How To Start A Cloud Kitchen Restaurant In India – A Complete Guide

How to start a cloud kitchen restaurant in India

With the advent of cloud technology facilitating online ordering, cloud kitchens suddenly seem like the only logical thing to do to manage high rentals and poor margins. Cloud kitchen or the digital restaurant is the latest trend that has quickly established itself in the restaurant space as a formidable restaurant format. With extreme competition in the restaurant space, high rentals, and rising costs, Cloud Kitchens seem like a smarter way to run the restaurant business.

What is a Cloud Kitchen & How Does It Function?

A cloud kitchen is primarily a restaurant kitchen that accepts incoming orders only through online ordering systems and offers no dine-in facility. They have a base kitchen that delivers food to the customers’ doorstep.

Understand the complete operations of the cloud kitchen model here.

Cloud kitchens can have their online ordering website and online ordering app, or they can accept orders through the various food delivering platform. Since the primary source of revenue for these internet restaurants is through the various food ordering platforms, such as Swiggy, FoodPanda, Zomato, etc., it is essential to have a Point of Sales software that accepts orders from multiple sources.  This would save you the hassle of manually adding and calculating orders from different ordering services at the end of each day.

Yumist, Spoonjoy, Box8, ITiffin, Biryani by Kilo, FreshMenu, Eatlo, Hello Curry, etc. are some of the popular examples of Cloud Kitchens.

All You Need To Know About Opening A Cloud Kitchen in India

In this article, we will take you through the investments, licenses required, type of location and everything else you need to know to open your very own cloud kitchen. It would come to surprise that it requires less than Rs 5 lakh to open an online restaurant.

1. Deciding The Location Of The Cloud Kitchen Restaurant

The primary reason behind the low investment needed to open a cloud kitchen is the real estate cost. In the cloud kitchen model, the location doesn’t have to do anything with footfalls, parking space, and high-end location. However, it does have a lot to do with proper sanitation and water supply with low rentals. Also, the location should also be chosen on the basis of the customer demography and the type of food product that you are selling. The location for the base kitchen can be acquired for as low as Rs 25k per month for 600-700 sqft which can go up to Rs 40-50k in a prime location market. This article will tell you how to decide the best location for your restaurant.

2. Implementing The Online Food Ordering

Once you have decided on the location, you need to decide on the technology to accept orders. There are many online ordering and delivery platforms such as Swiggy, Zomato, Foodpanda, etc. that accept online orders on your behalf and also deliver the food to your customers. These companies usually charge 10-25% of your revenue per order. There is also a one-time integration fee involved for some FoodTech companies.

Since a cloud kitchen relies solely on its online presence to draw in customers, a website with the option to order food online is an absolute must. There are various website developers who can build a well-optimized website for you. However, you can also go for the services provided at POSist which also gets integrated with your POS software which further increases your efficiency in taking orders and managing customers. Also, customers can track their orders on a real-time basis. The total cost of enabling Online Food Ordering for your restaurant comes up to Rs 50,000.

3. Acquiring The Licenses For The Online Kitchens

Licensing is an integral part of setting up a restaurant. There are few licenses which are important to procure in the first month of operations for a hassle-free business. These are FSSAI license, GST Registration, Municipal health trade licenses, fire licenses, etc. It is advised to hire an agency for applying for all the licenses because it is the most tedious and time taking task. Apart from this rest of the licenses would cost you around Rs 10,000 (if FSSAI license is applied for one year)

Here is a complete list of all the licenses required for opening a food business in India and the steps to procuring them.

Download Restaurant Licenses E-book

4. Kitchen Equipment, Raw Material, And Packaging Needed For A Cloud Kitchen

The cost of setting up the kitchen may vary from Rs 1,80,000 to Rs 2,30,000 depending upon the cuisine and food you are offering. For example, the cost of setting up a cloud kitchen that wants to serve items like Burger, Pizza, Pasta and Sandwiches will not cost more than Rs 2,00,000. If you spend wisely on equipment by procuring new electronic items and old equipment such as tables, racks and storing shelves, you can save up a lot of money. The cost can go up to Rs 2, 30,000 because of the heavy equipment like a chimney, deep refrigerators, and burners.

