Customer desire for wider range of vegetarian menu options growing

By Daniel Woolfson

- Last updated on GMT

Lean and green: beans, nuts, tofu and quinoa are popular amongst vegetarian customers
Lean and green: beans, nuts, tofu and quinoa are popular amongst vegetarian customers

Related tags: Vegetarian cuisine, Restaurant

British diners are demanding more and more meat-free menu options from food and drink operators, new data reports.

Almost three quarters of consumers said they wanted to see more vegetarian main courses on UK menus, according to independent research commissioned by Vegetarian Express.

71% of respondents said they would like to see more protein incorporated into vegetarian dishes, with the same percentage saying vegetarian options should be lighter.

Will Matier, managing director at Vegetarian Express, said: “There’s no doubt about it, the vegetarian market is growing. You just have to look at the number of dedicated vegetarian restaurants opening up on the high street to see evidence of that.

“If caterers are to compete, they must offer more choice – not just in terms of the number of dishes but also the quality of food.”

The most popular ingredients amongst consumers were beans (63%), nuts (48%), tofu (37%) and quinoa (31%).

Indian food was named as catering best to vegetarians (41%), with British (28%) and Asian (22%) food following behind.

Matier added: “Vegetarians want more than just one or two bog standard dishes to choose between and menus need to reflect this with innovative new recipes, exciting flavours and interesting ingredients – after all, vegetarians deserve the same eating out experience as everyone else.”

Related topics: Healthy options

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