In the world of food, there’s always something new on the horizon — and on supermarket shelves, restaurant menus, and dinner tables. An astonishing 15,000 or so new food products are introduced in the U.S. each year, according to a recent study out of Kansas State University.
That number, though, refers only to items developed for commercial distribution (about 90% of which will fail, incidentally, according to the Kansas study). In addition, there are traditional foodstuffs and dishes from the world’s cuisines that have become popular here for the first time; varieties of produce either recently hybridized or just now making their way into the American market; and the small-scale innovations of creative bakers, chefs, brewers, and other food craftspeople.
24/7 Tempo has assembled a list of 30 foods (well, 27 foods and three drinks) that anyone interested in expanding his or her culinary experience ought to try before the year is out. A number of these have been around for years, if not centuries — vegetables like the eerie-looking broccoli variation called romanesco; spice mixtures like Ethiopia’s hauntingly complex berbere — but have only recently become well-known or widely available.
Others, new to the supply chain, have been developed by corporate kitchens and food scientists and are available in grocery stores and/or through Amazon, Walmart, and other websites. Any of these might well become part of the way we eat from day to day — as have many of the biggest trends in food and drink since 2010.
Included on our list are snack foods, fruit and vegetables, meats, condiments, baked goods, desserts, and beverages. Some familiar names are involved, like Lay’s, Peeps, and Reese’s, in some of these products. There are products from or inspired by cuisines from India, China, Japan, Italy, Brazil, Georgia (the Central Asian one), and more. Some of the things included here are pure indulgence and might even qualify as junk food, while others are healthy, being low in carbs or fat or involving so-called superfoods. (These are 23 fall superfoods that will aid weight loss.)
Not everybody will like everything on this list, of course, but there’ll be something for everybody here. The world is full of flavors; try some that you might not already know.