Lastly, raw materials such as groceries, packaging, dairy, and poultry will cost you Rs 20,000 for the first five days of the operations.

5. Staff Requirement In A Cloud Kitchen Restaurant

The secret sauce behind a successful restaurant is the team that works for it, the Chef being the most important part of the team, as they not only prepare the food but also helps in designing the menu. In an online kitchen, a minimum of nine employees is required. You’d need at least two chefs, two helpers, and one housekeeper. The salary of the staff depends on their experience. The average salary of the chef at Commis level 1 is Rs 14000- Rs 15000 while that of helpers and other staff salary range between Rs 6000- Rs 8000 based on their work. Apart from the kitchen staff, two employees at the delivery and one at the counter for receiving online and telephonic orders are required. Here we would also like to recommend you to partner with the third-party delivery services which work on per order basis.

6. Staff Uniform For Cloud Kitchen Employees

For a cloud kitchen, one may feel that staff uniform is not required. However, it is still heavily recommended to have a dress code for maintaining discipline, cleanliness, and hygiene. The staff uniform would not cost more than Rs 7,000 – Rs 8,000 at Rs 150 per T-Shirt. However, if ordered in bulk the cost can go down to up to Rs 100 per T-Shirt as well.

7. Point Of Sale Technology Needed For A Cloud Kitchen 

The entire online food ordering and delivery system are heavily dependent on the proper acceptance of food orders. It is also important to keep track of the number of orders incoming from the various online ordering platforms. Tracking of orders and detailed reporting is essential for the smooth functioning of restaurants. Select a POS that is customized to suit the requirements of the online ordering website. The one we recommend is our very own POSist software, which is hardware-independent and completely browser-based. You can use any web-enabled device such as a computer, laptop, tablet or even your mobile to generate the bills. The cost for this should not exceed more than 25000.

8. Mobile Phones And Other Miscellaneous Items

An online kitchen requires a board line, mobile phones, high-speed internet, stationery, small counters, and chairs. Apart from that, you can also get a Cloud Telephony subscription that ensures that no call gets missed. You can also record the call for training purposes. The total cost of mobile phones and the Cloud Telephony subscription comes up to Rs 40,000.

9. Marketing Required For A Cloud Kitchen

Proper marketing and advertisement are essential to the success of a restaurant. For a cloud kitchen, marketing becomes even more essential as it becomes the single source of getting orders. Since you are not spending on location and other maintenance costs, you can keep a sum aside for marketing. Online marketing works in favor of cloud kitchens quite well. The first thing you need to do is to get your restaurant registered on restaurant listing and review sites such as Zomato, Tripadvisor, Burrp, etc., and encourage positive reviews from your regulars. You can also try Facebook for advertising special deals and discounts. Distributing pamphlets are also a great way to spread the word. You can get 25000 pamphlets printed at the price of 70 paise, which would amount to Rs 18,000.

Pros And Cons Of A Cloud Kitchen

While cloud kitchen formats are indeed one of the most profitable restaurant formats, with minimum risks involved, you still need to stay on your toes to make it a success. Employ these tips to increase the sales of your online restaurant, and let us know how they worked out for you.

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148 COMMENTS

  1. Hi,

    Thanks for the article. Its really helpful.

    Wish you could add a section suggesting how to arrive at a suitable valuation, for buying an existing cloud kitchen business.

    Regards,
    -Vinay

    • the crudest way to value this woukd be to take revenue / traction into account. Take stock of assets and liabilities . Mostly businesses sell out at 1 to 4 times their revenues incurred. Be careful of fabricated and inflated sales figures.

      Annual Revenue
      Annual Cost of Sales
      Annual Expenses
      Annual Net Income
      Adjustments for Interest, Depreciation, Tax and Amortization deductions
      Add-back for Interest paid on loans
      Add-back for Depreciation
      Add back for Taxes paid
      Add back for Amortization
      EBIDTA (Earnings before Interest, Depreciation, Taxes and Amortization)
      Adjustments for Personal, Discretionary and One-Time Expenses
      Add-back for Owner’s Salary, Payroll Tax, Benefits
      Add-back for Family Member Wages, Payroll Tax, Benefits
      Add-back for Owner/Family Personal Auto Use
      Add-back for Contributions/Donations
      Add-back for Fair-Market Rent Adjustment
      Add-back for Owner’s Insurance premiums
      Add-back for Legal, Accounting, Tax services
      Add-back for Owner Retirement Plan contribution
      Add-back for Travel/Entertainment Expenses
      Add-back for Subscriptions and Memberships
      Add-back for extraordinary, one-time, non-recurring expenses reflected on Income statements
      Adjusted Statement of Projected Annual
      Seller’s Discretionary Earnings

