Snacking for dinner? You're right on trend

Posted 3/1/24

(BPT) - How do you get your snack on in 2024? Dip for dinner? Are you creating your own perfect bite like a snack savant? In advance of National Snack Day this weekend, find out if your snack and …

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Snacking for dinner? You're right on trend

Posted

(BPT) - How do you get your snack on in 2024? Dip for dinner? Are you creating your own perfect bite like a snack savant? In advance of National Snack Day this weekend, find out if your snack and food game aligns with the nation’s palate in Frito-Lay's fifth annual U.S. Snack Index survey. Some of the results might surprise you.

There’s no doubt about it. Frito-Lay’s beloved foods — Lay’s, Doritos, Tostitos, Cheetos, PopCorners and more — are an integral part of American game days, celebrations and adventures. This privilege does not happen overnight and the company is committed to keeping a pulse on societal shifts, ensuring it is meeting our ever-evolving preferences and needs.

This year's survey discovered there is a real lack of time in people's lives to prepare, eat and enjoy their meals, especially among parents and younger generations. One-third of Americans have just 30 minutes for meals, and that includes cooking! When you think about it, that's less time than most work commutes. Sound familiar?

This is leading to the rise of the "no-prep dinner," a simple meal that tastes great, doesn't require a whole lot of effort and often is inspired by their favorite snacks. Snack-focused dinners are so popular today there's even a trending hashtag, #GirlDinner. But the trend involves everyone, with more than 92% men and women noting they reach for snack foods at dinnertime.

Here are some other snack trends the survey found.

A dash to dine: According to the Index, the average American has only 52 total minutes per day to prepare, eat and enjoy their meals. One-third of consumers note having even less time, scraping together less than 30 minutes a day to prep and enjoy meals.

Snacks moving to center plate: With a 35% increase in consumers integrating their favorite snack products into meals, snacks are taking center stage in a new way. Ninety-two percent of men and 93% of women use snack foods when making meals. Whether it's yearning for a specific snack (51%) or simply being too busy to cook (44%), Frito-Lay’s 2024 Snack Index predictions suggest that snacks will only continue to be essential ingredients for easy, no-prep meals.

The dip dynasty: Dive into the timeless tradition of chips and dip, where Salsa (27%), French Onion (21%), and Queso (20%) reign supreme as the top three rival dips. While Salsa steals the spotlight among Gen Z, Millennials and Gen X dippers, Baby Boomers crown French Onion as their dip MVP.

Snacking as an art, not an act: Eighty percent agree that combining multiple food products to create the perfect bite is an art form. While 65% of Americans admit to having eccentric snack combos, they are not the slightest bit embarrassed and will proudly “shout their unique combos from the rooftops” anyway.

Defining the “Snack Savant”: Millennials (83%) and Gen Z (82%) are most likely to embrace this title, with the majority of these Snack Savants also being city dwellers (77%). They are resourceful — 55% report their favorite snack combinations are inspired by what is already in the pantry — and lean on social media for additional ideas (32%).

Protein power: When eyeing snacks at the grocery store, Americans cite protein as the most important nutritional attribute (55%). Compared to previous years, an overwhelming 79% of consumers admit it’s more critical than ever for protein to take center stage — especially true for those most crunched on time (80%).

Energy boost: At least once a week, 60% of consumers look to their favorite snack products to provide energy. Millennials (72%) are by far the generation most in need of a pick-me-up, compared to Gen Z (62%), Gen X (61%) and Baby Boomers (46%). Parents have everyone beat, with 72% leveraging snacks for energy.

Taste triumphs: Across generations, nearly three-quarters of consumers (74%) refuse to sacrifice taste when selecting their snacks. Baby Boomers are the most unwilling to compromise on taste (84%), followed by Gen Xers at 75%.

Find out more about what the survey revealed, and how your snacking habits are stacking up to America's, in the Frito-Lay Snack Index. And go ahead — break out the Fritos and enjoy some Frito Pie tonight!