Last Updated on November 10, 2017 by Jen Kristensen
If you drop by Bonefish Grill, don’t be surprised if you notice that their menu is expanding with more items being added, and they’re not the only one. Every year the demands of consumers seem to change, and this year is no exception. While last year’s top food items are still popular, the following food items are the ones Americans are really craving for.
Locally Sourced Food
Whether it is meats, produce or something else, Americans are now showing greater interest in supporting foods that are produced by local farms. In survey after survey, it’s been shown that diners want to know where the food they are ordering is coming from, and that they prefer local. This trend is right up there with the demand for US food supply sustainability and environment concerns, so it is hardly surprising that most American restaurants now use locally sourced food.
Ice Cream on Demand
Everyone wants instant gratification and when it comes to ice cream, Americans are no exception. That probably explains why ice cream built from scratch is the in thing nowadays. With ice cream on demand, liquid nitrogen is used to freeze your ice cream so when you order it, it is cold and tasty, minus the additives and other stuff that give traditional ice cream an unpleasant, artificial taste. In addition, instant ice cream gives you a lot of flavors to choose from.
It’s true that a lot of Americans still eat meat, but a growing number are now turning vegetarian, and it is being reflected in restaurant menus. Proof of this is the fact that a recent study showed that a third of all US restaurant chains offer vegetarian entrée, and that more are likely to follow. What’s even more revealing is the study showing that 50% of Americans are now eating at least one non-meat meal a week, which is up by 40% since a similar study was done back in 2007. Given this fact, it’s not surprising that the demand for veggie meals with tomatoes, onions, lettuce and other greens are increasing.
Nutritious Treats for Kids
With the issue over America’s obesity problem, parents are now more concerned than ever before about what their children eat, and restaurants have responded. While restaurants have always had some healthy options for kids’ meals, they are now the main option rather than the alternative. While you shouldn’t expect French Fries to disappear anytime soon, there are now more baked fries, yogurt and fruits available.
Gluten Free Meals
This was a big hit back in 2013 and it is still very much in demand, testament to this being a recent survey showing 75% of chefs include it in their must-prepare foods. Aside from gluten free brownies, restaurants are now offering buckwheat pasta as well as other healthy grains. In addition, Americans are now looking for nutritious grains like amaranth and quinoa in their restaurant meals.
Not just ordinary nuts, but high protein nuts that give you an energy boost. When an NPD Group 2013 survey showed that 77% of Americans ate nuts at home, restaurants followed suit and consumers have responded well.
More Pizza Varieties
It might seem like there’s already an endless amount of pizza, but Americans are looking for higher quality ingredients as well. Aside from classic pizza toppings, restaurants are now offering more, much more to meet the demands of the public.
Burger with Fries
You can’t go to any casual food restaurant these days without running into the Monkey Burger or something like it. It’s basically a burger with fries in it plus a lot of other fillings. This was actually a hit back in 2013 but is still going on strong.
A bacon burger is exactly that, a burger that uses bacon for everything including the onions, patties and everything in between. Variations of this meal have appeared in a lot of casual food chains and there’s no sign of slowing down.
Other Popular Treats
Spam Fries are just like French Fries except it’s Spam that’s been fried, and they’re very popular now with both kids and adults. You’re also likely to come across cheese stuffed Doritos and Waffle Tacos as well, and aside from these, the popcorn cake is very much in demand, and as the name suggests, it’s a combination of cake and popcorn.
Other popular sweet treats in American restaurants are chocolate cookie milk shots, where a chocolate chip serves as the container for milk, chocolate chip cinnamon roll, and the Milky Bun, which is a combination of donuts and ice cream, which undoubtedly makes for a delicious concoction.
So don’t be surprised if the next time you are eating at Buffalo Wild Wings you come across these, as they’re pretty much what the American public wants. And once you get a taste of them, you’ll understand why.