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Running a restaurant comes with inherent risks. For example, a server could accidentally spill coffee on a customer’s laptop or a kitchen fire could bring operations to a screeching halt. If you don’t want to cover the costs of mishaps out-of-pocket, restaurant insurance can help. Restaurant insurance generally refers to a business owner’s policy (BOP) which includes commercial property coverage, general liability, and often business income coverage (aka business interruption insurance). Additionally, owners may need workers’ compensation, commercial auto coverage, and other endorsements like liquor liability, equipment breakdown coverage, and food contamination insurance.
Best Restaurant Insurance of June 2023
- Best for Quick Coverage: NEXT Insurance
- Best for Customer Satisfaction: Chubb Ltd. (CW)
- Cheapest Coverage: FLIP (Food Liability Insurance Program)
- Best for Financial Stability: BiBerk
- Most Flexible Coverage: Thimble
- Best Online Provider: Huckleberry
For a free no-obligation custom quote, contact our partner Gallagher Small Business to speak with a small business expert who understands your needs: 833.810.5726.
Best for Quick Coverage : NEXT Insurance
NEXT offers comprehensive coverage for small restaurants and a quick online application process.
Quick online quote and application process
High BOP revenue limits
Low-cost liability coverage (for some businesses)
Car insurance and workers’ comp discounts
Limited endorsement options
Lower financial strength rating than most competitors
Through Next, you can get a host of essential restaurant coverages, including commercial property, general liability, liquor liability, and workers compensation insurance. The online application process can be completed in less than 10 minutes, and you can get same-day coverage after submitting your credit card payment. Based on your application, Next presents you with three custom policy packages from which to choose. However, you can also talk to a Next agent in your area for more customized service if you prefer.
While NEXT’s financial strength rating with AM Best rating is lower than many competitors, sitting at an A- (Excellent), it’s still considered to have an excellent ability to pay claims. The company offers competitive premiums, plus you can save up to 25% via various discounts, including a 10% discount when you bundle multiple policies. Overall, it’s a great option if you’re looking to get comprehensive restaurant insurance as soon as possible. A Next BOP for restaurant insurance starts at $459 per year.
Best for Customer Satisfaction : Chubb Ltd. (CW)
Chubb is appropriate for larger small restaurants and has a stellar reputation regarding customer satisfaction and financial stability.
Great customer satisfaction record
High BOP revenue limits
Wide range of endorsements
A++ (Superior) financial strength rating
Purchase and issue online is not available
Chubb offers a comprehensive catalog of restaurant insurance coverages for food businesses with annual receipts up to $30 million. This makes it appropriate for restaurateurs who anticipate increasing the size of their restaurant business, and would like an insurer that can grow with them.
The company offers common food insurance necessities such as a robust BOP, equipment breakdown coverage, and liquor liability, plus a host of other options. Chubb also ranked second in the J.D. Power Small Commercial Insurance Study, only one point behind the leader (State Farm).
You must work with an agent directly to purchase a policy. This is often prudent, especially if you have extensive coverage needs, but is less convenient than same-day coverage companies that let you purchase via their website.
Cheapest Coverage : FLIP (Food Liability Insurance Program)
FLIP specializes in affordable insurance for small food businesses and does it well.
Policy packages start at $299 per year
Specializes in insurance for food business owners
No business income insurance or workers’ comp
Of the 19 insurers we reviewed, FLIP has the lowest annual premium for its food liability insurance policy, at $299. It was also one of the few companies to offer discounts. However, it doesn’t provide as many coverage options as most of the other insurers.
For the $299, you get general liability insurance coverage and product liability up to $2 million, inland marine up to $10,000, and rented property insurance up to $300,000. Add-on options include professional liability, cyber liability, and a trailer endorsement. On the downside, there’s no business income coverage, no workers compensation insurance, and no standard commercial property coverage. That said, if the coverage suits your needs, FLIP can be a bargain.
Best for Financial Stability : BiBerk
AM Best gives BiBerk its highest financial stability rating (A++), the company is backed by the Berkshire Hathaway Insurance Group, and it offers comprehensive restaurant insurance coverage for small and large food businesses.
A+ (Superior) financial strength rating
No BOP revenue limit
Wide range of policy types and endorsements
BOP only available in 28 states
GL only offered in 27 states
When it comes to AM Best’s financial strength ratings, BiBerk earned the highest possible mark—an A++ (Superior). In other words, AM Best believes that BiBerk has a superior ability to meet its payment obligations.
As for BiBerk’s coverage, it offers a generous business owner’s policy (BOP), which includes commercial property insurance, general liability insurance, and business income (aka business interruption) coverage. Additionally, you can customize your policy with one of several available endorsements, including liquor liability insurance, food spoilage insurance, and equipment breakdown insurance. Further, workers’ comp, commercial auto, professional liability, and umbrella insurance are available. On the downside, BiBerk isn’t available nationwide, so you’ll need to check the availability in your state.
Most Flexible Coverage : Thimble
Thimble is a convenient and affordable option for event-based food businesses or those that have intermittent coverage needs.
