A Guide to Kitchen Display Systems 2024

A kitchen display system communicates order details to kitchen staff, whether on paper or electronically, including items, customers, and readiness. Visual aids like digital screens provide real-time updates on orders.

These systems are crucial for restaurant success, ensuring fast and accurate food preparation. Manual methods, like kitchen order ticket systems, organize orders by table but may cause delays with high volume. Electronic systems enable quick task prioritization.

For efficient communication and accurate orders, various kitchen display systems are available, enhancing customer satisfaction and streamlining staff coordination.

What Are Kitchen Displays For?

Kitchen display systems are used to communicate order information quickly and accurately in a restaurant. For example, when customers place orders, the kitchen display system is used to update kitchen staff on the current status of each order so that cooks know what they need to do next. If there are multiple items on an order, cooks will prioritize them based on time or recipe.

This helps to increase accuracy because cooks are no longer expected to memorize each order so they can understand how long it will take to cook and plate each dish. This makes wait times lower for customers as well as increasing kitchen staff’s familiarity with ingredients, which reduces waste and increases the likelihood that orders will turn out just as they were intended.

Kitchen Display Systems Types

There are a number of different kitchen display systems that can be used to help keep your front-of-house and back-of-house communication running smoothly as well as improve accuracy in order fulfillment so that customers get their food just how they want it. These include:

Order Ticket System

This is a kitchen display system that works by having waitstaff write down meal orders then pass them to the kitchen staff as they are completed. They will arrange the meals on sheets corresponding to their table numbers which they can quickly reference when cooking so they are always cooking in order.

Kitchen Display System

This is an electronic version of an order ticket system that takes advantage of modern digital technology. This is typically displayed on a tablet or similar device and can be checked from anywhere in the kitchen so that cooks are aware of what needs to be cooked next.

Kitchen Display System with Visual Cues

This is a type of kitchen order system that communicates real-time updates on the current state of orders to kitchen staff. For example, these systems may use visual cues such as a digital screen, which shows how many orders are in the queue and what stage each one is at (ordering, cooking, plating, etc.).

Back-of-House Display System

This is an electronic version displaying real-time updates of orders between the kitchen and the dining room. Researchers from Cornell University recently found that when waiters see real-time updates on orders in a digital display, they can accurately predict how long it will take for food to come out of the kitchen.

Advantages of Kitchen Display Systems

There are a number of advantages to using kitchen display systems. These include:

– Ability to control order accuracy

– Increase the speed of communication between front and back of house staff

– Ability to see current orders from anywhere in the kitchen

– Flexibility related to adding or removing menu items

Disadvantages of Kitchen Display Systems

While there are quite a few benefits to kitchen display systems, there are also some disadvantages. These include:

– High initial cost of purchasing and installing kitchen display system

– Additional training is required for kitchen staff in order to use the system effectively

– Installation issues such as location and wiring can slow down installation time and increase costs

It’s important to weigh the pros and cons of a kitchen display system so you can make an informed decision about whether this is right for your restaurant. For example, if you have a tight budget but want to increase accuracy then an order ticket system may be right for you. If you don’t have enough staff available at the moment to install the system yourself, then a display system with visual cues may be best. The important thing is to carefully consider your options so that you can make an informed decision about the kitchen display system that will work best for your establishment.

Best Kitchen Display POS  Systems

There are quite a number of kitchen display systems and POS solutions that work with them natively. We have narrowed it down to the top providers on the market. Some of the best options to consider are:


This kitchen display system, and POS solution, is available in both a digital version and as an iOS POS app. It is one of the best KDS for restaurants with iPad-based systems. Its capacity to process high-volume data is an added advantage.



The other POS with a KDS is Toast Restaurant POS. Using an iPad-based POS system, the KDS allows users to see current orders in real-time. It also includes visual queues that are easy to read so you or your kitchen staff can focus on cooking instead of worrying about whether or not their last order was completed.


vend image

This POS system features a virtual bar and kitchen display that streamlines order communication between front and back of house staff. Vend is a great option because it’s one of the more affordable solutions on the market.



The Flagship POS system is a great KDS and POS for commercial use. One of the features that makes it unique is its display boards that show customers’ orders in real-time. This can make the waiting time shorter for customers as well as faster for kitchen staff who no longer have to memorize what they need to prepare next.

Square Register


While not technically a KDS, Square Register is still a great point of sale solution that works with Kitchen Display Systems as well. Its user-friendly interface makes it easy to use so staff can spend less time focusing on the software and more time on their customers.

Whether you have decided to go with one of these providers or another, make sure to do your research so you can find the best Kitchen Display System option for your restaurant. This will help you streamline communication between kitchen and front of house staff and improve operational efficiency.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, there are a number of kitchen display systems and POS solutions that work with them. We have highlighted the top options on the market for both digital KDSs and POS apps. Our hope is this article helped you as a restaurateur or someone with an interest in restaurant management software to choose the right system for your establishment.

It’s important to carefully consider the pros and cons of each kitchen display system so you can make the best decision possible about what will work best for you. Kitchen display systems are a great way to improve meal accuracy, increase the speed of service, and cut down on waste in both front and back-of-house operations. However, installation issues such as location and wiring can be a challenge. It’s also important to consider the initial cost of purchasing and installing these systems.

If you want to improve your customer service and the speed of your kitchen, then a KDS is one option that can help. Our article has provided you with some pointers about which features are best depending on what you’re trying to accomplish. We hope this has been helpful for anyone looking to start or upgrade their kitchen display system.

If you want your business to thrive, check out our free POS systems and find the best option for your needs.

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