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The Hottest Food Trends for this Holiday Season

Pumpkin spice is back in town. That can mean only one thing: gingerbread season is just around the corner. Soon, people will walk the streets bundled up in winter coats and looking for things that make the oncoming holiday season extra special.

 

Gifts, decoration, music, and treats. Especially treats.

 

There are certain foods you can’t escape near a specific holiday. For example, a turkey at Thanksgiving is a must, just like Christmas is almost impossible to imagine without gingerbread or pudding.

 

Savvy restaurant owners can attract new clients with a smart twist on classic holiday food recipes

 

But even though Grandma’s turkey is the foundation of the holidays in many homes, savvy restaurant owners can attract new clients with a smart twist on classic holiday food recipes.

 

The top food trends of 2018 give us an insight into what kinds of dishes will get your clients to step inside your restaurant this holiday season.

 
 

Top Christmas and Thanksgiving Holiday Food Trends for 2018

 

Thanksgiving Food Trends

 
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For most people, Thanksgiving is not Thanksgiving without roast turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, yams, corn, and a green bean casserole. These favorite holiday foods have a place on every family’s dinner table.

 

However, this doesn’t mean you’ll have to restrict your restaurant to age-old recipes. Give your creativity free reign and come up with ideas to make classic dishes fresh and exciting.

 

For example, exchanging unhealthy ingredients for healthy ones will definitely earn you some brownie points from your clients. Though not specifically a Thanksgiving trend, healthy eating is an ever-growing movement among consumers.

 

A healthy version of mashed potatoes (e.g. with a dairy-alternative and root vegetables replacing some of the potatoes) can be a big hit with comfort food-craving clients.

 

The Ketogenic diet (or keto) continues its reign among consumers. Cooking keto (very low carb) versions of classic Thanksgiving meals will help you extend your reach and draw new clients to your restaurant.

 

And last but not least, bite-sized dishes are still one of the biggest Thanksgiving food trends. Mini appetizers, side dishes, and desserts are popular with clients looking for an alternative presentation of classic meals.

 

Christmas Food Trends

 
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Nobody’s questioning the importance of ham, roast poultry, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie. Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without them. But a new ingredient here or a different preparation method there can work wonders on slightly bored taste buds.

 

The holiday flavor trends this year are salted caramel and clementine, with gingerbread spice making an unexpected appearance in various savory dishes.

 

Mince pies, for example, can get a delicious bath in salted caramel, gaining a new layer of festive taste.

 

Clementine juice is an excellent addition to traditional desserts, enlivening the flavors and adding a light, fruity touch. Heavy chocolate and butter-based cakes could especially benefit from clementine.

 

is a must-have ingredient for the holidays. From lattés to cookies, the aromatic and unmistakable taste of it is ubiquitous around the end of the year. But what if you tried to use them with savory dishes?

 

The holiday flavor trends this year are salted caramel and clementine, with gingerbread spice making an unexpected appearance in various savory dishes.

 

Sprinkle your meat stuffing with gingerbread spice and see what happens. The spice may just bring out the sweet undertones of your meat, rounding out the taste and bringing a look of surprised delight on your clients’ faces.

 

Mashed vegetables have always been a favorite among Christmas food trends. These side-dishes are incredibly versatile, their taste and texture varying based on the ingredients used.

 

And sky’s the limit. To get an extra kick out of this beloved classic, introduce apples, celery, root vegetables, or whatever you can think of to your mashed potatoes. Your clients will thank you.

 

Just because it’s Christmas, you shouldn’t abandon current top food trends. 2018 is big on fermented food. Korean kimchi, pickles, and other fermented vegetables made their way into sandwiches and side dishes. Why not introduce them to your Christmas menu?

 

Plant-based protein is another favorite this year. Delight your clients with meat-replacement options like lentils, tofu, chickpeas, or quinoa. A healthy Christmas meal doesn’t have to be an oxymoron.

 

The possibilities are endless. With a little creativity, chefs have the chance to create something new and exciting from even the best known dishes.

 
 

A Peek at 2019 Top Food Trends

 

Although 2018 still has a few more months to dish up, you can already start preparing for the next big thing: 2019.

 

The vegan diet continues to be popular. Tasty meat and cheese replacements find their way onto the plates of health-conscious consumers, even if they’re not on a strict vegan diet.

 

Try experimenting with vegan products to spice up your menu and offer your clients a healthy yet delicious option.

 

Make space for timeless classics like mac & cheese on your menu.

 

Buying your restaurant’s supplies from sustainable sources is another trend that will continue to grow in 2019. Similarly, consumers are willing to pay a higher price for fair trade and organic products.

 

Good quality ingredients are a must. Don’t worry if that means you’ll have to import them from another country; foreign trade and international payments have gotten a lot easier these days.

 

In 2019, comfort food is predicted to make a comeback. Make space for timeless classics like mac & cheese on your menu. This doesn’t mean you have to throw your creativity in a corner though. Experiment with new ingredients, healthier recipes, or unusual spices to give beloved classics an exciting twist.

 

While not strictly a food trend, reducing waste, especially plastic is an ever-growing movement across the planet. Show your environmentally conscious clients how your restaurant contributes to the fight against waste and climate change.

 

For today’s restaurant goers, food provides so much more than mere nutrition. A thoughtfully prepared dish exudes a sense of community, acceptance, and love.

 

Offering a no-straw option to cocktails and other dishes is a cheap and easy way to care for the environment. Or, at least seem like you do.

 

Trends come and go, but the importance of good food remains the same. For today’s restaurant goers, food provides so much more than mere nutrition. A thoughtfully prepared dish exudes a sense of community, acceptance, and love.

 

Add these “special ingredients” to each of your dishes and help make the food world a better place.