Best Kitchen Display Systems (KDS) for Restaurants

Cody Cromwell
Written by
Last update:

Best Kitchen Display Systems for 2021

The retail market is providing the best of both the worlds: a better and more accessible kitchen display experience than any of the past kitchen display solutions. Digital kitchens are the new kitchen display systems that serve both as showcases for multiple kitchen products and as digital kitchen equipment shelves.

The best kitchen display system of the future for restaurants will help to break down what was traditionally a single continuous surface into smaller and more manageable sections. The systems that are produced today are more than just a display, but are also built to accommodate a variety of applications, including digital signage for easier digital kitchen management.

There are multiple types of digital kitchen systems that are offered today. The digital kitchen systems provide you with useful information such as nutrition analysis, customer and order history, and virtual touchpoints that can be linked to customer accounts.

Furthermore, the digital kitchen systems provide the back and forth thermal scan technology which can enable the customer to preheat or reheat dishes using a validated smartphone app. This also can enhance the kitchen menu and also helps in improving kitchen efficiency.

Display systems are also a type of digital kitchen system that are available today.

How We Evaluated Kitchen Display Systems

The same strict criteria was applied to each display system in our evaluation process. To start with, each display system had to be highly visible. Next, an overwhelming majority of the opinions had to be favorable. To eliminate the trends, both the features and the recommendations of our expert panel were evaluated. The product reviews and reviews from the consumers and restaurant owners then helped clinch the deal. Lastly, our research and evaluation had to consider the value for money, so the entire process was fairly evolutionary.

Our Display Systems Evaluation Process

Our high standards for each display system ensured that we only included the very best and diverse collection of display systems.

The KDS collection includes KDS 12 plus which has a height of 12 inches, a width of 12 inches, and a depth of 12 inches. KDS 24 plus has a height of 24 inches, a width of 24 inches, and a depth of 24 inches. KDS 48 plus is 48 inches in height, a width of 48 inches, and a depth of 48 inches. All the products are 4 feet high and are 4 feet wide with a depth of 4 feet.

The KDS Comparison:

Toast: Best Overall Kitchen Display System

Toast Display is your best and easiest option if you don’t want to invest in high end kitchen display systems for your restaurant. It’s a cheap, easy way to have a kitchen that’s beautifully organized and professional looking. It’s also super easy to operate, so anyone can set it up. Plus, it’s made of solid plastic, so it’ll last a long time.

For the price, this KDS is a great value. It has top-down racks and drawers that come pre-assembled and can be mounted on the wall or display table // All the drawers are transparent.

It comes with pre-installed stainless steel shelves and castors. There’s also a wipe clean aluminum mounting panel and 4 pre-wired power strips for ease of installation. Our customers in a variety of restaurants and bars have found Toast Display to be user-friendly, durable and easy to use … AND affordable to boot.

Need some tips on using Toast Display? Check out our article here.

Toast KDS Pricing

The system has the basic set-up and includes an onboard toast dispenser, slicer, crumb tray, and a pump to keep the system clean and hygienic. The toast KDS comes in 3 different sizes, S, M, and L and are priced accordingly.


Toast KDS is a great display and kitchen equipment for restaurants and pubs. Made from high-quality stainless steel, Toast KDS has a stylish design and comes with a built-in pump for easy cleanliness. The real benefit of this KDS are the prices and the accessories include a display clip, crumb tray and crumb chute. The flexibility of being able to change the base unit to a counter clockwise or a counter-clockwise is a great advantage. Also it can be easily mounted on any furniture to create an attractive display.

Do you want a professional product in your kitchen? Than the Toast KDS is a great choice, it is perfect to display food to your customer and easy to clean.

Toast KDS Features

The Toast KDS is a smart kitchen display system that uses Bluetooth and WiFi to connect the ovens to your iPad, giving you a real-time view of exactly what’s going on inside each unit. You can also synchronize the burners from up to four different toasters with the app, so you always know what’s going on. Because your staff is always on the iPad and able to keep an eye on the toasters from end to end, it’s as if you have multiple eyes inside the ovens.

