Kitchen Innovations

Kitchen Innovations Awards

The KI Awards program has earned a reputation for defining the gold standard of foodservice equipment innovations. Forward-thinking and cutting-edge, this is the equipment that generates industry growth through a focus on automation, efficiency, safety improvements, sustainability, waste solutions, and more.

Join us at the 2022 National Restaurant Association Show to experience the largest Kitchen Innovations pavilion in the Show’s history! Preview the awardees from 2020 and 2021 that will be exhibiting below and check back in February for the full list of brand new 2022 KI honorees.

Interested in applying for a 2022 Kitchen Innovations Award?
Click here for more information!

While you wait to hear which new innovations are selected in 2022, check out the award recipients from 2021. Hear what makes these products stand out at the top before you interact with them at the next Show.



Curtis GemX® Narrow IntelliFresh® Coffee Brewer with FreshTrac®

The new Curtis GemX Narrow is a powerful machine for superb coffee and beverage specialties. At just 10.5-inches in width, the fully-automated GemX Narrow brews and dispenses twice the amount of coffee in the same space as a traditional single brewer maximizing precious counter space. This capacity is achieved through two narrow, 1.5-gallon dispensers that compactly fit onto the brewer.


Cockroach Multi-Station

The new patented Cockroach Multi-Station is a discreet and durable device that detects cockroach introductions early and provides ongoing defense. The station’s unique design and curvature mimics cockroach harborages to facilitate greater attraction and the glue board’s placement helps capture them at higher rates to achieve quicker elimination compared to traditional glue boards.

Eloma, An Ali Group Company

Compact Pro

Finally a fully modular combi to fit your kitchen’s flow: Choose control panels on the right, left or top; door hinges on left or right; three cooking systems—convection/fresh steam, convection/steam injection, or convection only. Choose between streamlined or advanced electronic HD touchscreen control, and two cleaning systems including autoclean®PRO. Plus, a design module featuring a variety of options and accessories.

Hobart - FEG

AMTL Two Level Door Type Dish Machine with Hobart Smart Connect IOT App

The only two-level dish machine on the market, the AMTL features an upper chamber that acts as a typical door style dish machine, with a 17’’ door opening, delivering 80 racks per hour. The lower chamber functions as a single rack washer ideal for pots, pans, flatware or utensils. The two levels can operate concurrently, or the lower level can be turned off independently.


Hoshizaki 2by2 ice cube machine, IM-50BAA-LM

With the premium-cocktail solid-ice market going crazy, the 2x2 undercounter model is the first ice machine in the North American market to make an ice cube this large: Measuring 1.9" x 1.9" x 2.2" with just a very small dimple on the long side, this ice is perfect for cocktails that require just the right amount of chill without too much dilution and a stunning presentation.

Manitowoc / Welbilt Brand

CrystalCraft Premier™

Large ice used to require large, bulky machines.  Manitowoc’s USE0050 charts a new course for large cubes through a reimagined evaporator design resulting in a compact gourmet ice machine.  Small in size, but big on features, the machine includes onboard water filtration for crystal clear cubes, and a membrane touchpad for effortless operation.

Minipack America


Want to marinate in 10 minutes instead of 48 hours? How about limoncello in 30 minutes instead of four weeks? The MX-Infuser/Vacuum Sealer offers sophisticated algorithms and single-touch icons to perform numerous processes from sous vide to marinating in two functions and three levels of intensity, or infusing in four levels of intensity. The compact design comes in eight body colors with a soft closure transparent lid.


iCombi® Pro

RATIONAL elevates combi oven technology with the iCombi® Pro. Advanced features include cooking intelligence that lets the operator indicate the results wanted, such as browning and doneness, and even allows mid-process changes. Thermocouples detect cooking conditions, adjusting energy to match needs. Additional air reversing fans improve heat distribution and flow. Results: Better quality, 50% more productivity, and 10% quicker cooking.

Sunshine Innovations


The unique, first-of-its-kind, fully automated Luccy produces fresh, warm, ready-to-eat, premium hummus in seconds at any point-of-sale or serving point. Luccy produces high volumes with adjustable portions and endless recipes, without any human intervention. Luccy is sized to fit in any kitchen or display, is easy and inexpensive to maintain, allowing to offer America’s number one dip to anyone, anywhere.

