Less Food Waste, Bigger Flavors, and More Global Influence: The Next 20 Years in Food Trends|Recipes Spots

Less Food Waste, Bigger Flavors, and More Global Influence: The Next 20 Years in Food Trends

Trends illustration
Simply Recipes / Asahi Nagata

Here are things that debuted in 2003 that are still going strong: Beyonce’s solo career (she released her first album, Dangerously in Love, that June), Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez (albeit with a long intermission), and Simply Recipes. 

Simply Recipes celebrates its 20th anniversary this year. While we didn’t have Bennifer getting back together on our 2000s nostalgia bingo cards, we want to take this moment to predict what the next 20 years could hold for the future of food. What will become the next viral baked feta dish? How will our eating habits change as we consider the effects of climate change on our food sources? Will our dishes come out of 3D printers and be delivered to us by robots?

We asked some of the leading food thinkers, chefs, influencers, and even members of our editorial team to predict what they think will be the new food trends for the next 20 years. We encouraged people to think big, throw out wild ideas, and imagine new possibilities for the future. Looking back, we could have never guessed how Simply Recipes would grow to include a worldwide audience of home cooks and food fans—we’re excited to see what the next two decades have in store for us.

Andrea Nguyen headshot
Simply Recipes / Sabrina Tan

James Beard Award-Winning Cookbook Author of seven cookbooks, including her latest, Ever-Green Vietnamese
: @andreanguyen88
: Viet World Kitchen

Eat More Plants

Wanting to eat and live more sustainably doesn’t mean going 100% vegetarian or vegan. I believe that most people will remain omnivores, but for the sake of personal and planetary health, they will lean toward adding more vegetables into their lives. Vegetable-centric, vegetable-forward cooking will gain greater traction as we look for ways to have better, healthier lives.

Natascha Fischer
Simply Recipes / Sabrina Tan

Content Creator
: @traderjoeslist
: Trader Joe’s List
: @traderjoeslist

Upgraded Nostalgia

Nostalgic foods that we ate as kids like cereal, donuts, and ice cream will continue to be remade using more nurturing, natural ingredients with more protein and less sugar. We already see this with popular brands like Magic Spoon cereal and will continue to see these types of upgrades expand across other foods.

More Allergen-Free Products

I think that the number of individuals with food allergies and sensitivities will continue to rise and that will result in more food items that are free of the top eight allergens claiming more real estate at grocery stores.

‘Shrooms Are Taking Over

Functional mushrooms like lion’s mane, chaga, and reishi will be added more and more to standard items like beverages, snacks, and beyond.

Joanne Lee Molinaro
Simply Recipes / Sabrina Tan

James Beard Award-Winning Cookbook Author of The Korean Vegan Cookbook
Instagram: @thekoreanvegan
TikTok: @thekoreanvegan
Website: The Korean Vegan

Globalization Normalizes Food Culture

I think cultural cuisines will play a much more prevalent role in our daily eating. We’ll be more used to trying things. Part of that is the globalization of information—pop culture and food especially. It’s incredible to see so many non-Koreans into BTS and K-dramas, and that same phenomenon will continue with food.

I grew up watching K-dramas, and we’d have to go to a specific video store for them. Now, you can go on YouTube or Netflix. Also, seeing things on TikTok or Instagram normalizes them, and when I see young people making food with Korean ingredients, I’m just like, “That’s great!” I think we’ll see more of that. 

3D Printer Carbonara

I’m a big sci-fi nerd. I’m reading this book where most food is made using 3D printers. In the book, a robot tells a human, “You have to eat. Can I make you a delicious carbonara?” and it’s all coming out of this 3D printer.

This can be a silver bullet when addressing worldwide hunger, starvation, and poverty. And it can radically change not just the availability of food and the eradication of food deserts, but our economy, geopolitics, and how we relate to each other. Food security is the linchpin to safety, so to the extent that we can utilize technology to make good, delicious, and nutrient-rich food available to as many people as possible, it can be life-changing to everyone in the whole world.

Max La Manna
Simply Recipes / Sabrina Tan

Cookbook Author, Digital Creator, and Low-Waste Chef
: @maxlamanna
: @maxlamanna
: Max La Manna

Root-to-Fruit Eating

Most food waste happens at home, so I’d like to see people use entire ingredients. It doesn’t matter how—you could use garlic peels to make a veg stock or onion skin to make onion powder. I assume no one ever goes to the supermarket and says to the person ringing up their items, “I’m just using the broccoli florets, so I’m only going to pay for that.” You pay for the whole thing, so you should use the whole thing. Whether that’s in the food you eat or in compost, I think everything we bring home has a use, and envision more people learning how.

Back to Our Roots

I hope more people will have access to community farms. We can take a step back and look at what our ancestors did and how they cooked. They cooked based on what was around, what was seasonal, and what was there for them instead of buying ingredients shipped from around the world. We can revive the practices our ancestors and grandparents have used for generations.

