The Most Popular Food Trends for 2019

There are SO MANY trends this year. Did you know being a Dietitian is one of them? 😉

It was honestly tough to narrow down the list but thankfully these trends are all over the restaurant industry, social media, and television!

2019 is the year of sustainability and health. All I have to say is…it’s about time.

Sustainability has always been a passion of mine. I find it rewarding to take the steps of reducing my food waste, using less plastic, shopping from local food vendors, and so much more.

When you think about it, a “healthy” diet is simply eating simple foods (limiting prepackaged sodium/sugar filled items), not eating too large of portions, cooking more of your meals at home, and trying to eat more fruits and vegetables. Simple. Getting a good nights sleep and being physically active is also CRUCIAL for health!!

The trends that I’ve focused on for Fox 17 were plant-based foods, preserved foods, reducing food waste, and coconut sugar! Catch the segment here!

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Plant-based foods are absolutely taking over the globe. I love it. This movement really promotes the idea of eating more vegetables, nuts&seeds, fruit, and whole grains. These are a lot of the food groups that many Americans miss out on. With that said, I absolutely love and adore my local Michigan dairy and meat products. I try to get a good balance of plant-based meals during the week but also still enjoy my favorites. You can try this trend by participating in Meatless Mondays. The idea behind this is to go Meatless just once per week, so easy! Here’s a recipe for Cauliflower Steak that you can try out next Monday.

Mediterranean Cauliflower Steak

Serves 4

Ingredients:

1 head of cauliflower

2 tablespoons of olive oil

Salt and pepper, to taste

½ cup assorted olives, pitted and sliced in half

½ cup artichokes, roughly chopped

¼ cup sundried tomatoes

1 tablespoon lemon juice

¼ cup feta

2 tablespoons parsley, chopped

1 cup of harissa

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Remove the leaves of the cauliflower and begin cutting 1/2 inch thick slices. Brush the cauliflower with olive oil on both sides and season with salt and pepper as desired.

In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, sear the cauliflower steaks until lightly browned (about 2-3 minutes per side).

Place seared cauliflower steaks on a baking sheet and roast for 12-15 minutes.

Combine olives, artichokes, sundried tomatoes, parsley, and lemon juice in a small bowl. Top each steak with the olive mix and a sprinkle of feta. Serve with harissa on the side.

The next big trend is preserved foods. Preserved foods can be pickled, fermented, or things like jams/jellies. Preserved foods are gaining attention because they help extend the life of fresh produce. Fermented foods, in particular, are popular due to their probiotic content. Probiotics are great for keeping our guts healthy! Many health professionals attribute a healthy gut as an indicator of good overall health. So eat up!

Here are some of my favorite fermented foods:

  • Fermented Carrots (other veggies too!)
  • Kimchi
  • Kombucha
  • Kefir
  • Yogurt
  • Sourdough Bread

Here’s a great recipe for fermented carrots!

Fermented Carrots

Fills one 16 ounce mason jar

Ingredients:

½ pound peeled and trimmed organic carrots

1 large garlic clove, cut in half

2-3 sprigs of fresh dill

½ tablespoons sea salt

Spring water

Preparation:

Cut peeled and trimmed carrots in half and trim to fit mason jar.

Add sea salt to the mason jar and then place carrots in the jar along with garlic and dill. Pour spring water over the carrots and fill until carrots are submerged.

Let sit at room temperature in an air-tight container for at least 3-5 days. You will start to see tiny bubbles form around the top as a result of fermentation. After opening, refrigerate for up to two weeks.

Reducing food waste is our third trend! Globally, we waste 1/3 of the food we produce every year. I know, it’s incredibly sad to think about. Taking steps to reduce waste saves the environment and your wallet. Try saving your vegetable scraps to make homemade stock or start turning your scraps into sauces, like chimichurri! I didn’t have much use for my carrot tops are I sliced my carrots for fermentation. Instead of throwing them away, I made an amazing sauce (great with locally raised Michigan beef!)

Check out this carrot top chimichurri!

Carrot Top Chimichurri

Makes approximately 1 cup

1 cup carrot tops

½ cup cilantro

2 tablespoons Fresh oregano

1 Jalapeno, sliced in half, seeds removed

4 Garlic cloves

1 teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon pepper

1/3 cup red wine vinegar

½ cup olive oil

Preparation:

Combine all of the ingredients except the olive oil in a food processor. Blend all ingredients until it begins to form a smooth paste. Slowly drizzle olive oil into the food processor and pulse to combine.

Last but certainly not least, the oh so delicious coconut sugar!! We’ve gone through a lot of coconuts in the last few years (hey coconut oil and coconut water). While it’s not the superfood everyone thought it was, it’s still pretty delicious and unrefined. Coconut sugar is made from the sap of the coconut tree. It sits in the sun to dry creating a sugar crystal. It does have some vitamins and minerals in it but is about the same calories as traditional table sugar. Try these coconut sugar cookies and you will instantly become a fan.

Coconut Sugar Cookies

Yields 12-14 cookies

Ingredients:

6 tablespoons room temperature butter

1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons coconut sugar

1 large egg

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine butter and coconut sugar together with a hand mixer or electric mixer. Add in eggs and vanilla and beat until combined.

Mix together flour, baking soda, and salt in a sperate bowl then slowly add to the butter mixture until just combined.

Portion out into 2 tablespoon scoops. Form a round shape and place on baking sheet.

Bake on a cookie sheet for 10 minutes.

Let’s see how these trends play out in the New Year!!

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