The Biggest Food Trends To Know For 2022

The last few years has seen canned cocktails, hard seltzers, Biscoff bakes and meal kits all become staples in our kitchens, but what does 2022 have in store? From retro puddings to potato milk (yes, really), here’s what – and how – we’ll all be eating over the next 12 months…
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TIKTOK TRENDS

“Platforms such as TikTok and Instagram have put the fun back into cooking and mealtimes. During lockdown, such platforms gave us a means of connecting with others when face-to-face contact was difficult. But food pictures and tablescaping are no flash in the pan – they’re here to stay. Across all age groups, 28% of respondents to our 2021 food and drink survey said they regularly look at social media for food inspiration. The reason is simple – social media makes the world of food come alive. These platforms are bursting with food ideas and hacks, and we’ve seen sales of all sorts of unexpected products rise due to social media activity. We don’t expect this trend to go anywhere anytime soon.” – Waitrose Food & Drink Report 2021-2022
 
“The hashtag #TikTokFood has collectively amassed 44.5bn views, and social recipes have boomed so much that you can now order trending recipes to your home. Everyone remembers the feta pasta trend. Supermarkets saw a notable uplift of feta sales at its peak and our one-pot greek cheese, tomato & tenderstem farfalle was our most popular vegetarian recipe in 2021. Social trends are transforming the way we eat at home. I love that they encourage people to swap their standard repertoire for more adventurous flavours and textures. It’s a chance to learn about new cuisines and anything off the beaten track.” – Jordan Moore, Gousto

JAPANESE FLAVOURS

“Umami will continue to grow in popularity in 2022. The Japanese word is one of the five basic tastes – along with sweet, bitter, salty and sour – and is akin to a savoury flavour (it translates as ‘pleasant savoury taste’). Sales of our Cooks’ Ingredients Umami Paste, which adds depth of flavour to any dish, are up 17% compared with 2019.” – Waitrose
 
“Koji is the hidden pillar of the traditional cuisine of Japan. It is the origin of sake, mirin and rice vinegar, as well as miso and soy sauce. Fundamentally it is steamed rice inoculated with the spores of a specific strain of fungi and left to incubate in controlled conditions for temperature and moisture. The starch becomes sugar, which makes it subtly sweet, and the proteins break down into simpler molecules, which adds umami, giving it the intensely fruity, musty and sweet aromas that characterise it. When combined with ingredients that are traditionally found in different regions (such as using chickpeas instead of soy to make a miso-like paste) it can bring an incredible depth of flavour. More and more chefs and enthusiasts are now using this method in their cooking, and I believe it will start becoming a big thing in 2022.” – Marco Ardemagni, Yatay
 
“Mushrooms are definitely enjoying a moment, having doubled their online value year on year to April 2021. Packed with umami flavours and B vitamins you can now buy many more exciting varieties, especially from Japan. You can even buy mushroom powders that make nutritious hot drinks.” – Bettina Campolucci Bordi, Bettina’s Kitchen

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CLIMATARIANISM

“A diet focused on reducing your carbon footprint is gaining popularity. As part of this year’s Food & Drink Report, we asked shoppers whether the carbon footprint of their food is important to them. Nearly 70% said it was either ‘very’ or ‘somewhat’ important. It’s people’s way of keeping tabs on their personal impact on the environment. Three-quarters of our respondents have tried harder not to waste food this year, with 56% saying it’s something they intend to carry on with. Meanwhile, 77% are concerned about the amount of plastic in their grocery packaging, and 71% have tried to reduce the amount of packaging they take into their homes.” – Waitrose
 
“Incorporating some core principles of the climatarian diet can be easy and can make a significant impact. At Kurami we only serve lean meats a few times per week, and we source it from a family farm just outside London. Eating more plant-based food can also impact your health. Studies have shown that eating a minimum of 30+ varieties of plants weekly can help favour a more diverse gut microbiome. This diversity contributes to a functioning digestive system, maintenance of immune function, healthy skin, and other aspects of physical and mental wellbeing.” – Camilla Pigozzi Garofalo, Kurami

PANEER

“The king of grillable cheese, halloumi, is set to be given a run for its money by paneer. With its buttery, silky texture and high melting point, it’s just as versatile as halloumi, but paneer absorbs more flavour, making it perfect for rubs, marinades and famously, curries and stews. In the second half of 2021, we saw our highest ever demand for paneer with our paneer butter masala and coriander rice recipe, so we’re expecting to see paneer continue to boom in 2022”. – Jordan 

 
“Sales of Indian cottage cheese have soared as people search for meat-free alternatives. Morrison’s is even selling paneer sticks. At BiBi, we serve a buffalo milk paneer lightly seasoned with a Lahori-style kebab masala. Our paneer is from the New Forest and I hope it convinces people that paneer is up there with Britain’s best-loved cheeses. The buffalo graze on the wild terrain and eat different grasses and herbs as the seasons progress. Every time they're milked, there are different nuances of flavour, and then in the dairy they use a low temperature pasteurisation which helps retain this complexity.” – Chet Sharma, BiBi

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RETRO DISHES

“From Angel Delight to sticky toffee pudding and banana splits, nostalgic desserts are making a comeback. They’re comforting, fun, easy and – after the 19 months we’ve all had – hark back to simpler times. Particularly popular are traybake sponges. A video for school dinner cake, complete with white icing and hundreds and thousands, has been viewed 167,000 times on TikTok, while searches for knickerbocker glory recipes on Waitrose.com are up 171% this year.” – Waitrose
 
“I am enjoying the renewed interest in the classics. Ingredients like kippers are popping up across menus and this year’s Great Taste Awards crowned the oak-smoked Mallaig Kippers from J Lawrie & Sons as champions. Anchovies are back too with hot new restaurant Brutto’s dish of anchovies with cold butter and St John sourdough taking over Instagram, as well as Blacklock’s egg and anchovy pre-chop bites. At Bentley’s, the English shellfish cocktail has become most popular dish on the menu.” – Richard Corrigan, Corrigan’s & Bentley’s Oyster Bar
 
"I've always been a big fan of a dessert in a glass; a peach melba, a knickerbocker glory, a trifle. They're the desserts I grew up with and continue to find comforting. And as a chef, the complexities of the layers of a trifle are hugely satisfying to create, as is finding that perfect balance between the booze, the sweet and the acidity. There is a lot going on despite it being a fairly pedestrian dessert and you can keep it hyper seasonal, switching out the fruits pending the month." – Patrick Powell, Allegra

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POTATO MILK

“We’ve seen the popularity of soy, almond, oat and pea milk in recent years. Now it’s the turn of potato milk. Low in sugar and saturated fat, it’s set to dominate coffee shop menus in the coming months.” – Waitrose
 
“The newest trend in terms of non-dairy milk is potato milk. This new milk alternative is low in sugar and saturated fats and is one of the most sustainable options as potatoes use about half the land it takes to grow the equivalent amount of oats”. – Bettina

TINNED FISH

“From Ortiz tuna to Cornish pilchard fillets, savvy foodies are loving canned fish. These long-life store-cupboard essentials can be used in appetisers, as a snack on toast or in a salad. It’s effortless food – and great with a glass of chilled white wine. And the colourful cans are works of art in themselves. Sales of mackerel and anchovies rose by 17% in August 2021 and we expect those numbers to grow.” – Waitrose

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