Millennials show old school, new patterns in preparing dinner.

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As millennials age – marrying, becoming parents – they are exhibiting traditional as well as new behaviors when it comes to planning dinners at home. Millennials who once were referred to as a single, large generational group are demonstrating similar behaviors as older generations in the same life stage in dinner planning behaviors, NPD found. For example, parents with children in the household invest more time preparing and cooking dinners at home, regardless of demographic category, the report said. Most people spend between 10 and 59 minutes preparing and cooking a family dinner. These types of invested dinners are forecast to grow over the next five years, according to NPD’s recent “Future of Dinner” study.
NPD found that millennials also apparently believe that as long as they play some role in the meal preparation process, they “made the meal.” This is different from Gen Xers, who acknowledge the difference between homemade and partially prepared meals, the study noted.
The NPD study also recognized that as Gen Xers age, they plan their dinners in a similar behavior seen in millennials and other generations as they also reached young adulthood. Gen X parents of Generation Z – those born after 1996 and a larger group than Millennials – taught their offspring how food fits into a well-lived life. These lessons set expectations for Gen Z that food and food brands should follow their needs rather than the other way around, NPD reported.

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