FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) --Eating out is one of the most common conveniences we enjoy. The only downside is that you're often limited to what's offered on the menu-- but not anymore.
"Being able to customize my stuff the way I like it, without the different kind of flavors I don't is really, really cool," said Ricardo Martinez, DIY customer.
Martinez likes fish but is picky about what goes on it. So he is literally building his own sushi dish-- just the way he likes it.
"We offer 'Do It Yourself ' sushi, poke, and ceviche bowls. So that means a customer comes in and they choose what they want-- what type of fish, what type of ingredients, what type of sauces," said Elvis Bencomo, Owner & Chef of Pasion Latin Fusion.
You know about customizing sandwiches, but the trend is taking hold across the food industry. Everything from do-it-yourself pizza and ice cream rolls to fancy tasting menus at sit-down restaurants.
"The 'do it yourself' concept offers customers the idea of them getting to choose what they want in their bowl. They can go as healthy as they want or they can explore different flavors that they've never tried before," said Bencomo.
Research shows people do not just like choice, they're demanding it. Seventy-two percent of consumers now expect restaurants to accommodate requests for customization.
"This includes people with special dietary needs, like people who have intolerances like gluten, or lactose intolerance. These people, plus folks with allergies, can really benefit from having specific choices," said Libby Mills, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
Experts caution, however, that we eat with our eyes first and overdo it on calories, fat, and sodium. Nutritionists say watch for words like crispy, breaded, fried, and creamy and opt for veggies, fruits, and lean proteins.