Inter-regional signaling coordinates pattern formation in Arabidopsis thaliana embryos. However, little is known regarding the cells and molecules involved in inter-regional communication. We have characterized two related leucine-rich repeat receptor-like kinases (LRR-RLKs), RECEPTOR-LIKE PROTEIN KINASE1 (RPK1) and TOADSTOOL2 (TOAD2), which are required together for patterning the apical embryonic domain cell types that generate cotyledon primordia. Central domain protoderm patterning defects were always observed subjacent to the defective cotyledon primordia cell types in mutant embryos. In addition, RPK1-GFP and TOAD2-GFP translational fusions were both localized to the central domain protodermal cells when cotyledon primordia were first recognizable. We propose that RPK1 and TOAD2 are primarily required to maintain central domain protoderm cell fate and that the loss of this key embryonic cell type in mutant embryos results in patterning defects in other regions of the embryo including the failure to initiate cotyledon primordia.