Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The 30 Most Popular Ingredients in Restaurant Kitchens

FoodCalc customers share more than a love for creating and sharing delicious recipes.  In fact, after ten years of analyzing thousands of recipes, our data shows a few key ingredients that are most likely to make an appearance in a restaurant's kitchen.  Thirty, to be exact.  Can you guess an ingredient in the top 5?  If so, you must be one of our many savvy recipe creators!

From the bottom up, here are the 30 most commonly used ingredients in restaurant recipes:

30.  Mushrooms, sliced
29.  Black olives
28.  Whole milk
27.  Heavy whipping cream
26.  Vanilla extract
25.  Sweet green peppers
24.  Cumin
23.  Spinach
22.  Sour cream
21.  Honey
20.  Cayenne pepper
19.  Soybean oil
18.  Cheddar cheese
17.  Butter, salted
16.  Butter, unsalted
15.  Basil, fresh
14.  Lemon juice
13.  Parmesan cheese
12.  Iceberg lettuce
11.  Cilantro
10.  Water
9.  Egg, raw
8.  Parsley, fresh
7.  Tomatoes, chopped
6.  Sugar

...and the top 5 most popular restaurant ingredients are:

5.  Onions
4.  Olive oil
3.  Garlic
2.  Black pepper
1.  Salt

Are you surprised?  What is the most commonly used ingredient in YOUR kitchen?

*All data courtesy of MenuCalc.

Friday, April 12, 2013

That’s a Wrap: Three Reasons Why We Love the Latest Trend in “To Go” Foods

From McDonald’s, to Starbucks, to your local corner cafe, you’ve probably noticed a food trend taking over lunch menus everywhere: wraps.  In the MenuCalc system alone, over 560 wrap recipes have been created and analyzed for their nutritional content.  Our sources tell us the trend is only set to continue.  Here are three reasons why we love them, and why you should, too.

1.    They’re portable.  Wraps can be eaten on-the-go easier than almost any other lunch food.  Unlike a salad, they don’t require a fork.  Unlike a sandwich, they don’t require a plate.  And unlike soup, there are no concerns about keeping the temperature right.  They’re perfectly designed to eat single-handedly and with very little mess. 
2.    They’re healthy.   Think of them as the burrito’s lighter, fitter cousin.  Wraps are a lower-carb, higher protein option for the ever-growing segment of diners looking to lighten up their lunches. 
3.    They’re fun.  Southwest, teriyaki, or just a classic turkey club…it’s hard to get bored with such endless variety! 

Get inspired to try some new flavor options with the top wrap combinations from the MenuCalc system:  Chicken Caesar, ham and cheese, spicy chicken, turkey and avocado, or Thai chicken.

Tell us, has your restaurant joined the wrap revolution?