Trend Alert: A Snapshot of Five Hot Food Trends

Food Channel identified the Top Ten Foods of the Decade

  1. sushi
  2. bacon
  3. cupcakes
  4. sliders
  5. gourmet burgers made with Kobe or Angus beef
  6. superfruits (acai, pomegranate, blueberries)
  7. oils (including olive oil, truffle oil)
  8. whole grains
  9. artisan foods (particularly breads, cheeses, dark chocolate)
  10. coffees, teas

What foods and beverages do you think will define the next decade?  Not sure if the following are all contenders, but they’re off to a hot start in 2010.

Macarons are the new cupcakes.macarons

Don’t confuse these colorful, crunchy French confections with the sticky-sweet coconut balls called macaroons. Maybe only one “o” separates the two, but they’re nothing alike. Macarons are whoopie pie-like treats that were once limited to Parisian tea salons and pastry shops.  Now they’ve broken through to the mainstream stage. McDonald’s has started to sell in France and you can now find in Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s and Starbucks. Read more about macarons at Wall Street JournalSerious Eats and Salon.

Beef jerky is the new bacon.

This dried, chewy beef is hardly new — its origins date back to the Incas.  Often associated with truck stops and C-stores, beef jerky gained cult-like status during the Atkins era.  But now these meat snacks are back with a vengeance.  Today’s jerky, however, has earned a shred of respectability. Read more about the jerky renaissance at the New York Times.

Coconut water is the new sports drink.

The  hip new way to rehydrate after exercise is coconut water.  All of a sudden you can find coconut water everywhere — including Vita Coco, Zico and O.N.E.  I previously identified coconut water as one of the big beverage trends.  Take a look at the video below featuring the co-founder of Vita Coco talking about how the company got started.

Relaxation beverages are the new energy drinks.

A new category of beverages has popped up that claim to calm you.  These so-called relaxation beverages are fortified with melatonin, kava root, L-Theanine and other amino acids that are intended to take the edge off stress and anxiety.  So that means drinks like the Slow Cow may be the new Red Bull.  Read more about relaxation drinks at Wall Street Journal and  I agree with fellow registered dietitian Keith-Thomas Ayoob who told  “People should look for reasons why they have stress and not for help from some sugary drink with herbs.”

slowcowOatmeal is the new whole grain.

There’s nothing particularly trendy about humble porridge. But somehow old-fashioned oatmeal has emerged as one of the hottest foods out there right now. Starbucks, Jamba Juice and Caribou Coffee are all selling oatmeal to the masses.  Even McDonald’s got into the game. Hotels and restaurants are serving upscale versions of oatmeal at breakfast, and The Cereal Bowl even has oatmeal cookers built into the counters.  Serious Eats predicted “fancy oatmeal” to be a big trend in 2010.

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