When looking for your next piece of catering equipment, you will often see products labelled with a “GN” number. GN is short for Gastronorm, which is used to measure the size of trays, pans and containers that are created to an industry standard.
Gastronorm sizes were created by the European Standards Committee as a way to standardise the container sizes in the catering industry. They are designed to help make it easier, simpler and more cost effective for manufacturers of catering equipment and the end consumer.
There are 9 different sizes, which are based on the outer dimensions of the container. GN containers are available in a variety of depths, enabling them to be used for a wide range of foodstuffs, and in various pieces of equipment.
Various materials are available, as it’s not only for heating that Gastronorm pans are used for. They are also used for storage when refrigerating, displaying in self-service environments and storing warm food for service. They are generally available in stainless steel, polycarbonate, melamine, polypropylene and even porcelain, meaning that there is a gastonorm pan to suit all storage or display needs.
Another useful benefit of using Gastronorm pans is that they are modular by design. For example, you may have a 1/1 GN Sized Well. This could be filled with a 1/1 GN pan. Or it could be filled with 2 x 1/2 GN pans; or 1 x 1/2GN pan and 2 x 1/4 GN Pans; or even 6 x 1/6 GN pans. Since gastronorm pans are all based on fractions, you can flexibly combine containers together to suit your needs.
GN Sizes and Ratios:
|GN 1/1||530 × 325mm||Full GN|
|GN 1/2||325 × 265mm||Half GN|
|GN 1/4||265 × 162mm||Quarter GN|
|GN 2/1||650 × 530mm||Double GN|
|GN 1/3||325 × 176mm||1 Third GN|
|GN 2/3||354 × 325mm||2 Thirds GN|
|GN 2/4||530 × 162mm|
|GN 1/6||176 × 162mm|
|GN 1/9||108 × 176mm|
The steel retains heat and keeps the food warm and allows you to cook food in a pan and then keep it warm afterwards without switching containers.
Polycarbonate and Polypropylene containers are often used for keeping foods refrigerated, or in a buffet display setting. They offer a flexible, strong, and sometimes transparent design that allows easier identification when being stored.
Melamine containers are made from a strong, lightweight and hard, thermosetting plastic. They are durable, strong and also available in different colours, making them great for displaying and storing food. These are not suitable for use in the oven.
Porcelain gastronorm dishes are suitable for hot or cold food preparation, storage and presentation in buffet displays or as an alternative to traditional stainless steel pans. They are strong and are Oven, microwave, freezer and dishwasher proof.
Things worth checking:
Will it fit: Check before ordering that the Gastronorm pan will fit in your equipment, and vice-versa. It’s important you use pans that will fit correctly. Ensure you check the depth of the pan will be compatible with your equipment, these are listed on the product page.
Which material: You should also check to make sure you choose a material that is suitable for the way you’ll be using them. Some materials can be used for both cooking and refrigerating, others are best for display.
Do you need lids: Most gastronorm pans have options for lids, some with cut-outs for keeping ladles or other utensils organised.
Still unsure which is right for you?
There’s a huge amount of different types and sizes of containers to choose from. Get in touch with our experienced team who can advise on what’s best for you and your requirements.
Phone: 01977 687 580