There is good reason for why sandwiches have always been a popular menu item. Diners love them, and operators do, too. Witness: a recent Datassential study found that 69 percent of sandwich-serving operators say that the menu item is a profit center for their operation. Further, 66 percent of those sandwich-serving operators say the menu item allows them to stay creative on top of food trends.

“Who doesn’t love a sandwich?” says Carson Williams, senior brand manager of the deli meat portfolio at Hormel Foodservice. “And especially given the current landscape of the industry, sandwiches help fill a need for operators while giving consumers something that they want. It’s a win-win.”

Here’s a look at how operators can build sumptuous, money-making sandwiches using deli meat products from Hormel Foodservice.

Image credits:Hormel Foodservice

Quality Drives Profitability 

Sandwiches can play a key role in ensuring restaurants have a lot of black numbers on their P&L, Williams says. Williams adds that a key component of making a delicious and profitable sandwich is the quality of its ingredients—according to a Datassential MenuTrends report, “All Natural” has grown 13 percent as a menu claim across four years. Hormel Foodservice’s deli meats has several different brands under its umbrella that offer a range of options without nitrates or antibiotics.

“If you have limited skill in your restaurant and you’re trying to make a great sandwich, high quality proteins and other components then become a critical factor,” Williams says. “It is the meat solution that can help elevate the overall quality of the sandwich and make it taste great every single time, no matter who is building it.”

Image credits:Hormel Foodservice

What’s For [insert daypart here]?  

One beautiful aspect of sandwiches is that they transcend dayparts. While they will always be the consummate lunch item, sandwiches have a lot to offer during other dayparts, from breakfast to dinner or even late night windows.

“If you take something like NATURAL CHOICE® Pastrami, you can use that for a lunch item, a dinner item, or even on a breakfast sandwich,” Williams says. “That’s one big thing within our deli meats portfolio: we have items that fit every type of daypart and can really open up a world of customization for operators.”

Image credits:Hormel Foodservice


Off-premises dining was one of the many trends slowly gaining momentum prior to the pandemic that has since exploded in popularity. Consumers continue to favor restaurants and menu items that grant them the most convenience. Not only can sandwiches be a perfect menu item for takeout or delivery, but they can also be a great opportunity for operators to offer a  grab-and-go option—Datassential reports that 25 percent of sandwich-making operators reported their grab-and-go sales rose last year.

“Grab-and-go is one of those things that can add to checks,” Williams says. “Say somebody is coming in and ordering something and they realize they could grab something quickly for their friend or somebody at home—it’s perfect for that. When it comes to grab-and-go, though, that’s an area where you really want to make sure the ingredients standout. Something high-end and less processed will add to the overall taste of the sandwich, even coming out of the grab-and-go case.”

Image credits:Hormel Foodservice

The Right Brand, the Right Product 

Because deli meats are a key component of many sandwiches, restaurants have to ensure they’re getting the right product. Hormel Foodservice offers a suite of different brands, products  and formats to help get restaurant operators exactly what they need in order to spark creativity  in the sandwich space.

“We have a product for every type of operator in any category,” Williams says. “If they have certain things they want to achieve, we can help set them up with the most cost-effective, high quality product they can find out there—from varieties of whole turkey, roast beef, ham and chicken, to those items by the slice—we have a protein to meet their needs.”

For more on Hormel Foodservice’s Deli Meats, visit the deli meats page. For more on the NATURAL CHOICE® brand, visit the brand’s page

**Natural means minimally processed and no artificial ingredients. 

Datassential, March 2023

Image credits:Hormel Foodservice
QSR Slideshow, Sandwiches