While they may be bite-sized, snacks can mean big biz for restaurants. And with the surge in demand for healthy, unique snacks, you can increase sales throughout the day by offering convenient, good-for-you foods.

High-protein meal replacers and feel-good snacks that tout benefits for energy, immunity, and health are more popular than ever. One in five consumers have expressed a willingness to pay more for food and beverages containing functional ingredients that “boost mental health.”1

Chip Craze

While potato and tortilla chips are still major players in the snack category, healthier chip alternatives are on the rise2. Consider banana chips or nori crisps with dip as a healthy option. Cinco de Mayo is this week, so serving up fresh guac with watermelon radish chips might grab attention.

Fermented Feelings

Fermented foods have held the top spot in annual lists of superfoods for years, and they’ve made their way into everything from cocktails and sauces to even desserts. Miso, the ever popular and versatile Japanese fermented ingredient, packs serious umami flavor and is perfect for your salad dressings, noodles, soup, and as a healthy glaze or marinade.

Also healthy and easy to make, fermented favorite sauerkraut not only works as a side dish with seasonal plates but also provides vitamin C and boosts gut health. Consider West Creek® Sauerkraut to top hard-boiled eggs for an extra zing of flavor, add some tang to crispy latkes, or punch up an Asian-inspired chilled noodle salad. Kimchi, kombucha mushrooms, fermented hot chili sauce, and tempeh, the Indonesian nutty-tasting protein bomb, are all trending foods that can help add healthy, unique snacks to your menu.

A Little Nutty

High in protein, plus vitamins and minerals, nuts and seeds are superfoods made for snacking. And while long served as a complimentary snack at bars, there are tastier and cost-effective ways to work these into your menus. Consider Magellan® Almonds to top a breakfast parfait, add to a puree with basil and spinach for a light pesto sauce, or to provide some crunch to a curried apple slaw side dish.

The Indian spice blend chaat masala has been trending the last several years, and the vibrant fruity and savory mix can bring peanuts to life or add a punch to a savory vegetable dip. And just in time for summer, grill up some peaches to top with chili-roasted pistachios, Burrata, and balsamic vinegar for a snack that’s a treat for the eyes and taste buds.

Pickled Perks

According to industry reports, about 4% of restaurant menus mention pickled ingredients. But they are starting to pop up in cocktails, chip flavors, pickled fruit, and as standalone dishes. Try serving Delancey Street Deli® Gourmet Pickled Red Onions to add a pop of color and tartness to charcuterie boards, fresh spring spinach salads, and avocado toast.

And when you finish with the onions, use the brine for marinades and salad dressings, and add to a dirty martini for a pretty, pink LTO that will get guests…well, pickled. To lean into the fruit trend, pickle watermelon rinds for a bruschetta topping or do a mix of summer fruit for a relish or salsa. For Italian restaurants, the classic mostarda can be used as a crostini topping, and spicy giardiniera is great for pasta salads.

1Technomic Snack Report 2023
2Datassential, The World of Snacks, 2023

Stay Fresh And Informed

Sign up for our newsletters for information on food trends, promotions, industry tips, and so much more.

Sign Up Today