Essential Commercial Kitchen Cleaning Tasks

Cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting is an important routine in the foodservice industry to prevent cross-contamination and the spread of viruses. There are so many items to keep clean in a restaurant, that it can be daunting to remember all of the individual cleaning tasks that you are required to take care of, as well as how often you are required to clean your equipment and kitchen to stay on top of it. To lessen the burden, we created this restaurant cleaning checklist that your employees can use to keep track of the cleaning tasks that need to be completed.

Utilizing a restaurant cleaning checklist is useful because it helps you stay organized, delegate tasks to your employees, and keep on top of food safety guidelines required for your commercial kitchen. Keeping your equipment clean, not only ensures better tasting food but you will increase the lifespan of your kitchen equipment. In addition to this easy-to-use cleaning checklist, creating and enforcing a HACCP plan in your restaurant can help keep your space sanitary and safe.

Tasks to tackle during and after Shifts.

There are several tasks you can do during and after shifts. Aside from washing tableware, glasses and other utensils put the following on your cleaning checklist:

  • Wash cutting boards, countertops, and prep table surfaces
  • Wash slicers, grinders, mixers, microwaves, coffee makers, and other prep equipment
  • Wipe down and disinfect prep station surfaces after preparing food
  • Brush off griddles, grills, and other cooktops after making meat, poultry, or fish
  • Empty drip trays from grills, griddles, and other cooking equipment
  • Clean any major spills or splatters off surfaces, floors, or equipment
  • Place dirty kitchen rags and linens in the laundry (separately from uniforms)
  • Place dirty aprons and coats in the laundry (separately from kitchen rags and linens)
  • Empty garbage cans frequently
  • Refill empty paper towel rolls or soap dispensers

End of the Day Tasks

When the day is done, it’s time to thoroughly clean the different areas and equipment in your kitchen. Make sure the tasks below are completed: 

  • Sweep or vacuum the floors of your kitchen, pantries, and walk-in fridges
  • Mop the floors (use a strong degreaser to scrub major grease spills)
  • Clean floor mats
  • Clean the washing stations and sinks
  • Wipe spills and splatters off the walls
  • Wash and sanitize all countertops and prep area surfaces
  • Clean beverage dispensers and gun heads
  • Clean and disinfect griddles, grills, burners, and other cooktops
  • Change foil linings on all ovens, grills, and cooking equipment
  • Clean deep fryers
  • Run a load of kitchen rags and linens in the washing machine (separately from uniforms)
  • Run a load of aprons and coats in the washing machine (separately from kitchen linens)

Weekly Cleaning Tasks

Throughout the course of the week, you and your staff should be thoroughly cleaning equipment. Always consult your manufacturer’s operation manual for specific cleaning instructions. Do the following once a week:

  • Boil out deep fryers 
  • Pour drain cleaners down floor and sink drains
  • Clean and delime coffee equipment
  • Clean and delime faucets, sinks and spray heads
  • Clean the interior and exterior of ovens and steamers
  • Wash exteriors of other cooking equipment and refrigeration units

Monthly Cleaning Tasks

Over the course of the month, you should give your entire kitchen space and equipment deep cleaning. Always check the manufacturer’s operation manual for cleaning instructions. Below are tasks to include on your checklist:

  • Scrub off spills and splatters from the walls and ceilings
  • Clean the condenser coil on refrigeration units every 1-3 months depending on dust or grease build-up 
  • Clean the drain pans, tubes and air filters on refrigeration units
  • Wash the interior of reach-in or walk-in refrigeration units
  • Clean the exhaust hoods at least every 4-6 weeks
  • Empty grease traps
  • Calibrate thermostats and ovens (if necessary)
  • Switch out pest and insect traps (if applicable)

Yearly Cleaning Tasks

Whether it’s annually or sparingly, the following should be done on a limited basis throughout the calendar year: 

  • Clean and descale ice machines at least every six months
  • Clean and delime dishwashers
  • Check to plumbing and schedule HVAC work to prepare for winter.

Check out our Cleaning & Washing Product range to help you keep your commercial kitchen clean and safe.

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