What Type of Commercial Sink Do I Need?

Chef Al's Equipment Buyers Guide to Finding the Right Sinks for Your Commercial Kitchen

Commercial Sinks Tip

Of the hundreds of pieces of equipment it takes to open a restaurant, you wouldn’t think sinks would require that much attention. But if you don’t plan your sinks as thoroughly as you do your stove, tables and refrigerators, you can find your sinks don’t properly meet your needs, or health code, causing you costly replacement and/or remodeling fees.

3 Bowl Sinks3-Bowl Scullery

Your 3-bowl scullery sink is your main wash sink for all your kitchen utensils. You’ll have one basin for washing, one for rinsing, and the third for sanitizing. Of course, you’ll also want a nice-sized area to drain your wet items at the end of the line.

This is your largest sink; It may be tempting to get one that doesn’t take up too much room, but be wary: health codes typically specify that your scullery sink be deep enough to submerge at least 50% of your biggest pan. This includes dough bowls, rethermalizers, racks, and other typically long or deep items. If your biggest wash item is a 20-inch pot, your scullery sink must be at least eleven or twelve inches deep.

shop prep sinkPrep Sink

Your prep sink’s primary purpose is to keep your food safe. Prep sinks help prevent cross-contamination and act as a great out-of-the-way place to wash vegetables, rinse food, drain colander items, and anything else that requires your food to touch water.

The size of your prep sink has to coincide with your kitchen limits, of course, but take into consideration the volume of food you’ll be working with on a regular basis. Will your prep sink handle 100 pounds of onions, or just ten? Will you drop a pan or colander in it for easier use? Make sure it fits your colander, your biggest bowl of pasta or fresh-from-the-farm veggies.

shop hand sinksHand Sink

Your hand sink has to be in the best possible location for your chefs, line cooks and food preparers to access easily. No one will practice safe hand washing if they have to walk all the way across the kitchen and out of their way for a twenty-second wash. Plan your hand sink location before you go shopping, and make sure you get a sink that will fit easily.

Space is always an issue in restaurant kitchens, everyone wants more room for storage, refrigeration, etc. This sink doesn’t typically need to meet size requirements, but it does have to be easily accessible. Some health codes require splashguards or other considerations, so again, make sure you’re in compliance with code before you begin.

By planning ahead with all three sinks, you’ll be able to plan and open a faster, more efficient kitchen.

Read more restaurant business tips and commercial kitchen equipments reviews at Gator Chef EDU Center.