Marketing Plant-based Menu Items

Access free plant-based food marketing resources that highlight the abundance of delicious meatless meals.

Promoting Plant-based Menu Items via Meatless Monday Can Help Meet Customer Demand for Meat-Alternatives.

  • The simplicity and flexibility of Meatless Monday makes it an easy first step to eating less meat.
  • Meatless Monday is one of the most well-known meat reduction campaigns. [MM 2020]
  • You don’t need to take meat off of the menu; simply promote plant-based options.
  • The only “rule” of Meatless Monday is to provide at least one plant-based option.

Menu and Food Presentation Recommendations to Increase Sales of Plant-based Items.

  • Plant-based menuing best practices to promote Meatless Monday options:
    • Use enticing language to describe menu items (see below).
    • List plant-based options first or second on the menu, not in a veggie or meatless section.
    • Do not label dishes ‘vegan’ or ‘vegetarian’. Alternatively, use a small leaf, ‘v’ or green heart to indicate it is a plant-based item.
  • Provide plant-based versions of familiar and traditional foods you typically serve. For example, if your best-selling items are cheeseburgers and lamb curry, offer a plant-based meat burger and vegetable or tofu curry.
  • Make meatless meals look visually appealing and easy to identify.
  • Don’t create a Meatless Monday or ‘Vegetarian’ section or station. Integrate all plant-based items into the usual food displays, grab-and-go cases and online apps menus so they are familiar to customers.
  • Provide useful nutritional info that promotes the positive immune boosting benefits of plant-based foods and helps dispel meatless food misconceptions, such as lacking protein.

Plant-based Menu Terminology Best Practices

Use enticing, sensory words that describe the texture, taste, or smell of plant-based menu items, including:

  • Juicy, crunchy, crispy, creamy, warming, crunchy, savory and sticky
  • Incorporate nostalgic, traditional names that evoke comforting, familiar feelings: grandma’s dumplings, mom’s meatballs and hearty holiday roast
  • Create a sense of place with geographic themed names: farm-to-fork, Cuban blackbean, New York-style pizza and Texas barbecue
  • Include provenance in the menu descriptions: wild-forged berries, local farmer’s market strawberries, and upstate-grown apples
  • Create cuisine-focused names: Tex-Mex,Thai, Mexican, Italian, Mediterranean, Indian and Southern
  • Ensure descriptions convey the fulfilling qualities of meatless items: full, filling, satisfied, satiated and hearty
  • Make the descriptions sound irresistible: mouthwatering, delicious, tasty

Learn more about the benefits of Meatless Monday and plant-based menu items at