The Ultimate Guide to Restaurant Accounting Best Practices

The Ultimate Guide to Restaurant Accounting Best Practices

We all have our list of favorite restaurants that we love visiting. It is not just the food but the ambiance, vibe, staff, cutlery, and other factors that make us like the place. You may have heard about so many new restaurants opening and then closing because of bankruptcy.

End of the day, it all boils down to good bookkeeping. Efficient and proper restaurant accounting will add value and ensure that it runs successfully. 

If you are new to this, then the below-mentioned practices will help you sustain and run the restaurant business well. It is not just about managing the restaurant, chefs, waiters, tables, and inventory. It is about numbers.

Understand The Language

If you are running a restaurant, it is important that you must have an understanding of the basic principles of accounting.

This will help you master your restaurant accounting and will help you take the right actions. As a restaurant owner, you must be aware of words like debit, credit, balance sheet, cash flow, and other forms and vocabulary. This will help you understand the accounting better and will also give you an understanding of whether the accountant or the bookkeeper is doing the task right. 

 Accuracy Matters

Sort in the principle of restaurant accounting is that you must never round off the figures. Even a small amount of a difference of rupees can impact the entire result of your balance sheet and accounting. You should take note of the exact of every rupee, which will eventually help you assess your profits and expenses. 

Cash-flow data

The cash flow projection formula will give you an insight into the revenue. The formula is total revenue – total expenses = projected cash flow. 

Whether you are a new or an old restaurant owner, you must be aware of cash projections as they help shape the business. In fact, it aids in financial planning and gives you a comprehensive picture of the budget.


Whether it is borrowing a small amount to run the business efficiently or borrowing a large sum of money, restaurant accounting can be tricky. You must list down the short-term and long-term goals so that the loan you are taking will help you fulfill them. You will need a qualified and certified accountant to guide you, or you may end up making losses or even closing the business because of bankruptcy. But above everything else, you will need financial statements to apply for a loan, which is where restaurant accounting will help. 


You need to master the art of payroll management when it is restaurant accounting. It is not just about paying the employees; it is about paying vendors, accounting for unforeseen expenses, and others. Classification of employees as per the salary will help streamline the process. Many restaurants outsource this to a third party as this involves way too many calculations, including leaves, extra hours, and others. 

Accurate records

Maintaining accurate and correct records is paramount. The data sheets should be updated and in the right folder so that they can be attained whenever required. Financial records must be updated as audits will happen, and if the numbers do not match, there may be legal hassles. For financial clarity, cash flow, inventory, and other expenses should be explicitly listed. 

Pay taxes

As a restaurant owner, you should have a conversation with your accounts team and be aware of all the taxes that need to be paid quarterly and annually. Laws vary from state to state, and you should ensure that your accountant is aware of this. 

Financial planning

Restaurant owners want to make money from the business, which will happen if you follow good restaurant accounting practices. After all, accountants are excellent with numbers. Apart from profit and loss, they can even help you lower operational costs and maximize profits. You must talk to your accountant; he will help you save and even plan your retirement. 

Wrapping it up !!!

Restaurant owners should never think that hiring an accountant is not required. For efficient restaurant accounting, hiring a professional accountant is a must. If it were so easy, many restaurants would not have shut down because of financial distress. You should hire an expert accountant who is not only good with numbers but has good knowledge about restaurant accounting practices, as this will help your business flourish.