Pizza dishes now account for 21% of all mains offered on chain restaurant menus, according to the Lumina Intelligence Menu Tracker.

Prezzo, Pizza Hut and ASK Italian are among the restaurant operators expanding menu options on menus including pizza ranges that are more premium, lighter and authentic.

MCA recently examined the pizza specialist restaurant space, exploring new innovation and emerging operators in the category. 

Chicken dishes also grew share, now making up 13% of all branded restaurant mains. Burgers were remained flat at 12% share.

Ice creams/sorbet were the most popular and growing dessert option, making up 38% of all options on branded restaurant menus.

According to a Q3 update, chain restaurants have increased the average price of food menus by +26.3% year-on-year, with high food and drink inflation and continued consumer spending restriction threatening viability.

Restaurant and QSR operators have a higher menu price inflation rate overall than same-line dishes, opting to focus on increasing the price of new dishes.

The average cost of a same-line dish has increased by +8.6% across all channels and courses, higher than the 6.7-6.8% CPI inflation figure seen in the period.

Double digit food and drink price inflation has forced operators to increase dish price points ahead of CPI.

Restaurants operators are gradually increasing menus following menu restrictions throughout the pandemic. Menus have increased on average +5.2%.