Welcome to Alimentary's listings of commercial kitchens to rent.
(Want to head straight to the listings? Please scroll down.)
Alimentary's Hot Kitchens was featured in the Financial Post. Read all about the sharing economy.
Looking for a kitchen to rent?
If you are looking for a commercial kitchen to rent by the hour to prepare your food? Please scroll down to view the kitchens on offer. This list is growing so we recommend you bookmark this page for future reference.
Starting a food business and need some advice? We may be able to help. We work with a variety of companies from well-established food retailers to boutique food producers. We offer special rates for food start-ups. Please enquire here.
New to renting commercial kitchens by the hour?
If you are new to renting Hot Kitchens, please look at the Tips for Food Start-ups below the Listings.
The prices and requirements vary with some venues requiring product liability insurance and others charging different rates for different times of the day, and different uses. Insurance is a live issue for kitchen rentals and is cited as the reason that many of Toronto's community centre kitchens are hesitant to rent out by the hour. Ask other food start-ups who their broker is and get coverage.
Need a kitchen in a city or neighbourhood not listed?
Let us know. The more requests we get for a certain city, the stronger the case becomes for opening a kitchen there.
In the meantime, if none of the kitchens listed suits your needs, a good strategy is to find a café or bar in the area in which you would like to do your cooking/baking/prep, ensure there is a legal loading dock or parking space within reach, and then approach the owners with a proposal to use their commercial kitchen space when they are closed/not using it. If you come prepared with information about your insurance coverage and the rate you’re prepared to pay, you’ll likely be ahead of the game. Bring a sample of your delicious food: a loving spoonful never hurt.
Expect to pay from $20/hour to as much as $300/hour with an average somewhere in the $30/hour range. If you’re prepared to work overnight, you can bargain for a lower price. Also, if your cooking is heat-free, you could try to argue for a lower price on the basis that your utility draw and risk will be less. Another way to bargain for a lower price is to book by the month (every Monday from 9-5, for example).
Of course, you'll want to see confirmation that the kitchen is inspected by local Public Health authorities. It pays as well to leave the kitchen in as good or better condition than when you found it (i.e. clean and ready to use for the next crew). Some caterers will hire someone to do this for them while they head off to the gig. Check the Tips below for more information of benefit to renters.
Looking to list your kitchen?
If you would like to list your Hot Kitchen (commercial kitchen available for rent by the hour), please contact us, and we'd be happy to help you. We charge a modest annual fee for listing your kitchen to help defray expenses. Most kitchens recover the listing fees in their first booking.
Alimentary's Hot Kitchens site gets a lot of traffic because we provide the kind of information that renters need including photos, comprehensive details about the kitchen and contact information. We keep the listings up to date to save everyone time (= money).
Got a kitchen in Bombay? New York? Montreal?
We are happy to list kitchens wherever they may be. Lately, we have received many phone and email enquiries from New Delhi, New York, London, Vancouver, Calgary, Montreal, and Waterloo region. As long as your kitchen is certified for use by a food business, it would be a welcome addition. Our fees are modest, our service is comprehensive and is the best that we know of. We are confident the listing will pay for itself, often with the first booking. Please get in touch.
New to renting out your kitchen by the hour?
Things to think about include what sort of insurance coverage you want the renter to hold, whether you want to restrict certain ingredients, and who will manage the rentals on a day to day basis. For more information, please consult our Tips for Renting Out Your Kitchen, found here below the Listings.
As an additional service, we are happy to arrange a site visit and consultation to help you get your kitchen ready to rent out. Please enquire here.
Ready to list with Alimentary's Hot Kitchens?
Hurray! Get in touch and we'll get you started on your way to earning extra revenue from your kitchen. The bonus is that you will be helping foster a vibrant local food sector.
HOT KITCHENS LISTINGS
The Depanneur - Toronto
1033 College St, Toronto, ON M6H 1A8
$25/hour + HST. Discount for regular bookings.
College St. W. at Havelock, two streets west of Dufferin
Home of the Rusholme Supper Club, the Dep has two kitchens available to food entrepreneurs. The upper kitchen, formerly a corner store, has a lovely vibe and is bright inside. For 2016, the upper kitchen is available Tuesdays to Thursdays in the afternoons and evenings. The lower kitchen is run as a coop. It is presently full though there is the occasional turn-over or sublet opportunity. There is no dedicated parking space, but loading/unloading hasn't attracted tickets yet. On the ground floor, there is a wider than standard entrance. Two ranges. Two ovens. Industrial glass door refrigerators.
Many food events take place at the Dep every night. Terrific owner, Len Senater, is a great resource in the Good Food Sector.
(info & links updated Jan 2016). More information is available here.
Kitchen24 Food Incubator, North York
GTA (Greater Toronto area)
100 Marmora Street, Suite 200, North York M9M 2X5 (401 and Weston Rd)
T: 416-792-4505 Steve Kidron, Manager
Rate: about $35/hour + HST Four hour minimum.
