Hot Topics & Trends: 10 Things You Should Know

April 24, 2015

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1. Grilled Veggie Slabs

Blackened Cabbage with Kelp Brown Butter is cooked until “you start worrying that it’s completely burned and possibly ruined,” and basted with kombu-infused, briny brown butter” to deliver a dish with an “unctuous, savory” flavor. Roasted cauliflower “steak” is topped with romesco sauce (red pepper, tomato, garlic, sherry vinegar) and fresh herbs and microgreens.  |  bon appetit, Martha Stewart Living

2. Savory Waffles

Buttermilk Oat Waffles with Spicy Maple Butter mix Tabasco and salt with maple syrup, while Whole Wheat Waffles with Chicken & Spinach Sauce make waffles a dinner centerpiece. | Martha Stewart Living, Taste of Home

3. Green Cocktails

The green juice craze carries over to cocktails as we spot drinks flavored with fresh celery, peas and asparagus. Also, fans at San Francisco Giants games can order cocktails made with herbs grown right at the stadium.  |  Martha Stewart Living, 

4. Veggie Desserts

The pastry chef at Maurice in Portland created a celery sorbet to top sponge cake covered in stewed rhubarb. Brooks Headley, pastry chef at Del Posto, pairs grilled eggplant with creamy chocolate chip ricotta ice cream. Eggplant Tarte Tatin with Black Pepper Caramel was also spotted, along with eggplant and rhubarb “bread” pudding.  | Saveur, Yahoo! Food, Gourmet, Maria Mind, Body, Health 

5. Avocado/Map Swap

Still having its shining moment, avocado is now getting attention as a mayo replacement in dishes such as deviled eggs and egg/tuna/chicken salads. They provide creamy texture and “fruity richness” with less fat and sodium.  | Cooking Light,,

6. Top It Off

Toasts with toppings are still very popular and the trend is branching out with crackers, rice cakes and tostados piled high with a variety of flavorful ingredients all spotted this month. | Taste of Home, Martha Stewart Living, Cooking Light

7. Iced Coffee

Warm weather kicks off iced coffee season and we’ve seen alcoholic creations appear like Iced Coffee Rum Kicker (coffee, rum, coconut water, almond milk, cinnamon) and watched Dunkin Donuts introduce Rocky Road flavor, Starbucks unveil cold brew, and Peet’s Coffee & Tea introduce its new crushed-ice coffee drink, Javia, promoted as being made from “fresh, brewed coffee,” while competitors’ drinks “are made from instant coffee powder.”  |,

8. Tahini Sauce

Made from ground sesame seeds and a staple in Middle Eastern, Greek and North African cooking, it’s an ingredient in hummus, but can be used to flavor everything from white chocolate cookies or deviled eggs to roasted veggies like cauliflower, carrots and kale.  |  Cooking Light,

9. Chicken Salad


Keeping with the trends of flavor variety and customization, Chicken Salad Chick is a new restaurant chain featuring 15 flavors of chicken salad including pineapple & macadamia nuts, hickory-smoked chicken & diced jalapenos and ranch dressing & bacon.  | The Tampa Tribune

10. Veggie Noodles

We’ve heard of zoodles (spiraled zucchini noodles), but what about Beet Linguine, Sweet Potato Noodle Buns, or Apple Noodles with Cinnamon and Toasted Coconut? We also spotted a creation that brings the veggie noodle and savory waffle trends together: Savory Parsnip Noodle Chive Waffles.  | Vegetarian Times,,


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Let FONA’s market insight and research experts translate these trends into product category ideas for your brand. They can help you with concept and flavor pipeline development, ideation, consumer studies and white space analysis to pinpoint opportunities in the market. Our flavor and product development experts are also at your service to help meet the labeling and flavor profile needs for your products to capitalize on this consumer trend. We understand how to mesh the complexities of flavor with your brand development, technical requirements and regulatory needs to deliver a complete taste solution. From concept to manufacturing, we’re here every step of the way. Contact our Sales Service Department at 630.578.8600 to request a flavor sample or visit