Not only can you control each oven’s temperature and time, but also each toaster’s spread, delay, and cancel settings. You can also use the Toast KDS to see a history of any toast made for a given time period, so if there’s any strange toast behavior, you can easily figure out what’s going on.

The Toast KDS features a USB interface for attaching your own temperature sensor and you can choose a small (12x12x18 inches) or large (18x18x28 inches) unit. Best of all, you’ll get a year of service to use the app – so you get a full year of foolproof functionality free of charge.

What Toast KDS Is Missing

The Most?

A good Toast KDS should accommodate a large number of components. First of all, it should have enough trays with which to fit all the ingredients. The trays are of varying sizes, with some of them being small and others being big. Overall, the Toast KDS should be able to accommodate a large selection of ingredients.

Another thing I believe is missing in other Toast KDS systems is the ability to fit different size glass containers. Even though the Toast KDS should accommodate the ingredient of different sizes, making things difficult each time limits the choice and annoys the user trying to find a perfect fitting glass container.

Along with the size difference of things to be toasted, the Toast KDS should also have enough space to fit the larger sized bread. This happens because when the bread rises, the outer surface gets stretched to a larger area and needs to be fully accommodated in the Toast KDS.

Lightspeed Kitchen: Best Quick Service KDS

Quick service restaurants like fast food establishments are hard pressed for space and square footage, and often operate on tight budgets. The best way to prevent potential disaster is to properly protect your hot foods from the ravages of air. From ambient light entering your kitchen during peak hours, to spills and splatters of savory foods, the effects of improper food storage can lead to lost earnings, claims, and even employee injuries. The BrightSign Solution for KDS

BrightSign is a leader in electronic signs, but the company also provides a complete, kitchen display solution for restaurants. The BrightSign KDS includes the kitchen sign as well as built-in electronic reporting of sales. With a small, sophisticated design, the unit fits most any kitchen space, and has a sleek, clean look that is attractive to customers. The unit also includes a built-in timer that will remind staff of end of day tasks, including clearing the area.

Lightspeed Kitchen Pricing

There are many different ways to display your product on the retail end, including kitchen displays (KDS) and glass display cases.

But regardless of which method you choose, you need to ensure that your ingredients are protected. Lightspeed kitchen displays are specifically designed to protect your ingredients from the elements, while being easy to see through, making them a smart choice for your restaurant or catering company.

To figure out which Lightspeed kitchen display system is right for you, start by checking out our pricing and sizing chart.

The chart will not only help you figure out what your needs are, but also point you in the right direction to find the most suitable kitchen display for your business.

It’s relatively straightforward to install and is screwed together so you can have it assembled in no time at all.

All of the Lightspeed kitchen display systems are HDP (high density polyethylene) which is regarded as the most durable material on the planet.

Our hanging bins come with hinged lids, which not only prevent your ingredients from falling out but also provide you with a sturdy base from which to hang your products. A hinged lid can also help reduce waste, making Lightspeed the smart choice.

The sliding bin display is a great option for your back room or pantry, especially when you need to rotate your ingredients before selling them.

Lightspeed Kitchen Features

Light Speed Display uses a proprietary system of gate/power jacks that allow windows, doors, moveable partitions and any other form of obstacles to be easily and quickly moved and replaced to quickly reconfigure your space no matter whether you have one long or two shorter modules on a floorplan.

Built to meet the strictest quality, cleanliness and safety requirements, the system’s industrial grade components are automatically actuated and powered via your restaurant’s AC power or grid power.

Light Speed Storage provides the highest level of visual merchandising with cutting-edge technology combined with the highest level of showroom quality.

Light Speed Display maximizes retail and restaurant space with over 50% more locations available than current systems.

Light Speed Display is designed and manufactured in the USA.

Light Speed Storage modules provide a highly visible mini-warehouse for a fraction of the cost per square foot of traditional warehousing.