6 Gas Range Burners
Free parking all around the building, loading dock for shipping and receiving is available on the side of the building.
Wilson Station – is the nearest subway station.
Additional Insured Name & Address on renter's policy:
RTK GROUP d/ba Kitchen24
100 Marmora Street Suite 200
Toronto, ON M9M 2X5
Storage rates negotiable and some storage included with package memberships.
Kitchen24 – has a fully licensed Kosher Kitchen.
Located in Leaside at 105 Vanderhoof Ave, Unit 8, this facility has plenty of free parking, is open 24/7 and has a loading door for easy loading in and out. Monday - Friday from 9-5pm their kitchen manager will accept deliveries on your behalf (with notice). The kitchen space has been divided into three kitchens, each of which can be rented individually. Many of Toronto's most successful start-ups have started here. Equipment includes:
10 burner stove
industrial dish washer
There is also dry, refrigerated and frozen storage.
Rates are on a sliding scale based on how you will be using the space. Expect to pay between $12-$45/hr. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com to set up an appointment to view the space. 416.400.2575. http://www.manningcanning.com/ratesandequipment/
Boutique Meals Kitchen, East York, Canada.
1100 Millwood Road, East York, M4H 1A3 (Millwood & Overlea)
Rate $30/hour overnight; $35/hour daytime plus HST. Four hour minimum.
Banquet hall attached can also be rented with kitchen.
A good sized commercial kitchen with plenty of work space and easy access to the north and east ends of Toronto. Good parking, delivery bay and range of equipment. Also, for the size and range of equipment, the rate is one of the most affordable in the city. Please note: that there is a banquet hall attached, making this a great facility for dinners/weddings, etc. Contact Tolga for details.
10 burner stove
2 range ovens
1 full size combo oven
2 upright fridges
20 foot prep counter
Hourly rate includes:
One shelf of freezer space; one shelf of walk-in fridge space;
two shelves in the dry goods storage space. Overnight storage can be arranged for regular clients.
Parking: Free outdoor parking with receiving door next to parking.
Insurance: Clients must provide evidence of $2 million liability insurance which lists M & T Boutique Meals Food Services Inc. in the policy.
TTC: 10 minute bus ride from Pape Subway Station on the Bloor/Danforth line.
Rate $30/hour plus HST with a four hour minimum.
In Good Company Kitchen - Oakville, Ontario
775 Pacific Road, Oakville, Ontario L6L 6M4 Canada
Contact: Michael Faye
T: (289) 259-3696
Rates: $15-20 per hour depending on needs
Electric meat and cheese slicer
Garland SUMG-100 gas convection oven - 6 tray
Four-burner gas stove top combo with gas oven
Two mobile 6' dollies for easily transporting and cooling baking trays Numerous pots, pans, utensils
Storage: Plenty of dry, refrigeration and freezer space, can accommodate a range of storage needs.
Parking/Loading Dock: Plenty of free parking, loading doors for large delivery available.
Public Transportation: Bronte Go Train a short distance away (1.3 km) and we're on a major bus route #10 West Industrial (Wycroft Road and Pacific Road stop).
Insurance requirements: $2 million liability insurance required by landlord.
(updated Oct. 3/17)
Gallery in the Market Kitchen - Toronto
St. Lawrence Market, Mezzanine Level 93 Front Street East, Toronto, Ontario, M5E 1C3
Contact: Gabrielle Bright
An upscale kitchen, this venue is for your swanky do. The kitchen is kitted out by Monogram. Teaching a class to the upper crust for $500 a pop? Book here. (Check out the mirror above the counter.) For more on the facilities, contact information follows. Regular hours booking time: $600-$1200 for a block of time. Hourly rates daytime $150/hour with a two hour minimum. This site also great for tastings, events and film shoots.
Can accommodate hands-on cookery classes of up to 40 people, sit-down dinners for up to 60 people, theatre style seating for up to 75 and cocktail receptions and tasting for 80 people.
Tips for Food Start-ups Looking for Commercial Kitchens to Rent
1. Ensure the space is inspected by the local health authority and was awarded a Pass. Ask to see evidence of this and take a photograph of it for your records. Explain that you need it for your insurance.
2. Have insurance. If you are preparing food for the general public or for a client as in for a wedding, and especially if you are getting paid for it, manage your risk. Depending upon what you're doing, you'll likely need product liability insurance, in addition to whatever corporate or company insurance you need. Some kitchens will require this before they will let you remove the food you've prepared from their kitchens.
3. Get your Food Handler’s Certificate (if in Toronto) or similar in your region. You need to know what a commercial kitchen is/needs and the rules of proper food preparation for the general public. Make this knowledge second nature and keep your accreditation up to date.
