Boost Value and Cut Costs with Speed Scratch Menu Items


You’ve no doubt heard these industry buzzwords lately: fresh, scratch-made, consistent. But creating an entire menu from scratch daily can be incredibly difficult, not to mention the stress it places on your kitchen and staff. Sourcing, storing, and measuring individual ingredients for each dish takes time and space, costing you money.

So, many businesses fall into the trap of cutting corners thinking it will save them money.

But, if there is anything we can learn from successful business owners like Shake Shack or Lemonade, it’s that cutting corners is a short-term solution. Truly successful businesses take pride in providing truly high-quality food, and revel in the success.

But consider a new buzzword: Speed scratch. Speed scratch dishes are scratch made items that have been aided and possibly enhanced by the addition of pre-measured and tailored seasonings, which allow a scratch-made product to be made quicker than measuring, sourcing and storing a bunch of ingredients.

Idahoan’s Bistro Mashed Potato Mix is one such speed scratch product giving operators the ability to more easily make scratch made mashed potatoes. They’re doubling your output while cutting prep time in half. Could speed scratch be the next big trend?


There are many reasons to move into speed scratch, but the most clearly defined benefit is speed. Time is money, and perhaps the restaurant industry knows that fact all too well. Consider all the time your team spends on prepping ingredients. Imagine doubling their output and freeing up their time for more important tasks. If you could still label your menu as “scratch” while cutting hours of prep time, wouldn’t you?

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One single pouch of Idahoan Bistro Mashed Potato Mix has all the seasonings you’ll need for rich potatoes with a fresh, fluffy texture meaning your prep team won’t be wasting time measuring out ingredients and seasonings for each batch of potatoes.


Idahoan took their speed scratch product one step further in order to provide truly unbeatable value for their operators. Their speed scratch mix gives operators the freedom to source their own potatoes (Russet, Yukon Gold, Redskin), giving the final product the fresh taste consumers are demanding. But the mix not only saves your operation time in preparation of a top-quality dish, it also literally doubles your output.

Chef David Macfarlane, Director of Culinary National Accounts at Idahoan says “By adding water, cooked potatoes and a pouch of Bistro Mashed Potato Mix, you essentially double the yield of the raw weight of the potatoes. Bistro Mashed Potato Mix also has fresh-dried, REAL potatoes and extends to exceed an original raw yield.”

That’s right, mixing 5 pounds of freshly mashed potatoes with a small 20-ounce package of Idahoan Bistro Mashed Potato Mix and water will churn out 10 pounds of mashed potatoes, perfectly seasoned and ready for service. That’s twice as much in half the time! 



All operators know the difficulties that come with sourcing consistently high-quality ingredients. Finding reliable suppliers is a huge issue on its own, but then we have to weigh in factors like weather and season, which could result in an inferior product. And even with the technologic improvements of today, sometimes there are simply unforeseen circumstances.

Operators need to find that happy medium where their food costs aren’t digging them into a hole but the value they’re providing is creating strong margins. Speed scratch products like Idahoan’s Bistro Mashed Potato Mix equal less time and less labor for operators, meaning many dollars saved. And those ain’t no small potatoes.