Light Speed Storage modules have full-featured showroom-quality doors with steel frames, high-gloss side panels, and vandal-resistant push-out windows.

Light Speed Hardware can be installed in minutes.

Light Speed System is designed to be installed by one person with no tools required.

What Lightspeed Kitchen Is Missing

LightSpeed is our mobile food service kitchen designed specifically for mobile food operators including schools, catering companies, church groups, and more. It’s easy, affordable, and is designed to meet all of your food service needs. Browse the gallery and video to get a glimpse of LightSpeed in action.

Upserve: Best KDS for Offline Functionality

You can make your food on your own, then pay. But what you can do with a hotspot is bring a lot of people in and sell them food.

The Internet is by far the fastest way of doing this and we're not going to deny that. The biggest problem with it is that the customer arrives and there's no food. It's still on you to get the food rotated, to get the orders started in a workable way.

You can do it with two people, or four, but it still adds up to a lot of work.

If you add an order taker, you need to train them, you need to take the order through the POS.

So we had the idea of a more offline management system, where the order is already written down, just waiting for you to move it away.

You can focus on cooking, on the dishes, on the service. You don't have to worry about the order.

It's pretty much how a taxi driver handles a fare. You already know what you need to do, and your job is only to move it over the exchange. There's no need to take the order – you already have it down on paper.

Upserve Pricing

To find the best KDS for your restaurant, start by looking at the pricing side of things. As there are a lot of models to choose from, you will not find an ideal price range for all restaurants, but should use the KDS to get a feel for unit you think suits your restaurant’s needs best.

Next, you will find that there is a variation of sizes within each model, and there are different options offered for various sizes. The main KDS selection you will be looking at is the following:

Upserve Full Featured – This is an all-in-one unit that features the ability to display menus, accept reservations, charge credit cards, and display specials and a number of themes. You will most likely be replacing your current POS system with one (upgrade) that allows you to pick from their selection of themes.

Upserve Basic KDS – This is an all-in-one unit, but it lacks the ability to display menus, accept reservations, and display specials and a number of themes. This one is aimed at for those who do not need to accept reservations.

Upserve Basic – This is a smaller status display unit that is suitable for those that do not have a lot of space for an actual KDS unit. This also works well in retail environments as it can be set up on a counter or partially hidden behind a desk.

Upserve Features

Upserve’s proprietary technology, which automatically assesses orders and sends them to kitchen staff, also provides significant benefits to the hospitality industry. These benefits have attracted the attention of hotel chains like Shangri-La, La Mer, and Hotel Aoyama.

The popular restaurant review site Zomato has also partnered with Upserve to launch a restaurant-verification program for its users. This program is already being used in more than 6,500 restaurants throughout Asia.

Kitchen Display Systems (KDS) is a new approach to customer-facing restaurants that focus on ease of use. This concept consists of data-driven software that live-streams and sends orders straight to the kitchen via handheld devices embedded within its kiosks. These KDS kiosks have a GUI interface that lets the diner view an entire order history calendar. This gives the diner the ability to make reservations easily, readily available to check out planned events, menu items, etc.

The KDS kiosks have a full GUI interface, enabling them to give the diner any information they can to make their lives easier. Other features include photo booths, which allow people to share memorable moments from their Dining experience at restaurants. The KDS kiosks get their orders from the biggest solution provider in the hospitality industry. The product is also coupled with several rich APIs, with many integrations such as table booking, guest check in, payment, and more.

What Upserve Is Missing

In a world where digital marketing and advertising is infinite, KDS is here to make the marketing jungle more enjoyable yet, to immerse into a world of Digital display systems. The constant flow of information can be hard to digest and be retained by consumers.

As the world becomes more complex, consumers are more sophisticated. They want more than what information alone can offer. Embracing the latest technologies, makes us focus on the way we deliver the message.

Upserve has taken a leap of faith by embracing new technology with the launch of KDS. KDS is the newest product and service with the ability to embed digital on-demand graphic messages for editorial and commercial purposes. Our digital marketing strategy involves providing our clients the options tailored to their marketing needs.

