A kitchen is the “nerve centre” of food and drinks in commercial establishments such as restaurants. This is where meals that keep customers coming back are prepared. It is also the place where all manner of cooking oils and cooking appliances and foodstuff are kept.
Keeping a commercial kitchen clean can therefore be a daunting challenge. So, how do you keep your commercial kitchen spotlessly clean and avoid being shut down by health inspectors? The following few tips might come in handy.
1. Follow Manufacturers’ Cleaning Instructions
Each cooking appliance has special cleaning requirements that should be adhered to. It is therefore important to follow a manufacturer’s instructions when cleaning your appliances.
2. Clean the Kitchen Continuously
Commercial kitchens are beehives of activity. The amount of waste produced, oils spillage, and sheer dirt collected call for non-stop cleaning to ensure that the kitchen stays clean throughout the day. Always aim to have your staff work from a clean, dry kitchen at all times.
3. Clean the Kitchen at the End of Every Shift
Before a new shift starts, the kitchen should be thoroughly cleaned. It’s always advisable to have a new team start with a clean kitchen. The idea here is to leave the kitchen the way you would want to find it at the start of your own shift. Make sure that all surfaces are washed and sanitized. These include the reach-in, cutting boards, the line, and all preparation tables. Make sure you brush the grills and clean your fryers. Remember to empty and clean the steam table and cover all the bins in the reach-in cooler.
Other cleaning work to be done after every shift includes washing the kitchen floor and floor mats, cleaning the walk-in refrigerator’s floor, putting aprons and chef’s coats in the laundry, emptying sanitizing buckets, and inserting all cleaning rags in the dirty laundry.
4. Cleaning at the End of Every Day
Some appliances should be cleaned daily. This should include changing foil linings on the grill, flattop, and range to prevent accumulation of food crumbs and run-off grease. The hood filters should also be run through the dishwasher. Preparation surfaces should be disinfected. Other appliances such as the fryer, flattop, grill, and range should be thoroughly cleaned as well.
Also to be thoroughly washed are used meat slicers and can openers, which should then be carefully dried and polished to keep away rust. Floors should also be mopped and walls wiped of any splashes or food debris. The trash cans in and around your kitchen should be disinfected.
5. Periodic Cleaning
Some appliances do not have to be cleaned every day. These include freezers and coolers, which should be cleaned periodically. Refrigerators, for instance, should be cleaned out once or twice a week. Freezers can be thoroughly cleaned once a year. When performing annual cleaning, transfer frozen goods to another freezer and allow the freezer to warm up before cleaning it. Other appliances to be cleaned periodically include pilot lights on all grills and ovens to make sure they are working properly. You should also periodically call in professionals to clean your exhaust hoods and clean behind ranges, fryers, and ovens.
6. Clean Storage Areas
Storage areas can accumulate a lot of food debris and dust. They can also attract rodents and pests. Once or twice a year, the storage area should be thoroughly cleaned. First, remove all the stored items and move them outside the storage area before giving it a thorough cleaning.
Keeping your commercial kitchen clean throughout the year is not so difficult if you hire a professional restaurant cleaning service. The important thing is to make sure that all appliances, surfaces, and storage areas are cleaned on a regular basis.