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How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan

Sally Lauckner

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This influences which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money .

When starting a business—no matter what type of business that may be—a business plan is essential to map out your intentions and direction. That’s the same for a restaurant business plan, which will help you figure out where you fit in the landscape, how you’re going to differ from other establishments around you, how you’ll market your business, and even what you’re going to serve. A business plan for your restaurant can also help you later if you choose to apply for a business loan .

While opening a restaurant isn’t as risky as you’ve likely heard, you still want to ensure that you’re putting thought and research into your business venture to set it up for success. And that’s where a restaurant business plan comes in.

We’ll go through how to create a business plan for a restaurant and a few reasons why it’s so important. After you review the categories and the restaurant business plan examples, you can use the categories to make a restaurant business plan template and start your journey.

Why you shouldn’t skip a restaurant business plan

First-time restaurateurs and industry veterans alike all need to create a business plan when opening a new restaurant . That’s because, even if you deeply understand your business and its nuances (say, seasonal menu planning or how to order correct quantities), a restaurant is more than its operations. There’s marketing, financing, the competitive landscape, and more—and each of these things is unique to each door you open.

That’s why it’s so crucial to understand how to create a business plan for a restaurant. All of these things and more will be addressed in the document—which should run about 20 or 30 pages—so you’ll not only have a go-to-market strategy, but you’ll also likely figure out some things about your business that you haven’t even thought of yet.

Additionally, if you’re planning to apply for business funding down the line, some loans—including the highly desirable SBA loan —actually require you to submit your business plan to gain approval. In other words: Don’t skip this step!

How to write a restaurant business plan: Step by step

There’s no absolute format for a restaurant business plan that you can’t stray from—some of these sections might be more important than others, for example, or you might find that there’s a logical order that makes more sense than the one in the restaurant business plan example below. However, this business plan outline will serve as a good foundation, and you can use it as a restaurant business plan template for when you write your own.

Executive summary

Your executive summary is one to two pages that kick off your business plan and explain your vision. Even though this might seem like an introduction that no one will read, that isn’t the case. In fact, some investors only ask for the executive summary. So, you’ll want to spend a lot of time perfecting it.

Your restaurant business plan executive summary should include information on:

Mission statement: Your goals and objectives

General company information: Include your founding date, team roles (i.e. executive chef, sous chefs, sommeliers), and locations

Category and offerings: What category your restaurant fits into, what you’re planning to serve (i.e. farm-to-table or Korean), and why

Context for success: Any past success you’ve had, or any current financial data that’ll support that you are on the path to success

Financial requests: If you’re searching for investment or financing, include your plans and goals here and any financing you’ve raised or borrowed thus far

Future plans: Your vision for where you’re going in the next year, three years, and five years

When you’re done with your executive summary, you should feel like you’ve provided a bird’s eye view of your entire business plan. In fact, even though this section is first, you will likely write it last so you can take the highlights from each of the subsequent sections.

And once you’re done, read it on its own: Does it give a comprehensive, high-level overview of your restaurant, its current state, and your vision for the future? Remember, this may be the only part of your business plan potential investors or partners will read, so it should be able to stand on its own and be interesting enough to make them want to read the rest of your plan.

Company overview

This is where you’ll dive into the specifics of your company, detailing the kind of restaurant you’re looking to create, who’s helping you do it, and how you’re prepared to accomplish it.

Your restaurant business plan company overview should include:

Purpose: The type of restaurant you’re opening (fine dining, fast-casual, pop-up, etc.), type of food you’re serving, goals you have, and the niche you hope to fill in the market

Area: Information on the area in which you’re opening

Customers: Whom you’re hoping to target, their demographic information

Legal structure: Your business entity (i.e. LLC, LLP, etc.) and how many owners you have

Similar to your executive summary, you won’t be going into major detail here as the sections below will get into the nitty-gritty. You’ll want to look at this as an extended tear sheet that gives someone a good grip on your restaurant or concept, where it fits into the market, and why you’re starting it.

Team and management

Barely anything is as important for a restaurant as the team that runs it. You’ll want to create a section dedicated to the members of your staff—even the ones that aren’t yet hired. This will provide a sense of who is taking care of what, and how you need to structure and build out the team to get your restaurant operating at full steam.

Your restaurant business plan team and management section should have:

Management overview: Who is running the restaurant, what their experience and qualifications are, and what duties they’ll be responsible for

Staff: Other employees you’ve brought on and their bios, as well as other spots you anticipate needing to hire for

Ownership percentage: Which individuals own what percentage of the restaurant, or if you are an employee-owned establishment

Be sure to update this section with more information as your business changes and you continue to share this business plan—especially because who is on your team will change both your business and the way people look at it.

Sample menu

You’ll also want to include a sample menu in your restaurant business plan so readers have a sense of what they can expect from your operations, as well as what your diners can expect from you when they sit down. This will also force you to consider exactly what you want to serve your diners and how your menu will stand out from similar restaurants in the area. Although a sample menu is in some ways self-explanatory, consider the following:

Service : If your brunch is as important as your dinner, provide both menus; you also might want to consider including both a-la-carte and prix fixe menus if you plan to offer them.

Beverage/wine service: If you’ll have an emphasis on specialty beverages or wine, a separate drinks list could be important.

Seasonality: If you’re a highly seasonal restaurant, you might want to consider providing menus for multiple seasons to demonstrate how your dishes (and subsequent purchasing) will change.

Market analysis

This is where you’ll begin to dive deeper. Although you’ve likely mentioned your market and the whitespace you hope to address, the market analysis section will enable you to prove your hypotheses.

Your restaurant business plan market analysis should include:

Industry information: Include a description of the restaurant industry, its size, growth trends, and other trends regarding things such as tastes, trends, demographics, structures, etc.

Target market: Zoom in on the area and neighborhood in which you’re opening your restaurant as well as the type of cuisine you’re serving.

Target market characteristics: Describe your customers and their needs, how/if their needs are currently being served, other important pieces about your specific location and customers.

Target market size and growth: Include a data-driven section on the size of your market, trends in its growth, how your target market fits into the industry as a whole, projected growth of your market, etc.

Market share potential: Share how much potential there is in the market, how much your presence will change the market, and how much your specific restaurant or restaurant locations can own of the open market; also touch on any barriers to growth or entry you might see.

Market pricing: Explain how you’ll be pricing your menu and where you’ll fall relative to your competitors or other restaurants in the market.

Competitive research: Include research on your closest competitors, how they are both succeeding and failing, how customers view them, etc.

If this section seems like it might be long, it should—it’s going to outline one of the most important parts of your strategy, and should feel comprehensive. Lack of demand is the number one reason why new businesses fail, so the goal of this section should be to prove that there is demand for your restaurant and show how you’ll capitalize on it.

Additionally, if market research isn’t your forte, don’t be shy to reach out to market research experts to help you compile the data, or at least read deeply on how to conduct effective research.

Marketing and sales

Your marketing and sales section should feel like a logical extension of your market analysis section, since all of the decisions you’ll make in this section should follow the data of the prior section.

The marketing and sales sections of your restaurant business plan should include:

Positioning: How you’ll describe your restaurant to potential customers, the brand identity and visuals you’ll use to do it, and how you’ll stand out in the market based on the brand you’re building

Promotion: The tools, tactics, and platforms you’ll use to market your business

Sales: How you’ll convert on certain items, and who/how you will facilitate any additional revenue streams (i.e. catering)

It’s likely that you’ll only have concepts for some of these elements, especially if you’re not yet open. Still, get to paper all of the ideas you have, and you can (and should) always update them later as your restaurant business becomes more fully formed.

Business operations

The business operations section should get to the heart of how you plan to run your business. It will highlight both internal factors as well as external forces that will dictate how you run the ship.

The business operations section should include:

Management team: Your management structure and hierarchy, and who is responsible for what

Hours: Your hours and days of operation

Location: What’s special about your location that will get people through the door

Relationships: Any advantageous relationships you have with fellow restaurateurs, places for sourcing and buying, business organizations, or consultants on your team

Add here anything you think could be helpful for illustrating how you’re going to do business and what will affect it.

Here, you’ll detail the current state of your business finances and project where you hope to be in a year, three years, and five years. You’ll want to detail what you’ve spent, what you will spend, where you’ll get the money, costs you might incur, and returns you’ll hope to see—including when you can expect to break even and turn a profit.

Financial statements: If you’ve been in business for any amount of time, include existing financial statements (i.e. profit and loss, balance sheet, cash flow, etc.)

Budget: Your current budget or a general startup budget

Projections: Include revenue, cash flow, projected profit and loss, and other costs

Debt: Include liabilities if the business has any outstanding debt or loans

Funding request: If you’re requesting a loan or an investment, lay out how much capital you’re looking for, your company’s valuation (if applicable), and the purpose of the funding

Above all, as you’re putting your financials together, be realistic—even conservative. You want to give any potential investors a realistic picture of your business.

