Restaurants tend to take pride in boasting about how their food is fresh and made from scratch. The moment we know a restaurant makes something from scratch — maybe some freshly baked biscuits or burger patties that are house-blended — we always feel a jolt of hope and anticipation. That’s because meals cooked with fresh ingredients tend to taste better than premade frozen stuff. Beyond this, frozen food might still taste good but it’s often unhealthy, less nutritious, loaded with preservatives, and higher in sodium (via The Washington Post). That said, it also really saves restaurants a lot of time.
So it should come as no surprise that many successful chain restaurants use frozen food to speed up preparation time and save on labor costs in the kitchen. According to an alleged former Bob Evans employee on Reddit, the meat at its restaurants comes in frozen. Beyond cutting down on some prep time in the kitchen, freezing has other benefits, such as drastically extending its shelf life, which reduces waste and keeps food costs down (via USDA). While freezing food might reduce its quality to varying degrees, it’s still a very cost-effective way to stay stocked up. If the alleged former employee’s claim is true, then Bob Evans is scaling down food waste and prolonging the shelf life of its products by using frozen meats. And that turns into cheaper prices on the menu that are easier on the wallets of its customers.