Cloud kitchen vs Dine-in

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Survival takes a toll on each one of us, which gives rise to the new inventions and techniques that we call trends. Cloud kitchen is one such invention, that has taken a toll on human survival. Anyone can start a cloud kitchen if guided properly.

Dine-in has got limitations and the current covid situations are totally against it. It is becoming challenging to run a dine-in restaurant, as more and more people are afraid to come into the restaurant. However, this does not mean that dine-in restaurants will come to an end. It’s just a temporary phase.

While comparing Dine-In Restaurants with Cloud Kitchens, it doesn’t mean that Cloud Kitchens are the only options left. It all depends on the vision of the Entrepreneur, that what exactly he/she wants to build this venture/business for.

Apart from their advantages, there are a lot of differences that one needs to know when it comes to signing up for any one of them.


This one of the major differentiating factors between the two.

Dine-in: Here people choose the restaurant according to the location and fine-dining experience that they get. The location of the restaurant plays a main role in its success story.

Cloud Kitchen: This concept does not require the idea of a smart and appropriate location as you can start a cloud kitchen (Link to starting a cloud kitchen) from anywhere. This focuses mainly on the deliveries or takeaways of food items and ultimately only food and no ambiance.


For starting any restaurant, you require money for long-term and short-term expenses. The cash inflow and outflow have to be sufficient to keep the restaurant running.

Dine-in: This requires a large amount of investment as compared to cloud kitchen as there are expenses like high rentals, good furniture, interiors, air conditioning, and other expenses to make the overall experience of the customer memorable.

Cloud Kitchen: One doesn’t require a prime location or an anchor shop to run a cloud kitchen. A person can start a cloud kitchen even from the top floor of commercial space. This mainly reduces the overall running expense of the business as the rentals go less and secondly one doesn’t need to focus on fancy interiors.


The carpet area required for a business to be fully operate at one place.

Dine-in: The carpet area required to run a Dine-In Restaurant is way more compared to a cloud kitchen, because as the name suggests, cloud kitchens mean the only kitchen, whereas, in a Dine-In Restaurant, you need a kitchen along with a good size seating area where your guests can come, sit and enjoy the experience. Hence, this increases the overall requirement of the space needed to set up a Dine-In Restaurant.

Cloud Kitchen: One can just start off with a minimum of 250 SqFt of space and build the kitchen and start the operations. As the space requirements are low, definitely the running expenses will reduce greatly.

Resource Cost:

he resources like staff, equipment, packaging material, and other expenses.

Dine-in: The overall expense for Dine-In Restaurants increases because of various reasons. There are different types of expenses like Crockery, heavy utility bills, etc. Moreover, you need a more diversified staff in a Dine-In Restaurant from a maintenance perspective. This increases the running expenses.

Cloud Kitchen: Whereas in this format, only the cleaning staff, chefs, and delivery staff are required and no more than two of each depending on the area of your kitchen, is required for smooth functioning.

Marketing Cost:

Marketing costs may vary in every format. This is a trial and error expenditure as the activities that are required for the marketing of the product may differ from one restaurant to another. But are necessary for each.

Dine-in and Cloud Kitchen: The marketing costs may vary, however, it is more required for a cloud kitchen since it doesn’t have physical visibility. Social Media is today’s most effective way of engaging an audience. Both the formats would require to incur this expense and is inevitable in today’s time.

Multiple Brands:

When a restaurateur operates more than one brand on the same premise. This makes it convenient for them to save on the overall cost and hence increased profits.

Dine-in: This format supports only 1 brand at 1 location, however, it can be a multi-cuisine restaurant serving different cuisines.

Cloud Kitchen: This is not the case when it comes to cloud kitchens. As there is no footfall in your outlet, you can utilize the same kitchen to run different brands. This is a convenient strategy for ambitious owners who are planning to expand their business with the least amount of investment.


Hence, back to the same question that which one is a better option. Here is a summarized form of all the points.

Basis of Comparison  Dine-in  Cloud Kitchen
 Importance of Location  Yes  No
 Investment  High  Low
 Size  Big  Small
 Resource Cost  More  Less
 Marketing Cost  Varies  Varies
 Multiple Brands  No  Yes


This article states differences according to our observation and is subject to change in respect to change in circumstances of the industry. This blog does not target any Dine-in restaurant or any cloud kitchen in particular.


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