Feel like there are other important components but they don't quite fit in any of the other categories (or make them run too long)? That’s what the restaurant business plan appendix section is for. And although in, say, a book, an appendix can feel like an afterthought, don’t ignore it—this is another opportunity for you to include crucial information that can give anyone reading your plan some context. You may include additional data, graphs, marketing collateral (like logo mockups), and more.

The bottom line

Whether you’re writing a restaurant business plan for investors, lenders, or simply for yourself and your team, the most important thing to do is make sure your document is comprehensive. A good business plan for a restaurant will take time—and maybe a little sweat—to complete fully and correctly.

One other crucial thing to remember: a business plan is not a document set in stone. You should often look to it to make sure you’re keeping your vision and mission on track, but you should also feel prepared to update its components as you learn more about your business and individual restaurant.

This article originally appeared on JustBusiness, a subsidiary of NerdWallet.

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How to write a restaurant business plan [with sample].

D. J. Costantino

By D. J. Costantino

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You can't start a restaurant without a plan. A restaurant business plan is one of the most (if not the most) essential elements in getting a new restaurant off the ground. There are a few reasons for this:

Although it's an essential step in starting a restaurant , creating a business plan can be challenging for an aspiring restaurateur. But it doesn't have to be overwhelming. There are a few key sections that should be included...

Table of Contents

Section 7: Appendix

What is a restaurant business plan, and why do you need one?

A restaurant business plan is a document that outlines the various aspects of your restaurant business. It can be used to secure funding from investors or keep track of your progress as you develop your business. A business plan should include information on your target market, competition, business model, marketing strategy, and financial projections.

A business plan is commonly associated with investors—it's what they will look to for a better understanding of a business, its concept, and its competitive advantage. It will also show how you plan to create a successful restaurant.

Restaurant investor Lauren Fernandez at Full Course keeps it simple: “It's to convince someone to give you money.”

“If you seek investment, it tells the story of the venture to potential investors and/or banks. For the business owner, it sets parameters as well as goals for both the pre and post-opening period. A good operator looks back on their Business Plan on a monthly or quarterly basis to gauge where they are in terms,” says Mark Moeller, president, and owner of The Recipe of Success , a national restaurant consulting firm.

That being said, a business plan doesn't have to be extensive. “Be detailed but not overly so,” says Moeller. “When a plan is too wordy, it tends to turn off the reader and can actually prevent them from finishing,” Lauren Fernandez adds that the business plan should be more akin to a sales document, not an A-to-Z tactical roadmap. At the end of the day, the main goal is to convince a lender or investor to give you money.

sample of a business plan for restaurant

Restaurant Business Plan Template

Start creating you restaurant business plan with our free PDF template

The key ingredients of a great restaurant business plan

Section 1: cover page and executive summary.

This is the “elevator pitch.” An effective executive summary quickly tells the reader who you are and leaves them wanting more. Include items like:

Section 2: Company description

This section gives a high-level overview of the business you're looking to start: tell investors what your restaurant is all about, who your team is, and how you're going to serve the market.

Restaurant concept

What type of restaurant are you looking to open? Here is where you'll want to give investors an overview of your business. Speak to what sets you apart from the pack, what food you'll serve, the service style (fast-food, fast casual, fine dining, etc.) you'll use, and what makes your new business special. Check out these successful restaurant ideas .

Mission Statement

Your restaurant's mission statement should boil down the essence of why you're starting this new venture in just a few words.

Some mission statements are short and to the point, like Ninety Nine's (“A Passion to Serve”). If you can't simplify your mission in just four words, there's no harm in elaborating. Here is Union Square Hospitality Group 's mission statement: At Union Square Hospitality Group, our mission is to enrich lives through the power of Enlightened Hospitality. This unique approach puts our employees first because we believe that attracting, hiring, and nurturing the right people is what sets our businesses apart. We aim to find “51%ers”, individuals who embody our Family Values of Excellence, Hospitality, Entrepreneurial Spirit, and Integrity. While much longer, it clearly speaks to the company's unique position and goals for the industry.

Management team

Tell potential investors who you already have on your team. It works in your favor to show strong connections to the restaurant industry. “Are they an island, or do they have good connections? The more people they have around them, there's something about that; there's an indicator of success that I can't put my finger on.” says Lauren Fernandez. Investors want to see that you have good people around you. If you have a great GM on board, introduce them here. An award-winning chef in the kitchen? Tell investors about them. Include a headshot, quick bio, and list of relevant experience.

Sample Menu

You don't, by any means, have to have a menu ready to go. But give an idea of some dishes or drinks with projected price points. A sample menu can go a long way in helping a potential investor imagine themselves eating at your restaurant. It also shows that you've done your research given the market, suppliers, and have an idea on menu design.

Section 3: Conduct a market analysis

This covers the customer base you're hoping to appeal to, your position in said market, and what you'll do to catch people's eyes. Describe the current restaurant market where you want to open:

Target market and demographics

Who is your target customer? Here's where you'll explain the tactics you took in conducting your market research and the results of those findings.

You'll want to highlight the most relevant statistics you found about your restaurant business. For example, if you're starting a coffee shop , you may cover that your primary research concluded that 24-36 year-olds make up 40% of your area's population. Research from other outlets suggested that coffee consumption for millennials continues to rise.

This would lead to a convincing, research-based conclusion that the coffee shop could be a realistic and profitable endeavor for the area.

Location analysis

You don't have to have a specific restaurant location or address in mind when you create a business plan. Set your focus on the city or the general neighborhood you want open in, and why you're looking at that area.

Give an overview of the market conditions in your area. Talk about things like foot traffic, day-parts, local events, and what that part of the city looks like in the future. Is there a new stadium or highrise on the way? Outline it in this section.

Your location choice should align well with the market you intend to target. For example, if you're hoping that young professionals will make up a large portion of your business, ensure your chosen location has that density of people.

Competitive analysis

Explain how your restaurant will stand out in a sea of competition. A good idea is to include SWOT analysis for your restaurant, outlining the internal strengths and weaknesses you believe your new business would have, as well as any external opportunities and threats you'd face as an entrepreneur.

Here are examples of each:

In your SWOT analysis, you should identify how you intend to overcome the weaknesses and threats your restaurant will face to reassure investors they won't be the downfalls of your business.

Section 4: Marketing strategy

How will you reach your target audience? Sticking with the above example of a coffee shop, you may want to talk about your restaurant advertising ideas for millennials, like using TikTok marketing to promote your menu items and an app-based loyalty program.

Marketing plan and channels

Talk about what marketing channels you plan to use to get butts in seats. Detail your plans for using social media, local advertising, promotions, and how you're going to reach your target audience.


You'll also want to take a stance on how you'd like to position your restaurant's brand and how you'd like it to be perceived. 65% of consumers feel an emotional connection to brands, so the stronger your emphasis on yours, the more likely your target market will notice and identify with it.

Grand opening plan

You can't have a restaurant without a grand opening .

“Budget at least 2-3% build cost for Grand Opening marketing. You have ONE shot at making a splash in the market, and you must get the grand opening right,” says Lauren Fernandez.“Grand opening should be a week-long celebration, not just one day. Give loyal fans a reason to come back daily. The grand opening ramp-up should begin ~90 days to open, working the market and creating excitement,”

Recommended Reading: Simple Restaurant Marketing Plan + PDF Template

Section 5: An overview of operations

Some investors want to see how all the moving pieces will mesh daily with a detailed operations plan. This section should encompass your staffing strategies, what tech you'll use, and what your restaurant layout may be.

Hiring is routinely one of the most difficult tasks in food service. Recent statistics showed that the number of people working in restaurants is declining. Add to that rising restaurant labor cost and high staff turnover . Investors want to know your hiring and retention tactics, such as retention and engagement strategies.

Back of the house

Talk about the details of the back-of-house in your restaurant, such as the commercial kitchen equipment your cooks and chefs will be wielding during their shifts and what the kitchen layout and workflow will be. If you have mock-ups - such as a kitchen floor plan - you can include them here.

Here is also a good time to discuss processes you plan to adhere to in the back of the house, such as food cost control methods and who your inventory suppliers are.

Restaurant technology

Tell investors what technology you plan on using to run your business—and not just the POS (point of sale). Restaurants have access to a bevy of software to run their business efficiently, and investors want to see that you are a savvy operator. You may want to list out:

Section 6: The financials

Don't be offended if you see investors skip straight to this section. After all, a business comes down to making money.

So before you finalize this plan, quadruple check these projections, look over your graphs and tables, and consider running them by a hired financial professional in your area.

Startup costs

Any good investor will want to know what his or her money will be going to. Disclose how much money you'll need to get this project off the ground, identify the biggest expenses, and don't be afraid to put a line item in for working capital - which is a reserve fund for your first few (likely slower) months of operation. Also, disclose if there are any planned restaurant business loans .

