5 Practical Changes to Healthify Your Restaurant Menu
Nearly all restaurants have something healthy to offer on their menu. Some of the well-known restaurant chains with guilt-free dishes you can indulge in are Chipotle, Wendy’s, McDonald’s, Subway, and The Cheesecake Factory.
Since even big, global restaurant chains are constantly looking for ways to incorporate healthier dishes in their menus, if you own a food business, it’s crucial to follow this trend.
Doing so allows you to cater to health-conscious customers who are always willing to pay more to enjoy healthy meals.
Making changes to your menu also enables you to offer more nourishing dishes that appeal to both health-conscious customers and those who want to expand their palates.
All these can translate into an increase in your sales and profits and ensure you stay on par with the competition.
Easy Ways to Make Your Restaurant Menu Healthier
Making your menu healthier may sound challenging. However, there are simple and practical steps you can take to make these changes.
Bidfood, one of the top food suppliers in Dubai, shares the below five easy tips that can help your restaurant have a healthier menu:
1. Introduce healthy substitutes.
Before modifying the content of your menu, you need to make some changes in the kitchen to ensure you can serve up healthier dishes and back up your claims.
An easy way to start is to replace the unhealthy ingredients you usually use with healthier ones.
If you use sunflower, canola, or any type of vegetable oil, switch to healthier ones, such as coconut oil or olive oil.
Also, serve salads with olive oil and vinegar instead of creamy, fatty dressings. If you use sour cream in some dishes, switch to Greek yogurt, which contains less sugar and more protein.
Instead of offering white rice exclusively, start offering brown and cauliflower rice as healthy alternatives.
Also, start making sugar swaps. Instead of using refined sugars in your desserts and sweet beverages, opt for natural sweeteners such as organic honey, dates, or monk fruit.
These changes may not be huge, but they’ll help you get on the right track to having healthier menus.
2. Serve leaner cuts of meat.
If different types of meat are staples in your menu, you can make these dishes healthier by choosing leaner cuts.
For beef, flank, sirloin, tenderloin, top round, and eye round are some of the leanest cuts since these have lower fat content.
On the other hand, loin chop, boneless ham, tenderloin, and top loin roast are the leanest cuts of pork.
For chicken, breast and drumstick are the leanest cuts. You can cut their fat and calorie content in half by serving them skinless.
You can also make your meat dishes even healthier by skipping unnecessary fats like butter and cream when preparing and cooking lean cuts.
Add more seafood dishes to your menu.
Fish and shellfish are nutritious since they are excellent sources of omega-3, vitamins B and D, iron, and protein.
However, the average person does not eat the recommended servings of fatty fish and shellfish per week, which means they are losing out on a lot of nutrients.
You can turn things around by serving more seafood in your restaurant. Use both wild-caught and farm-raised fish and shellfish in your new dishes or add them to tweak your current offerings.
If you want to use frozen seafood, choose products that are responsibly sourced.
Make sure you also prepare your seafood using healthy cooking methods, such as broiling, grilling, or baking.
4. Reduce portions.
Reducing portion sizes is one of the best strategies you can try to help people lower their risk for obesity and other diet-related diseases. It is also an effective way to reduce food waste.
Try to cut your serving portions in half. You can offer the smaller portion sizes at lower prices suitable for one person and the usual ones at their regular prices, which two or more customers can share.
If you choose to serve smaller portions only, be prepared to deal with some negative reactions. You can minimize and manage those by highlighting the nutrient quality and great flavor each dish provides.
Also, focus on enhancing the dining experience so your customers can enjoy themselves when they visit your restaurant.
5. Offer more healthy beverages.
Sugary and carbonated drinks are unhealthy for various reasons. To have a completely healthier menu, add more fresh juices and smoothies.
Fresh juices and smoothies are popular menu items since they are refreshing, especially during the summer. In cities like Dubai, where the weather is hot nearly all year-round, you’ll have additional offerings that are sure to sell.
Since you’ll use fresh fruits and veggies, you’ll be able to serve beverages that are tasty, nutritious, and low-calorie at the same time.
Make use of both seasonal and year-round fresh fruits and vegetables for your healthy beverages. Again, always use natural sweeteners, such as honey and dates, to give these drinks flavor.
Lastly, don’t forget to highlight your healthy alternatives to sugary fizzy drinks, such as water, brewed coffee, and tea.
Aside from serving plain drinking water, work with your sparkling water suppliers to find out what other water products you can add to your beverage menu.
Sparkling water is an excellent option since it makes this natural, healthy beverage less boring to drink.
Also, when served plain, coffee, and tea are actually calorie-free beverages and are excellent healthy options since they contain antioxidants and flavonoids that are good for your health.
With these tips, you can have healthier food and beverage offerings and more varied menu items that will satisfy your loyal and new customers.
You can get more ideas on how to improve your restaurant menu by visiting our blog page.