Using The Colour Wheel In Your Menu Design

Get creative with tried-and-true colour combinations.

Written by
Rachel Yeo
April 22, 2021

You might not think that the colours in your menu make a huge difference, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Whether it’s viewed online or in print, the colours you decide to use within your menu design can greatly impact consumer behaviour.

The Psychology Of Colour

In fact, a study by the University of Loyola has found that colour increases brand recognition by 80% –  making it essential for you to maintain consistent branding across all platforms and materials. With that said, let’s explore what the colour wheel is and how you can best use it within your menu design.

What Is The Colour Wheel?

Colour theory is both the art and science of using colour – and the colour wheel has been designed to demonstrate that exact purpose. Developed by Sir Isaac Newton in 1666, the colour wheel is a circle that exhibits the relationship between primary, secondary and tertiary colours (as below):

  • Primary colours – red, yellow and blue
  • Secondary colours – green, orange and purple (colours created when primary colours are mixed)
  • Tertiary colours – such as blue-green and red-violet (colours made from primary and secondary colours)

Fascinatingly, the colour wheel ensures an array of harmonious colour combinations, which can be incorporated into your menu. Here are the several main approaches you can use to create the perfect colour scheme:

1. Monochromatic Colours

A monochromatic colour scheme encompasses variations of the same colour. Simply put, this could be light and dark tones of blue as shown below:

2. Analogous Colours

Analogous colours refer to those that sit next to one another on the colour wheel. A fine example of this would be red, orange and yellow. The main concept revolves around having one dominant colour supported and accented by the other two.

3. Complementary Colours

Complementary colours are situated on opposite sides of the colour wheel. Examples include: blue and orange, red and green or purple and yellow. When combined, the two colours appear brighter and more contrasted.

4. Split-Complementary Colours

The split-complementary colour scheme builds on the complementary colour scheme, only with less contrast. Along with the base colour, it uses two colours adjacent to its complement.

5. Triadic Colours

This colour scheme makes use of colours that are evenly spaced around the colour wheel. Some colour combinations include purple, green and orange – or red, yellow and blue.

Design Your Menu For Free With Menuzen

If the principles of the colour theory have got you a little confused, we hear you. Fortunately, we’ve got just the solution – so you can spend less time worrying about menu design and more time running your business.

When it comes to designing your restaurant or cafe menu, make Menuzen your tool of choice. Not only does Menuzen function as a 100% free online menu creator, but our menu templates have also been professionally designed with harmonious colour schemes in mind.

As if that wasn’t enough to entice you, our cloud-based software offers multi-user access and instant updates across your menus whenever you make changes.

So if you’re wanting a creative menu at zero cost, it’s a simple decision. Pick Menuzen today.

Design your free live menu on Menuzen today!

Explore more of Menuzen’s features:

Want to learn more?

Subscribe to our newsletter for weekly updates, tips & tricks.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.