  2. do you offer setting up of cloud kictchen services too, if yes i would be needing it .
    please assist
    contact – {…Redacted..}

  3. Hi,

    We have initiated setting up unique cloud kitchen and looking for 1-2 partners who are interested and passionate about..

    You may please call me @ {…Redacted..}

    • I would be interested and looking for similar options / opportunity in Kolkata. Is this something that you can help / assist with?

  4. I have a commercial space in Faridabad , If anybody is having relevnat experience and interested in partnership
    pls call {…Redacted..}

  5. I have good experience in the hotel Industry over two decades in India as well as abroad and i know how cloud kitchen model works anyone interested to partner to start a business in north Bangalore can contact me on {…Redacted..}
    Any one seeking assistance for setting up cloud kitchen may please contact {…Redacted..}

  6. I have a cloud kitchen in Madivala, Bangalore. Tied up with Swiggy, Food Panda, Zomato.
    Constitution is Partnership duly registered. I wish to sell my stake. Anyone interested can contact me
    Joydeep – {…Redacted..}

  7. Anyone having a cloud kitchen in Gurgaon interested in partnering with a startup serving fresh packaged meals from retail points.
    Contact
    Arun Jain
    {…Redacted..}

  8. I have my own cloud kitchen setup in kphb( hyderabad), looking for partnership and enthusiastic entrepreneur to take it forward. Email me to {…Redacted..}

  9. Anyone looking to partner may connect with me at {…Redacted..}

    I hv experience of setting up these businesses from scratch, promote and gain mkt share with over 6+ yrs of experience in running successful F&B businesses.

  10. I’m looking for Investors / Partners for a high ROI Cloud Kitchen concept to be implemented PAN India.

    We are looking for Investors/ ppl who hv kitchen space/ food enthusiasts to take this amazing project forward.

    Do drop me a line at {…Redacted..}

  11. I have place and setup for cloud based kitchen in kothrud, Pune.Any one interested in partnership please whats App or message on {…Redacted…}

  12. Hello,
    I have an 15 years of experience in restaurant business and online ordering system… I have complete knowledge of setting up cloud kitchen as well designing recipes and menu… I have some good concepts over Bengali cuisine in line with a registered brand name. Any one who are passionate on food may contact on {…Redacted…} or mai me {…Redacted…}

  13. Hi, we have space of around 250 sft in posh and prominent location in kolkata, suitable for take away as well cloud kitchen seeks partner for high ROI food business ideas. Any one passionate on food may write a line to me {…Redacted…}

    • Hi Avik,
      I would be interested in this. I have all the food idea and operations knowledge. Not sure if we can connect on this, if you already haven’t found a partner. You can check some of our offerings (prepared by my wife) on http://www.foodcloud.in/satrangee. If possible, I would first request you to taste some of the food items (I can suggest you some if you wish to) before you want to proceed any further.

  14. Hi , I am looking for a partnership to start a cloud kitchen in Bangalore . I have an experience of hospitality sales & marketing in Bangalore and an overall experience of 11 years in hotel industry .
    Sankhadip Chakraborty {…Redacted..}

  15. Cloud kitchen business in India has seen a massive growth in the past few years. With the low initial investment, this format has gained immense popularity amongst the aspiring restaurant owners. This article is very informative and will come in handy for all the newcomers in the industry. Thank you! 🙂

  16. With more people ordering online delivery, and fewer going out to eat, many restaurants in India struggle to stay above water, especially given the high costs associated with the traditional restaurant model like premium real estate and wait staff. The cloud kitchen business is rapidly growing, and the article well explains all the details. Good Read

  17. The cloud kitchen business model is very profitable as you save a lot on the rentals as compared to other restaurant formats. but the competition is also very stiff since every restaurant is now offering online ordering which is the primary source of business for cloud kitchens and delivery restaurants.