Fewer customer complaints than expected
Comprehensive lineup of restaurant business insurance offerings
On-demand policies starting at $5 per hour
No commercial auto coverage
Not a direct insurer
Thimble specializes in helping small food business owners get small business insurance policies (underwritten by Markel or Chubb). Like others on this list, the company streamlines the whole process. You can get a quick quote online, purchase the policy, and print out a certificate of insurance within a few minutes. But what makes the company stand out is its on-demand coverage options and occurrence-based coverage.
If you only need coverage for a limited period of time—you have a popup restaurant, for example—you can elect Thimble’s on-demand general liability policy, which starts at $5 per hour.
What’s more, coverage is occurrence-based, which means that you’re covered for events that happen while your policy is active—no matter when someone brings forward a claim. This is especially useful if you purchase on-demand coverage, since someone could file a suit against you long after your event ended. But even for ongoing coverage, Thimble’s occurrence-based policies are flexible and can grant you peace of mind, even if you cancel or switch providers in the future.
Best Online Provider : Huckleberry
Huckleberry offers a convenient restaurant-specific endorsement that packages spoilage coverage insurance, food contamination coverage, and ordinance or law equipment coverage, among others.
BOPs include business income coverage
No BOP revenue limits
Liquor liability, workers compensation, and commercial auto available
Monthly payments not offered by all carriers
Not a direct insurance provider
Huckleberry is an online insurance broker that makes it easy for restaurant owners to get business insurance. You can visit the company’s website to request a quote, apply, and get coverage—all within a few minutes. However, if you sign up, Huckleberry won’t be your insurance carrier. Instead, you’ll be connected with a reputable carrier like Chubb Limited, Markel Corporation, or AmTrust Financial Services. (The carrier you get will depend on where you live and the type of coverage you choose.)
When it comes to coverage, Huckleberry offers a comprehensive business insurance lineup. Huckleberry’s BOP includes property insurance and general liability, along with business income coverage. Plus, you can get workers’ compensation insurance, commercial auto, and a laundry list of essential restaurant coverages, which is where Huckleberry really shines. It offers a restaurant-specific endorsement that packages spoilage coverage and food contamination coverage, among others. You can also purchase equipment breakdown coverage and liquor liability insurance.
Next is an all-around great choice for restaurant insurance as it offers the types of coverage that most restaurants need. But if you have a small food business and need ultra-affordable coverage, check out FLIP and Thimble. If your restaurant business is larger or you anticipate it becoming so, consider BiBerk and Chubb. Huckleberry is a good option for those who want an online provider.
A good first step is to get quotes from a few insurers that look like a good fit. Then, compare quotes and coverage to see which is best for your specific situation.
How Much Does Restaurant Insurance Cost?
The cost of restaurant insurance depends on various factors including your restaurant’s location, size, the assets you want to cover, your claims history, the insurer you choose, and more. According to our research, expect to spend at least $300 for food liability insurance and at least $450 for a restaurant business owner’s policy (BOP).
What Is Restaurant Insurance?
Restaurant insurance is a business owner's policy (BOP) plus restaurant-specific endorsements. Restaurant insurance includes commercial property coverage and general liability insurance: Some BOP policies include business income coverage, and many restaurant owners choose to add liquor liability, food spoilage coverage, and equipment breakdown coverage, among others.
What Insurance Does a Restaurant Need?
Restaurants need general liability insurance, at a minimum. Most also need commercial property insurance plus a host of other coverages, such as product liability coverage, liquor liability, workers compensation if they have employees, or commercial auto if they use a vehicle in business operations. A business owner’s policy (BOP) packages general liability and commercial property.
How Much Is Insurance for a Food Truck?
Food liability insurance for a food truck can cost as low as $299 per year. But that doesn’t include commercial property insurance, commercial auto coverage, or a trailer endorsement (if you operate out of a food trailer). Adding these often essential restaurant insurance coverages will increase costs to well over $1,000 per year.
To find the best restaurant insurance providers, we compiled a list of 19 commercial insurance companies that offer small business insurance in the food service industry. We collected 53 unique data points on costs, coverages, availability, the user experience, the quote and application experience, customer satisfaction, and the financial stability of each insurer.
Customer satisfaction levels were considered by looking at three years of consumer complaint data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) for each company’s commercial lines. We also considered whether each company placed in the 2022 J.D. Power Small Commercial Insurance Study. We used AM Best’s financial strength ratings to determine each company’s financial stability. For more detail, look at our full methodology for best small business insurance.
Next Insurance. "Business Insurance."
AM Best. "AM Best Assigns Credit Ratings to Next Insurance."
Next Insurance. "Financial Services Insurance For Small Business."
Chubb. "Business Owner's Policy."
J.D. Power. “2022 U.S. Small Commercial Insurance Study.”
Food Liability Insurance Program. "Coverage Details."
AM Best. "AM Best Affirms Credit Ratings of Berkshire Hathaway."
Thimble. "How to Print My Insurance Documents."
Huckleberry. "Huckleberry Carriers."