CHICAGO — U.S. consumers are ordering soups and salads less frequently when they dine out, according to a new study.

Salad and soup consumption is down slightly from two years ago, according to the “2018 Soup & Salad Consumer Trend Report” from Chicago-based research firm Technomic.

Among the report’s findings:

·          About 14% of consumers order salad every time they visit a restaurant;

·          Seventeen per cent of those who order soup are likely to order it as a snack, up from 11% in 2015; and

·          Fifty-two per cent of consumers who purchase salad said they feel healthier after eating it.

Soup and salad are trending down on menus due to the growth in popularity of other healthy food service alternatives such as roasted cauliflower dishes and poke bowls, according to Technomic.

“While soup and salad have traditionally served as go-to options for health-conscious guests, consumers now have a wider variety of healthy options to choose from,” said Anne Mills, senior manager of consumer insights at Technomic. “As more healthy foods become available and health definitions shift, brands will need to find new ways to differentiate soup and salad, perhaps with ethnic varieties that offer a balance of health and flavor.”