Dessert forecast 2020

Let’s admit it, it’s not fair to eat ordinary desserts every day. Trying out new flavours, experimenting with food and crazy innovations are a few things the whole world is going gaga over.

Food has become a global obsession today, and not just for millennials but even for the youngest kid who relishes taste, for you and me and everybody around! Desserts are a playground where one can experiment with new flavours and concepts.

Today consumers are more educated, mindful and globally connected than ever before, when it comes to food. Chefs have put their creative hats on while catering to consumer’s changing dietary and lifestyle preferences as the focus is slowly shifting to health and clean ingredient labels.

2019 was more about elaborate flavours, combination flavours, fusion desserts, healthy eating, Instagrammable food and global food. This year, some trends will carry forward in a grander way and some will fizz out. Instagrammable food is here to stay and will lead further to prettier and presentable plated food and desserts.

Innovative ways of plating and different plates and serving platters, will make a grand entry in every service offering place, as the visual appeal and presentation of the dish has become a necessity. The first point of contact of the customer with the dish, will have to look enticing. Here are a few trends that could make a statement...

Healthy eating

Gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian, vegan and keto are increasingly lifestyle options today, especially with the increasing awareness and acceptance in the new year.

We will see more gluten free options in traditional breads, pastas, gluten free flours like buckwheat, rice flour, tapioca and almond flour, which will be used more to make more desserts and bakery goods. Chefs will work to offer more wheat free items in the menu.

Nut milk, soy milk, oat milk will continue to dominate on the menus in 2020. Also, for desserts, dairy free cheese will be in great demand and plant-based proteins will continue to grow in the market.

Traditionally consumed ingredients such as kuttu, amaranth, nachni and bajra flour, will grow in usage. Seaweed and ashwagandha are also finding increased usage in the industry.

Probiotics with gut enhancing properties are creating a space for themselves too. As a best substitute in all the vegan and keto friendly dishes, cauliflower has witnessed its increase in menus and is replacing rice in risottos.

Desi inspired western desserts

Indians have become very adventurous and experimental eaters, but at the end of the day, they are always looking for some traditional Indian comfort food that satiates their taste buds and gives a feeling of home. This trend, kickstarted in 2018 and carried on throughout 2019, will peak this year as well.

Indian sweets inspired desserts like Motichoor ladoo cake, White Chocolate parfait, Rabdi panna cotta, Jalebi creme brulee, Kala jamun chocolate truffles and more will dominate the menu. Relishing a western dessert with a familiar flavour will always find loyal takers.

Clean flavours

Clean singular flavours in desserts are going to find favour with the audience. People are tired of multiple flavours in a single dish, which most of the time might not taste right if not researched properly. Hence the inclination towards food that has a clear-cut flavour profile.

A lavender creme brulee, with just a lavender flavour and without any addition of secondary flavours, will be more accepted than a lavender, ginger creme brulee with a pistachio crumb! Confusion of flavours will be passe in 2020.

Asian inspired desserts

Japanese mochi, pandan creme brulee to a matcha Japanese cotton cheesecake, will be the new additions to the dessert spectrum. Western desserts with Asian flavours, along with south-east Asian origin desserts like Japanese mochi, Buko pie from Philippines, egg custard tarts from Hong Kong, pandan cake, halo halo will all enter the market to enthral Indian palates. Bluepea is being used widely to make teas and Southeast Asian dishes, and this will find its way into desserts as well, giving us indigo hued desserts soon.

Levantine or Lebanese cuisine

This is one of the favourite cuisines, widely loved by the Indian audiences. After the spices, the desserts of the region like Mahalabiya, Baklava, Basbousa, Kunafa and more are going to make its strong presence felt and rock people’s taste buds this year.

Cocktail desserts

People love their cocktails and if the drink makes its way into their dessert, it’s a match made in heaven. Desserts inspired by cocktails will find acceptance in 2020. So, look forward to try a gimlet mousse, a bourbon cake, a Bloody Mary cream pie and lots more on the dessert menus.

Alcohol based ice creams So, we see a range of alcohol-based ice cream in a lot of places. The straight plain flavours or cocktail inspired ice creams will be a definite and evolved flavour this year.

The sweet-spot would be how one can bring alive the alcohol notes into the ice cream and yet leave back a delicious memory. We all have enjoyed our cocktails or drinks straight up and cold. But to now infuse these flavours subtly in a dessert, would be a joy itself. Who would not love plum cake with its generous dose of rum! That’s what we are talking about.

Savoury desserts

Black pepper ice cream, sesame macarons, salted caramel, chocolate chili pie, milk chocolate, tabasco lava cake – are just a few examples of what’s in store this year.

Guava chilli as a flavour in ice creams and popsicles has been enjoyed and loved by everybody. Similarly, the combination of spices or savoury ingredients in an inherently sweet menu, is what will get the creative heads to swirl.

Global fruits

Jackfruit, durian, pandan and more of Asian fruits will continue to grow in popularity. This year the fruits all around the world would be less extreme and more approachable compared to the past few years.