Embracing the Health-Conscious Customer

Posted by Melanie Trainor

Not so long ago eating nutritiously wasn’t a widespread movement, but today it is exactly what diners are searching for. We’ve put together a list of nourishing food trends to boost your menu appeal.

How to Contribute to Healthy Living

Onsite Gardens

The farm-to-table trend has increased in popularity and restaurants are taking advantage by growing their own vegetables and herbs, or sourcing them from local farms. Guests are increasingly becoming more interested in where foods come from. Fresh, local produce will add value to your naturally delicious menu items.

The Paleo Regimen

This lifestyle is often referred to as the ‘caveman diet’. It combines gluten-free dishes, the low-carb craze, and today’s protein-hungry gym culture. These meals often focus around lean meats, omega-3 packed fish, “heart-healthy” fats, fruit, seeds, leafy greens and low-starch fresh veggies.

New Greens

With the growth and popularity of farmer’s markets, diners are becoming more familiar with greens that go beyond the usual iceberg, romaine, and mesclun. People are looking to try unusual greens not often seen on a menu. Look for less common leafy options like frisée, mâche, lambs quarters, beet greens and tatsoi.

Veggie Snacks

Eating healthy doesn’t take snacks off the table. People are eager for small bites of flavorful, guilt-free options; hence the emergence of vegetable comfort foods like eggplant jerky and seaweed chips. These inventive edibles are a far better choice, and much more creative than the traditional celery or carrots served with a side of ranch!

New Protein Alternatives

As more people try to decrease their soy intake, the market for veggie-based meat substitutes has grown. Top of the list are mushrooms and corn-based alternatives; however, many chefs have also had success with cauliflower and nuts as well. Consumers continue to seek out opportunities to eat smarter and are enticed by creative and novel ways of doing so.

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