  18. There seems to be a cloud kitchen hype in India and why not, with food delivery apps gaining popularity a cloud kitchen setup is the way to go!
    They are easy to manage and have the flexibility to collaborate with other brands.
    I love how this article makes opening a cloud kitchen seem like a breeze.

  19. Anyone having a cloud kitchen in Kolkata interested in partnering with a home-chef serving unique Bengali / Awadhi dishes / items, which re not easily found elsewhere. Can try the taste of few items at “www.foodcloud.in/satrangee” (to feel the difference) !
    Contact
    Shankhajit {…Redacted..}
    {…Redacted..}

  20. Hi, the article is well written.
    I am planning to start a cloud kitchen in Mumbai.
    I had started a QSR and have exited the same.
    Preferable locations are Chembur, Mulund, Dadar, Lower Parel.
    Anyone interested in sharing economy and having at least 300 sq. ft carpet space is welcome.
    Do contact me on {…Redacted..}
    regards,
    Prasad.

  21. Hi,

    Looking to start a cloud kitchen multi-cuisine concept in mumbai. Looking for people with experience in the industry, operational experience would be preferred, if anyone is interested kindly contact on {… redacted …}

    Best,
    Hitesh Masand

  22. Good Article….any body can know about cloud kitchen by reading this article….. I also planning to start by knowing/visiting this cloud kitchen functions…. planning to start at Bangalore or Tirupati …. request information to guide me….MG.Sekhar

  23. hi
    i have a commercial shop (250sqft) at shivalik main road in south delhi..
    I want rent it out.
    if interested contact me on {…redacted …}

  24. Hi, I am interested in setting up cloud kitchen in GB RD Thane, MUMBAI.
    Anybody who can help me in setting up this is welcome on mutually agreed terms. I am new to this business hence require knowledge sharing experienced partner in this venture. Please mail me on {…redacted …}

  25. Hi I’m already running a restaurant and it’s doinf pretty well also tied up with zomato and Swiggy as delivery partners !!! Looking out to start 6 outlets (only cloud Kitchen) in bangalore intrested people can contact me on {…redacted …}

  26. Hii am naveen am looking to start cloud kitcken in bengaluru so i need partner for that and other details we can discuss . if intrested anyone pin me my mail id {…redacted …}

  27. Hi …I have 8+ experience in hospitality and I am interested in setting up a cloud kitchen in Western suburbs of Mumbai preferably …
    Would need partners who has good knowledge about the same industry..
    Please WhatsApp me if interested
    {…Redacted..}

  28. Hi Anybody looking to partner for a cloud kitchen in Noida? Pls watsapp me at {…Redacted..} mail at {…Redacted..}

  29. Hi my self Mohd saqib iam from Bombay .l want to open online kitchen in Mumbai .I have 3 years experience in Chinese and continental cuisine .I am also chef .i want partner to open online kitchen.plz call this no {…Redacted…}.

  30. Hey people!

    I am thinking to set up a cloud kitchen for my wife in Ahmedabad. But I don’t have any idea about setting up kitchen. Looking for partner/s or investors.

    Like minded people can contact me on {…Redacted…}

  31. Hi,
    The article above is quite factual and to the point. It is quite on ground with provable statistics.
    We are running a health food cloud kitchen ourselves and could relate to the above expenditures very well.
    We are planning on expanding our division in various locations of Delhi NCR. We thereby require a working partner for the same.
    If anyone has any lead who is willing to work on profit sharing model is quite welcome.

    Contact Addresses:
    Mobile: {…Redacted…}
    Email: {…Redacted…}

  32. I have a property in prime location of south Mumbai very much suitable for cloud kitchen. I wish to rent it out.Anybody interested please contact me at {…Redacted…}

    • Hi Charles,
      There are different ways to go about this. Either you focus on one category and then build on it as in HealthFood or Biryanis or you have small in house collectives operating as sub-brands within one Brand.

    • Hi Charles,
      There are different ways to go about this. Either you focus on one category and then build on it as in HealthFood or Biryanis or you have small in house collectives operating as sub-brands within one Brand.

