Gen X Restaurant Menu Ideas

Happy people dining

Gen X is the original group of adventurous diners - from Chinese and Mexican-inspired cuisine, to signature cocktails, they’re still looking for a way to find excitement on restaurant food service operation menus. Here are some tips and tricks to capture their attention, and bring them coming back for more.

Your Menu’s Magic Words

The easiest way to get the attention of this generation, is through menu descriptions. These magic words can help attract Gen X diners, and can provide them with an attribute they’re craving:

Herbal. The versatility of fresh herbs makes it the perfect complement to summer beverages, and creamy condiments, from basil lemonades to rosemary aiolis. No matter what the dish, fresh herbs can be used to enhance a variety of menu items, offering Gen X a unique, craveable flavor.

Authentic. While Gen X enjoys all sorts of exotic foods, they particularly enjoy authentically global dishes, made in the same methods or with the same ingredients as they would get abroad. And according to Technomic, Inc. more than half of the consumers polled said that they want their ethnic dishes to be authentic, as while not all diners can afford to travel the world, they can at least transport their taste buds. .

Homemade. With Technomic reporting that foods described with homemade ingredients are perceived as being tastier, there’s a benefit to your menu, and to your profits, to include ingredients which are made in-house.

Premium. Offering higher quality ingredients on your menu not only entices your diners with the feeling of getting something special, but it can also set you apart from the competition.

Better-for-you. Though not as health-conscious as boomers, Generation X is looking for menu items that are better for them than traditional fried, loaded dishes. Try offering leafy greens and lean proteins on your menu.  

Ethnic. Tying in with Gen X’s love for authenticity, ethnic flavors give them a chance to try something bold and unique. With their most popular foods being Mexican, Chinese, Japanese, and Mediterranean, offering ethnic dishes on your menu ensures they’ll find something they were craving.

Fresh. Think outside of the box when it comes to fresh ingredients. Your diners are looking for more than just fresh produce, they’re looking for freshly caught seafood and freshly roasted coffees as well.

A Generation On-the-Go, Looking for Dining Satisfaction

More likely to order restaurant delivery than any other generation, Gen X is not only looking for fast and convenient ways to dine on the meals they love, they’re looking to have a great time when they do choose to dine in.

Gen X On-the-Go:

  • Since freshness and speed matters, 54% say a convenient location is important when ordering delivery

  • 43% say they use restaurant technology more today than  they did two years ago

  • 14% of Gen X with smartphones say they use the devices at least once a week to look up nutrition information

Dining-In Satisfaction Guaranteed:

  • Having a restaurant atmosphere that is fun and upbeat attracts Gen X

  • So does creating a menu or ambience that is good for groups

  • And serving preferred beverages, including adult beverages