Upserve has been in the digital world for almost two decades. We understand the growing needs of many corporate and business entities. As times have changed, so have the needs of the consumers.

Upserve has been working on creating the ways that serve, help and save services being rendered to our clients. This include enhanced digital display, new generation of mobile apps, and web extensions. Upserve KDS is the latest technological method that service providers can embrace.

Revel Systems: Best KDS for Online Ordering & Delivery

Revel Systems are the best kitchen display systems for online ordering and delivery. They offer a wide range of countertops and table tops designed to meet the specific needs of your restaurant.

Though you can run online ordering from any basic tablet or computer, you’ll want to consider using one of Revel’s special kitchen display products. It’s the most convenient way for restaurant staff to take online orders.

For example, you may want to order ready-made meals for a lunch crowd, and a table display will be perfect for placing the meal orders clearly on the table for quicker customer pick up.

The best kitchen display systems for online ordering actually integrate with online ordering systems, so you won’t have to think about whether or not it’s compatible.

Many of their systems, for example, can easily integrate with the point of sale (POS) systems used by popular restaurant management software systems such as Restaurant POS, PayTable, and others. This allows online ordering to be taken directly at the table display at the time of the order.

Their systems offer multiple choices for online ordering and POS integration, and have the hardware necessary to accommodate a variety of restaurant concepts.

Kitchen Display Systems: Important Considerations

Revel Systems Pricing

Revel Systems creates supporting equipment for retail display systems, displays for corporate and institutional environments, and interactive table surfaces that bring engaging content and style to any location.

Named as one of Fast Company’s Most Innovative and Agencies that Matter, and an Inc. 5000 Company, Revel Systems is one of the fastest growing companies in the small business space.

Revel Systems is billing themselves as the best outdoor restaurant display systems for more than 30 years, and for a good reason. They have a vast product line to fit all commercial settings. Their goal is to help their customers realize their vision and to help build the brand. Revel Systems’s brand development tools include cabinets, tiers, shelves, pedestals, merchandisers, service staff, and menu boards. They typically only use industrial laminates with their products, but they can accommodate a variety of architectural applications.

The two kits that they have on their website for outdoor restaurant display systems are: Outdoor Restaurant Display Systems (Pro), and Outdoor Restaurant Display Systems (Deluxe).

Revel Systems KDS Features

Revel Systems is a restaurant counter display systems manufacturer with a range of countertop display additions from simple displays and signage holders to full kitchen display systems designed specifically for the hospitality industry. They have a range of KDS systems to suit a variety of foodservice environments and restaurant types.

By combining their stunning rear service counter and sub-bain-counter display displays with a range of signage and wayfinding systems, Revel Systems helps clarify restaurant and kitchen tasks, menus and promotions. With the amount of restaurant traffic and possible communication within a busy kitchen, it’s easy to understand why KDS plays such a large role in the success of a restaurant service counter.

Revel Systems KDS bags, china hangers, kitchen accessories, kitchen dividers and signs.

Kitchen advertising and signage materials, including room dividers, table bases, tabletop trays and drink lids, and display boards.

Kitchen accessories including hanging oven mitts and hanging tools.

Kitchen display systems from false kitchen dividers to open-sided, interior display systems to counter displays.

Sign selection includes menus, daily specials and promotional signs.

What Revel Systems KDS Is Missing

Revel Systems, a manufacturer of kitchen display systems (KDS) for restaurants, wants you to place its display systems to cater more efficiently your customer orders.

According to the manufacturer, there are two major features that are missing in general KDS for restaurants. Firstly, Revel Systems’ KDS sells only one type of merchandising system.

The display rack has only one size rack with a fixed spacing at the bottom. Additionally, it’s fully supported by metal bars. There is, however, no option to increase or decrease the vertical spacing.

