grease buildup before you begin cleaning. Grease buildup on the filters will need to be removed with a degreaser and water sprayer.

Once the bulk of heavy grease buildup has been addressed on both sides of the filter, it can be soaked in a chemical degreaser as recommended by manufacturer specifications for up to one hour per side. Then it should be removed from the degreasing bath, rinsed thoroughly in hot water, and completely dried before reassembling into its original position within the hood canopy.

Next, you’ll need to clean any external surfaces that have become contaminated with excessive amounts of grease (especially near seams). Use a hot water pressure washer set at 1,500 PSI and equipped with an appropriate pressure washer nozzle (not one designed for residential use).

Start with a wide pattern coverage at low pressure, beginning at least four feet away from any fixtures or electrical components within reach of the pressure wash nozzle spray arc. After completing this cleaning process it is advised that you inspect each piece after cleaning to make sure there are no areas requiring additional attention due to overspray or remaining debris accumulation.

Maintaining a Clean and Organized Walk-in Cooler

A walk-in cooler is an essential part of storing perishable food safely in a commercial kitchen. To maintain a clean and organized walk-in cooler in your kitchen, it’s important to properly organize, clean, and defrost regularly. In addition, you should inspect the equipment for any broken parts or leaks that need repair.

  • Organization: It’s important to keep your walk-in cooler organized so that you can easily find what you need when needed. Store items in the correct category and create a plan for the first in, first out (FIFO) rotation of products. This will ensure that nothing gets lost or forgotten and all food items have been used before they reach their expiration date.
  • Cleaning: It’s essential to keep your walk-in cooler free from dirt and debris by wiping down shelves with warm water regularly. Be sure windows are intact so you can monitor temperature changes as well as check shelves for spills to prevent spoilage of food products.
  • Defrosting: This is an often overlooked aspect of maintaining a clean walk-in cooler but it’s an important step to take every few months or when necessary. When defrosting the cooler, turn off the power to the equipment then clear out all products from inside the unit before cleaning up any spills or debris from inside surfaces and shelves. Use warm water mixed with soap or mild detergent to wipe down shelves one at a time before using the hot towel method to clear up any remaining frost on walls/floor surfaces. Make sure power is restored before returning items to the room once done with the cleaning process!
  • Inspection: Lastly, inspect the units periodically throughout the year for signs of broken parts like seals, gaskets, hinges, etc. If anything needs repair contact maintenance personnel immediately so they can have time to address the issue before it causes further damage/deterioration meaning more money spent fixing the problem ultimately!


Cleaning and sanitizing commercial kitchen equipment is an important key to a safe, healthy, and efficient kitchen. Taking a systematic, step-by-step approach and following the recommended tips will help you keep your kitchen in top condition. Doing so will not only help you avoid contamination of your food supply but can also help reduce energy use and improve the longevity of your equipment.

Remember to always use the right cleaning products for each job that meets the health code standards in your area. Be sure that all surfaces are cleaned after each use or shift as well as regularly inspected for any signs of wear or damage.

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