Meals Next Door - World's First Online Vegan Kitchen

Introduction: Meals Next Door - World's First Online Vegan Kitchen

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Household food waste alone per year is estimated to be $43 billion, making it a serious economic problem. NOT EVEN counting the restaurant waste, which must be an even incredibly higher number.

After reading this instructable, you will be able to start your own business from your home.

Skills needed;

- software + webpage design

- indoor construction + architectural design

- ability to follow very simple recipes ( computer guided cooking )

in 2010 at Virginia Tech university I have created this project for an Industrial Design class. I studied restaurant management in school and had this idea of an online kitchen for a while. and when my friend Bedri Cem asked me to present my idea in his ID class, I was very excited but nervous at the same time - since I didn't have any drawn/written materials. It was all just an idea in my mind.

My idea got accepted to enter the contest for his ID class. I got assigned with 4 team mates from the ID department. I was graduated at the time and was just attending this class as a guest. After working for very long hours, we came up with the following presentation, images, facts about the restaurant industry. We made it to top 3 in the class contest and received 98% A+ as a grade. After this class we were invited to give more presentations on campus under different departments. I have stayed in the area for a while after graduation in the hopes of starting this business but the laws in america didn't allow us. We have given presentations at the city hall, to lawyers, other business owners in the area... everyone loved it but couldn't come around the laws. The idea is to install these very tiny community kitchens all over inside the neighborhoods, quietly blending in. Creating no excess foot traffic nor does it require large amounts of unloading spaces like traditional restaurants. You can think of it as a home catering business. This is where it all started, I was home for a summer break (istanbul/turkey) and was eating a meal on the balcony, surrounded by hundreds of tall apartments. Then I said to myself, what if I worked from home, cooking food for my very immediate neighbors, starting with the same apartment, and maybe expanding to 2-3 more on the same sidewalk. then have another kitchen, always within the apartments. same idea unfolds, we would have hundreds, millions of these community kitchens, eliminating the need for restaurants. Safe, clean and VERY fast. no more driving around, completely eliminating the use of gasoline trying to feed yourself. Your food, your kitchen, always with you.

in summer of 2010 after graduation we did a short test run from my apartment. I have printed door hangers and put them on doors of where I could walk and deliver to, not very far, just a few houses/apartments around me, totaling up to 200-300 potential customers. We wrote a simple software and created a webpage. ONLY the people that received the door hanger could order from this specific kitchen. this is what makes us differ. We don't try to sell food to everyone in the city, just to our immediate surrounding area, and where we can't reach, we open another community kitchen. the aim here isn't to make profit profit profit. the aim here is to eliminate unnecessary food waste, which in return will make the whole planet profit. Our business is run mostly thru membership, we know our customers/neighbours, we always know our maximum and minimum, we don't have to pay rent because the kitchen is built into the building/community. Anyways after two weeks of successful orders, curious and excited returning customer, I have decided to shut it down. Even though I am eligible to serve food to public (servsafe permit) my "home kitchen" was not. I have received numerous invitations to start something similar in a commercial zone but then we are just another restaurant people drive to, using gasoline. nothings changed......


I would like to personally thank to our architect/designer Mr. Patrick Clay ( - - Mr. Bedri Cem ( for his logo/catalog designs, working late nights - teaching me how to use illustrator for long hours and Jacob Eberhart ( for everything he had done, without him I couldn't come as far, all the presentations we had been to, thank you all from my heart.


** attached is the .PDF document of our presentation/business plan. feel free to print it out and share it away. I have given copies of this to many people all over the world, other business/restaurant owners even..! share and open minds, create doubt and questioning towards our existing uncontrolled food service industry.

Step 1: Ordering System

First picture - MyKitchen

1. your plate

2. remaining orders for the day for your designated kitchen

3. nutritional label changes instantly as you add/remove items

4. no salt, no oil, no seasoning? no problem, remember you are the chef..!

5. side items

Second picture - MyProfile

1. personal settings

2. order history

3. suggestions accumulate based on your diet

4. you can see what you eat overtime in graph form, zooming in or out

5. reminders, notes section



this is the first step and maybe the only step if we can change the laws. as long as you write a program that can take online orders and alert you, you are done..!

the system keeps track of your ordering habits, height, weight, activity and makes suggestions based on what you may be lacking.

it's all just like playing a game on your iphone. you can cook an entire weeks meal and order it today, giving us the exact times that you want your food to be delivered, and it will be on your doorstep waiting for you to come back from work or gym, or breakfast when you wake up. 20 minute delivery guarantee, or free order.

we figured that eventually this was going to be a software business. like a franchise system, you choose to work from home, we come in set up your apartment's kitchen to our standards and give you the ordering system. now all you have to do is cook from home..!

The combinations you can come up with the food items is absolutely incredible..! And if you are not a cook, it's not a problem, you can look at what others are eating, order the same thing or change a few things on it. Eventually you will realize that you are the best chef there is! You can share what you eat on social media, have followers, comment on each others recipes.

Step 2: Idea

too much waste is happening in the food industry, it has to be controlled, reduced completely eliminated.

food can come to you at anytime, any day. you shouldn't follow it, frantically wondering what to eat next. we can have designated kitchens in large tall apartments. 3 floors out of 70 maybe, can be for this purpose, a community home kitchen. or in classic american neighborhoods.

what if we didn't need restaurants? doesn't it feel like more of a hassle to be driving everywhere all the time? I grew up in one of the most crowded cities in the world, 22 million people. for 12 years going to school I have spent 3 hours in traffic, 5 days a week. I don't even want to calculate how much time I have lost doing that, sitting in a car inhaling fumes...
what if drive thrus are not more efficient, what if our lives are not meant to be lived in a car? what if your food waited for you at your door step, fresh and clean food source, just like how you would feed your own kids, what if that waited for you at home... never thinking about food ever again? how much brain energy would you free, can you even imagine? we think about food and how to find time to get or eat it, ALL DAY !!!

