The Top 4 Restaurant Accounting Services of 2023

As a restaurant owner, I know that when it comes to restaurant accounting, it’s about as much fun as playing the “eyelid paper cut game” (not a real game, please don’t attempt).

The point is, with so many expenses to manage and revenue to track, it’s important to have a reliable accountant or bookkeeping service (or at the very least good accounting software) to help you not only stay on top of your finances, but use the data from those finances so you can analyze, accelerate and grow your business.

But with so many accounting options available, where do you even start? Because you basically have three options.

The Three Restaurant Accounting Options

best online accounting services
  1. Using your own accounting software and do all of the accounting and bookkeeping yourself, or have a manager do it (too nightmarish)
  2. Hire an actual accountant or CPA (too expensive)
  3. Use online restaurant accounting or bookkeeping services (just right)

Of these options, we highly recommend hiring an online accounting service, also called virtual bookkeeping services. We’ll tell you why in just a second, but so you don’t have to scroll madly down the page searching for the best restaurant accounting services, I’ll list them right off the bat.

My goal here is to provide you with the best bookkeeping services to choose from so you can find what’s right for you.

4 Best Online Restaurant Accounting Services [Quick Glance] – Best Bookkeeping Service Overall

Xendoo – Best Bookkeeping Service Runner-Up (Almost a Tie)

1-800Accountant – Best For Non-Profits

QuickBooks Live – Best For QuickBooks Users

Do I Really Need an Accountant or Bookkeeping Service?

Restaurant accounting

Yes you do. And that’s because running a restaurant business can be challenging, and managing finances can be one of the most time-consuming and complex tasks.

If you aren’t currently performing bookkeeping and accounting on a daily, weekly and monthly basis for you restaurant business, then you should be strung up by your toes and dipped in hot tar.

Ok, that’s a little harsh, but it is crucial to have a clear understanding of your financial situation at all times. And doing it yourself sucks! Even if you do have good accounting software. You should be spending your time growing your regulars and growing your business. This is where an accountant or bookkeeping service can help.

An accountant or virtual bookkeeper can provide several benefits to your restaurant business. They can help you keep track of your finances, and use financial reports to identify areas where you can save money.

Not only does this keep your financial records accurate and up-to-date, but the accounting service will also help you prepare financial statements, file taxes, and analyze your cash flow statements.

Advantages of Using a Restaurant Accounting Service

restaurant bookkeeping services

One of the biggest advantages of using an online bookkeeping service is that it can save you time and money. Online bookkeeping services are affordable and can provide you with real-time financial data.

Another advantage of using an online bookkeeping service is that it can provide you with access to your own team of professionals. Online bookkeeping services will often even assign you with your own accounting specialist who can provide you with financial advice and guidance.

They can also help you with tax planning, budgeting, and forecasting. Just having someone who is able to do this for you takes a load off your plate, and you’ll find your sanity returning.

But the most important factor is that they will automate many of the manual tasks associated with bookkeeping, such as data entry and bank reconciliation, which means you don’t have to do it. You need to have your time freed up so you can focus on other aspects of your business, like growing your profits.

virtual bookkeeping

You need to be out and about, firing up your staff and talking with your guests, as well as using your time and brain-power to ramp up your marketing to get even more people into your restaurant.

And of course, when choosing a bookkeeping service, you want to make sure to choose a reputable and reliable provider. I did some research on this, and the four services in this article are all great accounting services. You are welcome to choose someone else if you want. I’m just here to help.

Factors to Consider When Choosing an Online Bookkeeping Service

accountant for restaurant

Experience and Expertise

One of the most important factors to consider when choosing an accountant or virtual bookkeeping service for your restaurant is their experience and expertise.

You want to work with someone who is well-versed in the restaurant industry and has a deep understanding of the unique financial challenges that come with running a restaurant.

Look for an accountant or service that has experience working with restaurants similar to yours, and who can offer specialized financial advice and guidance.