Sales forecast

It can be hard to create an accurate forecast without a business. But a conservative yet confident restaurant sales forecast can show investors that you're doing the research and considering the right things. You should base this forecast on a few criteria: capacity, target market, delivery/takeout options, month-over-month growth expectations, hours of operation, and menu prices.

Projected Profit & Loss Statement

Use a projected (or pro forma) P&L statement to show investors how much money you expect to have made - or lost - by the end of your first year. This should be based on your sales forecast and your projected restaurant costs (both for opening the restaurant and operating it throughout the year).

Recommended Reading: Free Restaurant Profit and Loss Statement Template

Break-Even Analysis

It's an unforgettable day for a restaurant owner when the business becomes profitable - and you can determine that point in time with a break-even analysis . Calculating break-even will project the threshold to reach in time and sales to pay back investments and startup costs, thus reaching profitability.

Show investors how you reached your break-even point with a break-even calculation. You can reach this number by dividing total fixed costs by the difference between average revenue per guest and average variable cost per guest.

Alternatively, plug those projections in this formula to produce break-even dollars:

Break Even Point = Total Fixed Costs ÷ (Avg. revenue per guest - Avg. variable cost per guest)

You can then compare this number to your sales forecast to determine a timeline for the break-even point in days to let investors know what day they'll start seeing an ROI.

Recommended Reading: 15 Restaurant Metrics to Know and How To Use Them

The appendix and its contents are all optional, but this section could contain charts, plans, graphics, imagery, or any other material investors may find useful.

Floor Plans

As mentioned earlier, the appendix is the perfect place to include any mockups of your restaurant floor plans. These plans give readers an idea of how guests and employees will be able to maneuver through and interact with each other in the space.

Additional Financial Charts

Got supporting financial documents, like projected cash flow and a projected income statement? Awesome. Place them in here to show investors you really know your numbers.

Design Mockups

If you’ve worked with a building renovator and/or interior designer, include any graphic mockups of what the space would look like. Again, this section is completely optional, but it helps investors visualize the project you’re so passionate about and proves to them that you’ve gone the extra mile in your business research and preparation.

Use this sample template to help you build your restaurant business plan. Feel free to copy and paste this entire section into a Microsoft Word file or download the outline sample in Google Docs . Then replace the explanations for each section with information about your restaurant business.

Other Resources for Your Restaurant Business Plan

No great business plan is written in a vacuum. Use whatever you have at your disposal, from industry contacts to other entrepreneurs, and read up on more best practices. Here are a few resources that you can use to help you write a successful restaurant business plan.

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sample of a business plan for restaurant

Restaurant Business Plan

Restaurant Business Plan: What To Include, Plus 8 Examples

Do you want to ensure the success of your new foodservice endeavor? Write a restaurant business plan.

In this article, the experts at Sling tell you why a business plan is vital for both new and existing businesses and give you tips on what to include.

Table Of Contents

What Is A Restaurant Business Plan?

Why is a restaurant business plan important, questions to ask first, what to include in an effective restaurant business plan, how to format a restaurant business plan, efficient workforce management is essential for success.

Man looking at charts on a wall for his restaurant business plan

At its most basic, a restaurant business plan is a written document that describes your restaurant’s goals and the steps you will take to make those goals a reality.

This business plan also describes the nature of the business itself, financial projections, background information, and organizational strategies  that govern the day-to-day activity of your restaurant.

Empty fine-dining restaurant

A restaurant business plan is vital for the success of your endeavor because, without one, it is very difficult — sometimes even impossible — to obtain funding from an investor or a bank.

Without that all-important starting or operational capital, you may not be able to keep your doors open for long, if at all.

Even if funding isn’t a primary concern, a business plan provides you — the business owner or manager — with clear direction on how to translate general strategies into actionable plans  for reaching your goals.

The plan can help solidify everything from the boots-on-the-ground functional strategy  to the mid-level business strategy  all the way up to the driving-force corporate strategy .

Think of this plan as a roadmap that guides your way when things are going smoothly and, more importantly, when they aren’t.

If you want to give your restaurant the best chance for success, start by writing a business plan.

Man on laptop writing a restaurant business plan

Sitting down to write a restaurant business plan can be a daunting task.

As you’ll see in the What To Include In An Effective Restaurant Business Plan section below, you’ll need a lot of information and detail to ensure that the final document is both complete and effective.

Instead of starting with word one, it is hugely beneficial to answer a number of general questions first.

These questions will help you narrow down the information to include in your plan so the composition process feels less difficult.

The questions are:

Depending on your business, some of these questions may not apply or you may not have applicable answers.

Nevertheless, it helps to think about, and try to provide details for, the whole list so your finished restaurant business plan is as complete as possible.

Once you’ve answered the questions for your business, you can transfer a large portion of that information to the business plan itself.

We’ll discuss exactly what to include in the next section.

Man mapping out a restaurant business plan

In this section, we’ll show you what to include in an effective restaurant business plan and provide a brief example of each component.

1) Executive Summary

You should always start any business plan with an executive summary. This gives the reader a brief introduction into common elements, such as:

This portion of your plan should pique the reader’s interest and make them want to read more.

Fanty & Mingo’s is a 50-seat fine-dining restaurant that will focus on Sweruvian (Swedish/Peruvian) fusion fare.

We will keep overhead and labor costs low thanks to simple but elegant decor , highly skilled food-prep staff, and well-trained servers.

Because of the location and surrounding booming economy, we estimate ROI at 20 percent per annum.

2) Mission Statement

A mission statement is a short description of what your business does for its customers, employees, and owners.

This is in contrast to your business’s vision statement which is a declaration of objectives that guide internal decision-making.

While the two are closely related and can be hard to distinguish, it often helps to think in terms of who, what, why, and where.

The vision statement is the where of your business — where you want your business to be and where you want your customers and community to be as a result.

The mission statement is the who , what , and why of your business — it’s an action plan that makes the vision statement a reality

Here’s an example of a mission statement for our fictional company:

Fanty and Mingo’s takes pride in making the best Sweruvian food, providing fast, friendly, and accurate service. It is our goal to be the employer of choice and offer team members opportunities for growth, advancement, and a rewarding career in a fun and safe working environment.

3) Company Description

Taking notes on restaurant business plan

In this section of your restaurant business plan, you fully introduce your company to the reader. Every business’s company description will be different and include its own pertinent information.

Useful details to include are:

Again, you don’t have to include all of this information in your company description. Choose the ones that are most relevant to your business and make the most sense to communicate to your readers.

Fanty & Mingo’s will start out as an LLC, owned and operated by founders Malcolm Reynolds and Zoe Washburne. Mr. Reynolds will serve as managing partner and Ms. Washburne as general manager.

We will combine atmosphere, friendly and knowledgeable staff, and menu variety to create a unique experience for our diners and to reach our goal of high value in the fusion food niche.

Our gross margin is higher than industry average, but we plan to spend more on payroll to attract the best team.

We estimate moderate growth for the first two years while word-of-mouth about our restaurant spreads through the area.

4) Market Analysis

A market analysis is a combination of three different views of the niche you want to enter:

This section should be a brief introduction to these concepts. You can expand on them in other sections of your restaurant business plan.

The restaurant industry in our chosen location is wide open thanks in large part to the revitalization of the city’s center.

A few restaurants have already staked their claim there, but most are bars and non-family-friendly offerings.

Fanty & Mingo’s will focus on both tourist and local restaurant clientele. We want to bring in people that have a desire for delicious food and an exotic atmosphere.

We break down our market into five distinct categories:

We will target those markets to grow our restaurant  by up to 17 percent per year.

restaurant menu board

Every restaurant needs a good menu, and this is the section within your restaurant business plan that you describe the food you’ll serve in as much detail as possible.

You may not have your menu design complete, but you’ll likely have at least a handful of dishes that serve as the foundation of your offerings.

It’s also essential to discuss pricing and how it reflects your overall goals and operating model. This will give potential investors and partners a better understanding of your business’s target price point and profit strategy.

We don’t have room to describe a sample menu in this article, but for more information on menu engineering, menu pricing, and even a menu template, check out these helpful articles from the Sling blog:

6) Location

In this section, describe your potential location (or locations) so that you and your investors have a clear image of what the restaurant will look like.

Include plenty of information about the location — square footage, floor plan , design , demographics of the area, parking, etc. — to make it feel as real as possible.

We will locate Fanty & Mingo’s in the booming and rapidly expanding downtown sector of Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Ideally, we will secure at least 2,000 square feet of space with a large, open-plan dining room and rich color scheme near the newly built baseball stadium to capitalize on the pre- and post-game traffic and to appeal to the young urban professionals that live in the area.

Parking will be available along side streets and in the 1,000-vehicle parking garage two blocks away.

7) Marketing

Chef working in a restaurant

The marketing section of your restaurant business plan is where you should elaborate on the information you introduced in the Market Analysis section.

