This article discusses the new and coming food trends that will rule the culinary scene in 2021, with a special focus on local Texan food producers.
The Pandemic has spurred some fundamental changes in our lifestyles. Working from home, shopping from a distance and finally finding that time to get to know your kitchen a little better has prompted the rise of many new trends.
It’s been a bizarre year for food too. The global lockdowns forced us to make alterations to our eating and drinking habits, more out of necessity. While we need some practices like increased use of disposables to go sooner than later, desirable changes like more healthy eating initiatives and home cooking will possibly become big in 2021.
Texas Real Food lines up the food trends about to take off in this new year. We even take it a step further and let you know where to catch them locally in Texas!
More Focus on a Well-balanced Breakfast
With a majority of the population turning to at-home work options, there was a renewed interest in having well-rounded breakfasts and not just breakfast bars on-the-go. Healthy and wholesome breakfasts nourish our bodies and give us that positive kick to start the day. 2021 will see lots of acai breakfast bowls and smoothies (find these fresh at Bebidas), detailed breakfast sammies, frozen mochas and overnight oat cups filled with fruity and nutty goodness. Healthy bagel places like the Chicago Bagels have breakfast delivery to ensure you are well fed for the most important meal of the day.
New, Improved and Fiery Basics!
Last year saw even the least homely people turn into cooks. It was the need of the hour. When we turned our pantries inside out, we discovered many spices and sauces lacking. Presenting one of the fieriest food trends of 2021; Amped up seasonings and spice rubs. A good spice blend is all you will need this year to take your home cooked meals up a notch.
Spices, pastas, sauces and basics and are getting a delicious makeover. Try some applewood-smoked salt from Texas Flame and Smoke or add a new Cajun lemon pepper hot sauce from Lottabit Spices to your basics must haves.
Change your Oil
With the focus shifting from 0 fat to healthy fats, 2021 will see every kitchen look at alternative fat choices. The regular refined cooking oil will be exiting for good as there are now so many better and real oils out there. Did you know Moringa Oil is rich in omega 9 fatty acids and is also anti-inflammatory? Comanche Oaks Farms are one of our local Texan producers of Moringa oil and if you want to give pecan oil a try, go for the raw variety offered by Swift River Pecans from Fentress, TX. Of course, nothing beats extra virgin olive oil and 2021 will continue to see EVOO being drizzled generously on salads, soups and stir frys.
Upcycled foods are turning into the biggest food trend of the decade. During the pandemic, this trend reached new heights, as people began to save money and found creative ways of getting the most out of their foods. This year, more brands are joining this food movement with a slew of upcycled products arriving at the scene, that would otherwise go to waste.
Upcycled foods are reflective of another quality valued by shoppers: sustainability and their purchasing power. They’re looking for new ways to participate in sustainable practices and are open to trying new things in order to do so. Tia Lupita is a well-known hot sauce brand that also makes tortilla chips from sustainable cassava flour and okara. The United Nations estimates that $400 billion of food is wasted before it even reaches the stores, this is one shift in the food world that’s more than just a trend: It’s a move toward sustainable eating.
Kombucha, but Hard
Give way hard seltzer, sprightly Kombucha is what cool people drink nowadays. Low calorie-alcoholic beverages are the latest fad when it comes to healthy eating and hard Kombucha has found its place and is here to stay.
While regular kombucha is not alcoholic (or has very little amount of alcohol from the fermentation process), hard kombucha is specifically brewed to be alcoholic. Another reason kombucha will be flying off the shelves in 2021, is that it is gluten free (made from tea leaves ). Keep in mind though, unlike non-alcoholic kombucha that is rich in probiotics, there are differing opinions on the amounts of live gut-friendly bacteria in hard kombucha . If you are looking for handcrafted hard kombuchas in Texas, Lazy Beach Brewing is one of the best brands for guilt free libations.
Drinks for the Bedroom
Talking about beverages, here is another trend that is peaking in 2021. All the stress off last year has created a niche market for food and beverages claiming to promote calm and relaxation. The era of the energy drink is officially over. along with the weighted blanket and the meditation app, get ready for sleep inducing drinks this season. These beverages basically are made from water enhanced with magnesium, an important mineral needed by our bodies to relax and other amino acids and digestive enzymes that will help you get that snooze.
Plant based jerky
Yes, you heard it right. Vegans can now indulge in jerky just the way they like it- plant based. If you think of it, jerky can be made out of just about anything. You have jackfruit jerky, banana jerky, mushroom jerky and a whole lot of other flavors.
All Y’alls Foods in Texas Uses only certified non-GMO ingredients to give you that plant based protein in all its deliciousness. Finally jerky is not only for meat lovers anymore!
Boards, of all kinds
2020 saw Pancake boards, hot cocoa boards, charcuterie boards, French fry boards-they were all over my gram feed. While my favorite remains a dip-rich Mediterranean mezze platter, expect these fancy food collections to be featuring on social media till we move on to something else! Till then, Casero has these beautiful ‘assemble your own cheese board’ kit, you need to check out in 2021.
Made your own pickle yet?
This trend will only hit its zenith in 2021, only because maybe this year we ran out of mason jars from so many people turning towards canning. After home gardens, fermenting and pickling the harvests has been the top activity everybody seemed to have tried their hand at during the lockdowns. If you love pickles, but cannot get it right yourself, Texan local Madges Food Company offers kimchi, sauerkraut, and pickled veggies of all kinds, thriving with live cultures.
Take & Bake Dinner Kits
Also known as Half-scratch cooking meal kits, these half-prepped meal boxes are going to be the saviors of 2021, you just watch. With the novelty of lockdown home cooking is going to get a little too much for the busier folks, weary home chefs are going to jump at the availability of a new standard of healthy, fresh and easy to assemble dinner kits.
Sales for Take-& Bake kits have already soared, with many new establishments starting services that sometimes even include a video to go with the ingredients.
Based in Texas, Snap Kitchen, Farmhouse Delivery and Front Porch Pantry offer cost effective gourmet meals that cater to all dietary restrictions and are free from added hormones, antibiotics, and artificial preservatives.
Apart from these very obvious food trends, some subconscious food trends have also been lingering for the past couple of years. Mindful eating has people seeking personalized nutrition solutions that focus on specific areas of health related to the individual.
The looming climate crisis is another major factor altering our relationship with food. This is especially important for BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Color), since these groups suffer more by effects of climate change. plant based products have dominated in 2020 and so has the sale of sustainably sourced meat. 2021 will see the arrival of grass-fed beef on many of our plates.
Economic crisis around the world is also increasing people to take up farming and hence become self-sustainable when it comes to food. A Nielsen poll shows that 23% of Americans are willing to grow their own food if the economic crisis worsens.
The answer to the question everybody is looking for is “How can I get healthy and wholesome food at affordable prices?”