Grubhub’s ‘State of the Plate’ report: Orders of the Impossible Burger up 82% year on year

By Mary Ellen Shoup

- Last updated on GMT

Image: Grubhub
Image: Grubhub

Related tags GrubHub Impossible Burger vegan mobile apps food delivery

Grubhub has seen a significant increase in vegan and plant-based food orders in the past year based on user data of more than 500,000 food orders placed through the mobile app on an average day.

Grubhub’s food trends report from last year delved into the ‘why’ behind mobile food ordering, uncovering that the main reason people use Grubhub is because they ‘didn’t feel like cooking’ (43%) followed by the desire to ‘satisfy a craving’ (30%).

While those motivations haven’t changed, the types of food being delivered from restaurants are shifting.

 “Since we took a look at some of the top meals in our 2018 “Year in Food”​ ​report, we’ve seen some changes so far in 2019,”​ said Grubhub.

“One fact that’s clear: vegan and vegetarian options are here to stay.”

Plant-based competes with meat across the US

 Top food orders from spring 2019 included cauliflower bites, mixed berry acai bowls, and quinoa tacos as the most popular items, increasing in popularity by 536%, 411%, and 285%, respectively, compared with spring 2018.

 ​Among Grubhub’s forecasted top food trends for the summer and fall, five out the six dishes were meat-free (barbecue pork buns took the #1 spot for summer):

Forecasts: Summer (in ranking order)

  1. barbecue pork buns
  2. truffle parm fries
  3. quinoa & arugula salad

Forecasts: Fall (in ranking order)

  1. pesto pasta
  2. fried okra
  3. lemongrass soup

Orders of Impossible Burger up 82%

Orders of vegan-friendly foods on Grubhub were up 25% between January and May this year compared to the same period in 2018 with orders of the Impossible Burger rising by 82% nationwide year on year, in part because the burger (launched in summer 2016) is now more widely available.

The regions that saw the steepest increases in orders of the Impossible Burger were the Midwest (+326%) and the West (+412%).

Grubhub also looked at the cities ordering the most vegan food options while evaluating other factors including the number of vegan restaurants, ratings, order volume, and overall number of vegan items available on Grubhub in each respective city as compared to the rest of the country. Eight US cities made the list:

  1. Los Angeles, CA
  2. Brooklyn, NY
  3. Portland, OR
  4. Las Vegas, NV
  5. Rochester, NY
  6. Philadelphia, PA
  7. Detroit, MI
  8. San Diego, CA

Late-night ordering has also continued to rise in 2019, with the Impossible Burger leading the trend, becoming 529% more popular as a late-night meal, according to user data.

New solution to family dinner?

Photo: skynesher

In its annual food ordering trends report, nearly all households with children surveyed by Grubhub (91%) have ordered in for their family. The top reason why (46%) is "it was easier"​. However, reasons differed between moms and dads:

  • Dads do it as a treat for the kids (38%) and because they want to spend more time with family (37%)
  • Moms say they didn't have time to cook (44%) or didn't have anything planned for dinner (44%)

Budget vs. Variety: Moms and dads also have different priorities when ordering. Of those surveyed, dads named "variety of restaurants"​ (24%) as their top priority, compared to 19% of moms. Mothers were more budget conscious, with 25% choosing "budget-friendly"​ restaurants, compared to 19% of men.

Nearly every parent surveyed orders in for their family but one third of respondents said they feel judged by other parents when they do. This feeling is felt more by dads -- 45% say they feel negatively judged when ordering in, compared to 22% of moms.

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