When it comes to changing the menu, some restaurateurs are reluctant to do so because they think patrons will rebel against unfamiliar items. But you don’t have to get too fancy, all you have to do is to use something we all like and incorporate new dishes around it.

You can never go wrong with chicken, it’s the most popular animal protein in South Africa and we’re also pretty good at producing it. The cost of producing it in South Africa is 10%-20% lower than some EU countries. With this level of favouritism, it would be foolish not to incorporate it in your restaurant. Read on for a few menu innovation tips on how to incorporate chicken into your menu.

Why we love chicken so much

Chicken is healthy – it’s as simple as that. Chicken is high in protein and rich in vitamins such as iron, zinc and Vitamin B. It’s also low in fat and cholesterol, making it the preferred food for health-conscious people. It’s highly recommended, especially now, to consume proteins as it builds one’s immunity to illnesses.

Decorate a plate with it

Chicken has a neutral and mild flavour, so there’s so much you can do to spice it up. It can be breaded, seasoned, fried, poached, roasted or chopped up and tossed into a salad. You can also offer chicken as an appetiser. You can try using it as chips instead of tortilla chips, chicken strips with a variety of sauces or chicken chips loaded with cheese and other toppings typically placed on French fries.

Chicken is the perfect canvas for food creativity. Just take a look at these tantalising chicken recipes for a little inspiration.

Offer limited-edition dishes

I did say you can’t go wrong with chicken. But to ensure something new on the menu doesn’t flop, try and serve limited-edition dishes and gauge your patrons’ reaction to them. RocoMamas does this often. This helps to determine what’s popular so you can keep selling it.

Favourite food for delivery

If you needed another reason to serve chicken, here it is. It’s one of the most popular dishes for food delivery. Since more people opted for it and became used to a delivery service during the early stages of the lockdown, you cannot afford to leave it off the menu.

Menu innovation goes a long way to driving revenue in your restaurant, but there are other ingredients that are key to your success. You don’t have to worry, we’ve outlined them in detail for you. Download our guide to Secret Ingredients to a Successful Restaurant.

Author : Rudi Badenhorst