Go into detail about the plans you have to introduce your restaurant to the public and keep it at the top of their mind.

Fanty & Mingo’s will employ three distinct marketing tactics to increase and maintain customer awareness:

We will direct each tactic at a different segment of our potential clientele in order to maximize coverage.

In the process of marketing to our target audience, we will endeavor to harness the reach of direct mail and broadcast media, the exclusivity of the VIP party, and the elegance of a highly trained sommelier and wait staff.

8) Financials

Even though the Financials section is further down in your restaurant business plan, it is one of the most important components for securing investors and bank funding.

We recommend hiring a trained accountant  to help you prepare this section so that it will be as accurate and informative as possible.

Fanty & Mingo’s needs $250,000 of capital investment over the next year and a half for the following:

Projected profit and loss won’t jump drastically in the first year, but, over time, Fanty & Mingo’s will develop its reputation and client base. This will lead to more rapid growth toward the third and fourth years of business.

working on restaurant business plan

Most entrepreneurs starting a new business find it valuable to have multiple formats of their business plan.

The information, data, and details remain the same, but the length and how you present them will change to fit a specific set of circumstances.

Below we discuss the four most common business plan formats to cover a multitude of potential situations.

Elevator Pitch

An elevator pitch is a short summary of your restaurant business plan’s executive summary.

Rather than being packed full of details, the elevator pitch is a quick teaser of sorts that you use on a short elevator ride (hence the name) to stimulate interest in potential customers, partners, and investors

As such, an effective elevator pitch is between 30 and 60 seconds and hits the high points of your restaurant business plan.

A pitch deck is a slide show and oral presentation that is designed to stimulate discussion and motivate interested parties to investigate deeper into your stakeholder plan (more on that below).

Most pitch decks are designed to cover the executive summary and include key graphs that illustrate market trends and benchmarks you used (and will use) to make decisions about your business.

Some entrepreneurs even include time and space in their pitch deck to demonstrate new products coming down the pipeline.

This won’t necessarily apply to a restaurant business plan, but, if logistics permit, you could distribute small samples of your current fare or tasting portions of new dishes you’re developing.

Stakeholder Plan (External)

A stakeholder plan is the standard written presentation that business owners use to describe the details of their business model to customers, partners, and potential investors.

The stakeholder plan can be as long as is necessary to communicate the current and future state of your business, but it must be well-written, well-formatted, and targeted at those looking at your business from the outside in.

Think of your stakeholder plan as a tool to convince others that they should get involved in making your business a reality. Write it in such a way that readers will want to partner with you to help your business grow.

Management Plan (Internal)

A management plan is a form of your restaurant business plan that describes the details that the owners and managers need to make the business run smoothly.

While the stakeholder plan is an external document, the management plan is an internal document.

Most of the details in the management plan will be of little or no interest to external stakeholders so you can write it with a higher degree of candor and informality.

Sling app for managing a restaurant business plan

After you’ve created your restaurant business plan, it’s time to take steps to make it a reality.

One of the biggest challenges in ensuring that your business runs smoothly and successfully is managing  and optimizing  your team. The Sling  app can help.

Sling not only includes powerful and intuitive artificial-intelligence-based scheduling tools but also many other features to help make your workforce management more efficient, including:

Sling's scheduling feature

With Sling, you can schedule faster, communicate better, and organize and manage your work from a single, integrated platform. And when you use Sling for all of your scheduling  needs, you’ll have more time to focus on bringing your restaurant business plan to life.

For more free resources to help you manage your business better, organize and schedule your team, and track and calculate labor costs, visit  today.

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Sample Restaurant Business Plan

This is an example of a completed business plan for a restaurant, in this case an upscale modern-day alpine concept in Munich, Germany, with a variety of traditional meals that are prepared with regional and seasonally adequate ingredients, without the use of prefabricated products.

The founder has a wide experience in the food as well as the hospitality business and will manage the various aspects of the company herself. She has already established herself in Munich with excellent local contacts and knowledge

The business plan elaborates on crucial points like the restaurant concept (product range, general business strategy and USP, Vision and Mission), provides a brief overview of the market situation, location and competition as well as a risk analysis. It also gives information regarding potential business partners, the marketing plan, the venue organization and financing.

The financing of a business is an important issue, and being able to present an appropriate and convincing business plan to banks and/or potential investors is a prerequisite for obtaining such financing.

This might be important for you: A good way to get started quickly, efficiently and professionally is to hire a  business plan writing company to write your business plan. At BrainHive, we offer flexible business plan consulting packages. If you want to know the business plan cost , we can also help you out, being one of the most affordable and yet professional business plan consulting firms in the market. Don’t hesitate to approach us anytime if you want to learn more about us or get an individual quote for your business plan project. It is perhaps also worthwhile to note that we can also help you with your existing business plan , as well as prepare just the your business plan’s financial part . This way, you can rest assured that you will receive a custom business plan service that fits your exact need at the best price imaginable.

Sample Restaurant Business Plan Overview

1 Business Concept 1.1 Product Range 1.2 General Business Strategy / USPs 1.3 Vision/Mission 2 The Market 3 The Location 4 Competition Review 5 Risk Analysis 6 Partner/s 7 Marketing Plan 7.1 Pricing Strategy 7.2 Communication Policy 8 Venue Organization and Financing 8.1 About the Founder 8.2 Staff 8.3 Legal Form 8.4 Capital Contribution 8.5 Accounting

Sample Restaurant Business Plan: Business Concept

The [Sample Restaurant Business Plan Ltd.] emanates the concept of upscale modern-day alpine hospitality. The experienced founder Mrs. [Sample Restaurant Business Plan] has secured a suitable site, potential staff and suppliers. The dishes are prepared by original home recipes and served in a cozy and refined atmosphere. The most important elements of the concept are the alpine character, variety of traditional menus (regional & seasonal cuisine without prefabricated products), appealing interior decoration, and an excellent location in XX Frauenstrasse in Munich with access to well-paying casual customers. The selected site has XX indoor seats, XX outdoor seats and a courtyard with another XX seats. The founder Mrs. [Sample Restaurant Business Plan] will manage all the aspects of the business. She has been active in food service for X years, has completed training in the hotel business, has been working for some years in Munich and has very good local relationships.

Product Range The restaurant will feature traditional cuisine. Some of the specialties of the restaurant will include: • Schnitzel • Sugared pancake with raisins • Salzburg dumplings The offer consists of lunch menu, business lunch, standard lunch and a varying daily menu. The menus will be based on the products in stock, as every product has to be fresh. The restaurant will be independent of breweries (hence will offer only the best quality beverages in glass bottles). The unique, unfiltered house beer will be a special attraction enhancing the image of the restaurant by endowing it with local charm.

General Business Strategy / USPs The restaurant will differentiate itself from other dining establishments in the area with its particularly down-to-earth atmosphere, high quality and original homemade dishes, giving its guests an exceptional experience. Staffed by highly motivated employees, the Sample restaurant will not be forgotten by its guests. They will keep coming back whenever the opportunity arises. The site of the establishment has a large storefront, where one can “see and be seen”, a key part of Munich entertainment. The interior will be welcoming and cozy, with a large main table and several small tables for 2-4 people. The Sample restaurant will offer only regional and seasonal products produced by local farmers or sold in the area of Munich. The dishes will always be freshly prepared. Customers will know they are getting good and healthy food whenever they come to the Sample restaurant. Acquiring a solid customer base, connections and advertising partners is an important component of the overall business strategy. The founder expects that her personal expertise and focus on a friendly welcome will prove to be the decisive factor pushing her establishment to the top of the list in the area. To achieve this goal, each customer will be approached individually. Staff competence and skills will be highlighted by specific knowledge, such as information about ingredients, recommendations, and more.

Vision/Mission The aim of the restaurant is to become the first choice for a special dining experience in the area. Customers should be fully assured of the quality of service, good management and the product variety so that they’ll come again. In the first three years the restaurant will have up to six staff members apart from the manager herself. The annual revenue in the third year should be around XXX,XXX Euro. In the fourth or fifth year a management holding company could be founded and other venues could open, while the revenue is expected to reach one million Euro by means of creating a loyal customer base, who will recommend the establishment to other people. Go back up

Sample Restaurant Business Plan: The Market

In order to assess the market entry prospects of the (sample) restaurant, we will look at both the consumer confidence in Germany and that in the region of Munich. The local competition and the advantages of the location are reviewed in more detail in the following parts of the business plan. Consumers expressed optimistic attitudes in XXXX and consumer confidence continued to grow. The economic and income expectations as well as the buying power are very high. The dramatic drop in energy prices in XXXX boosted disposable income and encouraged spending. Consumers also see the German economy improving after the downturn in the fall of XXXX. The inclination to save dwindled down to a new record low in January XXXX due to low interest rates and mistrust of banks, with consumers preferring to spend their money. The following graph illustrates this trend.

