With circumstances like inflation and staff shortages on the rise, menu items that save time, money and labor — all while still tasting delicious, of course — are essential for kitchens, especially during busy seasons.
If you’re searching for tasty, affordable and easy-to-make food products to store in your commercial kitchen, you’ve come to the right place! This article will explore some of the best labor-saving foods, ingredients and practices, as well as some excellent dishes you can use them for.
Best Labor-Saving Food Products
From pre-made soups and tender meats to delicious fruits and vegetables, there’s no shortage of labor-saving foods and ingredients readily available for your establishment. Explore the benefits of each item and how it can be used to craft unique recipes to wow your guests.
Here are a few time-saving food products from quality brands to consider adding to your menu!
1. Pre-Roasted Fruits and Veggies
Roasting your favorite fruits and vegetables can yield some delicious results, but it can also be more costly and time-consuming. Thankfully, pre-roasted fruits and veggies allow you to forgo the tedious chopping, portioning, seasoning and roasting. All you have to do is heat and serve.
Pre-roasted fruits and veggies are delicious to enjoy on their own, but you can also use them to enhance a variety of recipes. Simplot RoastWorks roasted Fuji apples are roasted crisp-tender and lightly seasoned with sugar and cinnamon so you can easily serve them for breakfast or dessert — whether topped with ice cream and streusel, over a dessert pizza or in a roasted sweet potato mixture.
Meanwhile, pre-roasted veggies are suited to more savory dishes. Simplot’s Mediterranean vegetable blend combines seasoned onions, zucchini, bell peppers, green beans and carrots — perfect for veggie sides, soups, salads, lasagna and frittatas. A flame-roasted corn and black bean fiesta blend makes a delicious addition to Mexican dishes like guacamole, wraps and salsas.
2. Avocado Pulp
Ditch the hassle of chopping ingredients and mashing avocado for guacamole with Simplot Harvest Fresh avocado pulp. Perfectly ripe, ready for serving and free of preservatives and additives, this chilled and smooth avocado pulp takes a variety of dishes to a tasty new level. It’s a time-saving base for house-made guacamole and a delicious topper for nachos, tacos, fajitas and salads. You can even spread it on sandwiches for a unique Southwestern flair.
3. Par-Fried Foods
Partly fried — or “par-fried” — chicken products by Tyson and Tyson Red Label make it easy to whip up your customers’ favorites in minutes, saving both time and money. While still uncooked, par-fried chicken has been flash-fried and breaded for a short period to ensure the bread stays in place and that maximum color is achieved. The result is a consistent, even-looking final product.
Par-fried chicken is best when prepared in a fryer, then cooked until the product achieves an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. With their easy handling and preparation, long shelf life and low labor investment, par-fried foods are ideal for a variety of establishments. These include casual and quick-service restaurants, colleges and universities, hospitals, delis, bars and grills and entertainment venues.
From breaded chicken tenderloins to breast filets, par-fried chicken is delicious when served alone, with a dipping sauce or tucked between slices of warm bread for a savory chicken sandwich. The possibilities are limitless!
4. Sous Vide Meats
Sous vide is an increasingly popular cooking technique for hotels, restaurants and other businesses seeking to address inflation, waste reduction and job shortages. This method involves sealing ingredients in food-grade packaging, then cooking the items at precise temperatures and times while submerged in water.
As chefs have started to realize their cost- and labor-saving benefits in addition to flavor, color, texture and consistency, sous vide solutions have rapidly gained traction in the culinary industry. Best of all, nearly any type of meat can be prepared and pre-made this way.
Tyson’s sous vide portioned chicken breast is fully cooked in its own juices with no artificial ingredients, resulting in remarkable flavor and tenderness. This labor-saving ingredient speeds up preparation, bringing a level of flexibility to optimize your entire menu. Meats prepared through sous vide are especially easy to shred, making them useful for lettuce cups, sandwiches and other delicious dishes.
Additionally, there’s no need to worry if you stock up on too much chicken. Because sous vide is a technique used to extend the shelf life of cooked foods, you can easily freeze and store them for later to make soups, pasta and other dishes.
5. Ready-to-Bake Batters
Baking from scratch is a precise, time-consuming process that requires carefully measuring ingredients for the best results. Luckily, Krusteaz ready-to-bake batters can help make the process a little quicker and easier.
Whether you bake fudgy brownies, moist cakes or muffins, this refrigerated and ready-to-bake batter in a bag can accommodate a variety of treats and desserts. Additionally, you can seamlessly customize these sweet dishes with additional toppings and ingredients for your own signature touch.
6. Ready-to-Eat Soups
Ready to help customers take on the chilly fall weather with a steaming, savory bowl of soup? Campbell’s frozen, bagged and ready-to-eat soups are available in a wide range of flavors to suit multiple tastes and preferences. Feel free to throw in a few of your favorite ingredients to craft a stellar soup selection for your guests.
A bowl of Mexican-style chicken tortilla soup is hearty enough to serve on its own or alongside a slice of cornbread. Vegan vegetable soup is a delicious, low-sodium option to add to your lunch or dinner selection.
If you’d like to add some coastal flair to your menu, a bowl of crab bisque with sherry is a winner. This soup is a match made in heaven with fresh-baked bread. You can also top it with some avocado and crumbled bacon, a drizzle of oil or a shot of sherry — perhaps even some truffle oil if your offerings are extra decadent.
Contact Feeser’s for Time-Saving Food Products
At Feeser’s Food Distributors, we understand the importance of providing the highest-quality foods and ingredients to your customers, even during trying times. That’s why we offer the most exclusive brands delivered directly to your establishment.
What started as a produce stand in 1901 is now one of the largest food service distributors throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. We proudly serve a variety of restaurants, schools, hotels and other food service facilities. Whether you need fresh produce, meat and poultry or frozen foods, we provide outstanding products, value and customer service with a smile.
Become a customer of some of the best local and national brands that supply fresh to frozen foods for all of your commercial kitchen needs. Contact Feeser’s today to learn more about our services or become a customer!