The second feature that Revel Systems omits from its kitchen display systems is the capability to change the merchandising system for different cuisines. For instance, in a pizza restaurant, you need a different merchandising system than in a diner with a wider range of food. The second item is the lack of flexibility when sourcing merchandise from Revel Systems, which requires you to order, settle and pay before he can deliver to your restaurant.

Furthermore, the manufacturer suggests that the only way to get a custom-made merchandising system is to pay extra. You’re paying more for the same.

TouchBistro: Best High Volume KDS

(KD System)

  • Most popular KDS in America
  • Used in thousands of restaurants
  • Industry leader in KDs
  • KD and MDS systems by TouchBistro are the most affordable systems on the market.
  • High quality custom panels
  • Create your own display, or buy from our menu
  • High quantity, high speed panel changes
  • KDS systems by TouchBistro are made of the highest quality components and the most common terminal and kraft bag cutting patterns.
  • Made in USA
  • Systems come with a lifetime warranty
  • Ease of assembly
  • Sets up in less than 30 minutes
  • Easy to install
  • High-Tech, state-of-the-art, technology that is the latest and greatest in TouchBistro KD systems.
  • Offer menu opportunities never before available to the commercial kitchen or restaurant industry. (off-the-shelf menu)
  • Easy to customize
  • Make your own menu
  • Can be retrofitted to existing KD systems.
  • 10-degree back angle means no more struggling to see the front panel or the ticket dispenser.
  • Secure locking system
  • TouchBistro KD systems feature a secure new locking system that has a large and visible locking knob that locks into place when closed.

TouchBistro Pricing

TouchBistro is a complete kitchen display system for the restaurant industry. It includes a 22" LCD touch screen, a wireless base station, an integrated wireless photo printer, indoor and outdoor mounts, an integrated laser pointer, a wireless cash drawer, and a wireless access point.

The TouchBistro system supports printing and copying of preprinted and custom printed menus on inexpensive paper, from a wireless menu printer (and also digital photo CD). The TouchBistro system enables restaurant menu boards and printed menus to be displayed with the laser pointer device with a few button presses and emits light at the menu. This gives a customer the "touch" of our menu and a feeling of the food.

Our new TouchBistro system has a built-in wireless cash drawer that employs integration with an existing third-party wireless transaction-enabled device. It also provides instant printing receipts using an existing device or with our configuration utility. This cash drawer update supports all existing wireless devices, such as BATs or CRMs, that are already in use on sites. Or you can install a brand new cash drawer with public support (installer must come to your restaurant for training).

TouchBistro Features

TouchBistro – Open Kitchen Management Software is developed to manage the activities of your kitchen effectively in real time. TouchBistro provides real-time tray status report, heat-map to facilitate kitchen staff to follow the cleanliness of the kitchen accurately, report list to manage all the reports for each dish, and the ability to manage all transactions and generate reports in an easy way.

The Key Feature of TouchBistro

Feature 1: Real time kitchen display window management software

The first key feature of TouchBistro is that it manages the kitchen display screen in real time, no matter whether it is on or off the computer. It doesn’t need any special software at all, the user interface is simple and it works as an ordinary web browser. In front of each dish, a tray number icon is displayed, which can be managed by the operator. Every dish has a different tray number and will be displayed in the corresponding window, which saves much time for operators to choose the right window.

Feature 2: Customized reports for each dish

What TouchBistro Is Missing

TouchBistro is a software and touchscreen kiosk used for ordering, payment and management of diner food menu.

TouchBistro kiosks are widely used by restaurants to manage their food orders. It is because of this that the thought of an Android tablet being so useful in the restaurant is not popular.

As a mobile-first agency that has mobile- and tablet-friendly websites and also software and cloud solutions, we have realised that there is a need to simplify things and make ordering food from a tablet easy and simple for customers.

The team at Pocket Sandwich is an aspiring local team of designers, developers and engineers under the age of 25. We have come across most challenges while we were in the process of building our own software.

Therefore, we have incorporated various innovative features to make your restaurant ordering experience simple, easy and comfortable.