Suzy Karadsheh
Simply Recipes / Sabrina Tan

Food Blogger
Instagram: @themediterraneandish
Facebook: The Mediterranean Dish
Website: The Mediterranean Dish

Give Me Heat, Give Me Flavor

One ingredient that I am starting to introduce in my cooking to readers is Aleppo pepper. It’s a little bit spicy, and I’ve seen a trend toward spicy foods that will continue into the future. Adding anything spicy to food used to be a big deal, but now I hear people saying, “Give me more spice!” And it’s not just the heat; it’s also the fruitiness of Aleppo pepper, which tastes different from Urfa or Sichuan peppers. Beyond just the heat, people are becoming interested in the flavors of different peppers.

Skip the Cereal—Make Breakfast Savory

I think savory breakfasts will replace the hurried bowl of cereal in the morning. I grew up with things like tomatoes, cucumbers, and fava beans for breakfast, and I see more and more people sampling these recipes from the traffic on my website. People are more conscious of what they put in their bodies. There’s been a shift from, “I just want a quick breakfast on the go before I leave for work” to “I want something more nourishing.” People are turning away from processed foods and looking to incorporate more whole foods into their lives. I think the Mediterranean diet is here to stay because it focuses on whole foods.

The Woks of Life
Simply Recipes / Sabrina Tan

Food Bloggers and Cookbook Authors of The Woks of Life
Instagram: @thewoksoflife
: The Woks of Life

A Wok in Every Kitchen

We hope that over the next 20 years, Chinese home cooking will continue to make its way into people’s kitchens, similar to how Italian food and techniques have become mainstays for home cooks. We hope the same will be the case for Chinese dishes, ingredients, and techniques. Everyone should have a wok in their kitchen!

Small But Mighty Ingredients

In the next wave of home cooking, we’ll rely even more on affordable ingredients that pull their weight on flavor so home cooks don’t need pricier, larger cuts of meat. Things like oyster sauce add a rich, salty oyster flavor with just a little bit of sweetness, transforming sauces and marinades. Chinese fermented bean curd is another powerhouse—it’s as incredible a soy product as any out there. The magic of fermentation yields a satisfying saltiness and a depth of flavor that only comes from dairy cheeses, yet you can find it in bean curd.

Jeanine Donofrio
Simply Recipes / Sabrina Tan

Food Blogger and Cookbook Author of Love & Lemons: Simple Feel Good Food
: @loveandlemons
Website: Love &Lemons

Cabbage, Get Ready for Your Spotlight

Cauliflower had its moment, and so did kale. I predict that cabbage will be the next trendy veggie. It’s not only nutritious and affordable but also incredibly versatile. In my new cookbook Simple Feel: Good Food, I have recipes for savory cabbage pancakes, seared cabbage “steaks,” loaded pita nachos with pickled cabbage, and hearty vegan cabbage tacos. I can’t wait to see other ways we use this delicious veggie!

Laurel Randolph
Simply Recipes / Sabrina Tan

Food Editor for Simply Recipes and Cookbook Author of The Unofficial Simpsons Cookbook
Instagram: @laurelrandy
Website: Laurel Randolph

It’s Celery’s Time to Shine

You heard me right, celery. That often overlooked veggie that wilts with abandon in your crisper drawer after you made chicken soup or a stir fry weeks prior. It’s worthy of more than mirepoix! I want to see celery soups (a favorite of mine), celery side dishes, celery apps, celery drinks! Affordable, low-calorie, with plenty of crunch and a refreshing vegetal flavor—what’s not to love?

Leveled Up Baking with Bitters

I’ve been seeing more and more booze in baking, and cocktail bitters are becoming a popular ingredient in the kitchen. I think it’s time for them to become as indispensable for baking as that bottle of vanilla extract in your cupboard. They work miracles in drinks, rounding them out and providing balance, and they can do the same thing for baked goods. Aromatic, potent, complexly flavored bitters add a little intrigue to your whipped cream, balance out your sweet cake, and spice to your cookies. Here’s to adding a little bite of bitter to future sweet treats!

Myo Quinn
Simply Recipes / Sabrina Tan

News & Features Senior Editor for Simply Recipes
Instagram: @myo.k.quinn
Website: Myo Quinn

Ta-Da! Open Sesame!

We’ve just scratched the surface with sesame seeds, the tiny and delicious seeds with a deep history that spans African, Middle Eastern, and many Asian and American food cultures. It’s a common ingredient in so many cuisines around the world, yet we don’t know about many of them here in the U.S. That’s going to change! I think we are going to ride the wave of our interest in cooking with sesame oil, tahini, and toasted sesame seeds into sweet black sesame paste, halvah, zhī ma jiàng (Chinese sesame paste), a myriad of popular Middle Eastern breads, cookies, and candies, and so much more.

Article Categories:
Dishes · Soups

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