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The cheapest food to cater that will have high profit

2 hotdogs with ketchup and mustard

Need to make more on the food you sell? Consider adding some of these fab food ideas to your menu.

Looking to make bigger profits from your mobile catering trailer this year? We’ve got some great suggestions of foods to serve that offer the potential for a high profit margin.

However profitable your business is, if you want to be in with the best chance of protecting what you’ve worked so hard to build up, call the team at Mobilers. A simple call to arrange mobile catering trailer public liability insurance today could make a world of difference to your business prospects in 2023.

10 foods to bring in the profit

The most profitable items to sell from a catering trailer or food truck can vary depending on the location, target customers, and competition. For some inspiration on what locations may suit you, check out our blog on the best UK cities for food trucks. For example, an ice cream van trading near the beach during the school summer holidays could be one of the most lucrative businesses around – but on an industrial estate in winter, the profits could be a whole lot less!

However, there are some food items that tend to be more popular and profitable than others all year round. Here’s a list of 10 foods that could set you up for a bumper year of trading in 2023.

  1. Street tacos, fajitas and burritos

Easy to make, great to takeaway, and offering limitless customisation with various meats and toppings. Offering those little meal add-ons such as extra guacamole is a great way to bump up the price.

  1. Gourmet burgers

The days of dried up, tasteless burgers are long gone. Gourmet burgers made with high quality ingredients and unique toppings are now all the rage and a very desirable option for a wide range of customers.

Vegan and vegetarian burgers are increasingly popular as customers look to cut down on their meat intake. And this is great news for your profit margins, as meat tends to be one of the more expensive items to stock.

Remember that when cooking meat, food safety is paramount. A foodborne illness is the last thing you’ll want a customer to leave with, but if you have mobile catering trailer public liability insurance on hand, your business should still be protected should someone make a claim.

  1. Speciality sandwiches and subs

From grilled cheese stacks and spicy paninis to the classic BLT, specialty sandwiches are always popular with British consumers and can be sold at a higher price point. Offering a wide variety of breads, meats, cheeses, and toppings, there aren’t many more versatile options available.

  1. Pizza and pasta

Italian food is a firm favourite among the UK population and can be far more profitable than other cuisines. As well as its popularity, a big reason behind its success is the fact that a large proportion of the menu is pizza- or pasta-based and therefore relatively cheap to produce.

Wondering how to start a mobile pizza business? Then look no further than this helpful article from the team at Mobilers.

  1. Loaded fries

Whether sold as the main event or alongside burgers and hotdogs, chips are always a popular, low-cost item on any mobile catering menu. Offering them with an exciting range of seasonings and toppings means you can cater to a wider range of tastes and push up the price point. 

  1. Soups, chilis and curries

Making sauce-based dishes like soups, chilis and curries in large batches is a surefire way to keep costs low while still providing customers with a warm and comforting meal. These tasty dishes are all easy to serve meat-free and offer you the ability to bulk them out with cheaper foods such as rice or bread.

  1. Ice cream and desserts

With the potential to earn big profits at certain times of the year, selling ice cream can be a lucrative option. Combine this with items like cookies and cupcakes and you could be on to a real winner with customers who’ve got a sweet tooth.

Wondering whether the ice cream van game could be your next business break-through? Read our article on how much money an ice cream van can make in the UK and our top tips on how to start your own ice cream business to find out more.

  1. Crepes, waffles and pancakes

Using inexpensive batter, crepes, waffles and pancakes are all very tasty and versatile options that can be filled and topped with either sweet or savoury ingredients. This makes them not only a desirable option for food truck customers but for food truck owners, too.

  1. Specialty coffee

Specialty coffee like latte, cappuccino, and iced coffee can command high prices and make even higher profits for mobile catering businesses. Our article on how to start a mobile coffee business is a great place to explore whether this would be right for you.

  1. Juice and smoothies

Simple to make and just requiring plenty of fruits and vegetables, offering juices and smoothies at your catering trailer could be a great move. And if you create a menu based on seasonal produce then this will not only lower the cost of the raw ingredients and increase your profits but it’ll also do wonders for your eco-credentials.

Tips and tricks for profitability

As well as serving the right food and drink items, there are plenty of other strategies to help increase profits for your mobile catering business. Try these out and see how they affect your bottom line.

  • Offer daily specials to attract customers and increase sales. It can also help use up any ingredients nearing their expiration date.
  • Offer combo meals to provide customers with a convenient and well-rounded meal.
  • Promote your food truck on social media to increase brand awareness.
  • Think about your location. Could you start a roadside catering business? Or which vehicles are best suited for a conversion into a mobile food truck.
  • Buddy up with other businesses, such as a nearby music venue to increase custom.
  • Offer additional catering services to provide an additional source of income.
  • Be creative with your menu. Never be afraid to experiment with different cuisines and flavours.
  • Focusing on fresh, high-quality, local ingredients may mean that customers are willing to pay more. Just make sure you shout about your ingredients in your advertising.

Mobile catering trailer public liability insurance that protects your business

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There really is no better way to safeguard all your hard work than with the right catering insurance.

Mobile catering trailer public liability insurance is easy to arrange with Mobilers. Give the team a call today.

Frequently asked questions

Should I offer vegetarian/vegan products on my catering van menu?

Offering vegetarian and vegan products can be a wise decision, as it allows you to cater to a wider range of customers. With the increasing popularity of vegetarian and vegan diets, there is a growing demand for plant-based options. By offering these products, you can attract a larger customer base and increase your chances of success. Additionally, providing vegetarian and vegan options aligns with the current trends of sustainability and health-consciousness, which can further enhance your business's reputation.

Can selling coffee be profitable for a food catering van?

Coffee is one of the most popular beverages worldwide, with millions of people relying on it to kickstart their day or keep them going throughout the afternoon. By offering a variety of coffee options, such as lattes, cappuccinos, and iced coffees, a food catering van can tap into this lucrative market and attract customers who are looking for a caffeine fix on the go. With the right marketing strategies and high-quality ingredients, selling coffee can definitely boost the profitability of a food catering van.

How do I start a successful catering business?

Starting a successful catering business is not just about the food, it's also about the planning and
execution. First, identify your niche, be it weddings, corporate events, or private parties, and
understand the specific requirements of your target audience. Second, create a solid business plan, outlining your budget, pricing, and marketing strategies. Get the necessary licenses and permits in compliance with local health and safety regulations. Invest in quality equipment and hire skilled staff.

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