Chefs Predict 2016’s Top Menu Trends

Local sourcing, chef-driven fast-casual concepts, and environmental sustainability remain among the top menu trends, according to the NRA’s annual What’s Hot culinary forecast.

The NRA surveyed nearly 1,600 professional chefs all members of the American Culinary Federation, to find which foods, beverages and culinary themes will be hot on restaurant menus in 2016. According to the survey, the Top 20 food trends for 2016 are:

1.      Locally sourced meats and seafood

2.      Chef-driven fast-casual concepts

3.      Locally grown produce

4.      Hyper-local sourcing

5.      Natural ingredients/minimally processed food

6.      Environmental sustainability

7.      Healthful kids’ meals

8.      New cuts of meat

9.      Sustainable seafood

10.  House-made/artisan ice cream

11.  Ethnic condiments/spices

12.  Authentic ethnic cuisine

13.  Farm/estate branded items

14.  Artisan butchery

15.  Ancient grains

16.  Ethnic-inspired breakfast items

17.  Fresh/house-made sausage

18.  House-made/artisan pickles

19.  Food waste reduction/management

20.  Street food/food trucks

For complete survey results, additional trends to watch, video and downloadable graphics, visit

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