Breakfast, Take 2: Are You Eating 4 Meals a Day?

Date posted: May 8, 2017


By Rieva Lesonsky

You may think that’s an odd question, but apparently many Americans have added a second breakfast to their daily meals. According to an article in The Wall Street Journal, both food manufacturers and restaurants report consumers are grabbing a quick breakfast (pre-workout for some) and then eating a bigger breakfast later in the morning. The U.S. president of Pret A Manger, an international restaurant chain, says it sees a breakfast rush between 8 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. and then another around 10: 30 a.m. And she notes “people are eating more little portions, more often.” To serve these new diners, the chain is adding more small breakfast food choices to its menus.

The WSJ notes this “fast-growing habit seems to have caught the giant food industry by surprise.” This all comes on the heels of consumers embracing breakfast food for lunch and dinner as well. And it also likely ties into the snack trend we talked about a few months ago. In fact, Jordan Rost, VP of consumer insights for Nielsen, told The WSJ second breakfasts “fit the idea of the snackification of breakfast.”

If you want to take advantage of the trend, whether making it or selling it, make the food portable—since many are eating their #secondbreakfast (The WSJ reports more than 87,000 Instagram posts use that hashtag) as a “second activity” while working or driving. Needing a fork or plate makes that more difficult.

In general, second breakfasts are more savory (meaning less sweet in cooking terms) than what we consider traditional breakfast food.

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