Posted on January 13 2018
How to Create Healthier Menu Options for your Restaurant
As we have mentioned here before, health food, clean living, and locally sourced products are at the top of consumer’s minds for 2016. Creating healthier food options will help you drive business as well as being, overall, a good decision for your customers. Here are some tips on increasing the healthiness of your menu:
Swap pasta for quinoa: quinoa is a seed – not a grain – and it’s also a super food. If you add quinoa as an option for grain, you are providing a healthy, paleo, gluten free, and delicious alternative for your diners. It can be substituted for a pasta recipe or work well as the base for a hearty lunchtime salad. Additional bonus: quinoa is very cheap and will keep your costs down!
Swap lettuce for kale: Americans are eating more leafy greens than ever before, and the darker the green, the more nutrient packed it is. Kale is currently in season, so source it at your local farm for added bonus points for the foodie community. A versatile leafy green, kale works equally well as a lettuce substitute or sautéed as a side vegetable.
Swap sugar for fruit: the farmers’ market stands are bursting with fresh fruit in July. Make season, fruit focused desserts the start of your menu. Not only are they healthy, but they are also bright and colorful! Berry dishes, strawberry shortcake, and parfaits are all great, light summer desserts. You can also puree fresh fruit to keep behind the bar in lieu of sugary mixers, and consider making a shrub (vinegar and pickled fruit) as a simple, classic cocktail base that the hipsters will love.
Create big and small versions of entree items: this is a great way to increase your bottom line and also allow your customers to have control over their portion sizes! A ‘small’ version of regular menu items can be half the size and 75% of the price of the full size version – increasing your profit margin. Petite pasta dishes are perfect for light eaters or those that may want a ‘small’ indulgence but not be interested in a full size bowl of pasta. This is also a great option for your lunch menu!