American Dining and Ordering Habits in 2023

Sep 20, 2023

We are almost in the last quarter of this year, and two recent reports give insights on 2023 general dining habits.

The Restaurant Online Ordering Trends report offers insights from a survey of 1,505 US consumers and DoorDash data on changing restaurant consumer habits. Key findings include:

In 2023, food delivery and takeout are more popular than dining at restaurants, with 77% ordering delivery, 76% ordering takeout, and 61% dining in.

  • Curbside pickup is favored, especially by parents, making it a convenient option.
  • Due to their busy lifestyles, delivery is often a last-minute solution, especially for Gen Z and Millennials.
  • Ordering restaurant food has become a weekly habit for almost half of consumers, with many using third-party apps.
  • Consumers prefer ordering from local restaurants, with menu selection options a significant factor.
  • Third-party apps like DoorDash are the preferred way to browse and order food.
  • Social media and food photography influence younger consumers’ restaurant choices.
  • Off-peak orders, including late-night and breakfast, are growing in popularity.
  • Generational differences exist, with Gen Z and Millennials cooking less and Baby Boomers preferring home-cooked meals.
  • Fries are the top food ordered on DoorDash, followed by burgers, tacos, salad, and pizza.


Another recent survey conducted by US Foods® on over 1,000 Americans in 2023 reveals changing dining-out habits and preferences:

  • Americans increasingly opt for casual convenience, with takeout and delivery orders surpassing dine-in occasions. On average, they order takeout or delivery 4.5 times a month compared to eating at a restaurant three times a month.
  • The top reasons for dining out include avoiding cooking (75%), convenience (51%), and socialization (44%).
  • More than half (57%) prefer ordering takeout for its comfort and convenience.
  • 54% are willing to wait 30 minutes or more for takeout, with fast food, fast-casual, casual dining, contemporary casual, and bar and grills being popular choices.
  • 63% go out for the restaurant experience, including atmosphere and socialization.
  • Better food quality, no cleanup, and socialization are key reasons for dining out over dining at home.
  • Casual dining is the most popular restaurant type, followed by fast food, fast-casual, contemporary casual, and bar and grills.
  • The shift from physical menus to QR codes due to the COVID-19 pandemic is not universally well-received, with 76% preferring physical menus.
  • Cost is a significant factor, with half of Americans spending less than $20 per person when dining out, averaging $166 per person per month.
  • Tipping habits vary, with some now tipping 20% or more for excellent service.
  • “Bar and grills” are a popular dining choice, with booths and TVs contributing to their appeal.
Majority of those surveyed preferred physical menus

In 2023, Americans appreciate the dining-out option for its convenience, experience, and diverse restaurant choices. They use apps like DoorDash to order meals during off-peak hours, and older generations prefer home-cooked meals. It will be interesting to see if these trends continue into 2024.