Vitamin seaweed 16x9 P Badge

One of the things I love most about the food and drink industry is the constant appetite for experimentation, leading to the creation of new trends that take consumers by storm. Whether that’s a new ingredient, drink or gadget (I’m looking at you, air fryer), the race to find what’s next becomes a measure of relevance for chefs, at-home hosts and especially brands.

Every December at Pinterest, we reveal what’s set to go big the following year through our future-gazing Pinterest Predicts report. Thanks to user searches and what they save on their boards, we can see what’s becoming a growing trend. And it’s not guesswork. A rigorous analysis of our data showed 80% of our trend predictions have been correct in the past three years.

What we cook, buy and drink reflects wider societal shifts, and this is certainly the case in our 2023 trends. Food costs are soaring, and the Food Foundation’s Broken Plate’s Food Report explains “more healthy foods are nearly three times as expensive per calorie as less healthy foods”. So in 2023, we’ll see people looking to the sea for their cheap, nutrient-filled superfoods.

Easily added to many dishes in most people’s existing recipe repertoire, seaweed is soaring on Pinterest – which is why we’ve coined ‘vitamin seaweed’ as one of the top trends for next year. A longstanding staple of Asian cuisines, the likes of nori, green algae and seaweed snacks will make their way into the mainstream, with millennials and gen X driving this trend forward. Brands can tap this trend by showing its benefits for the body and wallet, alongside its versatility as a snack, extra veg or smoothie ingredient.

While Dry January is a challenge that has become an annual habit for many, we’re also seeing a bigger push from people and brands embracing low-abv drinks and mocktails year-round. User searches for ‘fancy non-alcoholic cocktails’ have increased 220%, and other related searches are also climbing, hence why we’ve called our 2023 drinks trend ‘free spirited’. Consumers are truly embracing a new way of thinking about alcohol and drinking on their own terms, either motivated by a health-conscious outlook or a newfound love for tasty low-abv options. With the wider non-alcoholic industry booming, brands can engage consumers through seasonal flavours with a drink that’s not only on-trend and relevant, but hangover-free.

Gardening and baking are two activities that have boomed in popularity over the past two years. Now we’ll see green fingers making their way into the kitchen, experimenting with flowers and herbs as their baking artistic expression. Foraged flowers will be used as edible decorations on cakes, as searches for ‘daisy cupcakes’ continue to climb, but similarly cakes are also being used as flowers, with sweet confectionery replacing the bouquet as a gift. Feeding into the wider societal move of embracing the spectacular, our predicted trend for 2023, ‘wildflours’, is all about making food that’s as worthy in a gallery as it is on a plate.

These trends respond directly to the desires and flavours consumers are interested in and have been searching for when looking for inspiration. Food and drink brands can leverage these insights and create campaigns that are informed, pertinent and exactly what consumers are after (before they even know it) at a time when their choice is key.