IHOP on Wednesday announced the brand’s largest menu evolution to-date, featuring a selection of items spanning across breakfast, lunch, dinner, and beyond. This new menu was driven by internal brand research that identified what guests were looking for when it came to IHOP’s menu—quality ingredients, options that meet the indulgent and lighter side of cravings, choice, and value, the company said.
The response was a fresh take on Sweet & Savory Crepes, Eggs Benedicts, Ultimate Steakburgers, with a new Four-Cheese Crisp, and the return of Cinn-A-Stack Pancakes.
“Starting with the launch of Burritos and Bowls in 2021, IHOP has been on a journey to rethink our menu by leaning into our equity of breakfast. The introduction of our most thoughtful, innovative menu evolution to-date offers new ways to enjoy everyone’s breakfast, lunch, and dinner favorites,” Kieran Donahue, IHOP’s CMO, said in a statement. “Every decision we made for this menu was driven by our guests and their continually evolving feedback and needs so they can enjoy our menu items how they want them, when they want them.”
The brand’s P.M.-focus kicked into gear with IHOb and the launch of Ultimate Steakburgers in 2018 (a move that generated more than 36 billion earned media impressions out of the gate), and has since expanded with Buttermilk Crispy Chicken, IHOPPY Hour, and Hand-Crafted Melts.
For International Bank of Pancakes rewards members, the launch also includes an offer of earnings double PanCoins on all Eggs Benedicts purchases from April 14–23. IHOP saw its app downloads triple year-over-year in Q4 and added 4.4 million members in the platform’s first nine months, nearly 2 million more than expected. It accounted for 5 percent of sales by year’s end.
The new menu push will be supported with a 360-marketing campaign featuring new menus, paid linear and digital media, social and earned media.
Here’s a breakdown:
- New Eggs Benedicts: IHOP covered all the flavors guests crave, from classic ham, to veggie, to a spicy poblano kick, to transforming its hickory-smoked bacon into a bourbon bacon jam. For this menu innovation, IHOP used a new high-quality hollandaise that is rich and creamy, poached eggs (or eggs however guests would like them), and English muffins.
- New Sweet & Savory Crepes: IHOP’s new Sweet & Savory Crepes offer all-day flavors like Cinnamon Bun, Fresh Berry, and Chicken Pesto.
- Cinn-A-Stack: IHOP’s Cinna-A-Stack Pancakes are back on menus nationwide. With its cinnamon roll filling and cream cheese icing, Cinn-A-Stack is one of the brand’s best-selling recipes, and most frequently requested menu item to bring back.
- New Ultimate Steakburgers: IHOP’s updated lineup of Ultimate Steakburgers includes a new four-cheese crisp and bourbon bacon jam. Guests can upgrade cheese on any Steakburger to the four-cheese crisp made with sharp cheddar, Swiss, fontal, and gruyere.
- New Fish and Shrimp: IHOP now offers crispy battered Fish and Shrimp platters served with French fries, tartar sauce, and a lemon wedge.
- New Fresh Salads: The newest Fresh Berry and Chopped Chicken Salads feature fresh ingredients to meet the lighter side of guests’ cravings.
- New Beverages: From new Mango Iced Tea to Strawberry Lemonade Splashers, IHOP now offers even more beverage options.
The new menu is available at participating IHOP restaurants nationwide starting Monday, April 3.
IHOP’s same-store sales rose 2 percent in Q4, marking its seventh straight period of growth. Average weekly sales per store in the fourth quarter were 38,200 ($1.99 million in annualized AUV), slightly ahead of the prior year’s $37,500. More than 1,200 restaurants offer virtual brands Thrilled Cheese and Super Mega Dilla. A third one, named TenderFix, was slated to launch soon.
As of Q4, IHOPs franchisees had taken roughly 10 percent year-over-year pricing.
The move could help with off-premises growth as well, especially with burgers and salads. IHOP’s to-go business was 22 percent of sales last quarter, led by a 14 percent mix for delivery. Traditional takeout generated the remaining 8 percent.
The Dine Brands’ chain opened 37 restaurants in 2022. More stores were supposed to open in Q4, but they slipped into the first quarter of 2023. For this year, IHOP is targeting 45 to 60 net new openings.
IHOP ended 2022 with 1,677 U.S. restaurants, a net gain of 20 units year-over-year.