Here we look at the fastest-growing flavours in vegeterian dish entrées on Canadian menus over the latest two-year period.
Tropically inspired flavours are showing the most momentum in vegetable dishes. Pineapple (+46.2%) and avocado (+27.3%) are both popping up in ethnic stir-fries, bowls and dishes, pairing well with bold sauces, such as sweet and sour and peanut. For example, Thai Room offers Avocado Peanut Stir Fry with Thai peanut sauce.
Cucumber grew 25.9% and is commonly spotlighted in Asian and Mediterranean offerings, complementing chickpeas and nuts. With 61%* of consumers citing health and a desire for getting proteins from non-meat sources as top reasons for eating more vegetarian meals, operators are combining healthy vegetables including cucumbers with protein-packed options. For instance, The Chopped Leaf offers its No. 2 Bowl featuring protein-rich chickpeas and pecans alongside cucumbers.
Two rising vegetables in veggie entrées are onions and tomatoes, up 8.8% and 6.7%, respectively. While both are quite common across mealparts, operators are reinventing these traditional flavours by varying up preparation methods to diversify their veg-centric menus. Operators are showcasing onions in a sauce or masala and highlighting tomatoes in a relish or chutney.
*Source: 2017 Canadian Centre of Plate Consumer Trend Report