In the restaurant industry, a ghost kitchen is a physical space that is designed to optimize delivery and reduce unnecessary costs. Rent is low and efficiency is high, allowing operators to have their own private commercial kitchen space inside a delivery center to prepare orders. It can be difficult to expand a traditional restaurant due to high overhead costs, making ghost kitchens an attractive option for restaurateurs. In short, ghost kitchens are facilities for operators to create food for consumption outside the facility. On apps like Grubhub and DoorDash, restaurant listings that work with ghost kitchens don't look any different from traditional establishments.
For example, in Northern Colorado there's a restaurant called Rocco's Ravioli that appears in the apps, but it doesn't have a shop window. It's a food delivery service that makes food in a ghost kitchen. Ghost kitchens have been gaining traction in the restaurant industry for the past few years, and they offer many opportunities for aspiring restaurateurs to get involved. They facilitate market entry and minimize risk, while established restaurants can take advantage of this opportunity to stay agile in a fluctuating market. Customers have adapted to the trend quickly and easily, making ghost kitchens likely to be here to stay.
This type of ghost kitchen is ideal for adding a new source of income and experimenting with new dishes at the local market. Ghost kitchens are professional kitchen installations that are configured solely for takeout or delivery. Millions of consumers use these apps, so your ghost kitchen has access to a large market of potential customers. Ghost kitchens can house one brand that only delivers to homes or several separate entities in the same building. They are often located outside urban areas and focus on preparing and delivering their food at a fast pace. An incubator or emerging ghost kitchen is associated with a traditional restaurant, but they focus on online ordering and delivery.
One trend that is becoming more popular is the formation of central ghost kitchens, which are economies with several restaurants or brands that work in the same physical space. Ghost kitchens are food preparation operations without waiters, dining rooms or parking; in reality, without any public presence. You can use your ghost kitchen to test new concepts for your menu and increase the reach of your business. Even before the pandemic, ghost kitchens were opening in response to growing consumer demand for meals delivered from restaurants. Even national chains such as Chili's and Applebee's used ghost kitchens to maintain cash flow and try new menu dishes with different brands in case the ideas failed.