Millennial Menus: Culinary Trend Tracking Series

Published: March 30, 2016 - 86 Pages

Table of Contents

  • Executive Summary Tables Millennial Menus
  • Customization Let them build it, they will come
    • Expert Spotlight - Steven Goldstein, Founder, The Culinary Edge
    • CUSTOMIZATION - Trend Distribution & Opportunity Grid: Restaurant & Foodservice
    • CUSTOMIZATION - Trend Distribution & Opportunity Grid: Retail
  • Mashups Thoroughly Modern Medleys
    • Opportunity Spotlight - Co-Branding in Mashups
    • MASHUPS - Trend Distribution & Opportunity Grid: Restaurant & Foodservice
    • MASHUPS - Trend Distribution & Opportunity Grid: Retail
  • Millennial Munchies Snacks on the Rise
    • Spotlight - Ben McKean, Hungryroot (
    • MUNCHIES - Trend Distribution & Opportunity Grid: Restaurant & Foodservice
    • MUNCHIES - Trend Distribution & Opportunity Grid: Retail
  • Bowling for Dollars Why Bowls Are a Big Thing
    • Restaurant Spotlight - Los Angeles' Kaya Street Kitchen
    • Spotlight - Pat Peterson, Head Chef, Beefsteak
    • BOWLS - Trend Distribution & Opportunity Grid: Restaurant & Foodservice
    • BOWLS - Trend Distribution & Opportunity Grid: Retail
  • Shrubs and Digestives What's Old Is New Again
    • Functional Spotlight - Digestive Drinks


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Demanding what you want, how you do and don’t want it, and when you want it are hallmarks of Millennials, the 69 million U.S. adults currently age 18-34,  and it’s not just about food.  Simmons data show that the Millennial age cohort is significantly more likely than those 35+ to like standing out in a crowd,to enjoy making fashion statements, and to expect their car to express their own personality.  As the new slogan from Burger King has it, it’s not just “Have It Your Way”—it’s “Be Your Way.”  This issue of Culinary Trend Tracking Series (CuTTS) explores how to cultivate the demanding but trend-setting Millennial generation as consumers by focusing on the following strategies and product categories: 

  • Customization. Salad bars and self-service hot food stations set the stage in both foodservice and retail for a full-fledged customized dining lifestyle.  Once customers get a taste of customization, they won’t look back.
  • Mashups. Taking up where fusion left off, the sky is the limit for the mashup trend, including a growing opportunity for consumers to get involved in the creation of the newest crazy-mixed-up food or beverage.
  • Munchies. Ditching the three-meals-a-day standard, Millennials are reshaping how Americans eat, often opting for several snacks or small meals throughout the day. With 35% of Millennials trending toward snacks as meal replacements, munchies are now expected to be healthful, flavorful, and portable.
  • Bowls. Burgers may still be king, but bowls are fast becoming the preferred vessel for everything from rice, noodles and salad to quinoa, acai, and poké. Whether the ingredients are customized or pre-set, bowls allow for creative expression and plenty of room for healthy ingredients, all within a familiar format.
  • Shrubs and Digestives. As consumers become more interested in probiotics, shrubs and digestive have taken on new life in the market as beverages, mixers, and flavoring agents.

Culinary Trend Tracking Series (CuTTS) is the essential source for tracking culinary trends and opportunities in the restaurant, foodservice, retail prepared foods, and packaged food and beverage sectors. This new report series empowers the menu and food manufacturing innovation of executives, strategists, chefs, and food research professionals in R&D/product development, market and consumer insights, brand management, and trade and consumer marketing.

CuTTS provides authoritative culinary trend and opportunity analysis within the framework of today’s key sales growth drivers:

Health and wellness, including ingredient spotlights and ingredient avoidance trends

Bold flavors and flavor adventure

Food integrity and authenticity, including natural, organic, local, and food freshness

Craft and artisanal

Purposeful eating and sustainability

Each Culinary Trend Tracking Series report (75 pages plus) takes a sustained look at a key topic area such as meal-time or snacking trends, international cuisines, or indulgence eating, or at a broad menu and product category such as proteins, vegetables and sides, baked goods, condiments, sweets and desserts, and beverages. In each issue, the most salient food industry opportunities are encapsulated in category relevance and trend application tables and graphics that lay out current and future insights.

Culinary Trend Tracking Series provides the expert analysis our clients have come to rely on to make the right strategic decisions, at the right time. These reports continue our tradition of providing top-level studies that combine a unique set of raw data with an informed focus on market opportunities.

CuTTS will be an essential resource for you in:

• Identifying future opportunities in menu offerings and packaged foods & beverages

• Leveraging the long-term drivers that are truly propelling food industry trends

• Tracking trends in fine dining restaurant, foodservice, retail prepared foods, and packaged foods

• Matching emerging trends to your organization’s ongoing menu and product development




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