    • There are different ways to go about this. Either you focus on one category and then build on it as in HealthFood or Biryanis or you have small in house collectives operating as sub-brands within one Brand.

  33. Thanks a lot for all the information and guidance. We are interested in starting cloud kitchen or restaurant business in Pune and looking for partnership. Have both higher education and almost 15 years experience in Hotel industry. We can give full time, and also contribute funds to invest and become managing partner in this exciting venture. If anyone is interested, please call or whattsup me on {…Redacted…}. Cheers, Anup

  34. Hi, I am starting a cloud kitchen in Bandra East. The speciality is ready to make, marinated Seafood. I have cracked down delicious recipes and also have place in Mumbai – Bandra (East). I will be doing the running around and managing the operations. Need investing partner.
    Anybody interested in investing around 15 lacs (10 lacs set up and 5 lacs operation cost for 3 months). Do whats App me on {… redacted …} – Vinay

    • Hi Vinay,

      I really dont think that kind of money is required unless and until you are opening 5-6 outlets at one go.

  35. Hi Naveen! This is Vishakha here. I am looking for a serious partner for a food startup in Bangalore. You could contact/whatsapp me on {… redacted …} in case you find this of your interest.

  36. Anybody interested in Jaipur , then I have a good residential House of 7000 Sq ft in nirman nagar where we can operate this business , even we can do other business also
    Pls call {… redacted …} or whats app {… redacted …}

  37. Hi!
    I am planning to open a big cloud kitchen in Pune Very soon at a prime location which is near to biggest IT hub if any one would like to join me as a partner please feel free to get in touch with me on my what’s app number {… redacted …} .
    Thanks
    Sandeep

  38. I can help set up the entire Cloud Kitchen business from Scratch and get it running, get investments if required later on and handhold for smooth operations and profitability.
    Write to me , if you are looking at making it big with low investments.

    Food business is tricky, but done the right way, it will make you super rich in a very short time, as it is a recession proof business.

    • Need some suggestions on the below:
      I have a 2 floor bungalow. Ground floor is totally empty and have a properly built kitchen with all the equipment. Is it feasible to start a Cloud Kitchen in a residential area. I am asking in terms of Marketing and Business growth.

    • i’m interested for cloud kitchens, i do have one in bangalore and try for big project in pan india can u help me regarding the same.

  39. Need some suggestions on the below:
    I have a 2 floor bungalow. Ground floor is totally empty and have a properly built kitchen with all the equipment. Is it feasible to start a Cloud Kitchen in a residential area. I am asking in terms of Marketing and Business growth.

  40. Hi
    I own veg restaurant. I need to upgrade to online kitchen. Need dedicated partner.
    Any suggestions by experts are Wellcome

    WhatsApp {…Redacted…}
    Mob {…Redacted…}

  41. I am running a Mughlai Restaurant on Cloud Kitchen in Noida by the name of Nawabjaans.

    If anyone interested for expansion please contact on {…Redacted…}

  42. Hi Charles,
    There are different ways to go about this. Either you focus on one category and then build on it as in HealthFood or Biryanis or you have small in house collectives operating as sub-brands within one Brand.

  43. There are different ways approach a Cloud Kitchen Business. I have been there, done that and trust me , done the right way, it can be replicated in no time! to go about this. about the menu….Either you focus on one category and then build on it as in HealthFood or Biryanis or you have small in house collectives operating as sub-brands within one Brand.

    • Hi Payelji,iam looking to establish a cloud kitchen,would like to consult you in mumbai.pl contact me on {…Redacted…} or mail at {…Redacted…}

  44. I have done varrious cloud kitchen setups before if you want to get your business started contact me . I offer my own brand too . Contact me : {… redacted …}

  45. Hi,

    I have got a space of almost 2500 carpet area in Balia, Garia Station Road, in Kolkata which is well connected with every means of transport. I am having a covered area, which was initially build for a factory shed. I am willing to open up the cloud kitchen. I need guidance in all aspects to open the kitchen. A help from company like Faasos will be great help.