Germany Consumer Confidence


Source: Statista, ifo-Konsumklimaindex

Consumers expect that the German economy will continue developing favorably in the coming months. It is clear that the lower energy prices play an important role. Low energy prices combined with a significant depreciation of the euro act as a stimulus package, encouraging business investment as well as export. German companies are also optimistic about the economy, as the high level of the ifo business climate shows. The hospitality industry is relatively resistant to the crisis on one hand, but on the other hand it is dependent on consumer spending, meaning that the current data are to be taken very positively overall. Specifically in Munich there are numerous other factors that make the success of the planned startup even more likely. Munich is still the leading retail location in Germany according to data of CBRE, one of the largest and most renowned real estate consulting companies in the world. Rent in prime locations is as much as XXX Euro / m² (XXXX). This dominant position results from important economic conditions: Munich and Stuttgart have the lowest unemployment rates in Germany. The average per capita purchasing power in Munich in XXXX was XX XXX Euro, which is the highest in all major German cities. The regions of Starnberg (XX,XXX Euro per capita) and Munich (XX,XX Euro per capita) are two of the four with the highest purchasing power in the immediate vicinity of the Bavarian capital.

Tourists also contribute to the high retail turnover in Munich, especially from China and Arab countries. A recent study by BBE Handelsberatung shows that overnight guests in Munich spend around 1 billion Euro in the inner city annually. The Russians are another important group of tourists. Many of them come for medical treatment. These factors underlie the fact that Kaufingerstrasse and Neuhauser Street were two of the busiest shopping streets in Germany in XXXX. Even neighborhoods in these areas benefited from this tendency. Overall, retail trade in Bavaria in XXXX generated a real increase in turnover of X.X%. The number of employees rose by X.X%. The following table illustrates the strong position of Munich and makes a comparison with other German cities.

 [Table Removed]

Overall, the results of the market review from different perspectives give the planned restaurant a positive outlook. In all likelihood the venue will become popular with customers very quickly and this will turn into a sustainable trend. Word-of-mouth will bring new customers and the growing customer base will provide a reliable source of revenue for the restaurant.

Sample Restaurant Business Plan: The Location

The very well-off people of Munich are always on the lookout for special entertainment options. XX Frauenstrasse (Street), where the restaurant will be rented is close to popular shopping areas with many specialist shops and catering establishments. The street is right on Viktualienmarkt and is easy to reach. Integrated window frames, lots of light and high ceilings will also entice potential customers. The building also has a large basement available to store goods on site. The following map section shows the attractive location within walking distance of numerous Munich hubs.

Source: Google Maps

 The fact that these premises are vacant is important motivation for the founding. Mrs. [Sample Restaurant Business Plan] is certain that she will be able to do better business here than at other relevant / available locations.


Storefront 10 Frauenstr.


Premise sketch

Sample Restaurant Business Plan: Competition Review

The restaurant will have to deal with stable competition no matter its location – there will always be a lot of other entertainment venues in the area. Their product focus isn’t always the same, though, and they don’t have craft beer. Often the service is neither personalized nor especially competent. The following venues are potential key competitors:

As in most industries, three factors play an essential role in whether a business in gastronomy will succeed or fail: quality, price and marketing. The restaurant will not allow any shortfalls in these areas and turn special attention to communication with the client. Customers expect high-quality service. This is why the founder herself should be right behind the counter. One usually has only one opportunity to satisfy a guest. If this opportunity is missed, they will just go somewhere else. Moreover, you risk getting a bad rating on Yelp or Google Places. The new realities of the Internet are another reason to be one hundred percent present with each individual customer and meet all their needs. Face-to-face communication with the customer will give a face and a friendly voice to your establishment that he’ll remember with pleasure. This personal touch is a decisive factor behind your success in the highly competitive environment.

Sample Restaurant Business Plan: Risk Analysis

The operational risk is the main one the founder will have to reckon with. For example, it is important to start generating income as soon as possible to cover high fixed costs like rent and electricity. Moreover, the investment cost in the dining facilities will reduce the available liquidity. The product is fresh and perishable. You will then have to sell a sufficient quantity. The founder must assess the effectiveness of the available marketing investments by observing the competition over a longer period of time and doing a comprehensive analysis. Health, contingency and occupational accident insurance must be checked very thoroughly to guarantee legal protection. Insurance against damages and theft is also recommended. Given the nature of the business project, it is extremely important not to compromise on performance and to focus on quality, attention to hygiene and reliability. This is the only way to create the right ambience and gain loyal customers. You will need a well-designed website and local search engine optimization, which is why positive reviews are of paramount importance given that they are communicated on review sites (ex. Google Places, Facebook etc.). The numerous challenges of the business model are very likely to be overcome given the experience and qualifications of the founder.

Sample Restaurant Business Plan: Partner/s

The founder already has numerous business contacts with potential suppliers. Some of these suppliers are friends of the founder, making them particularly reliable and flexible. Moreover, the long-year friendship of the founder and supplier guarantees that only the freshest goods will be offered in the restaurant and supplied directly from the region.


Sample Restaurant Business Plan: Marketing Plan

Pricing Strategy

The restaurant can offer an authentic Bavarian dining experience with local dishes, which are made using only the highest-quality ingredients. The enterprise will thus be operating in the premium price segment, also due to the location in part. High fixed costs make it difficult to lower prices, which is why the venue has only limited possibilities to launch special promotions. It can offer discounts on certain seasonal products in the initial period after opening or on special days.

Communication Policy

Given the strong competition already mentioned, the sample restaurant will choose its marketing mix so as to build the best status on the broadest possible front. The target group – tourists and families – is well-defined. Well-designed storefronts, a pleasant interior, online advertising and to some extent magazine and outdoor advertising have been identified as good marketing methods to make the presence of the newly opened restaurant known. The founder should also design eye-catching business cards and flyers. We have planned public events with costumes and stilts, at which we will also distribute flyers. The founder has a huge Facebook contact network and has already set up a website at……: The founder is familiar with cutting-edge POS and will utilize Orderbird software, which provides further options for digital marketing. For example, the program offers interfaces to social media platforms. The founder plans to give discount coupons to guests who allow posts of advertisements of her restaurant to their Facebook wall.


Pictured: Sample Restaurant Logo

Since the location of the restaurant in a busy district of Munich promises a lot of pedestrian traffic, it can be assumed local advertising will prove quite lucrative. It is possible to promote the venue with car stickers and similar measures such as distribution of promotional gifts in pedestrian areas. The Internet presence and local search engine optimization will be an important component of success for the long-term success of the sample restaurant, as they will be a permanent source of information and contact platform around the clock, thereby fulfilling quite important functions. In Munich there are numerous markets and events in the neighborhood, at which the sample restaurant can rent a booth/stand. These events create opportunities for direct sales and promote the shop via flyers and displays. The company may obtain contact information of potential customers and do some legal e-mail marketing by using sweepstakes. To this end we could put a plexiglass box with some completed entry flyers to encourage visitors to fill in a survey too. Organizing events such as guided beer tasting tours or movie nights planned on social networking sites and event pages are also among the effective marketing activities. We can post free invitations on websites like Facebook (using local groups), or CouchSurfing.

Sample Restaurant Business Plan: Venue Organization and Financing

About the Founder

Mrs. [Sample Restaurant Business Plan] will open and manage the sample restaurant. Her qualifications are suitable for this business. She has completed training in hotel management and has worked in some of the most exclusive hotels in Munich and in the administration for Bayern FC. She has worked in the gastronomy industry since XXXX. In this time she has worked in some trendy gastronomies where she has been responsible for staff management and also at various festivals as a freelance waitress. Mrs. [Sample Restaurant Business Plan] describes herself as a hard-working leader personality with excellent communication skills and also has many contacts in Munich. This mix of expertise and soft skills ensures her success in overcoming all challenges as the manager of the sample restaurant.

To save resources in the initial phase, there will be only one waiter/waitress, one chef / cook and 1-2 temps in the summer along with the manager of the restaurant. The waiter is responsible for taking orders and has direct contact with the guests at all times. He / she will also set the tables, serve orders, prepare the checks, clean up and be responsible for general maintenance tasks. He/she will also tap the beer. The chef prepares all the dishes. Before and after carrying out his main job responsibilities he also has to take stock and do general clean-up, maintenance and organization work. The temps have various service tasks, stock work and tidying / cleaning. More full-time staff will join the team as soon as the operational infrastructure is in place and there is a loyal customer base generating predictable and stable revenue. The main responsibility is carried out by the founder and manager. Apart from the management and accounting, she will be working on the busiest stations at any given point in time.

