Here's what you'll be seeing on menus and your social feeds when the clock strikes midnight on Jan. 1 — or, at least, in the year to come.
While the Year of the s'more has been building momentum for some time, 2017 will officially be the year of s'mores everything and anything. From the famous s'mores tartuffo at L'Oca d'Oro in Austin, Texas, to the new s'mores Girl Scout cookie — if the Girl Scouts can't predict a trend who can? — debuting in 2017 and even an artisanal s'mores kit at Anthropologie, s'mores are gonna take over. And yes, you'll still want some more.
As concerns about the environment and climate change rise, interest in meat alternatives has grown as well. As the race for the first consumer-ready test-tube meat, aka cultured meat, continues, several vegetarian-friendly meat alternatives are already on the market, like the much-buzzed-about Beyond Meat. The start-up, which even gained a major investment by Tyson Foods in 2016, created a meat alternative that looks, tastes and like a burger, though it's made from 100% plant proteins. Our new Beyond Chicken Asian Bowl on our menu is an Asian inspired stir fry dish includes Beyond Meat: Chicken (that has as much protein as chicken and is also cholesterol and gluten-free) with brown rice, broccoli, sweet red peppers and crunchy water chestnuts. A true textural and taste phenom! Try it here.
Spiralizing zucchini and squash hit it big in 2016, with zoodles dominating everything from Instagram to trendy restaurant menus. Following in the trend of substituting veggies for foods, cauliflower rice became a big thing in 2016, as did all sorts of ways to re-create traditionally carb-y foods but with vegetables. Bring on the broccoli crust pizza.
If you want evidence of a big trend ready to sweep the nation, just look to New York, where the newly opened meat-free and recently Michelin-starred restaurant Nix has reservation waits rivaling the musical Hamilton.
We've noticed the "veggie everything" trend while we were creating our first menu and came up with this ingenious swap for our Kid's Mac & Cheese made with butternut squash. Surprisingly, our version of this classic is kid tested and approved, our "kid testers" never knew they were eating veggies! And P.S. adults can enjoy it too (as part of your meal delivery experience).
Meal kits are great, but they take some work: 90% of meal kit users abandon their subscriptions within six months. While millennials may have laid off frozen dinners like Lean Cuisines and relied on pre-chopped boxed ingredients for the past few years, expect the laziness to set in (that's why these kits were created in the first place) and the microwavable meals to return to prominence.
But now that we've seen how good preparing food at home can be, these frozen and packaged meals need to step it up. In 2016, brands began launching their restaurant-equivalent heat-at-home meals, like Devour's frozen white cheddar mac and cheese with bacon and ravioli with Italian sausage and pesto.
We've also come up with our own version of "heat-and-eat" gourmet, like our Southern "Fried" Chicken" or our Chef Nick's choice Seared Atlantic Salmon with Creamed Spinach. Our meal delivery service in Philadelphia and South Jersey, sure beats waiting in line at the grocery store to stock up your fridge and freezer. Expect to see many more heat-and-eat gourmet-style meals from us in 2017!