4. Ensure that the kitchen you are renting is zoned commercial as well as is inspected by the local Public Health Authority. This may seem onerous, but if you carry product liability insurance, your insurer will likely want to know where you produce your product, and more than one broker/insurance company has checked an address only to discover, much to the chagrin of the producer, that the location isn’t even zoned for commercial use. If your neighbour’s aunt’s basement is zoned commercial, she’ll have evidence to this effect. Ask to see it, and photograph it. (And ask also to see evidence that the kitchen is a commercial (inspected) kitchen (see (1) above)).
5. Be clear about the terms of your rental including the start time, what condition you expect the facilities to be in (i.e. clean and ready to use), whether a staff person will be on site to help with locking/unlocking and questions about where things are, whether, and if so where, you can store dry, refrigerated or frozen supplies. Determine who is responsible for clean-up and what the deadline is for your exit. A good rental facility will allow for some lag time between bookings to ensure everything is ready for clients.
6. If you’re new to this rental facility, you may want someone representing the owner to sign off that you have left the facility in a clean and good condition when you vacate. Arrange for this when making the booking, not as you are leaving.
7. If you plan to rent by the month, get everything in writing regarding the terms, and don’t give any money until you’ve had a trusted lawyer or legal eagle read over the lease. A commercial lease is not the same beast as a residential tenant’s lease. Renter beware. Also, as a food start-up, you’ll want a “get-out-free” card or equivalent. In other words, you don’t want to wind up on the hook for the rental of a facility you don’t need 3 years after you’ve wound your food business down. Make sure the notice for ending the lease is short and sweet even if this means a higher rent. We all think we’ll last forever; few of us make it past three years.
8. Aim to leave the space cleaner and better than how you found it. If it’s a dump when you arrive, find another kitchen for your next gig. It’s not really worth it to get blue in the face about this stuff. You’re a client. Take your business elsewhere.
9. If it’s a publicly accessible kitchen, pop in on it or volunteer to help another cook on a day when it’s booked, so you can familiarize yourself with its idiosyncrasies. This is especially useful if you’re booking the kitchen for a big or important gig--catering your mom’s wedding, cooking for the Occupy encampment of 300, etc., catering an Alimentary Initiatives affair (if you specialize in fungi, fermentation or algae, do get in touch please).
10. Stay away from kitchens that seem shady, where there is no sign, where there is no paper work, where you feel intimidated, etc. There are some unscrupulous types who know how desperate food start-ups are … beware of them and be vigilant for red flags.
Tips for Renting Out Your Kitchen
1. Figure out what you are and what you are not renting out. For example, if you have storage space to offer, either dry or refrigerated, let your potential clients know. If there is equipment you don't want anyone but your mom and you messing with, make that clear. Best to put this in writing and post it in the kitchen as well as make it part of your rental contracts.
2. Take some great photographs of your kitchen to give potential renters a clear idea of the amount of space, the state of the equipment and etc. Make sure your kitchen is sparkling and bright when you photograph it. If you would like to post a description and the photos here, please get in touch.
3. Be clear about the condition in which you intend to have it ready for the tenant, and the condition in which you expect it to be left.
4. Who's going to open the kitchen for the renter? Who's going to lock up? Have a person's name and cell number ready for the renter, so that if things go awry they have someone to contact. It's a good idea to have this posted in the kitchen too.
5. Decide about your position regarding insurance. Many kitchens don't ask for renters to have their own insurance, but a few do. What level of risk are you comfortable with? Are you adequately insured in case things should get pear-shaped? Where is your fire equipment? Make sure your renters know how to use it, and where the emergency exits are.
6. Keep an up-to-date tally of what is and what isn't working in your kitchen and try to repair broken-down equipment promptly or else remove it from your list of available equipment.
7. Plan at least an hour's lag between bookings to ensure that in the instance in which a client does not clean up after herself, you can get the place clean for the next client.
8. Figure out a deposit to cover cleaning if someone leaves the kitchen in a state. Or charge a deposit to those clients who've left you in the lurch with respect to a clean kitchen. It's a good idea to build in an extra "cleaning fee" in those cases in which a kitchen is left in a shambles because a cook ran out of time before her big gig. You can always return it, if the kitchen is left in a sparkling condition.
9. Be punctual. If a client has rented the kitchen from 9:00 am, someone should be there at 8:30 am to open up and ensure everything is clean and in working order.
10. If there is a lot of expensive equipment, you may want to do a quick checklist inventory with the client so you both agree about the state of the equipment at the outset of the rental. Have that printed, and at the beginning of the rental, have both your representative and the renter sign it as an acknowledgement of the state of things at the outset of that day's rental. And then at the end of the rental, review the same equipment to ensure it's in top nick.
We’ve got to say it…
These tips are offered free of charge. Alimentary Initiatives accepts no responsibility whatsoever for any loss that may be incurred as a result of following these recommendations. It is the responsibility of each start-up or individual and of each kitchen manager/owner to ascertain for herself or himself that the conditions of rental or letting meet their requirements for risk management.
Alimentary Systems Inc. does not accept liability for any misrepresentation or inaccuracies with respect to the detail of facilities described.