The Ltd. legal form is selected based on the premise of avoiding personal liability and entering the market with a reputable form. Other advantages are that more shareholders can join a Ltd. and the costs of founding and operating an enterprise in this legal form are easy to predict. The form is also a juridical entity, meaning that contracts and accounts can be signed and opened in the name of the Ltd., which later makes it easier to sell among other things. Some disadvantages of this legal form are the slightly higher notary fees and the costs of drafting the partnership agreement. In addition, it must be ensured that no actions are taken that could be construed as gross negligence, because in this case the managing partner may also carry private liability. The accounting and expenses for tax consulting services are usually a bit higher than those for joint partnerships. In conclusion, we can say the Ltd. provides some tax benefits and can also serve one well as a tax “piggy bank” for a rainy day. You can develop hidden assets / reserves because profits are not distributed as they would be with other business partnerships. The corporate tax is lower than the income tax levied on joint partnerships.

Capital Contribution

Chief Operating Officer Mrs. [Sample Restaurant Business Plan] is planning to provide equity contribution in the amount of XX,XXX Euro. Target debt financing in the amount of XXX,XXX Euro is intended to complement the contribution, thus creating the material basis for a fast, uncomplicated market launch.

The necessary routine work related to taxes, electricity, Internet and telephone bills and bank statements is assigned to an accountant on a month basis. Also, a tax consultant is entrusted with the preparation of VAT returns and financial statements.

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13+ Restaurant Business Plan Examples [ Startup, Fast Food, Opening ]

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How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan + Example Templates

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Noah Parsons

8 min. read

Updated March 8, 2023

Group of seven individuals standing around inside of the entrance of a restaurant. Two are speaking with the owner, who just finished planning for his restaurant, preparing to order food.

If you’re starting a restaurant , you already know that it’s a risky business. Restaurants are notoriously difficult to run well, and often require lots of capital to get off the ground. Plus, all the equipment and renovations to a space mean you’ll probably need to spend a good amount of cash before your doors are open and you get your first customer.

Because of the risk and the amount of money involved, writing a business plan for a new restaurant is even more important than it might be in other industries. While not everything will likely go exactly as you planned, if you have a business plan you’ll certainly minimize your risk and make it that much more likely that you’ll find financial success.

A restaurant plan shares a lot of similarities with a standard business plan. Here on Bplans, we’ve got a great guide already on how to write a traditional business plan . In this article, I’ll dig into how to write a business plan specifically for a restaurant—the changes and additions you’ll want to make so your plan is customized enough to be truly useful. 

I’ve also included links to examples of restaurant business plans at the end of the article so you can see templates of how other restaurants have tackled their business plan.

If you’re not quite ready to write a plan and just want to learn how to start a restaurant, check out our guide .

On this page

Why writing a business plan for your restaurant is important

What to include in your restaurant business plan, restaurant business plan templates and examples.

Is creating a business plan for your restaurant really that important? While most people think business plans are just for getting loans and investments, the real number one reason you need a business plan is to ensure that you are successful. 

Don’t just write a plan for investors or for your bank. Write a plan to help you figure out your startup costs and the money you’ll need to get going, how long it will take to pay back lenders and to answer the hard question of why the world needs your restaurant .

Of course, you will also need a business plan for your investors and lenders. They’ll want to see that you know what you’re doing and that you have a plan in place for how you’ll be spending their money. They’ll want to know that you’ve thought through everything and have contingency plans in place if things don’t go exactly as you imagined.

Every business plan follows a fairly standard format, but restaurant business plans need to cover specific topics that other business plans don’t touch on. Here’s an outline of what you should include:

1. Executive Summary

Every business plan needs an executive summary.  Usually, you write the summary last, after you’ve fleshed out all the details of your plan. The executive summary isn’t a repeat of the full plan—it’s really just a brief outline that should be 1-2 pages at the most. 

When you’re getting introductions to investors, you’ll probably just share your executive summary to start, and then share the full plan if an investor is interested. 

Your executive summary should summarize your vision for your restaurant, a short description of your target market , and highlights of your management team and financials. If you did a market analysis, don’t get into tons of detail, but cover enough that a casual reader will understand what you’re trying to accomplish.

2. Opportunity: Vision and Concept

In a traditional business plan, you might discuss the “problem and solution” in this section. For a restaurant, you’ll want to talk about your vision and concept instead. It’s a different way of framing an eatery’s product or service.

This is where you’ll talk about the type of food you’ll be serving and the environment you hope to create for your diners. You’ll need to define your mission statement—are you “fast-casual” or “fine dining”? Will diners order at the counter and bus their own tables or will you offer table service? Will you focus on just one meal time or cover multiple meals?

3. Sample Menu

Nothing can explain your restaurant better than a sample menu. Your menu shows that you’ve thought through your overall concept and can translate that concept to the plate in a consistent way.

Not only will your menu help to explain your restaurant concept, it will send signals with your pricing. Are you serving premium food at premium prices, or are you a bargain restaurant that is looking to turn tables quickly? Your menu can communicate all of this.

For your business plan, consider including “cost” information with your menu, if you can gather this information. Investors will want to see that you understand how your dishes will be profitable and the potential margin that you’ve built into your menu.

4. Design and Branding

When you’re starting a restaurant, spending time to plan your overall design aesthetic and your brand is an important step. Restaurant signage and interior design help attract customers and signal what kind of restaurant you are. The right design and branding attracts the target customer that you’re hoping will walk through the front door.

In your plan, include your logo if you’ve designed it already and photos from similar restaurants to explain the mood you’re trying to create. Provide details of design elements and even your color palette if you know the direction that you plan to go in.

5. Target Market

Arguably, the target market section of your business plan is one of the most important components. Your target market describes the types of customers you hope to attract. Trying to please everyone is bound to be a failure—instead, focus on a specific group of people or type of person and build from there.

For example, maybe you’re focusing on attracting a student crowd from the local college. Or, perhaps you’re focusing on young, health-conscious families.

There are a lot of details that you can include in your target market section of your business plan and we’ve got a great article that covers everything you might want to include .

6. Location

For a restaurant, location can make or break the business. Occasionally, a restaurant concept is so good that people go out of their way to find it. But, more realistically, your location needs to be convenient for your target market. If it’s hard for your customers to get to you, hard for them to park, and not something they notice as they drive by, they’re unlikely to check your restaurant out.

In your business plan, make sure to discuss the potential locations that you hope to occupy, assuming you haven’t already secured the location. Explain why the location is ideal for your target market and how the location will help attract customers.

Be sure to explain the complete costs of your location and what kinds of renovations will be necessary to open your restaurant.

7. Marketing and PR

Getting the word out about your new restaurant can be challenging. Your PR and marketing plan section will discuss how you plan to let your target market know that you’re open for business. Will you use mailers? Targeted social media posts? On-street advertising? Any other advertising?

As important to marketing is Public Relations (PR). This is the press coverage you hope to get in the local media and on food blogs. But, you probably don’t want to get tons of press before you’re ready. Too much press too early and you may not have all the kinks worked out creating bad experiences for early diners. 

Your marketing strategy and PR plan should explain the kind of marketing and advertising you plan on investing in and how you’re going to manage your PR. If you’re going to hire a PR consultant, describe that person or company and their experience in the restaurant industry. If you’re going to do it yourself, explain your plans and how you’ll have time to manage PR while also getting a restaurant up and running.

8. Company & Management

Most restaurants are partnerships and your plan will need to explain how your business is structured and who owns what portions of the business. 

You’ll also want to include a company description that includes details on the management team and the highlights from their resumes. Potential investors will be looking for experienced owners and managers to get a restaurant up and running, so this section of the plan should explain why your team is qualified to build the business into a success.

9. Financial Plan

Finally, your restaurant will need a financial plan . Investors will want to see a sales forecast , income statement, (also called profit and loss statement) cash flow statement, and a balance sheet. If you use a tool like LivePlan , you’ll be able to build out your financial forecasts relatively quickly, even if you don’t have experience with business numbers.

If you need additional help, we’ve created a guide to creating the financial statements you need to include in your business plan .

If you want to see how other restaurants have planned their businesses, check out our free library of restaurant business plans . You can download all of them in Word format so you can jump-start your own business plan.

Content Author: Noah Parsons

Noah is currently the COO at Palo Alto Software, makers of the online business plan app LivePlan.

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Restaurant Business Plan Examples

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A professional restaurant business plan is an important step towards launching a business in this challenging industry. Several of our restaurant & foodservice clients have graciously provided permission for us to share their plans with you. Below are several sample restaurant business plans and pitch decks created by Cayenne Consulting:

Fast Casual Restaurant Business Plan & Pitch Deck Samples

Hashi is a new fast-casual Asian-inspired restaurant concept. It will be positioned to take advantage of the fastest-growing segment within the foodservice industry and is designed to meet the evolving demands of today’s consumers. The menu offers a limited selection of Americanized Asian dishes. Cayenne Consulting prepared Hashi’s business plan, financial forecast, and pitch deck:

Hashi Business Plan

Hashi pitch deck, mexican restaurant business plan example.

