Our society is getting increasingly health-conscious and it is little wonder that some kids’ menus are pushing aside traditional favourites such as fries, for healthier alternatives. According to The International Food Information Council (IFIC) Foundation’s 2018 Food and Health Survey, 70% of people would give up a favourite product for one that did not contain artificial ingredients. In light of this rising demand for wholesome food, revamping your menu to include healthy children’s dishes will open up your restaurant to families who value nutritious eating.
What to add to your menu
When we think of healthy eating, fruits and vegetables are among the first things to spring to mind. However, as most parents know, children are not fans of vegetables. This calls on your chefs to be imaginative and present vegetables in a manner that turns ordinary food into something exciting and inviting. The same can be said about fruit. Although kids usually like certain fruits, your restaurant can present them in a unique way that makes them more appealing.
Have more fish and chicken on your kid’s menu, than beef. Make sure that the meat isn’t deep fried. Offer dishes that have the meat grilled or steamed as this is much healthier than frying.
Experiment with different combinations of fruits to make smoothies and juices. Avoid using a lot of sugar. These drinks make a great alternative to sodas, which are often laden with sugar and unhealthy additives.
What to avoid
Fat has received a lot of bad press over the years. However, not all fat is bad. The fats to avoid are trans fats, which may be found in partially hydrogenated oils. Use healthy fats found in such products as olive oil. Once you make this change, make a point of highlighting it in your menu, so that your patrons are aware of the type of the healthy fats you use in your dishes.
Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are another food type to be wary of, especially in children’s menus. Since they are relatively new, a lot of research has not been done on the long term health effects they have on humans. Avoiding suppliers that use these ingredients in their products will help your restaurant to supply healthier meals.
Publicise your menu
Once you’ve tweaked your menu, you will need to let parents know that your restaurant has healthier alternatives for kids. Start by updating your website as well as your social media pages.
If you have a mailing list, you can run an email campaign, informing your customers of the latest additions to your menu.
Take professional pictures of your meals and share them on social media to draw attention to your restaurant.
As with any advertising, your choice of words is important. Ensure you emphasise the benefits of your new menu, without exaggerating. For example, if your dishes contain less salt and sugar, emphasise these in your messaging. This will appeal to parents who are concerned about using less of these ingredients in their food.
A lot of people are concerned with genetically modified food and the implications it has on their wellbeing. If your focus is on sourcing ingredients from farmers who grow their produce organically, state this in your advertising./p>
As you improve your menu to include more wholesome choices for children, your restaurant will attract health-conscious families. In this way, your restaurant will not be left behind as the winds of change sweep the dining landscape, where health consciousness is on the rise.