As our team is young and we are the first to listen to customer feedback, we regularly update the software according to customer suggestions and requests. So there is always something new to add to our applications and to make your life easier.

Our applications are designed and developed by Khaleej-based Pocket Sandwich and iLeahApps based in Hong Kong, with the main objective to serve all restaurant owners and users.

We are looking forward to your suggestions and will endeavour to add your ideas and suggestions to our apps in the future.

Fresh KDS: Best Low-Cost KDS

The best kitchen display systems (KDS) come from the leading restaurant equipment suppliers. A KDS display system is a custom built vending machine that will allow you to easily and affordably display all your food in the most attractive and attractive way. Follow the links below to learn more about the leading display systems for your restaurant.

Essential Update:

Once you've purchased a kitchen display system, you're in business and the fun begins. Follow the five steps below for the best and most efficient system and happy vending.

Step 1 – Sales:

Visit KDS Manufacturers for information about the equipment necessary to get a KDS set up. Find a place for the KDS cabinet, computer, food storage and access.

Cabinets for KDS

Having a KDS cabinet is required for display. Some cities have a minimum size requirement for the KDS cabinet — make sure you know the size of the cabinet that you choose.

Step 2 – Installation:

Install the KDS computer and the touch screen controller. There is a wide selection of computer systems. Check out the manufacturers site for a list of compatible computers.

Fresh KDS Pricing

The world of restaurant equipment is too big to fit in one post. So we’ve started a dining equipment series which will cover each of the major categories (dining room furniture, tabletop displays, kitchen displays, bakery equipment, and restaurant equipment) in detail.

In this post, we’ll cover tabletop display systems (KDS) … because, as you’ll soon see, this is where the real money is made. KDS is available as either free standing or floor mounted. Free standing systems come in two basic styles: the tiered stand alone display or stand alone stacked panels display.

Tiered stand alone display systems feature a long width of food prep space which is comprised of shallow tiers with sides which prevent the food from falling off.

Stacked panel displays feature two to three tiers of displays which can be open or closed and often come with a corrugated backboard.

Free standing and stacked panel displays feature four display boards which can be customized with a variety of food displays like tray, utensil displays, glass shelves, ice racks, and many more.

Fresh KDS Features

What Fresh KDS Is Missing

In Your Restaurant?

If you’re thinking of buying new KDS, you ought to consider looking at systems made by JAC. We understand your restaurant well and have specialized in KDS industry for years. For your reference only, here is JAC KDS top features and advantages :

{1}. 100% eco-friendly material by rubber and steel.
{2}. Cool stainless shop grilles and glass shelves which is stable enough to load larger items, such as table; with great visibility and efficient functions resulted from different lighting modes enable customers to find the items easily.
{3}. Adjustable shelf can be used for the door of refrigerator and safe-keeping boxes.
{4}. Large storage space can be used for dishes, shelved which can store a lot of goods for staff. Supplying the more freshness with more display system.
{5}. Supporting bakers, cook and other linen with the mirror, facilitating for staff’s work.
{6}. High gloss, so the staff’s work is facilitated.
{7}. Easy and fast maintenance.
{8}. Environmental materials without off-gassing and without chemical attack.
{9}. A system that attracts customers and increases the sales.
{10}. All grades of the system can be provided according to the different size of space and environment.

Bottom Line

When you are in the restaurant industry, you want to see your guests being excited about your food. The way that they see your food is by their being able to see and touch it. Nothing will make your guests feel more excited like demonstration.

Once you are a successful restaurant owner, you should think of having a full-fledged restaurant display to be able to demonstrate the food in front of the guest’s eyes. You need to give the guest a true flavor of the food that they are about to have. Therefore, you have to match the right display that you can grant the food presentation such as chopsticks, plates, a paper menu, and wine glasses.

Display styles will give you a good impact and are important in grabbing the guests’ attention. The right demonstration and display system should be able to give your guests a quick, memorable experience when it comes to not only the food but the presentation as well.