10 Food Trends That Top Chefs Would Like To Bid Adieu In 2024

Food trends are good but not when they become so pervasive that it feels like they have overstayed their welcome. Here are some of the food trends we could do without in 2024.

Published On Jan 05, 2024 | Updated On Mar 08, 2024

Image

While many wonderful trends have hit the food and drinks landscape in 2023, there are also those that need to leave in the new year. Most of these trends sparked by social media had little or no value in making our lives better, easier or exciting. So is it perhaps time to kiss these trends goodbye? Here’s what the top chefs and food entrepreneurs have to say.  

Image
Chef and entrepreneur Tarun Sibal is rooting for shorter menus with clear descriptions in 2024. (Photo: Unsplash)

The one trend I want to see hibernate in 2024 is the intentionally confusing menu descriptions. The “dictionary dishes” is something we can do without. A guest does not need a doctorate or a pre meal tutorial to order with confidence. A good menu should answer more questions than it creates. Another trend that can see a “U” turn is the glorification of humble home dishes in restaurants menus. Indians eat differently at home and outside of home, it’s a peculiar distinction. There is a reason some dishes are most enjoyed at home and not in restaurants. 

Image
Certain dishes require a particular kind of fat and it is best to stick to full-fat cream for that creamy texture believes Shailendra Kekade, Culinary Director, Sante Spa Cuisine, BKC

We see restaurants trying to make certain Indian dishes using vegan/non-dairy cream without being mindful of the final output in terms of the nutritional value and taste. While I am pro-veganism, certain dishes require a particular kind of fat and it is best to stick to full-fat cream for that creamy texture. Talking of ingredients, mayonnaise is one that needs to go right away. It’s not at all healthy and is only around for its to convenience. 

Image
Putting caviar on everything needs to go away in 2024 believes Niyati Rao, Head Chef & Partner, Ekaa. (Photo: Unsplash)

I understand a cheese board but what I don’t understand are butter boards (basically softened butter spread on a board). Flavoured butters are fine but I am not ok with a butter board where butter is just smeared over a board with different types of toppings. It all looks very pretty but I am not sure if people eat all that butter which leads to a lot of wastage. I would never do it because I can't imagine spreading a copious amount of butter on a board and just leaving it open and throw it later. I’d rather use that butter over a bread or in a soup. 

The other thing we should let go of is putting caviar on everything. It's a quick fix for chefs. I don't mean fish roe, but hardcore beluga caviar. Why not focus more on technique in cooking? Putting a dollop of caviar is just the chef's way of saying, ‘oh I didn't get time on this dish. So I put caviar on some mashed potatoes, it's now royal mashed potatoes.’ I do understand that we, as innovators and chefs, don't always have a lot of time but relying on caviar shortcuts is something we could dial down. 

Image
Pancakes made of superfoods like quinoa, millet or lentils can be a great alternative for plant-based eaters believes Rijul Gulati, Head Chef, Indian Accent Mumbai. (Photo:  Unsplash)

I think the one trend that might make its way out gradually is finding plant-based alternatives to everything, like plant-based ghee, plant-based cheeses, vegan eggs, mock seafood… Diners looking for a sustainable lifestyle have better options that are natural and not processed. These include natural oils like coconut and mustard oil, pancakes made of superfoods like quinoa, millet or lentils rather than vegan egg omelettes to fulfil their dietary needs. 

While 2023 was all about millet I wouldn’t want to see it extending its stay in 2024. That’s because everyone has done quite a lot with millets. As chefs we have cooked, experimented, educated people and served millets in different forms and cuisines. So much so that everyone has now got an overdose of millets. Of course it would continue to stay on the menus because of its health benefits. But it’s time to shift the focus to something else in 2024. 

Image
While grazing boards have gained immense popularity for their aesthetic appeal and variety, they often contribute to excessive food waste believes Lakhan Jethani, Head Chef & Co-founder, Mizu Izakaya. (Photo: Unsplash)

While grazing boards have gained immense popularity for their aesthetic appeal and variety, they often contribute to excessive food waste. These boards laden with an assortment of cheeses, cured meats, fruits and spreads often lead to over-purchasing and an abundance of leftovers that frequently go uneaten. The emphasis on presentation sometimes overshadows the practicality and sustainability of these boards, leading to food wastage. As we move forward, prioritizing mindful consumption and more sustainable food presentation methods could replace the grazing board trend, fostering a greater sense of responsibility towards food utilization and waste reduction. 

One trend that I personally feel should fade out in 2024 is the extreme focus on trendy interiors and less on concept, food and cocktails. While I do understand that pretty (read instagrammable) interiors and visually engaging food will help you trend on social media, it would only get you customers inside the restaurant for the first time. In my opinion taste should come first, and it doesn't with these things. Ultimately, it’s the food, drinks and ethos of a place that will guarantee longevity of a restaurant. 

The viral trend of London croissants should stop today! Forget the next year. Calling a laminated pastry filled with chocolate and garnished with fruits wouldn’t make it a croissant. It gained popularity because of Instagram and has no culinary value as such. It’s a clash between traditional and novelle.


Photo: Shutterstock

POPULAR ON ZEST