5 menu trends driven by millennials: 1. Customization 2. Munchies 3. Bowls 4. Mashups 5. Shrubs and digestives

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5 menu trends driven by millennials: 1. Customization 2. Munchies 3. Bowls 4. Mashups 5. Shrubs and digestives

Millennials are leading the way when it comes to swapping out the three-meals-a-day ritual in favor of several snacks or small meals. 35 percent of millennials, according to the report, are using snacks as meal replacements. “Munchies,” therefore, “are now expected to be healthful, flavorful and portable.” This data dovetails with last winter’s 2016 trends forecast from Baum + Whiteman consultants, who made the following prediction: “The ground is shifting away from sweet to savory and from high carb to nutrient-dense and high-protein indulgent snacks.” Toppogi (above), rice cakes with teriyaki butter, sesame seeds and toasted nori from Momosan in New York are a good example. As Restaurant Hospitality noted last year, “For restaurants looking for ways to drive traffic and sales, especially in off-hours, snacks might be the golden ticket.”

Everyone is after the millennial dollar. These young consumers (69 million U.S. adults currently aged 18-34) comprise a generation that knows what it wants and sets the new trends in food and dining. In its new report, “Millennial Menus: Culinary Trend Tracking Series,” market research publishing company Packaged Facts notes: “Demanding what you want, how you do and don’t want it, and when you want it are hallmarks of millennials.”

You get this group: Millennials are more likely than older adults to want to stand out in a crowd, to make fashion statements and to expect their purchases, from shoes to cars, to express their individual personalities. “This pronounced proclivity for bold and confident individualism extends noticeably to millennials’ food choices,” explain the authors of the Millennial Menus report.

The company outlines how to cultivate the demanding, opinion-leading millennial generation as culinary consumers by focusing on these five important food trends:

1. Customization

2. Munchies

3. Bowls

4. Mashups

5. Shrubs and digestives


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