They should know all about prime cost, labor costs, cash flows, inventory management, operating expenses, payroll taxes and net profit margin to name a few. And by simply pulling information from your restaurant POS system, they can get exactly what they need.

Pricing and Packages

We all care about price when it comes to purchasing anything, and it’s nothing new when choosing an accountant or online bookkeeping services.

So of course you’ll want to find a service that offers transparent pricing and a range of packages to choose from, so you can select the one that best fits your restaurant’s needs and budget. Look for a service that offers flat-rate pricing or a clear fee structure, so you can avoid unexpected costs or hidden fees.

Customer Support

As with any service in any industry, good customer support is essential when it comes to choosing an accountant or online bookkeeping service.

Look for a service that offers responsive and helpful customer support, so you can get the help you need when you need it. Consider the service’s hours of operation, response times, and the availability of support channels like phone, email, and chat.

With many of the bookkeeping services, you will be assigned a dedicated specialist and you will be able to contact him/her directly.

Technology and Integrations

The right technology and integrations can make a big difference when it comes to your restaurant bookkeeping. Look for an accountant or online bookkeeping service that uses modern, cloud-based technology and offers integrations with other tools and software you use, like Xero or QuickBooks Online.

This can help streamline your financial management processes and make it easier to track expenses, manage cash flow and payroll, and stay on top of your restaurant’s finances.

What Services do Virtual Bookkeepers Provide?

restaurant bookkeeping services

These online accountants provide any and every service that a bookkeeper or CPA would provide if you hired them personally. Those services include (but not limited to):

  • Bookkeeping services
  • Catch up bookkeeping
  • Payroll services
  • Customer invoicing
  • Tax services
  • Preparing and analyzing financials like cash flow statement, balance sheet, cash flow statement, profit and loss statement, etc.
  • Bill pay
  • Financial planning and investments

Top 4 Restaurants Bookkeeping Services [In-Depth Look]

bookkeeper 360

Bookkeeper360 is by far one of the best online bookkeeping services available, especially for the restaurant industry. It is a cloud-based accounting service that offers bookkeeping, tax preparation, payroll, and advisory services to small businesses.

The company has a team of certified public accountants and bookkeepers who provide personalized services to their clients.

Bookkeeper360 at a Glance

SoftwareQuickBooks & Xero
Pricing$125/hr. or $399/mo. – $749/mo.
Dedicated SpecialistYes
Support OptionsPhone, Chat & Video Conferencing
Monthly Financial StatementsYes
Invoicing and Bill PayAdd-on Cost – $150/mo.
PayrollAdd-on Cost – $46/mo.
TaxesAdd-on Cost – $800 per filing
CFO AdvisoryAdd-on Cost – $1,000/mo.
Free TrialNo

Pros and Cons

bookkeeper360 pros and cons


  • Dedicated bookkeeper and CPA
  • Cloud-based platform for easy access to financial information
  • Integrates with Xero and QuickBooks accounting software
  • Accrual accounting available
  • Free consultation
  • Lots of add-on services


  • A bit pricier than its competitors if you have high monthly expenses

Bookeeper360 Pricing

Depending on the services and frequency you require, Bookkeeper360 offers three available subscription plans. Unlike other bookkeeping services, the starting prices for these plans increase based on your monthly expenses.

However, you can cancel your subscription anytime, and there is no contract required.

In addition, if you click on any of the links here, Bookkeeper360 will give you TheRealBarman special when you sign-up, which is 20% for the first three months, which is pretty frickin’ amazing.

The three pricing plans are:

Pay as You Go – $125 per hour for support for up to $20,000 in monthly expenses

Monthly: Pricing starts at $399 per month for cash accounting and $549 for accrual accounting for up to $20,000 in monthly expenses

Weekly: Starts at $549 per month for cash accounting and $749 for accrual accounting for up to $20,000 in monthly expenses; support and advanced reporting included.

bookkeeper360 pricing

As you can see above the pricing chart, you can select either Cash or Accrual Accounting, and then you can use the slider to declare what your monthly expenses are. The pricing adjusts for you.

