Spring runs from mid-March to mid-June, ushering in an abundance of vibrant seasonal flavors and colors. Al fresco Mother’s Day brunches, colorful Easter buffets, and St. Patrick’s Day revelry are just a few of the many reasons to offer seasonal springtime menus. 

With 79% of consumers interested in LTOs featuring seasonal ingredients, creating a limited-time offer for the spring is a smart move.1

Incorporating the following tips and recipe ideas will help you spring into the season and stay top of mind with customers.

Incorporate Seasonal Produce

Whether you have a rooftop garden, neighborhood farmer’s market, or a local supplier, nothing beats the taste of fresh, seasonal produce. Popular spring vegetables include zucchini, carrots, cabbage, artichokes, and snap peas, while in-demand fruits include acai, dragon fruit, kiwi, strawberry, rhubarb, and pineapple.2

Gott’s Roadside in St. Helena, California, has had great success with a limited-time-only Caramelized Pineapple Shake, featuring caramelized pineapple puree and a caramel drizzle.

Try incorporating the produce available in your area into an item you already offer such as a salad, soup, bowl, or pizza. Alternatively, you can create something completely new for an LTO or brunch item, such as this Asparagus, Prosciutto, and Fontina Tart.

Celebrate Spring Holidays

You can’t talk about spring without mentioning the season’s major events and holidays that traditionally involve food and beverages. Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, Easter, Cinco de Mayo, and Memorial Day, all happen in the season. Creating strategic specials or LTOs just for these days alone can help drive more traffic to your business. 

A favorite Mother’s Day brunch dish is Shrimp & Cheese Grits, while Carne Asada is great for Cinco de Mayo. A Hot Roast Beef Sandwich pairs perfectly while watching college basketball games. Calypso Bar & Grill in Virginia Beach, Virginia, rolls out a special menu during NCAA games with drink specials and plenty of snacks to please fans such as wings, nachos, and chili cheese dogs.

Keep Things Saucy

Consumers craving a bit of comfort and indulgence seek out saucy offerings as they navigate the move from winter through spring, according to Datassential. The most popular savory spring sauce flavors include zesty and creamy varieties such as Parmesan dressing, horseradish cream, Thousand Island, creamy garlic, Russian, hollandaise, lemon herb, and vodka sauce.3

This Shrimp Linguini, for example, incorporates Campbell’s® Culinary Reserve Roasted Poblano & White Cheddar Soup with Tomatillos along with in-season spinach and fresh parsley.

Introduce Springtime Soups

As the weather transitions between cold and warm, soup makes an ideal appetizer, side, or hearty meal. Borrow from the list of seasonal produce above to create wonderfully fresh and vibrant soups that customers will remember. Integrate ingredients such as apples, leeks, asparagus, carrots, kale, and peas to make countless springtime broths, bisques, chowders, gumbos, and more.

Take advantage of the seafood season, too, as seafood-based soups, and especially chowders, become more popular in spring and leading into summer.2 Pair them with a grilled sandwich, crunchy croutons, or toasty, buttery garlic bread

“With spring and summer, use cold ingredients on top to garnish, so you’re getting different textures and you’re also getting a different temperature that can help with consumers who don’t want to eat hot soup in warmer weather,” says Senior Chef Greg Boggs, Campbell’s Foodservice. “For example, if it’s a lobster bisque, building a deconstructed lobster roll on top that piles up high can help provide more visual appeal and value to the customer.” 

Read more about menuing seafood soups in the spring and summer in our guide.

Balance Healthy with Indulgent

With so many opportunities to celebrate with indulgent food this spring, you’ll want to have the comfort food that customers expect. Try this Mexican Street Corn Dip or Creamy Chicken and Waffle Sliders.

However, it’s also important to remember that some consumers will seek food that’s not so heavy. So, consider offering a few better-for-you options alongside the more indulgent ones on your menu. Try lighter fare such as Lemon Chicken Scaloppini With Spinach.

Whatever your springtime menu plans, count on Campbell’s Foodservice to help you create something successful. Get more menu inspiration from our recipe library.

1 Spring Trend Report, Foodbytes, Datassential Trendspotting, Vol. 111

2 Seasonality 2023 Datassential

3 “20 Comforting, Creamy Soups for Spring,” EatingWell, March 6, 2023