TurboChef Technologies, LLC


Picture three independent ovens—say a convection oven, an impingement oven, a speed oven, or any combination thereof—stacked in a single footprint. Then picture them all ventless, auto-loading and unloading, working off a single control panel and a single shared plug.  Plexor’s modular design not only offers all that but also enables cooking modules to be field swapped to accommodate future menu changes.



Think of the food safety and labor savings: This patented MULTI.Day Hot Vacuum system allows you to vacuum-store hot food in MULTI.Day trays and transport it anywhere without the risk of liquid spills or contamination from outside. In less than 60 seconds, the tray is hot-vacuum sealed and ready for transport to satellite locations, preserving food at service temperature for days, eliminating refrigeration and retherm processes.

Meet the following 2020 Awardees in the 2022 Kitchen Innovations Pavilion



The Mixstir keeps product consistently blended and ready to cook or serve while maintaining flavor profiles. Unlike conventional blenders, which tend to clog and break in certain applications, the Mixstir combines a robust, stainless-steel vessel, slower RPM and a unique blade design to handle blending thick batters for frying operations and mixing seasoned oils for products like Nashville hot chicken.


KAY® Antimicrobial Fruit & Vegetable Treatment (AFVT) & Produce Handler

Food Safety Simplified: The patent pending handler system enables the use of AFVT without the need for a dedicated produce sink, dispensing equipment or personal protective equipment (PPE). Designed with small batch produce washing in mind, the easy-to-use system mixes a 4oz bottle of concentrate with 4 gallons of water to create the required concentration of use solution. It’s all pre-measured, requires no physical contact with the concentrate, and no PPE. AFVT is FDA approved and EPA registered.


Rodent Ceiling Service

Rodents threaten food safety and an operator’s brand, from below AND above. Ecolab’s service combines patent-pending equipment with regular service to proactively eliminate rodent activity in ceilings before it takes hold. Early detection is the key to superior results, and the unique rodent ceiling device enables servicers to access ceiling voids for early detection and interdiction.

Electro Freeze, An Ali Group Company

9 Flavor Fuzionate

More flavors, less space: The Fuzionate soft-serve system uses patented mix-chamber geometries and blade design to blend right at the point of dispense, enabling up to nine high quality independent flavors from a single base mix. An integrated variable speed motor, coupled with electronic controls, allows custom tailoring to a variety of frozen bases and syrups.


GP PRO Automated Sealing Machine

With explosive growth in food delivery, takeout and drive-thru, the GP PRO Automated Sealing Machine is a great enabler. A superior alternative to snap-on lids for cold drinks, GP PRO Automated Sealing Machine applies a film seal to paper and plastic cups ranging from 8 oz. to 44 oz. The seal ensures drinks are spill resistant and tamper-evident.


Sphere Ice Machine

Clear, solid sphere ice creates a top-shelf impression, and with less surface area than a cube, it melts more slowly, too, an advantage especially in premium liquors. Hoshizaki’s undercounter sphere ice machine, the first of its kind in North America, fits behind a bar at only 24.75” wide and 33.5” tall and produces 500 1.8”-ice spheres daily.



Blending the flexibility of a tilt skillet with true cooking intelligence, the RATIONAL VarioCookingCenter® can boil, fry, steam, sauté, braise and more in record time. The unit recognizes load size and automatically adjusts the cooking process to produce consistent results, all without an operator having to manually set time or temperature. Other features include heat zones, auto lift and more.

Star Manufacturing

Ventless Induction Down Draft

This new 208V rangetop combines induction technology with the patented Wells Ventless System exhaust, creating a new solution for operators wanting prepare food in full view of customers without the constraints of typical, externally vented, air systems. Key specs include four 1800W hobs, a center-mounted downdraft ventless exhaust that leaves a clear view of cooking, and a self-contained four-stage filtering system.



Say hello to EVEREO®, the first ever “hot fridge” designed to preserve meals for days at serving temperatures. The unit’s patented technology allows foodservice operators to preserve cooked food at hot temperature and ideal humidity for up to 72 hours. Among benefits: no energy-intense cook-chill-regenerate processes, reduced handling labor, and virtually instant service time.

KI Awards Judges

The KI Awards program is judged by a panel of respected third-party experts from across foodservice representing some of the industry’s best-known brands and organizations.

Meet Judges


Visit the Kitchen Innovations Pavilion in South Hall to engage with all of these products!

2022 Floorplan

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