How to Set Up a Mobile Kitchen

by Contributor; Updated September 26, 2017

Are you planning on starting up a mobile kitchen in order to prepare and sell food for a fair or carnival, or even as a mobile restaurant on wheels? Many people are doing just that, running their tiny restaurants out of trailer kitchens that they can pull around to wherever the customers are. They do this to drastically reduce the overhead involved in running the restaurant, while still being able to work and serve the people. There are some things to keep in mind when setting up a mobile kitchen that will help you avoid potential problems later on.

Step 1

Decide on a focus. Mobile kitchens are inherently very small, so you are not going to be able to offer a huge restaurant style menu. Choose one particular type of thing to focus on and stick to it. This will save precious storage space and allow you to be able to grab what you need quickly and easily.

Step 2

Ensure that you have adequate power. While many locations will have an electrical connection that you can hook into to supply power to your mobile, kitchen, you absolutely cannot assume that this is always going to be true. Always purchase a backup generator with a battery array to supply the power you are going to need.

Step 3

Make sure you have proper refrigeration. The worst thing that can happen to any food service establishment is widespread food borne illness. Aside from proper sanitation, the best thing you can do to ensure that no one gets food poisoning as a result of patronizing your mobile kitchen is to make sure that everything is properly chilled. Adequate refrigerator space and refrigerator thermometers are an absolute must.

Step 4

Take your water and sanitation needs into account. As is the case with power, you will not always have water and sewer connections where your kitchen goes. When you set up your mobile kitchen, be sure that you not only have a large tank of fresh water to do your cooking with, but that you have enough capacity to handle all the waste water that is produced as a result of cleaning. Just because your kitchen has wheels is no excuse to neglect proper sanitation.

Step 5

Make room for your supplies. Space will be at an absolute premium in any mobile kitchen unit. Combination kitchen units, combined appliances, and storage anywhere you can find it are going to be critical to your success. Still, no matter how efficient you are at storing your supplies, you will need to restock more than a standard restaurant kitchen.


  • Consider using gas stovetops and ovens in your mobile kitchen. A huge benefit of these is that they do not require electricity of any kind, so you can use them in many more situations.

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