Prison Architect Wiki

A Restaurant is a room where prisoners with experience in cooking or customer service can prepare and serve food to Civilian Customers. This room was added by the Second Chances DLC.

As soon as a customer sits in a Chair, a prisoner will grab raw Food from a Fridge and put it to cook on a Cooker. Once the meal is ready, they will move it to a Display Counter, and then serve it to the customer. Once they ate up their meal, the customer will pay at the Shop Counter and then leave the Restaurant. Prisoners will also clean the floor and wash dirty plates at the Sink when this is full (workmen and janitors can help them).

Prisoners will always use all the available Cookers, regardless of the number of customers inside the Restaurant. Every extra meal will be stored in the Display Counter for later use. If it's not used by the end of the work shift, it will be dumped (having a Bin nearby can be useful).

The number of customers that arrives is based on the prior group's satisfaction. Customers who don't get served will have low satisfaction, low quality meals will give a medium level of satisfaction, and high quality meals will give customers high satisfaction.

A customer will pay:

  • $0 if they leave before their meal is served;
  • $5 for low quality meals;
  • $15 for high quality meals.

In the labour management tab of the restaurant you can choose whether your prisoners should prepare high quality meals (slower to make) or low quality meals (faster to make).

Prisoners can only work at the Restaurant if they possess at least 50% experience in Cooking or Customer Service, which can be gained in three ways:

  • Pre-existing Work Credential (up to Maximum Security level)
  • Training Programs (Kitchen Safety and Hygiene or Three Strikes Training, for Cooking and Customer Service respectively);
  • Taking part in labour job in the Kitchen or the Shop.


You can also use Wall Panels to separate the "kitchen" from the "dining" area. Note that people can walk through counters and other objects, but can't walk through panels.

Chairs don't need to be placed in front of tables, as customers will sit on any available chair they find. If you put a chair behind your counter, for example, you can see a customer and a prisoner sharing the same chair.

You can have 1 prisoner working in the Restaurant for every 12 squares; therefore you can have 2 workers assigned in the smallest Restaurant allowed (5x5).


Prisoners with access to the Restaurant can acquire weapons and tools (all of them made of metal, so it is adviced to use a Metal Detector) and booze ingredients (used to produce narcotics).

  • Knife (Weapons, Tools, Metal)
  • Fork (Weapons, Tools, Metal)
  • Spoon (Tools, Metal)
  • Scissors (Weapons, Tools, Metal)
  • Booze Ingredient (Narcotics, Produced Narcotics)

Tips and Tricks[]

Zoning the Restaurant into 2 areas (for example, one for the prisoners with the counter and the "kitchen", and one for the customers with chairs and tables) has only a cosmetic effect, as the customers may go anywhere they please in the Restaurant. For example, they will go straight through "the kitchen area" if that's the shortest way to reach the road. If you care about aesthetics, plan the Restaurant so that your customers enter from the door that leads to the shortest route for both the northern end and the southern end of the road (or your helipad/dock, depending on how your the civilians arrive to your prison).

Customers will start coming inside the Restaurant as soon as there are chairs in it and it has prisoners assigned to work there, even if there are no cookers or counters. Wait until you are ready to serve your customers before designating the area as Restaurant, to avoid angry customers.

It may happen that none of the prisoners working at the Restaurant have Cooking experience: in this case, they will stay in the room but won't cook anything, and the customers will leave angry. Be sure to have the Kitchen Safety and Hygene program available for your prisoners.


If customers don't arrive at the Restaurant but you already satisfied every requirement, saving and loading the map might fix the issue.