From freak shakes to dessert burgers, new food trends are always emerging and it can be hard to stay on top of what’s actually relevant for your business and your customers. To make things a little easier, we’ve unpicked some of the leading food trends for 2023 and beyond, exploring how they’re likely to impact fast food and quick service restaurant menus – and how you can put them into practice to drive sales.
According to Lumina Intelligence, there are a series of mega trends impacting foodservice that could result in a real boost to fast food restaurant sales.
1. Convenience: With growing digitisation, more tech-savvy consumers and more choice available than ever before, it’s no wonder online food ordering has become and popular yet competitive market. Consumers don’t just want convenience: they demand it.
Put it into action: Working with aggregators to make your offering available for delivery could open your brand up to a whole new customer base.
2. Indulgence: A treat is the main driver of placing food orders via apps and was the number 1 mission for eating out of home in 2022. The treat sentiment is largely driven by consumers seeking out affordable moments of indulgence, which is a common trend during times of economic hardship or recession.
Put it into action: Ice cream is the ultimate indulgence – and great for upselling in addition to your core menu. Pre-packaged ice creams, such as Ben & Jerry’s, are easy to add to your menu, easy to store and require zero preparation for your kitchen team. Explore the full range here.
3. Value scrutiny: The cost of living crisis has resulted in 78% of consumers describing themselves as ‘very value conscious’, prioritising cost above all other credentials when it comes to choosing where to spend their cash.
Put it into action: Ensure value is at the core of your offer to stay competitive and relevant to customers during this time. Meal deals and combo promotions can work well here, driving transaction value up for you, whilst offering the customer an overall better deal.
1. Pimp your chips
Chips and fries have seen the largest growth in share across UK foodservice menus, due to their universal popularity, low cost and flexibility as a dish accompaniment.
Put it into action: Take your chip offering to the next level with toppings and sauces which offer fantastic upsell moments. Hellmann’s Mayonnaise is a great place to start. It’s a brilliant flavour carrier and the perfect base for your special sauce creations. Get inspired with Mayo Mixology recipes from our chef team.
2. Spice things up
Spices including chilli, turmeric and cumin have seen huge growth over the past few years, coinciding with growing consumer interest in more adventurous global cuisines.
Put it into action: From spicy dips and chutneys to side dishes, pizza toppings or even meat marinades – there’s a whole host of ways to build more spice into your menu. Check out our spicy recipe collection to get inspired.
3. Get Pickling
‘Pickled’ is word in growth on menus. In fact, it’s grown more in use than any other descriptive term, reflecting the growth in pickling as a cooking method. Not only does pickling ingredients add flavour and texture, but it’s great for preserving food for longer and reducing waste too.
Put it into action: Whether you’re doing it yourself or buying in pickled ingredients, pickled now stands for so much more than a gherkin. Try topping burgers with pickled red onions, ginger or cucumber.
 Source: Lumina Intelligence, Eating & Drinking Out Panel, Menu Tracker, October 2022
 “Foodservice delivery: Defining customer missions”, IGD, January 2023
 Source: Lumina Intelligence Menu & Food Trends Report, December 2022