Bookkeeper360 Services

Bookkeeping services

Payroll and HR

Tax filing services

Back office services

Bank and credit card reconciliations

Accounts payable and accounts receivable

Financial statement preparation

Though it can be a bit pricier than its competitors, the feedback from customers of Bookkeeper360 is remarkably positive. Rarely is the price mentioned because they deliver on what they promise. I highly recommend Bookkeeper360.


virtual bookkeeping services

Xendoo is another bookkeeping service that I am very impressed with. They specialize in helping small businesses and restaurants with their accounting needs, including a wide range of services, such as: monthly bookkeeping, tax preparation, financial transactions and financial reporting.

Xendoo’s team of certified accountants uses cloud-based software to provide real-time financial data and analysis, which can help restaurant owners make informed business decisions.

One of the standout benefits of Xendoo is their affordable pricing. They offer a flat monthly fee, which includes unlimited support and access to their online platform. This can be a great option for restaurants that are looking for a cost-effective way to manage their finances.

Xendoo at a Glance

SoftwareQuickBooks & Xero
Pricing$395/mo. – $995/mo.
Dedicated SpecialistYes
Support OptionsPhone, Email, Chat
Monthly Financial StatementsYes
Invoicing and Bill PayNo
PayrollGusto (Integration)
Taxes and Consulting ServicesAdditional Cost
Free TrialNo

Pros and Cons

xendoo pros and cons


  • User-friendly platform
  • Dedicated account specialist
  • Competitive pricing
  • Integrates with Xero and QuickBooks accounting software
  • Mobile app
  • Catch up bookkeeping services
  • 30-day money-back guarantee


  • No free trial
  • No accrual accounting option with Essential plan
  • No invoicing or bill pay services

Xendoo Pricing

Xendoo Pricing

Xendoo has competitive pricing and provides three subscription options that are determined by the monthly expenses of your business and the number of bank and credit card accounts linked to your account.

The three plans are: Essential, Growth, and Scale. The Essential plan costs $395 per month, the Growth plan is $695 per month and the Scale plan is $995/mo.

Additionally, Xendoo offers custom plans for businesses exceeding $125,000 in monthly expenses, as well as advanced financial analysis, budgeting and tax advice for $1,500 per month.

Xendoo Services

Xendoo offers a range of accounting services for restaurant businesses, including:

  • Bookkeeping and accounting
  • Tax planning and preparation
  • Financial statements and reporting
  • Cash flow management
  • Payroll and HR services
  • CFO advisory (additional fee)

Overall, Xendoo is a fantastic choice for small to medium-sized restaurant businesses that require basic to advanced accounting services at an affordable price.


1-800Accountant provides a comprehensive suite of online accounting services that can help small business owners save time and money.

Their team of real CPAs offers personalized consultations to help businesses stay on top of their finances and make informed decisions. Additionally, their online platform is user-friendly and accessible, making it easy for business owners to manage their finances from anywhere at any time. 

1-800Accountant at a Glance

SoftwareClientBooks – No Quickbooks or Xero
Pricing$129/mo. – $399/mo. billed annually
Dedicated SpecialistYes
Support OptionsPhone, Email & Chat
Monthly Financial StatementsEnterprise plan only
Invoicing and Bill PayNo
Taxes & Consulting ServicesEnterprise and Corporation plans only
Free TrialNo

Pros and Cons

1800accountant pros and cons


  • Great for Non-profit organizations
  • Expertise in tax preparation and planning
  • Dedicated accountant
  • Reasonable flat fee, no matter the number of transactions
  • Mobile app


No month-to-month pricing option; paid annually only

Bookkeeping services & financial reports only available on Enterprise plan

Add-ons can get expensive

1800Accountant Pricing offers a variety of pricing plans for small businesses, including restaurants.

