Most people appreciate the services provided by the concession stand operators on the beaches, around concert halls, parks, zoos, stadiums, and many other recreational venues. While classic concession foods like burgers, hot dogs and fries are traditional crowd favorites, these days people are increasingly seeking healthier food options.
How can concession stand operators keep up with consumer preferences and expand their menu offerings? Also, how do you make sure to still turn a decent profit from healthier snack and food options?
Whether you want to cook at home or for commercial purposes, the following recipe ideas will go a long way.
Start putting fruit snacks on your menu
Fruit cups or salads are easy to make, much healthier than candies, and can be high margin items since you can make a lot of melon cups from just one melon.
Instead of only offering M&Ms and MilkyWay bars, offer some healthy fruit snacks as well. Opt for fruits that have longer shelf life and are easier to store, package and consume. You can sell single bananas or apples, or cut up a few types of fruits to make fruit snack cups. Some popular fruits that are easy to prepare and package include melons, apples and grapes.
Swap out ingredients for healthier options
While donuts, cookie doughs and mug cakes are typically the go-to sweet snacks, they can be rather unhealthy with a high calorie count. In this case, you can easily swap out ingredients or change the cooking method to make them healthier.
Instead of wheat flour, use other ingredients like pumpkin flour, sweet potato, or mashed bananas. Instead of deep-frying your donuts, cookie doughs, and mug cakes, you can bake them or air fry them. Your sweet-toothed customers will still enjoy a sugary bite, without all the unnecessary calories.
Roasted nuts have a healthy fat content
Nuts are full of protein, healthy fats and a variety of vitamins. They’re also very easy to store, package and transport. Therefore you should definitely consider adding nut snacks to your concession stand menu.
Pistachios, almonds, cashew nuts, peanuts, walnuts, and pecans are some easily accessible choices. You can either purchase large bags of pre-roasted nuts and divide them into smaller snack packs, or roast them yourselves. If you choose the latter method, definitely feel free to experiment with different seasonings! Be it sweet with honey, or savory with cumin and paprika, offer a range of options to satisfy people with different tastes.
Choose healthier meats with higher protein and lower fat content
You can create hundreds of mouth-watering chicken or turkey recipes for your concession stand. One of the recipes is the delicious Southern Fried Chicken, which you can also bake or air fry for lower calories. Use chicken or turkey thighs, breast, or drum, and add flavor as you wish. Soak in buttermilk for a maximum of 48 hours to make it tender. Grate some garlic or mix garlic with onions.
A food blogger and academic writer for an essay writing service says that you can use vegetable oil or canola and fry the chicken at moderate temperature. Bread the chicken using wheat flour or mix wheat and cornflour, then fry it for a few minutes. Pepper and salt will help add flavor.
Vegetables are perfect snacks
Vegetables are a great choice, and just like fruit cups, very easy to prepare. Carrot sticks and celery sticks are nicely crunchy. Cucumber slices are another popular vegetable you can find in a pre-packaged vegetable cup. You can add ranch, hummus or even peanut butter as a side dip for the vegetables, or add pita chips or bagel chips to make the snack platter more filling.
Don’t forget healthy drinks
There are more than 1,000 different types of drinks you can prepare for your concession stand customers. On top of carbonated sodas and energy drinks, you can also offer healthier options like fruit and vegetable juices, tea, coffee and more.
If you want to offer more premium items, consider selling smoothies with fruits and yogurt in them. You can even try to be creative and prepare vegetable juices and smoothies mixed with fruit or nuts.
Juices, hot beverages, and smoothies go better served with salty snacks like roasted almonds, various types of chips like potato, cassava, yam, and arrowroot chips. You may also prepare mozzarellas sticks, dill pickles, and bagel bites as snacks to serve with your beverages. Juices can be served with various types of cakes like carrot cake and other snacks made from the floor.