Top 10 US Culinary Trends for 2017, as Told by Sterling-Rice Group

pastaSterling-Rice Group, a firm that offers annual culinary trends, has identified the top 10 trends in the United States for the year 2017. They predict that these 10 trends will stand out on restaurant menus, become more visible on grocery shelves, and attract the attention of consumers across the country in the coming year.

What is SRG?

Sterling-Rice Group is a nationally recognized brand-building firm based in Boulder, Colorado. They specialize in consumer insights, business strategy, innovation, advertising, and design. As food and beverage experts, they promote the growth of living well brands that make people’s lives happier and healthier.

For the last five years, Outside Magazine has named the firm as one of the Best Places to Work. Furthermore, the firm offers cutting-edge culinary trends in the United States every year.

Their in-house culinary team and Culinary Council compiled a 2017 report that showcases key societal shifts that serve as a driving force behind long-term food trends. According to them, the coming year will show chefs and foodies seeking inspiration from ancient wellness philosophies and traditional cooking methods. This serves as a basis for their predicted top 10 food trends.

What are these 10 trends?

The first trend is Wake and Cake. Syracuse University recently conducted a study proving that a daily dose of chocolate improves cognitive abilities. On the other hand, Tel Aviv University has recently found that having dessert after breakfast could help with weight loss. Together, the research findings forecast a post-breakfast dessert trend.

The second trend is Dosha Dining. Traditional Indian physicians have long recommended turmeric for its health benefits and savory flavor. It came into the spotlight in 2016 and, inspired by the ancient practice of Ayurveda, consumers are predicted to gravitate more towards it in 2017.

The third trend is Plant Butchery. In the coming year, US consumers will see the emergence of butcher shops that cater to vegans and meat lovers alike. Meat substitutes are no longer limited to seitan and soybean because chickpeas, corn, legumes, and fungi have entered the scene.

The fourth trend is Food Waste Frenzy. According to food and nutrition strategist Rachel Begun, around 40% of US-grown food goes to waste. Next year, restaurants and food companies will offer options that use the entire fruit or vegetable — even the seeds and discarded juice pulp.

The fifth trend is Snackin’ Sardines. Consumers continue to be interested in protein-rich snacks, and sardines are high in omega-3, protein, and umami flavor. The fish, then, is a forecasted trend.

The sixth trend is Noodle on This. Asian noodles have become American favorites, from Vietnamese pho to Japanese ramen. The Chinese lamian (hand-pulled noodles) will add another authentic experience for consumers.

The seventh trend is Mocktail Mixology. Next year, nonalcoholic happy hours and standalone mocktail menus will make way for a unique beverage experience — without the hangover.

The eighth trend is Goat! Get It. Goats are low in calories, fat, and cholesterol, so it makes sense that they are 2017’s go-to protein. They make a good foundation for both spicy and sour preparation.

The ninth trend is Cook and Connect. Chef Rosemary Mark said that sharing a meal is essential to culture because consumers yearn for real-time interaction despite virtual connection through technology. As such, communal pizza ovens, outdoor kitchens, and the like are bound to rise in the coming year.

Finally, the tenth trend is Migratory Meals. 2017 will see US menus highlighting cuisine from different cultures. After all, Chef Victor Matthews said that chefs, culinarians, and foodies exist in a world of endless culinary comradeship.

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