Before enrollment, a complimentary live bookkeeping consultation is mandatory, and the services are charged on an annual basis. You can also personalize a package to better align with your company’s requirements.

Bookkeeping services and financial reports are exclusive to the Enterprise subscription, while both Corporation and Enterprise plans offer business and personal tax preparation services:

  • Business Plan: $129/month for ongoing tax guidance and proactive tax strategizing
  • Corporation Plan: $239/month for continuous tax advice, proactive tax planning, and tax preparation services
  • Enterprise Plan: $399/month for year-round tax consultation, proactive tax planning, bookkeeping services, and tax preparationHere are some of the pricing options available:
  • Custom Plan: Contact for pricing
1800accountant pricing

1800Accountant Services

  • Bookkeeping and accounting
  • Tax preparation and planning
  • Payroll services
  • Audit defense
  • Business consulting
  • Financial statement preparation

Overall, is a good option for small businesses that need online bookkeeping services and personalized support from a dedicated accountant.

However, they do not provide a month-to-month pricing plan, so it’s important to consider your budget when choosing online bookkeeping services for your restaurant.

Quickbooks Live

Quickbooks Live for Restaurants

Quickbooks Live is basically an extension of QuickBooks Online accounting software and is designed to help businesses maintain their books, properly categorize expenses, and perform reporting.

What this means is if you are a die-hard QuickBooks user for your accounting software, Quickbooks Live is nice because you have professionals who are experts in using it.

One of QuickBooks Live’s primary selling points is that they will provide businesses with tax-ready books.

However, their service is limited compared to the other three on this list, as it works more as a supplement to QuickBooks Online than a full service bookkeeping service.

QuickBooks Live at a Glance

SoftwareQuickBooks Online (duh!)
Pricing$220 – $400/mo. + $500 onboarding fee
Dedicated SpecialistYes
Support OptionsPhone, Chat & Video Conferencing
Monthly Financial StatementsYes
Invoicing and Bill PayNo
PayrollQuickBooks Payroll integration
Free TrialNo

Pros and Cons

quickbook live pros and cons


  • Dedicated specialist certified in QuickBooks
  • QuickBooks Live provides tax-ready books, which can save businesses time and money when it comes to filing taxes.
  • The service is an extension of QuickBooks Online, which means businesses can easily integrate their bookkeeping with their accounting software.


  • Limited services compared to others
  • Expensive for what you get
  • Learning curve on using QuickBooks Live can be time-consuming
  • Not included with QuickBooks online; costs extra
  • No financial and tax consulting
  • No accrual method available
  • Does not include inventory management
  • Bookkeepers not always available when needed

QuickBooks Live Pricing

Quickbooks Live Pricing

QuickBooks Live offers three pricing tiers, which are determined by your business’ monthly expenses. The real kicker though is that you will need to pay a monthly subscription fee for QuickBooks Online, which can range from $30 to $200.

When you first sign up for QuickBooks Live, your initial month of service is devoted to onboarding and organizing your books, and this is charged at a rate of $500.

Following this, you will be charged according to the appropriate tier for your business:

  • Low Volume: $200 per month for up to $10,000 in monthly expenses
  • Medium Volume: $300 per month for up to $50,000 in monthly expenses
  • High Volume: $400 per month for anything over $50,000 in monthly expenses

QuickBooks Live Services

  • Onboarding and setup ($500)
  • Bookkeeping
  • Monthly financial reports
  • Tax preparation
  • Payroll (paid integration)
  • Accounts receivable and payable
  • Clean-up services (included in onboarding fee)
  • Consultations

QuickBooks Live is a good service for those who want a bridge between their QuickBooks accounting software and the specialist who is helping them. The bang for your buck is a bit weak though.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is an Accounting Method?

An accounting method is a set of rules and procedures used by businesses to record financial transactions. It involves the process of identifying, measuring, and communicating financial information to stakeholders.

For restaurants, choosing the right accounting method is crucial to ensure accurate financial reporting and compliance with tax regulations.

