The kitchen in a restaurant is one of the genuinely unique working environments one can experience. From hours before opening until long past the time diners have left, the kitchen is a near-constant stream of chaos and bustle that often requires workers to be fast on their feet.
Somewhere amid all this madness, cleaning and sanitizing must remain a top priority if you want your restaurant to remain in business. Breaking down the tasks and deciding how frequently to complete each one makes cleaning much more manageable. Here are some tips for maintaining a clean restaurant kitchen.
During and after each shift, the staff must complete many specific cleaning tasks before leaving for the day. This non-exhaustive list includes:
- Washing and sanitizing the line and prep area utensils, cutting boards, and other pieces
- Brushing the grill between uses
- Emptying all kitchen trash
- Regularly refill sanitizer bucket and fresh rags
- Gather and wash aprons
- Sweep and mop the floor
An essential rule when cooking meat is to prevent cross-contamination from the juices found in each type. A great way to reduce this risk is to swap out cutting boards and knives any time you change to a different family of meat.
There are also tasks you should complete weekly to keep the kitchen in good operation. These cleaning tasks are essential to maintaining a safe dining and working environment. Some of the jobs include:
- Emptying and cleaning all coolers and racks
- Clean ovens following manufacturer’s recommendations
- Emptying grease trap
- Deep scrubbing the floor
There are also monthly tasks to complete, and these typically take a long time to finish. An important thing to remember is you want to do these tasks the right way to avoid repeating them multiple times.
- Clean storage and freezer areas
- Scrub walls
- Sharpen meat slicers
- Empty, clean, and sanitize ice machine
One of the essential tips for maintaining a clean restaurant kitchen is to perform regular audits of the cleaning job your employees are performing. If they aren’t willing to clean the area they spend the most time in, what condition are they leaving for your diners? Audits help keep employees on their toes and ensure your restaurant is in good order in the event of a visit by the health inspector.