With Americans’ increasingly busy schedules and demand for convenience and customization, it’s no surprise that all-day dining is growing in popularity. In the past, if consumers wanted to dine during off hours, they would visit their local diner, quick service or fast casual concept. However, today, more and more casual and fine dining restaurants are expanding their menu offerings beyond traditional dayparts to take advantage of the all-day dining trend.1
Both foodservice operators and consumers can benefit from all-day dining. For operators, all-day dining can mean a boost in profits while serving casual, and often less pricey, food.1 For consumers, it provides convenience and variety.2 So, what’s driving this trend and how can you help your customers leverage it to drive profits in their establishment?
Here are three of the biggest trends driving all-day dining:
Back in 2015, McDonald’s made headlines when it introduced all-day breakfast. Other restaurants quickly followed suit when they realized the profit potential. After all, 7 out of 10 customers say they want restaurants to serve breakfast throughout the day.2 According to Technomic’s Consumer Trend Report series, about 35% of consumers wish restaurants offered breakfast foods for lunch, while 30% wish restaurants served breakfast items for dinner and some even crave indulgent breakfast fare for late-night meals.3
Menu expansion beyond traditional dayparts is a major strategy that can help boost your customer’s business, especially when they can leverage the same ingredients throughout the day. For example, chicken can be a versatile, go-to ingredient across all dayparts, even breakfast. In fact, chicken is among the top 10 most menued breakfast proteins,4 due in part to the growth of chicken and waffles.
Many restaurants are blurring the lines between dayparts with imaginative breakfast-inspired dishes served throughout the day. Chef Aaron Raeder of Born and Raised Craft Pub in Nevada serves a Fried Chicken & Donut Sandwich with bacon, pepper Jack cheese and whiskey syrup. For chefs looking to offer healthier options, chicken sausage is appearing more as a tasty alternative to pork sausage and bacon.
Did you know that consumers, on average, eat about four to five snack foods a day?5 The on-the-go lifestyle has created a surge in snacking and consumers are increasingly replacing meals with snacks. While most consumers eat three meals a day with a few snacks throughout, the gap between eating three meals a day and snacking is narrowing.6 There is a growing opportunity for foodservice operators to drive sales, especially during off-peak hours, with snacks and small plates.
Whether your customer is fast casual concept or fine dining restaurant, you can help them create a successful snacking program. Since 37% of consumers believe any food can be considered a snack if the portion size is small,6 operators can get creative with small-plate menus, and even market them as snacks to drive traffic between traditional dayparts. The Cheesecake Factory features a “small plates and snacks” section of its menu with a variety of small, indulgent dishes like Chicken Samosas, Loaded Baked Potato Tots, Nashville Hot Chicken Nuggets and Crispy Crab Bites.
More people are taking control of their schedules. In fact, it’s predicted that 43% of the American workforce will be made up of freelancers in 2020.2 This could mean huge opportunity for foodservice operators as freelance workers turn to restaurants to do work, where they can often be more productive than they would be at home.2 Walk into any coffee shop today and you’ll come across freelancers immersed in their work. So why not tap into this growing segment?
Freelancers also need a space to meet with clients, and what better place than your customer’s restaurant? As more restaurants offer the option of all-day dining, freelancers will have more options to choose from, beyond the corner coffee shop. And as the number of freelance workers continues to increase, the number of all-day dining options will expand as well.2
Help your customers realize the sales potential in all-day dining and how they can distinguish themselves with PERDUE® HARVESTLAND® chicken and turkey—a line of poultry products that contain No Antibiotics Ever and no animal by-products, and are raised on a 100% vegetarian diet. This portfolio of wholesome proteins not only differentiates your operator by elevating menu offerings; it also meets their consumers’ ever-growing demand.
From breakfast to snacking, there are numerous trends that can inspire your customer’s all-day menu. Just make sure they know to promote their new hours of operation and menu specials. The popularity of all-day dining will continue to grow, especially as consumers seek out dining options convenient to their schedule.