Case Study: On-trend lentil salad boosts menu category sales at Twin Peaks locations nationwide

September 2022

As football season ramps up and temperatures drop, many American consumers look to sports bars as a gathering place to watch the game or meet with friends and coworkers while satisfying their appetite. At Twin Peaks restaurants nationwide, hungry sports fans can now find lentils on the menu in an on-trend, protein-packed Chicken Street Corn Salad that provides a lighter, fresher option with just as much flavor and satiety as classic bar fare.

The Chicken Street Corn Salad features grilled chicken, iceberg lettuce, charred corn, lentils, Twin Peaks’ signature Billionaire’s Bacon, roasted jalapeños, Parmesan, pico de gallo, green onions, cilantro, tortilla strips, creamy lime vinaigrette, and chili lime salt.

With a mighty 51 grams of protein, this salad helps consumers feel full for longer while delivering on menu appeal. Lentils add extra protein to any dish, with 12 grams per ½-cup cooked serving, and are a cost-effective ingredient that satisfies consumers looking for plant-forward options in a more traditional sports bar setting.

Casual dining concepts like Twin Peaks tend to invite a wide consumer base, making the category an ideal testing ground for plant-forward options. Many restaurant brands know that consumers prefer to try new ingredients like lentils in familiar dishes with recognizable flavor profiles — this safe experimentation can draw the consumer in and encourage repeat purchases.

With lentils featured alongside the enticing flavors of elote, or Mexican street corn, this dish capitalizes on a growing consumer interest in authentic ethnic dishes. [1] Elote is currently in the adoption stage of the menu cycle, with a 92% increase on menus in the past four years.

Chef Alex Sadowsky, director of culinary and menu innovation at Twin Peaks Restaurants, says that the Chicken Street Corn Salad is a key example of experimentation that piques consumer interest. “It’s approachable, putting a cool spin on a familiar Southwest salad,” Sadowsky says. “It has a really great health halo, and although it was a bit of a stretch for what we thought would work for the brand, its sales are outperforming our expectations. Consumers love the high protein content in a salad, which gets a boost from lentils that carry fresh flavor, too.”

Since its launch in mid-summer 2022, the Chicken Street Corn Salad has outsold the rest of the salad category combined two times over, and it is now featured as a permanent, signature dish in all locations. The dish is performing so well that the company plans to replace quinoa with brown rice and lentils across the menu, saving on production costs.

Positioning itself as “your local sports lodge,” Twin Peaks leads the sports bar category, with an emphasis on inventive scratch cooking. The company has 93 restaurants in the United States (U.S.) and expects to open seven more locations by the end of 2022 for a total of 100 units. In 2023, the brand will complete construction on an additional 25 U.S. locations, with further expansion plans in Mexico, where lentils will also be on the menu, as well as Canada.

For more on menu innovation around plant-forward options in the sports bar category, check out our recipe ideas and culinary highlights.

Contact our team today at to learn more about incorporating lentils into menu items to save on both calories and production cost.

[1] Datassential SNAP Elote Food Profile