The 10 Biggest Health Food Trends of 2021, According To Whole Foods Market
It's hard to believe 2021 is just around the corner, especially given what an...interesting year 2020 has been. One thing we're looking forward to in the new year? All the exciting food trends on the horizon.
For the sixth year in a row, Whole Foods Market has released its annual Top 10 Food Trends list, and in 2021, we can expect to see a lot of fancy basics, innovative oils, plenty of chickpeas, and more. Without further ado, here are the food trends that are about to take over grocery shelves and pantries nationwide.
Well-Being is Served
As Hippocates once said, "Let they food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food." With 2020 putting health at the forefront of everyone's minds, it's really no wonder that we can expect plenty of superfoods, probiotics, broths, and the like, stocking our pantries. Anything edible that can help with immunity and supporting overall well-being will definitely be on the table.
While we at mbg love a good mushroom-packed tonic or gut-healing bone broth, it's important to remember that simple, accessible ingredients can pack a medicinal punch too. Clementines, ginger, and garlic for the win.
Epic Breakfast Every Day
Between pandemic-induced schedule changes and the new reality of working from home, breakfast is having a moment. No commute time just means more time to make an excellent breakfast any day of the week—which is why epic breakfasts come in at #2 in this year's list.
Keep an eye out for more ingredients that make it easy to health-ify some of your favorite breakfast staples, like meatless breakfast sausage and keto pancake mixes. Might we suggest subbing them into one of these 33 knock-out morning recipes?
Basics on Fire
From spice blends to sauces, 2021's kitchen "basics" will be anything but. More time in the kitchen equals getting creative and taking old favorites to the next level. According to Whole Foods, everything down to table salt is going to be getting a whole lot fancier.
Coffee Beyond the Mug
A jolt of joe is now being added to everything from granola to booze, giving us more ways than one to get our fix. In 2021, it'll be easier than ever to work your daily dose of caffeine into a snack or meal. Good thing coffee can actually be really healthy, as long as you're not going overboard. Here are a top tips from a gastroenterologist on how to incorporating it into your routine.
Baby Food, All Grown Up
Oh, to be a baby in 2021! The latest baby foods hitting the market are packed with not only nutritious ingredients, but plenty of innovation and flavor. Parents can rest assured there are ample options for their little ones that are healthy and still baby-approved.
Food waste is a huge drag, and it looks like food companies are catching on to that. From stems and leaves, to vegetable pulp, 2021 is going to see a focus on "upcycling" food scraps and incorporating them back into totally edible and delicious snacks. A win for the environment—and our appetite. We're all for pairing your upcycled staples with other low-waste kitchen habits and making this the year you finally start a compost bin. (This cheat sheet will make it way easier.)
Of course, olive oil will always have a place in our kitchens. But this coming year, we're branching out a bit. From walnut to pumpkin seed, there's no shortage of new oils hitting shelves, according to Whole Foods Market. Each offers their own distinct flavor and smoke point, making a simple oil swap an easy way to switch up your favorite recipes.
Kombucha has been on the scene for a while now, and in 2021, it's getting boozier. You may have noticed hard kombuchas trickling into stores near you, and soon enough, they'll be fully mainstream. Considering they're gluten free and often packed with probiotic-goodness, we'd consider them a very welcome addition to the beverage aisle.
The Mighty Chickpea
According to Whole Foods Market, chickpeas are the new cauliflower. In other words, they're a wonder ingredient that you can prepare in tons of ways. Ever heard of chickpea cereal? How about chickpea flour? Or chickfu (tofu made from chickpeas, naturally)? This little protein-packed legume is about as versatile as it gets, and we're all for brands making it even easier to eat every day.
Fruit & Veggie Jerky
And lastly, vegetarians and vegans (or anyone else who enjoys the meaty texture or jerky) can rejoice! Fruit and vegetable jerky are going to have a moment in 2021, with options like mushroom, banana, and mango jerky coming to your snacking rescue. Bonus points: This method of preparation can make your favorite produce picks shelf-stable!
Sarah Regan is a Spirituality & Relationships Writer, as well as a registered yoga instructor. She received her bachelor's in broadcasting and mass communication from SUNY Oswego, and lives in Buffalo, New York.