Frida Mexican Café is a Mexican full-service restaurant that combines color, art, and great food and service in a Mexican art-oriented atmosphere. The name, personality, and even the ambiance of Frida Mexican Café is inspired by the artist Frida Kahlo whose life many moviegoers will remember from the Selma Hayek film, “Frida.” The menu is a fusion of authentic Mexican and Tex Mex. Cayenne Consulting prepared Frida’s business plan and financial forecast.

Frida Mexican Cafe Business Plan

Fast food franchisee business plan example.

Subway is a well-known fast-food franchise concept. Cayenne Consulting helped a client prepare a business plan and financial forecast for a potential franchisee. These materials were used in multiple ways: to show the franchisor of the potential of awarding a franchise to our client; to persuade lenders that the client presented a sound credit risk; to support the client’s E-2 Investor Visa petition; and to provide the client with a roadmap as he embarked on his new venture.

Subway Business Plan

Anatomy of a restaurant business plan.

Every restaurant business is unique. So, too, is its business plan. Nevertheless, most restaurant business plans share the following general structure:

How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan

My step-by-step recipe for success.

By Jimmy Lewin In the past two decades, we have written hundreds of business plans for restaurants, food trucks, ghost kitchens, bars, lounges, and other food & beverage businesses. You can see some sample restaurant plans here . We have enjoyed seeing the positive results achieved by many of our clients when their business plans and financial forecasts were submitted to banks, investors, and landlords.

How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan

Recently, it occurred to me that I have a formula, or recipe, that has provided excellent outcomes for our clients, and I decided to share my recipe with you. I hope you’ll find that the benefits of following my recipe are that it leads to a professional, organized, and concise document that is easy for bankers and investors to follow, and that it provides a roadmap for the successful launch and operation of your business.

By the way, I am happy to share my recipe for writing a successful restaurant business plan, but if you think I am going to share my recipe for my famous Poppyseed Wine Cake, you will have to wait for a later post.

Restaurant Business Plan Outline

Every restaurant business will include the following sections, though not necessarily in this order:

Executive Summary

Company overview.

Industry Analysis

Market opportunity, marketing plan, competition, company & management, financial information.

The specific order of the sections depends on how best to tell your unique story. Let’s dig into each of these in more detail.

Every business plan should begin with an attractive cover page . This is your chance to make a great first impression. Your goal is to have your business plan be as professional as you are, and as professional as you intend for your restaurant business to be. This begins with your cover page.

The page must include the name of your restaurant and your logo. Your logo is not optional. If you do not have a logo, have one designed immediately. If you don’t know a graphic designer, find one online. Many are very talented and very affordable: always an excellent combination.

You will also want to include your name, contact details, and the current date.

Your Executive Summary should only be one page. It needs to be brief and to the point. Include a few sentences about each of the following topics:

If you don’t want to include an executive summary, that’s ok. Just feature the executive summary information at the beginning of the company overview. In this section you should explain:

Restaurant Sample Menu

Use just one page to provide a sample menu. It doesn’t have to be fancy or even all-inclusive. Just give your audience a glimpse into your cuisine. Allow your readers to understand if your menu will be large and complex, or simple with just a few items, or somewhere in between.

Restaurant Operations

The restaurant operations section is your opportunity to explain that you know how to launch and operate a restaurant. It’s not about the food or the level of service, it is really about the nuts and bolts of the business. Here are some important areas to address:

Restaurant Location & Space

I’ve seen business plans where this section was neglected or even omitted. That is a huge mistake. Even a very talented chef will not be successful if the business is located where no one can find it, or if the space is too small or too large. Don’t let your readers guess, tell them where you intend to locate, the amount of space you require, and how you intend to use it.

If you have selected a space, describe it in words, photographs, and floor plans. Provide a map that will support your location strategy. Your location strategy could, for example, include proximity to a heavily traveled roadway, to other restaurants and retailers, or perhaps near hospitals or in a downtown location.

If you haven’t selected a location, describe in as much detail as possible the type of neighborhood you would like to operate in, and why. Again, don’t leave your readers guessing.

The industry analysis can be its own stand-alone section or presented as a paragraph in the Market Opportunity section depending upon how much research you intend to do. Note that this post is being written as the United States and many other western countries are slowly coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic, while many other countries are not so fortunate. This is important as the pandemic has had a huge impact on the restaurant industry worldwide. Therefore, it is important to analyze your industry at the time you prepare your business plan. For example, if you hope to open a restaurant in the U.S., the industry trends should be in your favor as so many restaurants closed last year, never to re-open, giving you an opportunity to snap up a great location and fill unmet demand. You will also want to discuss other trends in the restaurant industry such as the popularity of ethnic foods, fast-casual dining, the move towards more ghost kitchens, or other happenings in your industry.

This is an important section that will require a great deal of research on your part. You must answer a number of important questions, and in doing so, you may discover that you have an excellent market opportunity (or, perhaps, one that is not so exciting and should be reconsidered). Specifically, you will want to answer these questions:

Note that, sometimes, this information is readily available and easy to find. Other times, it is not, and may have to be purchased. Either way, it is important and must be accurate and current.

The marketing plan that I develop for most restaurants and food trucks is divided into 3 sections. In the first section, I like to describe the brand. In this case, when I use the word “brand,” I mean this: “What do you want your customers to think about your restaurant?” Perhaps you want them to think about great tasting food or reasonable prices. Perhaps you want them to think about consistently high customer service or how the staff is always so friendly. To me, this is your brand.

In the second section of the marketing plan, I like to detail the strategies and tactics that you will employ to create awareness of the business. If no one knows about your restaurant, I promise that no one will visit. So, let’s list some strategies and tactics you might utilize:

In the final section, you should talk about the importance of social media. I like to talk about starting a Facebook page, an Instagram account, and using Twitter to engage with potential customers. Once you have a social media following, you can use social media to distribute images of your culinary creations or to promote specials.

Like the Marketing section discussed above, I like to separate this section into three parts: the competitive landscape, your direct competitors, and your competitive advantages.

In the Competitive Landscape section, you should discuss the other restaurants or retailers your customers can decide to visit, other than yours. For example, if you are opening a sandwich shop, where else can a busy, hungry customer buy a similar sandwich at a similar price point: perhaps other sandwich shops, fast-food franchises, and supermarkets? Are there many alternatives in the area, or just a few?

In the Direct Competitors section, you should define what you believe constitutes a direct competitor and then list 4-6 of those competitors. If you define direct competitors as other sushi restaurants, then you should list 4-6 other nearby sushi bars and include their web addresses so that your audience can better understand who you are competing against.

In the Competitive Advantages section, you must explain how you will distinguish your restaurant from your competition. Perhaps you will offer better service or higher quality ingredients. Maybe your restaurant will be in a safer neighborhood with better parking options.

I usually include four or more parts in this section. I begin by first describing the company itself. If it has been incorporated, I include the precise legal name so that if someone wants to check to ensure that the company is properly registered, they can do so. I also like to mention how many staff members are working for the company or will work for the company. Some might be full-time; some might be part-time and some might be consultants. I like to mention that as well.

Most investors will tell you that the most important aspect of any business is the experience of the management team and its ability to execute the plan. I agree, so this is a very important part of your restaurant’s business plan. Begin by telling your audience about the team. Tell the reader that this team has many years of restaurant industry experience. Or, if it does not, then what other important benefits do the members of the team bring to the business? In the restaurant business, sometimes the team is initially just you. If that is the case, say so and explain how you intend to manage the business. Be sure to mention that you have surrounded yourself with, or intend to surround yourself with, loyal, capable staff members who share your goals for the business.

Next, provide your biography, as well as for other key members of the team. The bio should detail past successful jobs and entrepreneurial ventures, as well as relevant educational backgrounds. You should also indicate what each member of the team will do at the restaurant.

Of course, no one works alone, and no one works 7 days a week. So you must create a staffing plan. You should include how many team members work in the front of the house (the dining room) and how many work in the back of the house (kitchen). How many are full-time, and how many are part-time? Here’s a tip: the restaurant business is known for high turnover, so you need a plan for quickly recruiting and training new hires.

Begin this section by describing how much capital you require, how you intend to use the capital, and how you intend to source that capital, e.g. savings, investors, bank loans, etc.

The financial information section should also include at least a 3-year income statement forecast and the financial assumptions that you used to support the forecast. This way, your reader will understand how you arrived at your numbers. A simple income statement forecast (also called a P&L forecast) may suffice for some investors. However, if you intend to borrow money from a bank, you will likely also need to provide a balance sheet forecast and a cash flow forecast along with your underlying assumptions.

You are not quite finished. There is a bit more to do:

As mentioned earlier, my partners and I have written hundreds of restaurant business plans in just the past two decades. If you would like to see an actual business plan that was written based on the guidelines provided above, you can see some sample restaurant business plans here . If you would like to talk to us about helping you create a winning business plan for your restaurant, please contact us .

