Getting Back to Dinner at Home – How Are Restaurants Meeting Their Customers’ Behaviors

Increasingly, consumers are eating dinner at home, either preparing it from scratch, using a meal kit or choosing restaurant takeout or delivery. That’s because people are busy these days. They often work shifts that conflict with their partner or family, or need more than one job to make ends meet. It’s tough to find time to go out to eat, but it’s not any faster to prepare a meal from scratch.

How can people still get a healthy and delicious meal on the table?

Home Delivered Meal Kits

Some home cooks enjoy this near-scratch cooking experience that takes care of the planning and shopping for you. Any number of companies deliver all the necessary meal components, along with step-by-step directions directly to your doorstep in just the quantities you need to complete your meal.

Some of the downsides include:

  • It can be expensive. $10-$20 per person, per meal can add up, especially when you are the one providing the labor.
  • It’s environmentally unfriendly. It takes a lot of packaging to deliver perishables to your doorstep, especially when many people don’t get home until after 6 p.m. or later. This is of particular concern in warm climates. Ingredients are not always in optimal condition by the time they are opened.
  • It can be time consuming. Consumers often report that prep time is grossly underestimated; that it takes the average home cook much longer than stated to get a meal on the table. For those with limited time in the evening, this can prove frustrating.

Restaurant Delivery or Takeout

The rise of the remote worker has led to fewer workers fleeing their cubicles for lunch or dinner. But they may be enticed by the prospect of delivery. Same with “sandwich generation” individuals who are stretching their time between caring for parents and children with little time to even step out to grab a takeout meal. Don’t underestimate the importance of convenient ordering, online ordering allows customers to place an order any time during the day and pick it up on the way home.

In-Home Catering

What else do today’s busy consumers not have time for? Entertaining. This is an underserved market in some areas. You may not have the capacity for large scale event catering, but could you provide a multi-course dinner for 10-12 people that will allow for home entertaining without the headaches? It could open an additional revenue stream.

For additional ideas on how to keep up with ever-changing diner preference, contact the experts at Horizon Hospitality.

Restaurant Recruitment Experts

Our team is comprised of true restaurant industry experts. If you need assistance in hiring for your restaurant or want to keep up with the latest developments and best practices, contact our restaurant management recruitment team at Horizon Hospitality.





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