This persistent shortage of restaurant staff has left operators struggling to provide top-quality service and maintain profitability. 

Sixty-two percent of operators say their restaurant doesn’t have enough employees to support customer demand.1

However, there are several labor-saving strategies that you can employ to navigate this difficult landscape. 

Consider Bowls and Casseroles

One effective way to save labor and streamline your kitchen operations is incorporating bowls and casseroles into your menu. These dishes are not only on-trend but are also easy to prepare ahead of time, making it possible to serve your customers quickly. For example, The Porch at Christie’s, a restaurant in Westport, Connecticut, offers a Rice and Beans Bowl, where all the prep work is done in advance, allowing their staff to assemble bowls to order in no more than 30 seconds.2 This approach minimizes kitchen labor and improves efficiency.

Consider this Mexican Street Corn Carnitas Bowl. Pairing two great Mexican dishes together, the components can be prepared separately and ahead of time, with the added labor savings of Campbell’s® Culinary Reserve Mexican Street Corn, resulting in a time efficient dish.

Rethink Your Soup of the Day

Using a ready-to-eat frozen soup for your soup of the day is an excellent strategy for labor saving in your restaurant. Hot and ready for both lunch and dinner, this approach can save you valuable kitchen prep time while offering your customers a comforting and delicious option. Consider repeating favorite soup recipes weekly, such as classics like broccoli cheese or tomato basil, or introducing seasonal soups, such as autumn squash in the fall and lobster bisque in the summer.

Campbell’s® Culinary Reserve soups can be served as they are or customized and embellished to suit your restaurant’s style. Garnish with creme fraiche, fresh herbs, or croutons for a luxe presentation. Or serve with Lance® Saltines Crackers for the perfect pairing. Explore options like Campbell’s® Culinary Reserve Broccoli Cheddar Soup or Campbell’s® Culinary Reserve Creamy Broadway Basil and Tomato Bisque to enhance your soup offerings.

Cross-Utilize Ingredients Across Dishes

Cross-utilization of ingredients is a clever strategy to maximize the use of versatile elements like slow-cooked meats and sauces. These can be prepared in advance, stored, and used across various menu items, reducing kitchen labor and saving time.

For example, you can slow cook proteins, such as pork, chicken, short ribs, and turkey, the night before and use them in countless recipes, from appetizer nachos to high-end meat and potato offerings. Explore creative ideas, such as Chicken Chilaquiles with Spicy Tomato Sauce, using leftover pulled chicken. You can also use Campbell’s® Culinary Reserve soups to create easy sauces and vinaigrettes, as demonstrated in this Italian Sausage with Pasta Made With Campbell’s® Culinary Reserve Roasted Red Pepper and Smoked Gouda Bisque.

Discover Our Labor-Savers

In these challenging times, having the right products and partners can make all the difference. To conquer today’s industry challenges, explore Campbell’s Foodservice’s broad portfolio of labor-saving products. We are proud to be your strategic partner, helping you maintain quality and efficiency despite the ongoing staffing shortage in the restaurant industry.

1 “Restaurants Added Jobs in 24 Consecutive Months,” National Restaurant Association, Jan. 6, 2023

2 Cobe, Patricia, “Recipe Report: Labor-Saving Dishes,” Foodservice Director, Sep. 9, 2021