Why Choose Us for Your Business Plan Needs?

Learn more about Cayenne Consulting’s expertise in restaurant, bar, and lounge business plan preparation . You can also see more business plan examples here .

Help me write a great restaurant or bar business plan!

If you'd like an assessment of your needs and a fee estimate, please let us know how to reach you:

sample of a business plan for restaurant

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Restaurant Business Plan

Are you thinking of starting a restaurant business? We have prepared a solid restaurant business plan example that guides you on every stage of your business plan writing

sample of a business plan for restaurant

A restaurant business plan will serve as a compass no matter where you are in the restaurant ownership journey.


The rise of the restaurant sector is revved by the expansion of multi-cuisine restaurants across regional borders. Everyone needs to eat, and there are still many specialist areas of the food and beverage industry for owners to explore. If you are planning to start an F&B business, then start it by outlining your business plan .

Need A Restaurant Business Plan? We’re Here To Help!

A company’s recipe would be tasteless and odorless without it. Since the restaurant industry has one of the worst failure rates , starting one is a challenge. It is successful because of the careful planning and execution of the restaurant business plan.

In 2020, the size of the world’s restaurant industry was 3.5 trillion dollars. According to forecasts, this amount will increase to 4.2 trillion US dollars in 2027.

A business plan provides you with direction and a practical strategy for growing your restaurant business. Starting with a sample restaurant business plan is the first step toward success.

Spend time reading through several examples of food and restaurant business plans before you begin drafting your own. You can better apprehend your goals and the format of your final business plan by studying them.

How To Write A Restaurant Business Plan?

The most effective substitute for writing a business plan is to use a template. Using the restaurant business plan template , you can quickly compose each phase. Let’s look at the topics the business strategy covers.

Restaurant Business Plan Outline

This is the standard restaurant business plan outline which will cover all important sections that you should include in your business plan.

Market Opportunity

Financial projections & funding.

After getting started with Upmetrics , you can copy this restaurant business plan example into your business plan and modify the required information. It’s the fastest and easiest way to start writing your business plan .

What To Include In The Restaurant Business Plan?

Before you get started with writing your business plan, here are a few areas that you should include in your business plan:

Executive Summary

An introduction to a business plan starts with an executive summary section . It covers a general overview of the business, management functions, market opportunities accessible, and a summary of the financial projections & funding .

The second section shows the restaurant concept, business models, objectives, long & short-term strategies, intellectual properties, and sustainable approach.

Restaurant Operations

You can plan the functionality of the restaurant with the help of restaurant operations. Quick-service, online food delivery compatibility, and drive-through operations should be defined underneath. Customer service, training, cost control , and operating standards should be mentioned here with careful attention.

Describe your possible site (or locations ) in this part so that you and your investors can picture what the restaurant will look like.

To make the setting feel as authentic as possible, provide a wealth of details about it, such as the square footage, floor plan, design, demographics of the neighborhood, parking, etc.

As a result, your restaurant’s location is noted in this area along with a plan to accommodate additional options.

Industry Analysis

Based on the demographic information that is available for the company, industry analysis presents an overview of the sector. The industry analysis of demographic habits and buying patterns is essential for developing a suitable menu for them.


The competition is arguably the biggest test for the restaurant industry. However, the level of competition can also benefit because it would attract customers.

In addition, the absence of competition in a region may indicate that it is not where the restaurants are offering their services, so you should research the area before developing it for your restaurant.

The list of restaurants with concepts similar to yours should be recognized and included in your restaurant business plan.

Every day there is more competition in the F&B industry. Marketing is therefore a crucial component in creating a restaurant business plan. Before starting, you should have a clear understanding of your market approach.

Set up money for both traditional and internet advertising. A portion of every rupee you make should go into advertising the eatery. It becomes crucial to define marketing strategies and set up a suitable plan to draw in the target market.

All of your restaurant’s marketing methods will be covered in this section on marketing.

Company Management

The heart of your organization is covered in the company & management area. Someone should be able to guide your business decisions and lay out the boundaries you must follow. A strong staff decides the precise orientation of the company.

Financial Plan

The financial plan section shows the startup expenditures, cost of goods sold , projection of cash flow statement , balance sheet & income statements. If a business thinks about the other means of finance through a bank, then the cost of funds and sources of finance need to be mentioned here.

Restaurant Business Plan Summary

Creating a competitive advantage for your business in the target market is challenging. Serving distinctive food items and updating your food menus are crucial for maximizing business potential due to increased competition.

Writing a business plan with a comprehensive strategy provides a detailed view of how to establish a business without making mistakes. Also, add an appendix for the restaurant business plan to provide a clear idea.

The restaurant business plan template allows you the flexibility to change each aspect. After completing your business plan, you will have a thorough understanding of how a restaurant operates.

Ready To Start Your Planning?

Owning a restaurant might be the most lucrative choice right now. But very few people turn it into a fulfilling career that pays well. Launch a business with a visually engaging restaurant business plan with Upmetrics.

Download the  sample restaurant business plan template  now.

Customize your business plan.

Upmetrics help in customizing your restaurant business plan as per your requirements. So, signup with Upmetrics today!

sample of a business plan for restaurant

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Not found what you are looking for? Explore our 200+ sample business plans to find match for your business.

sample of a business plan for restaurant

DISCLAIMER: The business plans, templates, and articles contained on are not to be considered as legal advice. All content is for informational purposes, and upmetrics makes no claim as to accuracy, legality or suitability. The site owner shall not be held liable for any errors, omissions or for damages of any kind.

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Restaurant Business Plan Template

sample of a business plan for restaurant

Updated January 09, 2023

A restaurant business plan defines the concept, operational strategy, and business goals of a restaurant. The plan can serve as both a blueprint for day-to-day internal activities and a pitch for potential funding sources. Typically, a restaurant business plan should include:

Maintaining an updated business plan benefits restaurants by formalizing the business identity, outlining a roadmap for the future, and keeping all interested parties aligned.

sample of a business plan for restaurant

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  1. How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan

    Your restaurant business plan company overview should include: Purpose: The type of restaurant you’re opening (fine dining, fast-casual, pop-up, etc.), type of food you’re serving, goals...

  2. [Guide] How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan + Sample

    Restaurant Business Plan Sample Outline Section 1: Executive Summary Section 2: Company Description Section 3: Market Analysis Section 4: Marketing Plan Section 5: Operations Plan Section 6: Financials Section 7: Appendix Other Resources What is a restaurant business plan, and why do you need one?

  3. Restaurant Business Plan: What To Include, Plus 8 Examples

    At its most basic, a restaurant business plan is a written document that describes your restaurant’s goals and the steps you will take to make those goals a reality. This business plan also describes the nature of the business itself, financial projections, background information, and organizational strategies that govern the day-to-day ...

  4. How to write a restaurant business plan

    The menu is the most important touchpoint of any restaurant’s brand, so this should be more than just a simple list of items. Incorporate your logo and mock up a formatted menu design (tap a designer for help if needed). Your sample menu should also include prices that are based on a detailed cost analysis.

  5. Full Restaurant Business Plan Example for Free

    Sample Restaurant Business Plan: Risk Analysis The operational risk is the main one the founder will have to reckon with. For example, it is important to start generating income as soon as possible to cover high fixed costs like rent and electricity. Moreover, the investment cost in the dining facilities will reduce the available liquidity.

  6. Restaurant Business Plan

    Restaurant Business Plan . 13+ Restaurant Business Plan Examples; 1. Restaurant Business Plan; 2. Restaurant Business Plan Outline; 3. Food Restaurant Business Plan; 4. Sample Restaurant Business Plan; 5. Restaurant Business Plan for Investors; 6. Restaurant Business Plan To Get A Loan; 7. Restaurant Business Plan Inventory; 8.

  7. How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan + Example Templates

    If you’re starting a restaurant, you already know that it’s a risky business.Restaurants are notoriously difficult to run well, and often require lots of capital to get off the ground. Plus, all the equipment and renovations to a space mean you’ll probably need to spend a good amount of cash before your doors are open and you get your first …

  8. Restaurant Business Plan Examples

    Restaurant Business Plan Outline Every restaurant business will include the following sections, though not necessarily in this order: Cover Page Executive Summary Company Overview Sample Menu Location & Space Industry Analysis Market Opportunity Marketing Plan Competition Company & Management Financial Information

  9. Free Restaurant Business Plan Template That Matches Your Taste

    A business plan provides you with direction and a practical strategy for growing your restaurant business. Starting with a sample restaurant business plan is the first step toward success. Spend time reading through several examples of food and restaurant business plans before you begin drafting your own.

  10. Free Restaurant Business Plan Template

    Typically, a restaurant business plan should include: Company information Mission and vision Location (s) Legal structure Hours of operation Management structure and key personnel Industry analysis and competitor research Marketing strategy Funding needs and financial projections