With a new year (and a new decade) on the horizon, it’s time to look ahead to some upcoming food trends. Curious eaters are traveling to less familiar parts of the world for new inspiration. And there’s a focus on healthier ingredients on both food and drinks menus. Here are the food trends we predict will take 2020 by storm.
1. Novel Plant-Based Foods
Diets centered around fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, and whole grains continue to thrive. And innovative plant-based foods and dishes are more available to everyone. That means healthy and environmentally conscious eaters have more options than ever.
In baking, there are new types of flour made from coconut, spent grains, and bananas. And, vegan butters are now made from chickpeas, macadamia nuts, and watermelon seeds. Meanwhile, chefs continue to experiment with meat substitutes. Look for new dishes with mung beans, hempseed, and jackfruit in 2020. And find milks made from nuts and oats as new standard bases for ice cream and yogurt.
2. Low-Carb Crusts, Croutons, and Even Noodles
The keto diet continues to be popular. And as a result, you can find new plant-based ingredients subbed for flour in more and more dishes. Cauliflower isn’t just for rice and traditional pizza crusts anymore. You can now find it as a coating for chicken nuggets. While quinoa and dehydrated legume proteins are new bases for alternative croutons. Traditional Japanese yuba noodles made from heated soy milk are appearing with more frequency, too.
3. West African Cuisine
Culinary staples from across the region of West Africa are on the rise as a food trend for 2020. Look for dishes with moringa, tamarind, and ancient grains like fonio, teff, and millet. They’re often paired with familiar ingredients like tomatoes, onions, chili peppers, ginger, and peanuts.
Expect to see jollof rice pop up on menus. The one-pot dish flavored with tomatoes, onions, and spices in a standout of West African cuisine. Other entrees include squash seed-based egusi soup, and ginger and garlic-scented suya skewers threaded with meat.
4. Everything Ube
This purple yam from the Philippines is big on Instagram due to the vivid violet color it lends to desserts. And, the rise in popularity of Filipino food is making it a staple in the mainstream restaurant scene. Ube puree adds a boost of vitamins, minerals, and a smooth, vanilla-like flavor to already familiar foods. In 2020, you’ll see purple cupcakes, doughnuts, ice cream, macarons, waffles, and more with increasing frequency.
5. Non-Alcoholic Drinks
The New York Times notes that millennials are reducing their alcohol consumption. And some don’t drink at all. So restaurants and bars will offer more options for non-alcoholic drinks. Watch for mocktails made with botanical-infused faux gin on drink lists in 2020. And expect to see hops-infused sparkling waters, more choices for alcohol-free beer and wine, and other novel drinks.
6. Focus on Sustainability
Eco-conscious practices continue to grow in popularity. That means composting is still on the rise. As is promoting farming practices that improve soil health and reduce carbon footprints. This ethos extends to reducing food packaging waste. Which comes in the form of reusable cups, strawless lids, paper straws, and smaller napkins.
In summary, food trends in 2020 will offer healthier options for everyone. There will be a focus on global cuisine while keeping an eye on sustainability at home. And, chefs will continue to keep us guessing with new ingredients for food and drinks alike. It’s a new decade with only novel and innovative food trends to look forward to.
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