Operator's Edge | Transform Dessert Flops into Delicious Treats
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Transform Dessert Flops into Delicious Treats

Some days in the kitchen don’t go as planned. Pies or cakes may get baked or cut improperly, or overestimating might result in too many leftovers. Restaurants throw out 4% to 10% of all prepared food1 due to these common issues, which means they’re also throwing out a lot of profits. In addition to protecting food margins, a restaurant’s food waste reduction efforts are an important factor considered by 55% of consumers when choosing a restaurant2. Luckily, dessert mishaps or extras don’t have to go to waste. A little bit of culinary creativity goes a long way in turning imperfections into craveable confections. Keep these ideas in mind and reduce waste when the opportunity arises.

Pie Milkshakes

The best way to use up imperfect or broken pie slices is to blend them with ice cream to create a drinkable delight! With so many pie varieties and ice cream flavors, the options are truly endless. Top with cut-up pie pieces or candy for visual appeal that makes mouths water. Play with fun flavor combinations like the sweet heat in this Spicy Cinnamon Apple Pie Shake with Salted Caramel Churro.

Cheesecake Sundae

This refreshing treat is enjoyable in the warmer months and is a fun alternative to traditional ice cream sundaes. Simply scoop cheesecake into an ice cream dish or waffle cone bowl. Sprinkle on plenty of toppings like chopped nuts, hot fudge, and caramel sauce. View the full method in this Caramel Chocolate Chip Brownie Cheesecake Sundae recipe.

Creative Cannoli

Cannoli shells are the perfect blank canvas for reviving leftover slices of icebox, cream, or open face pies. And their crispness makes them ideal for takeout and delivery business. Combine two pie slices with 20 ounces of ricotta cheese and pipe into cannoli shells. Keep this Cookies & Cream Pie Cannoli recipe in mind as a year-round crowd-pleaser or customize for the seasons with strawberry filling in summer and pumpkin in the fall.

With minimal effort, you can reduce costly food waste by transforming imperfect desserts into premium items with premium price tags. Arm your team with these ideas and quickly turn mishaps into traffic drivers like delicious LTOs or over-the-top Instagrammable treats.

Content courtesy of Sara Lee Foodservice

1Managing Food Waste in Restaurants Report, National Restaurant Association, 2020

2The State of Restaurant Sustainability, National Restaurant Association, 2018