CHICAGO — According to a new report by Chicago-based research firm Technomic, the appearance of vegetables on the menu has increased more than 11 per cent in the past three years.
“An increase in the price of proteins has given chefs the opportunity to introduce inventive vegetable formats onto the menu,” said Darren Tristano, EVP, Technomic.
“For example, operators have found a variety of uses for kale, and it has grown in total menu incidence by almost 400 per cent over the past five years. Additionally, different preparation methods, like roasting Brussels sprouts or caramelizing root vegetables, have had a big influence on the way vegetables are menued.”
The new “Category Close-up” report reveals operators are transforming vegetables into creative dishes and giving them prominence on the menu, specifically featuring them in centre-of-plate arrangements.
The research also shows that 65 per cent of consumers believe restaurants can offer healthy food without sacrificing taste, with 85 per cent of consumers saying fresh food is healthier and tastes better.