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Restaurant Breakfast and Brunch Trends - US - July 2017

"Breakfast and brunch continue to shine as bright spots in the restaurant industry. Brunch in particular has become a trendy meal occasion due to its association with relaxation, innovative dishes, and even alcoholic drinks. Operators are leveraging consumers’ interest in brunch by creating unique brunch entrées and innovative brunch cocktails. While consumers view at-home breakfast foods as convenient, restaurants can invest in new technologies that make ordering breakfast even easier."
- Caleb Bryant, Senior Foodservice Analyst

This report examines the following:

  • Consumers tend to stick to restaurants they know
  • Manufacturers double down on convenience

This Report will cover consumer attitudes, perceptions, and behaviors surrounding breakfast and brunch in the foodservice industry. In this Report, “breakfast” can either refer to the morning dining occasion as well as a type of food that may or may not be consumed in the morning (eg pancakes for dinner). Likewise, “brunch” refers to an actual occasion (a meal between breakfast and lunch) as well as the foods commonly associated with brunch. While consumer attitudes/behaviors regarding breakfast foods from retail (ie food purchased from a grocery store) will be discussed briefly, retail breakfast foods are not covered in-depth.

Breakfast restaurants need to focus on breaking consumers out of their habits as most consumers only go to one or two restaurant types for breakfast/brunch. While iGens and Millennials tend to visit multiple restaurant segments for breakfast/brunch, Gen Xers, Boomers, and those in nonurban areas tend to only visit a few locations.

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
      • Executive Summary

        • The issues
          • Consumers tend to stick to restaurants they know
            • Figure 1: Restaurant breakfast/brunch visitation, number of locations visited, May 2017
          • Manufacturers double down on convenience
            • Figure 2: Breakfast/brunch attitudes, by HH income, May 2017
          • The opportunities
            • Brunch is a unique meal occasion
              • Figure 3: Brunch occasions, by generation, May 2017
            • Consumers want a variety of brunch options
              • Figure 4: Brunch option interest, May 2017
            • Social media posters are key consumers
              • Figure 5: Breakfast/brunch attitudes, by social media breakfast/brunch posters, May 2017
            • What it means
            • The Market – What You Need to Know

              • Restaurants face off against retail
                • Consumer confidence should be great for restaurants
                  • More consumers are telecommuting
                    • Is breakfast old-fashioned?
                    • Market Perspective

                      • Retail breakfast foods focus on convenience
                      • Market Factors

                        • Healthy consumer confidence bodes well for restaurants ... in theory
                          • Figure 6: Consumer Sentiment Index, January 2007-April 2017
                          • Figure 7: Disposable Personal Income change from previous period, January 2007-April 2017
                        • High interest in clean eating
                          • Figure 8: Food attitudes, any agree, 2010-17
                          • Figure 9: Food attitudes, any agree, by age
                        • Consumer working habits dampen demand for restaurant breakfast
                          • Figure 10: Employed workers doing some or all of their work on their main job at home, 2006-15 annual averages
                        • The most important meal of the day?
                          • Figure 11: Food attitudes, any agree, 2010-17
                          • Figure 12: Food attitudes, any agree, by age
                        • The good and bad of commodity prices
                          • Figure 13: Changes in food price indexes, April 2016-17
                      • Key Players – What You Need to Know

                        • Brunch is big business
                          • Technology expands the potential of restaurant breakfast/brunch
                            • Breakfast sandwiches grow on menus
                            • What’s Working?

                              • Mainstream chains adopt brunch
                                  • Figure 14: Maggiano’s – Say Hello to Brunch video, March 2017
                                • Brunch is intrinsically linked to social media
                                  • LTOs strike a balance between health and indulgence
                                    • Booze with breakfast
                                      • Figure 15: Breakfast/brunch cocktail examples
                                  • What’s Next?

                                    • Skip the breakfast rush line
                                      • International dishes to watch
                                        • Third-wave coffee bumps up the breakfast check price
                                          • Breakfast to you
                                              • Figure 16: New Denny’s on Demand video, May 2017
                                          • Mintel Menu Insights Analysis

                                            • Breakfast dish trends
                                              • Egg entrées are appearing more on menus
                                                • Figure 17: Top 10 egg dishes on menus, change of incidence, Q1 2015-Q1 2017
                                                • Figure 18: Top 10 egg dish cuisine types, change of incidence, Q1 2015-Q1 2017
                                              • Pancakes, waffles, and French toast grow; pancakes get savory
                                                • Figure 19: Top 10 pancake flavors, change of incidence, Q1 2015-Q1 2017
                                                • Figure 20: Savory pancake examples
                                              • Breakfast sandwiches: deep dive
                                                • Breakfast sandwiches: restaurant segments
                                                  • Figure 21: Change in incidence and penetration of breakfast sandwiches, by segment, Q1 2015-Q1 2017
                                                • Breakfast sandwiches: ingredients
                                                  • Figure 22: Top 10 breakfast sandwich ingredients, change of incidence, Q1 2015-Q1 2017
                                                  • Figure 23: Top 10 breakfast sandwich breads, change of incidence, Q1 2015-Q1 2017
                                                  • Figure 24: Top 10 breakfast sandwich meats, change of incidence, Q1 2015-Q1 2017
                                                  • Figure 25: Top 10 breakfast sandwich cheeses, change of incidence, Q1 2015-Q1 2017
                                              • Breakfast/Brunch Restaurants to Watch

                                                • LSRs
                                                  • FSRs
                                                  • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                    • Familiar cuisines are the most appealing
                                                      • Brunch is a unique meal occasion
                                                        • Consumers want a variety of brunch options
                                                          • Weekend and weekday breakfasts differ
                                                            • Those who post about breakfast/brunch online are enthusiastic diners
                                                            • Breakfast/Brunch Restaurant Visitation

                                                              • QSRs remain the top spot for breakfast
                                                                • Figure 26: Restaurant breakfast/brunch visitation, May 2017
                                                              • Cater to the iGens
                                                                • Figure 27: Restaurant breakfast/brunch visitation, by generation, May 2017
                                                              • Most consumers visit only a few locations for breakfast/brunch
                                                                • Figure 28: Restaurant breakfast/brunch visitation, number of locations visited, May 2017
                                                                • Figure 29: Restaurant breakfast/brunch visitation, 4+ locations visited, May 2017
                                                            • Breakfast/Brunch Cuisine Interest

                                                              • Consumers are interested in familiar cuisines
                                                                • Figure 30: Breakfast/brunch cuisine interest, May 2017
                                                              • Interest in international dishes among segment visitors
                                                                • Figure 31: Breakfast/brunch cuisine interest, by segment visitors, May 2017
                                                              • Not all Millennials are the same
                                                                • Figure 32: Breakfast/brunch cuisine interest, by generation, May 2017
                                                                • Figure 33: Breakfast/brunch cuisine interest, by select Millennial groups, May 2017
                                                            • Brunch Occasions

                                                              • Brunch is a fun, social meal occasion
                                                                • Figure 34: Brunch occasions, May 2017
                                                              • Younger women view brunch as a social experience
                                                                • Figure 35: Brunch occasions, by gender, May 2017
                                                                • Figure 36: Brunch occasions, by gender and age, May 2017
                                                              • iGens and Millennials brunch for a variety of reasons
                                                                • Figure 37: Brunch occasions, by generation, May 2017
                                                                • Figure 38: Brunch occasions, by age and HH income, May 2017
                                                              • Brunch is a relaxing occasion for Black and Asian diners
                                                                • Figure 39: Brunch occasions, by race and ethnicity, May 2017
                                                              • Brunch is a frequent occasion for engaged social media users
                                                                • Figure 40: Brunch occasions, by social media breakfast/brunch posters, May 2017
                                                            • Brunch Option Interest

                                                              • Consumers want options when dining out for brunch
                                                                • Figure 41: Brunch option interest, May 2017
                                                              • Millennials drive interest in alcohol at brunch
                                                                • Figure 42: Brunch option interest, by generation, May 2017
                                                                • Figure 43: Brunch option interest, by Millennials and area, May 2017
                                                                • Figure 44: Brunch option interest, by Millennials and ethnicity, May 2017
                                                              • Hotels can attract locals with brunch
                                                                • Figure 45: Brunch option interest, by segment visitors, May 2017
                                                              • Cool cocktails can wind up on social media
                                                                • Figure 46: Brunch option interest, by social media breakfast/brunch posters, May 2017
                                                              • Coffee and booze for parents
                                                                • Figure 47: Brunch option interest, by parental status and age, May 2017
                                                            • Brunch Option Interest – TURF Analysis

                                                              • Methodology
                                                                • 79% of consumers are satisfied with three brunch options
                                                                  • Figure 48: TURF analysis – Brunch interest, May 2017
                                                              • Breakfast/Brunch Important Factors

                                                                • Quality, affordability, and location are point-of-entry factors
                                                                  • Figure 49: Breakfast/brunch important factors, any day, May 2017
                                                                • Healthful dishes may attract more female consumers
                                                                  • Figure 50: Breakfast/brunch important factors, any day, by gender, May 2017
                                                                • QSRs must keep up with iGen tastes
                                                                  • Figure 51: Breakfast/brunch important factors, any day, by generation, May 2017
                                                                • The importance of factors varies by segment visitors
                                                                  • Figure 52: Breakfast/brunch important factors, any day, by segment visitors, May 2017
                                                                • A great coffee selection appeals to parents
                                                                  • Figure 53: Breakfast/brunch important factors, any day, by parental status and age, May 2017
                                                              • Breakfast/Brunch Important Factors by Day

                                                                • Take it easy on the weekends
                                                                  • Figure 54: Breakfast/brunch important factors, weekday vs weekend, May 2017
                                                                  • Figure 55: Breakfast/brunch important factors, weekday vs weekend, May 2017
                                                              • Breakfast/Brunch Attitudes

                                                                • Restaurant breakfast/brunch is an indulgence
                                                                  • Figure 56: Breakfast/brunch attitudes, May 2017
                                                                • Restaurant breakfast a treat for women, utility for men
                                                                  • Figure 57: Breakfast/brunch attitudes, by gender, May 2017
                                                                  • Figure 58: Breakfast/brunch attitudes, by gender and age, May 2017
                                                                • iGens/Millennials drive interest in breakfast/brunch tech
                                                                  • Figure 59: Breakfast/brunch attitudes, by generation, May 2017
                                                                  • Figure 60: Breakfast/brunch attitudes, by select Millennial groups, May 2017
                                                                • Social media breakfast/brunch poster profile
                                                                  • Figure 61: Social media breakfast/brunch posters demographics, index against all AFH breakfast/brunch consumers
                                                                • Brunch is an anytime occasion for the social media poster
                                                                  • Figure 62: Breakfast/brunch attitudes, by social media breakfast/brunch posters, May 2017
                                                              • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                • Data sources
                                                                  • Consumer survey data
                                                                    • Mintel Menu Insights
                                                                      • Social media methodology
                                                                        • Abbreviations and terms
                                                                          • Abbreviations
                                                                            • Terms
                                                                            • Appendix – The Consumer

                                                                                • Figure 63: Employed workers doing some or all of their work on their main job at home, by occupation type, 2006-15 annual averages

                                                                            Companies Covered

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                                                                            Restaurant Breakfast and Brunch Trends - US - July 2017

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