Chili peppers

Elevating Dinnertime: Meet The Superfoods Of 2024

As part of our quest to help businesses reimagine dinnertime for families across America, our chefs are always on the hunt for inspiring new ingredients and culinary styles that are both nutritious and delicious.

We understand that trying new foods can pose many challenges for kids and adults alike. That’s why our chefs are spilling the beans about what they expect will be this year’s most popular superfoods and culinary trends, focussing on accessible ingredients that any home cook will feel confident incorporating into their cooking. Let’s dig in!


Benefits Of Cooking With New Foods

Whether your business is targeting stay-at-home cooking all-stars or more experienced chefs, there are many benefits to encouraging your customers to cook with healthy and exciting new ingredients.

Expanding Pallets. Variety is the spice of life! Bringing new flavors to the dinner table helps cultivate adventurous pallets, and starting early by presenting an array of foods to growing children can lay a foundation for culinary exploration.

Cultural Appreciation. Our chefs take inspiration from around the world, paying tribute to unique spices, sauces, and cooking techniques. Why? Because food is more than just sustenance: it’s an experience. Your business has an opportunity to introduce your customers to new culinary traditions and flavors by incorporating a diverse range of ingredients into your products.

Improving Flexibility. In our fast-paced world, flexibility and adaptability are quality life skills. Exposing people to a wide variety of foods helps them develop flexibility and open-mindedness to try new things.

Boosting Nutrition. You didn’t think we’d leave out this important point, did you? Testing, tasting, and trying a wide range of ingredients (whether they make our superfood list or not) offers many nutritional benefits that can have a real impact on the short—and long-term health of the people who enjoy your products.


Meet Your Trending Superfood Lineup

While some of these superfoods are newbies, and some are staging a comeback (or truly never left), these are the ingredients and trends that our chefs say are enjoying a culinary moment in the limelight—and can help your product offerings stand out from the crowd.

Can’t Beat The Heat. ‘Forbidden’ peppers, homemade hot sauce, and spicy challenges? We’re feeling the heat! Besides helping to clear out sinuses in a hurry, spicy foods have been linked to improved heart and cardiovascular health, higher HDL (“good”) cholesterol levels, and even boosted metabolism. Bonus: it can be easy to offer your spices on the side or create varying levels of heat across your product lineup, helping to reach a wider range of customers.

Meatless Everything. The meatless trend is only just starting to ramp up, and we suspect this trend will continue to be in high demand. From “I’d never know it’s not beef” burgers to using pulses and root vegetables as mains to vegan eggs, our chefs are committed to finding unique and nutritious meatless superfood options that will stand out to your customers—and taste absolutely delicious.

Yuzu Fruit. This sour little fruit has been popping up on menus nationwide, and customers are asking for more. It’s exceptionally rich in antioxidants and vitamins and can help reduce inflammation and promote good heart health. It can be used to replace citrus staples like lemons and limes in everything from desserts to slaws to salad dressings. Our chefs expect yuzu fruit to be a popular ingredient on this year’s superfood list.

Pasta. We know what you’re thinking: “Pasta?” Yes—pasta! After suffering from ups and downs in popularity for decades, “comfort foods” are making a big comeback, with pasta leading the charge. Fresh pasta, in particular, is typically made using minimal, clean ingredients that can provide a healthy dose of energy, fiber, and even protein. Not to mention, it’s a vessel for a plethora of nutritious sauces, proteins, vegetables, and so much more.

Unlikely Friends. Pickles and peanut butter aren’t only reserved for pregnancy cravings anymore! OK, maybe we won’t go that far, but unlikely food pairings are certainly one of this year’s hottest culinary trends. Think sweet and spicy, savory and salty, and other thrilling flavor combinations that leave a lasting impression. Although we are technically not naming ingredients in this category, the superpower of ‘Unlikely Friends’ lies in their ability to add anticipation, curiosity, and delight to snacks and meals—something we think everyone can benefit from.


Think Outside (Or Inside) The Box With Intelligent Foods

Our definition of ‘superfoods’ might be a little out of the box; but we believe that what makes a superfood shine is its ability to add energy, excitement, novelty, and curiosity to the dining experience. Pair this with real health benefits, and these superfoods are unstoppable—not to mention that your customers are sure to gobble them up.

Our commitment to drawing from various cultures, ingredients, and cooking techniques is at the heart of our Menu Solutions services. Our chefs keep inspiration high (and costs low) to create exciting food and meal products for our partners that meet the evolving demands of their target markets.

Whether you’re looking to start a new venture in the food space or scale your brand to reach more dinner tables across the country, we’d love to discuss how Intelligent Foods and our award-winning culinary team can support your goals. Please contact us to learn more about how our services can help your business grow!