How do ghost kitchens work?


How do ghost kitchens work?

In: 6338

It’s a kitchen that sends food out to customers – no dine in or carry out only delivery. Because of the common shared equipment and base ingredients in kitchens along with no need to differentiate a dining room to customers, one physical kitchen can house several ghost kitchens. This reduces startup and ops cost for a notoriously narrow profit margined industry.

Because no customers see in, some ghost kitchens are under fire as rebranding their exact business to always seem new and fresh/dodge accumulating poor reviews. In actuality they’re just recycling the same old everything.

For larger corporate “ghost restaurants” it is essentially a “secret menu” for delivery only, and comes right out of the same kitchen as everything else. For instance if you order a Melt Down melt, it’s gonna get made in your local Denny’s kitchen like anything else you’d order from Denny’s.

Some other variations include simply using someone elses kitchen in their off hours. Local restaurant closes at 5PM, you go in at 5:30 and set up, work all night, and close down.

Discovered this with Mr Beast Burgers in Pennsylvania. Our 7yr was dying to try it. It was a local pizza chain that microwaved a frozen burger.

Ghost kitchens became very popular here during the pandemic where, at one point, there were around 5 or 6 operating out of one restaurant kitchen that was impacted pretty hard as their main business was not take out. Not much advertising except on the food delivery apps. Most of them were burger/ fast food “restaurants” run out of a finer dining kitchen that needed to do something to keep the lights on when dining in was not an option. They had a Guy Fieri burger shop, a Mr. Beast Burger, and several others all sharing a kitchen for delivery only. Many of the other, traditionally dine in only places around here opened ghost kichens to stay open. It has actually worked well and kept many cooks employed during 2020-2021.

In addition to the great answers given already, The New Yorker had a great explainer a few years back: