Using Your Food Effectively: Three Tips to Control Food Costs for Restaurant Owners
As a restaurant owner, you have a lot on your plate. Hopefully you have your inventory under control, buy in bulk, and carefully manage food orders. Even still, food waste could be eating away at your profits and costing your restaurant big bucks in the long run.
Here’s three tips to minimize food waste once it hits the pantry or fridge.
- Portion Control
Portion control isn’t just a smart way to lose weight – it’s also a great way to minimize food waste. Consider using portion control tools like serving spoons or scales to make sure each plate gets the just the right amount of food. You can also ask staff to keep an eye out for dishes that customers consistently can’t finish – you might be serving too much.
- First In, First Out
This rule may seem basic, but it’s critical to make sure that your back-of-house is on board and understands the importance of this method. Using the oldest food first helps prevent food expiring before it gets used. Labeling containers with dates of usage can also help keep things organized.
- Daily Specials
Daily specials are a great way to add some tasty variety to your menu and sneak in ingredients that are lingering in the pantry. Enlist front-of-house staff to encourage customers to try daily specials with incentives, so you can decrease food waste and increase profit at the same time.
Remember, the number one way to control food costs in your restaurant happens before it even arrive is inventory control.