Types of Accounting Methods: Cash vs. Accrual Accounting

what's the difference between cash and accrual accounting

There are two main accounting methods that restaurants can use: cash accounting and accrual accounting.

Cash Accounting

The cash accounting method is based on cash transactions. This method is usually used by small restaurants and bars that have fewer transactions. The method allows the business to record the generated income at the point when cash is received from sales and cash is paid for expenses.

This method is simple and easy to use, but it may not provide an accurate picture of the restaurant’s financial health since it does not take into account unpaid bills or revenue that has been earned but not yet received.

Accrual Accounting

The accrual accounting method records revenue and expenses when they are earned or incurred, regardless of when cash is received or paid. This method provides a more accurate picture of the restaurant’s financial health since it takes into account unpaid bills and revenue that has been earned but not yet received.

However, it requires more record-keeping and may be more complex and time-consuming.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Each Accounting Method

The choice of accounting method depends on the size and complexity of the restaurant’s operations, as well as its goals and objectives. Here are some advantages and disadvantages of each method:

Cash Accounting


  • Simple and easy to use
  • Provides a clear picture of cash flow
  • Less record-keeping required


  • May not provide an accurate picture of financial health
  • Does not take into account unpaid bills or revenue that has been earned but not yet received
  • May not be suitable for larger or more complex restaurants

Accrual Accounting


  • Provides a more accurate picture of financial health
  • Takes into account unpaid bills and revenue that has been earned but not yet received
  • May be more suitable for larger or more complex restaurants


  • Requires more record-keeping
  • May be more complex and time-consuming

Q: What is the difference between bookkeeping and accounting?


Bookkeeping is the process of recording and organizing a company’s financial transactions. It involves keeping track of every financial transaction, including sales, purchases, receipts, and payments.

Bookkeeping is a crucial component of any business as it helps to maintain accurate financial records that can be used for various purposes, such as preparing tax returns and financial statements.

Bookkeepers are responsible for recording and classifying financial transactions, reconciling bank statements, and generating financial reports.


Accounting involves interpreting, analyzing, and summarizing financial data. It goes beyond bookkeeping and involves using financial data to make informed business decisions.

Accountants use financial data to prepare financial statements, analyze business performance, and provide financial advice to business owners.

They also ensure that financial reports are accurate and comply with accounting standards and regulations.

Q: What is a Virtual Bookkeeping Service?

A virtual bookkeeping service is a type of bookkeeping service that is provided remotely through the internet. The best virtual bookkeepers use cloud-based software to manage financial records, prepare financial statements, and perform other bookkeeping tasks.

This type of service allows businesses to outsource their bookkeeping tasks to professionals who work remotely, saving them time and money.

Benefits of a Virtual Bookkeeping Service

There are several benefits to using a virtual bookkeeping service, including:

  • Cost savings: Virtual bookkeeping services are often more affordable than hiring an in-house bookkeeper.
  • Flexibility: Virtual bookkeepers can work on your books at any time, from anywhere, which means you have more flexibility in your schedule.
  • Expertise: Virtual bookkeeping services often have a team of professionals with expertise in different areas of bookkeeping, which means you have access to a wider range of knowledge and skills.
  • Accuracy: Virtual bookkeeping services use advanced software to ensure accuracy and minimize errors.
  • Time savings: By outsourcing your bookkeeping tasks, you can focus on other areas of your business.

In the end, I hope this helps you get your restaurant accounting and bookkeeping in line. Don’t spend time getting educated on becoming an accountant. You have a job that you already need to get better at. Hire a professional, I promise you won’t regret it. Here are the 4 best restaurant bookkeeping services again, in case you’re ready: – Best Bookkeeping Service Overall

Xendoo – Best Bookkeeping Service Runner-Up (Almost a Tie)

1-800Accountant – Best For Non-Profits

QuickBooks Live – Best For QuickBooks Users

See you next time,

TheRealBarman Team