Why Ventless Cooking Can Help Expand a Menu


Running a successful foodservice operation means having equipment that delivers efficiency and versatility, but not all kitchens are designed to have traditional stoves and cooktops. Fortunately, modern technology is here to help with ventless cooking options. Now, operators can make hot dishes practically anywhere, even in mobile setups where vents aren’t possible.

Now that ventless cooking is so prolific, let’s look at how this equipment can transform different foodservice operations and help businesses expand their menu offerings.

Menu Expansion

Ventless cooking equipment can run the gamut from griddles to ovens to sandwich presses. Best of all, each of these machines only requires an outlet to work, meaning kitchens can expand their menu in a few different ways without the need for expensive overhead ventilation.

First, operations that only previously served cold food can now offer hot dishes, such as sandwiches, soups, or other fast-service menu options. Best of all, because these machines cook quickly, operators don’t need to worry about slowing down their service to accommodate these dishes.

Another way kitchens can expand their menu with ventless cooking is by adding additional equipment that would otherwise be too cumbersome to install. For example, if a kitchen needs a second grill, they can add one without needing a new vent hood. More cooking surfaces means the chef can prepare more dishes simultaneously, allowing for menu expansion.

Think Outside Pre-Existing Ductwork

With ventless cooking equipment, operators can get more creative about setting up their kitchens and prep areas. Now, any commercial space can be used for a foodservice operation, not just those that are built for it. Even if an operator wants to move into an existing kitchen, they’re not limited by the existing ductwork and vent hoods.

Renovations and repairs are also much easier to handle and more cost-effective. Since these devices don’t need vents or other hookups (i.e., natural gas), they’re easier to fix. Plus, if a kitchen wants to add more equipment or upgrade to a larger machine, they don’t also have to renovate the infrastructure around it.

Ventless Cooking Means Electric

For the most part, gas cooking is the standard for foodservice operations like restaurants and fast-casual kitchens. While gas cooking does offer some incredible benefits, it also comes with some significant downsides. Specifically, operators have to worry about smoke, gas, and grease coming off the grill or oven, creating a need for vents.

Ventless cooking equipment is far more versatile, all without limiting a chef’s cooking capacity. In some cases, electric grills and ovens are better for consistent output because it’s easier to maintain the same temperature. Plus, operators don’t have to worry about other potential safety issues, such as gas leaks, grease fires, and smoke inhalation.

Ventless Can Go Anywhere

Pop-up restaurants and ghost kitchens are becoming more popular, as are mobile setups for events and gatherings. Now, foodservice operators don’t have to rely on traditional preparation methods to take advantage of these vending options. For example, chefs would traditionally have to cook food in a kitchen beforehand and use warming trays to serve the dishes at an event.

Now, with ventless cooking equipment, chefs can bring raw ingredients and cook items to order. This setup can reduce waste and lead to better customer satisfaction, all without adding any extra time or labor. Also, this flexibility means that operators can bring some pre-made dishes to an event and then use a mobile grill or oven to make extra food as necessary.

Other operations like schools and venues can also incorporate more mobile kitchens to serve big crowds faster and more efficiently instead of having to rely on existing infrastructure.

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