The dish pit is an afterthought in kitchen design, but it is an integral part of the flow of the kitchen service.  The dish pit is the conveyor belt for clean supplies for the cooks and clean plates and utensils for patrons. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when setting up or redesigning your business’s dish area.

Needed Space

In every kitchen, space is important. However the space needed for a dish pit is as important as other parts of the kitchen. Dish pits require many things that take up space—including space for clean and dirty dishes, sinks, and a commercial dishwasher.

It is highly important to create the proper space to accommodate the volume of dishes. A pastry business would require less space than a large event caterer. In the early stages of creating your dish pit, pick a reasonably sized dishwasher and try to find space for your dirty bus boxes.


The flow of dishes in and out of the kitchen is extremely important. Proper placement of clean dishes allows easy access for staff. Bus boys must be able to easily store dirty dishes. Also, cooks and chefs must be able to easily access clean, well stored dishes that have dried properly.

Upright Or Undercounter Dishwasher

The best dishwasher for your needs depends on the type of establishment you have. For businesses with a high volume of dishes, upright or conveyor dish machines are the best for productivity. These dish machines can wash up to twice the number of rack per hour and use the same amount of energy per wash cycle as compared to the undercounter dish machines.  Undercounter dish machines are best used for small coffee shops with low volume and limited space.

Plumbing & Sink Considerations

Kitchens can have a dish sink, a mop sink, a 3-compartment or 4 compartment sink. It is best to have some idea of what kind of faucets you would like during your restaurant’s planning stages. Plumbing can be adjusted to the most important parts of the dishpit.

Small Items

Items like squeegees, mops, scrubber pads, and sanitizing chemicals all have their place in the place in the commercial dish pit. Oftentimes,  the dish pit serves as storage and contains specific cleaning supplies to be used there to prevent contaminating other parts of the kitchen/dining room.


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