Grilled Cheese sandwiches are featured on the lunch menus of 48% of all school districts with an average frequency of 2.3 times per month. Frequency on the menu varies by district, with some districts listing Grilled Cheese 5 or 6 times per month and some only once or twice.
The second leading sandwich is Meatball, which is on the menu of 40% of school districts. Meatball Sandwich has an average menu frequency of 1.5 times per month.
Spicy Chicken heats up the menu of 38% of districts. More importantly, average menu frequency is twice as high at 4.9 times per month. Spicy Chicken is on target for high and middle schools, but way off base for elementary palates as evidenced by a diminished incidence and frequency level. See FlavorTrak Sandwich Report for details.
Although category incidence for PBJ is moderate at 32%, frequency on the menu at 10.9 times per month is over four times as great as other sandwiches. Some districts offer PBJ as an alternative every single day.
The FlavorTrak K-12 Database includes 45,000 items on the breakfast and lunch menus of elementary, middle and high schools from 175 leading school districts including the Top 100, with menu representation in all 50 states. More than 100 sandwich varieties are monitored in FlavorTrak.
Menu Item Frequency / Month
Ham and Cheese
Turkey and Cheese
Peanut Butter and Jelly
Fish Filet / Portion
BBQ Rib / Riblet
Deli Meat / Cold Cut
Beef Cheesesteak / Philly
Turkey Ham and Cheese
Implications for food manufacturers are clear. Provide products, preparation suggestions, recipes and promotional materials that help K-12 culinary staff meet increasingly changing food and flavor preferences of student diners. Assistance is only a phone call away for food manufacturers seeking greater insight into menu preferences and opportunities for their categories.
About FlavorTrak K-12 Menus
Foodservice Research Institute specializes in collecting information from commercial and non commercial operators. We created FlavorTrak K-12 Menus to assist your targeted research efforts by quantifying category usage levels. Our experience with the MenuMine menu information database has been used to create a service with an exclusive focus on the school foodservice segment.