    Thanks and Regards
    Rajib Banerjee

  46. I am looking for Cloud kitchen in Pune , any lead of already established kitchen willing to rent out or share.
    Plz contact – {… redacted …}

  47. Mumbai based – Looking for partnering for cloud based or open air restaurant concept in central/western mumbai. You can reach me on {… redacted …}

  48. Hi ,
    I am operating a food bussiness right now and i am extremely satisfied with my input vs out put ratio. It has moved to 5 franchises within 7 months without any promotions. I can see tremendous scope in my sector if u are ready to do big and interested in doing something satisfying unique and hassle free then you are most welcome. Basically looking for investors.
    Thanks!.

  49. HI,

    I AM PLANNING TO OPEN A CLOUD KITCHEN IN MUMBAI CHEMBUR AREA NEED CONSULTANT
    MY CONT & WHATSAPP NO {… redacted …}
    THANKS
    HEERU H PREMCHANDAANI

  50. i am planing to open a cloud kitchen in mumbai lokhandwala area as i do have my property around 500sqft and looking for partner. Dm me on {… redacted …}

  51. i’m interested for cloud kitchens, i do have one in bangalore and try for big project in pan india can u help me regarding the same.

  52. Hi,we have own porperty 1800s.feet and900s.feet and,9000s.feet in difrent place in ludhiana(punjab)and we are intersed in cloud kithcen

  53. hi i am meenu jain, i am planning to start home cooked kitchen services in kandivali east. Anyone interested can contact me on {…redacted…}..

  54. hi, I am Meenu Jain, I am planning to start home cooked kitchen services in Kandivali east. Anyone interested can contact me on {… redacted …}.

    • Hi Meenu,i am from mumbai please share me your coordinates on my mob will connect you {…REDACTED…} Shashank singh

  55. I whould like to talk for cloud kitchen
    At anand city and near area
    Plz give me the mobile no. For
    Talk about
    My no is {…Redacted…}

  56. Hi everyone. Good day !! hope you all doing great. I am a indeed a staff from one of the leading brand in Online Food Business. Please drop a text on my Whatspp {…redacted…} if anyone is interested in Cloud Kitchen business

  57. Even I am looking to partner with someone from Food industry to manage the business. I am from Kolkata. Connect with me on {…redacted…}

  58. Hello,

    We have a place in prime time Kandivali, Mumbai and are planning on starting a Cloud Kitchen in the next one month. We are already two partners but invite any others interested to partner and explore the hyper-local market there. Call on {…Redacted..}.

  59. Hi I want to start cloud kitchen but need some information before starting if some one already running cloud kitchen and want to share knowledge pls reach me at {…Redacted…}

  60. HI we are gurgaon based and are looking to open a cloud kitchen need help from experts.
    Have a 800 sq feet area in a busy office/commercial area.

  61. I HAVE JUST CLOSED MY RESTORENT IN DELHI ROHINI OF WAH JI WAH OUTLET .INTERSETED IN SETTING CLOUD KITCHEN IN ROHINI .LOOKING FOR PARTNER

  62. Hi – I am looking to start a cloud kitchen in Pune but have no background of the food industry. Anyone having any reference to visit such places also I am interested in any partnership opportunities as well.

  63. We, at Coldstar logistics are well versed with cloud kitchen back end cold chain & dry logistics, pl contact me if logistics services required in major metro cities. We are already working for leading brands in Cloud kitchens.

    Thanks
    Ashok Shetty
    …{REDACTED}…

  64. We, at Coldstar logistics are well versed with cloud kitchen back end cold chain & dry logistics, pl contact me if logistics services required in major metro cities. We are already working for leading brands in Cloud kitchens.

    Thanks
    Ashok Shetty
    …{REDACTED}…

  65. I have a place in parel and a Chinese food cook. Planning to start a cloud kitchen business within 2-3 months. Will be starting something like wok express. Anyone interested in partnering or sharing some insight WhatsApp me. …{REDACTED}…

    • Hi, my name is melvin.. I am planing to do something similar.. I have 14yrs of expeirience in restaurant industry.. Here is my …{REDACTED}…

  66. Hi, my name is melvin.. I am planing to do something similar.. I have 14yrs of expeirience in restaurant industry.. Here is my …{REDACTED}…

  67. Hi everyone
    I need a partner for cloud kitchen in Deccan area pune Along with that running cafe setup is there for sale which owned by me. If anyone interest please contact me, My contact no is {…REDACTED…}

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