Make Your Restaurant Menu Healthy
Every modern restaurant can do its part in ensuring its menu is healthier. No matter what time of day it is, it’s never too late or early to eat better. While you might still use high-fructose corn syrup in your foods, you should try modifying your ingredients and adding substitutions for strict diets. Here are ways restaurants can create a healthy menu.
Consider Dietary Restrictions
Many restaurants may not fully understand dietary restrictions. Some are so severe that specialized menus and kitchen spaces are necessary to accommodate certain customers. The changes are often relatively simple to implement, but you must learn about common dietary restrictions and consider what you can change on your budget.
There are many sensitivities, allergies, and religious-specific diets to follow. Consider polling community members to see what diets are the most common in your area. The two most common diets are alkaline and Mediterranean.
Mediterranean diets focus on healthy oils, seafood, and grass-fed meats. Any processed foods, refined sugar, and dairy are off-limits. Add symbols to show what menu items are. For instance, you can indicate dishes that use grass-fed meats or dairy. People can then pick or avoid items accordingly.
The alkaline diet is different. A person on this diet cannot consume acidic foods because their bodies don’t break them down fast enough. A person with this diet experiences acid reflux if they don’t follow it. Consider crafting a menu including ingredients with little to no acid, such as avocados.
Use a Menu Key To Show Healthy Options
A menu key is the best way to show what foods are healthiest to eat, including what’s vegan or vegetarian or contains nuts. Some examples of menu keys include an image of a grill that signifies the main course or side dish is grilled or a sugar-free symbol to show a drink or food option has no sugar.
A menu key helps customers pick food options that help them feel comfortable eating in your restaurant. Consider adding calorie count to your menu so that those on various diets know how much they can eat.
Slim Down Dinner Portions
Dinner is the best time to eat well. But it’s not healthy to have huge portions. Instead of offering endless baskets of fries or bread, consider offering better portion sizes for sides and even the main course. You could also consider providing an unlimited vegetable tray option.
When you slim down dinner portions, you help patrons avoid health problems like acid reflux and diabetes. Customers like size options, but they sometimes need help knowing how much they’ll be getting so that they don’t have leftovers.
Give Customers Alternatives to Sweeteners
Artificial sweeteners aren’t good for you. However, people often use them in foods and for drinks. Coffee is a typical drink that doesn’t always taste great without cream and some sweetener.
Customers enjoy having options for sweeteners as much as they do non-dairy options. A great restaurant alternative to sugar is honey. It’s sweeter than sugar and has a long shelf life. It’s also natural, making it a healthier option.
Your restaurant has lots of ways to make a menu healthy, including substituting menu ingredients for something better. Keep these ideas in mind as you customize and remake your menu so that it’s easier for customers to pick what to eat.