Step 3: Kitchen

We designed the kitchen to be built off premises and easily put together on premises. Keeping the format as similar as possible even in home kitchens. Since we don't have any open flames as cooking equipment, we also do not need an expensive hood system, which makes this idea perfect for a home kitchen. everything runs on electricity. and if the rooftop of the apartment/house was solar energy, collecting rain water etc. we could in theory run this kitchen for free.

the kitchen is also dirt free. It washes itself at night automatically, it's pretty much a sealed pod, mostly in epoxy. that's why everything is curved so the water coming out from the ceiling with hidden sprayers gets washed down with gravity and gets drained into the middle. very limited resources used to clean everything. no other kitchen in the world can be this "sanitized".

I hate having to combine the idea of sanitation and food. one seems very alive, happy and the other, dead. these are rules created in developed countries to stop the spread of bacteria. but I have been traveling around the world since age 7 and I have been mostly in developing/3rd world countries where these codes and laws don't exist, but people living still very healthy and alive. so, i leave that part to think about to you because to me it doesn't matter. I designed it all this way just so we don't get questioned everyday by the health department. although everyone that ever cooked would probably choose a self cleaning kitchen anyways :)


Step 4: Entrance & Public Areas

" Meals next door owned by Akin Yildiz and Jacob Eberheart is a clear revolutionary vision of creating an efficient, sustainable, and clean kitchen that delivers healthy home cooked cuisine to its customers. This project provides a unique opportunity to create a holistic vision for the future of fast food; clean, healthy, and organic. The project is centered on sustainability and efficiency.

Entering the restaurant is a complete departure from the outside world. Walls coated in American Clay stucco in rich hues and floors of plyboo bamboo gives the reception area a warm and delicate appearance; a place where the customers can marvel at the décor while they wait for their meals. Leaving the profane and entering the sacred brings the viewer to the kitchen, a decidedly sacred and powerful space, worlds apart from the entranceway. Long preparation areas made out of Hempcrete and concrete dye allow for a spotless and clinical appearance for food preparation. An innovative lip system on the preparation area makes for a streamlined countertop into the wall, greatly reducing the hidden spots where dirt and grime could sneak. Fluorescent lights give a sharp but warm glow as well as saving energy. "

**from the original publishing;

The remaining rooms of the apartments/houses will also be employee/volunteer friendly. Equipped with showers, changing rooms, recreational area (internet access, seating areas etc.) I believe in making any business employee/volunteer friendly. the idea to be able to shower at work, work out or even rest is priceless. happy employees/volunteers = success & stability

Step 5: Marketing & Competition

the first picture is the door hanger we have designed and used successfully during our trial.

then we have some comparison charts. I believe that when McDonald's first came up with his idea, there was no intention of serving unhealthy food. I am sure the person was just as excited as me, giving something to the world, something new, something exciting. Over the years however things change... They maybe serving unhealthy food BUT their business is unique. Just outdated in this new era, now all they have to do is serve healthy foods :)

As you can see they finish second on the chart. you can go anywhere in the world and receive the same service, quality, food. this has to be admired. many businesses fail trying to accomplish this.

You can also see how technology is changing the way we live, eliminating human jobs at an incredible speed. Redbox* single handedly destroyed the movie rental business. The machine does stock control, accounting and marketing all on its own, automatically. Very similar to our community kitchen idea, just in a different business form. A very good example as to why Meals Next Door would succeed in its mission.

*Redbox; this is still and outdated technology in my opinion, it was since they launched. you have to drive to them, using gasoline + traffic. movies should be free to download online to anyone. isn't the purpose of a movie to teach something? how can you put a price on knowledge, art? not everything should be profit based. I believe that if we freely share knowledge + art, we will eliminate the need for money.

Step 6: Packaging & Delivery

the packaging becomes plant food, anywhere in the world you can throw it outside, it starts to grow plants as it dissolves to the soil - packaging can also be collected back and washed at the kitchen. again - we already know our maximums. everything is very organized as you can see.

delivery is preferably on foot, especially in cities with tall buildings.

or bicycle for more residential areas

and at most an electric car, like a nissan leaf - this would be necessary in very spread apart american neighborhoods. I still believe that 2 bicycles will be plenty tho.

Step 7: Conclusion

The combinations you can come up with the food items is absolutely incredible..! And if you are not a cook, it's not a problem, you can look at what others are eating, order the same thing or change a few things on it. Eventually you will realize that you are the best chef there is! You can share what you eat on social media, have followers, comment on each others recipes.

for the test run I had purchased these biodegradable containers.

The idea is good, everyone I showed it to wants to order from it for tonight's dinner. There is still not a stable way of eating healthy unless you prepare at home. I believe this is the new era of "fast food dining" and it should be studied very carefully. I believe to put an order to our waste, not just food but packaging, transportation etc. If we can harness our "waste" we will realize that we didn't have to work so hard at everything to begin with. And what if a simple software solved this problem?

First we need to change some laws and not be so afraid of food. This is a very fast growing problem, especially in developed countries where people stopped cooking for themselves. Don't forget Fast doesn't mean Unhealthy - even domino's pizza can't guarantee under 30 minutes of delivery SIMPLY because they have to drive and get stuck in traffic while your unhealthy food gets cold in the back seat !

Let's create a waste free new earth

thank you,

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    3 Discussions


    6 years ago

    Wow, that's a really cool idea! Very nice execution, good luck with your bussiness!

    Akin Yildiz
    Akin Yildiz

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    thank you very much sir. we have never started it actually, just got people to really really like it all the time.