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Fun Holiday Food Trends

Whether you’re in charge of planning a corporate holiday event or trying some new traditions for your own seasonal gatherings, checking out the latest holiday food trends for 2022 is bound to spark inspiration!

New Ways to Incorporate Seasonal Flavors

There are certain flavors that seem to go hand-in-hand with the winter holidays, especially peppermint, eggnog, sage, ginger, and cranberries. And while these ingredients are always welcome at the holiday table, 2022 offers myriad opportunities to flip the script and try them in new ways.

If you live in a warmer climate where BBQ adds to the holiday fun, why not feature a cranberry and/or orange-spiked barbecue sauce instead of the usual tomato/vinegar mashup? Instead of pumpkin pie or sage stuffing, offer a pumpkin-sage cheesecake. 

Similarly, eggnog can be presented as the “hero” flavor in pudding or candy bark, while peppermint can be elevated from candy cane status to the star of a tropical chutney. 

These Boards Are Never Boring!

If you haven’t tried the butter board craze yet, the holidays are a great time to set out these novel and festive spreads – especially when you’re having a buffet, or looking for something to set on the coffee table other than the usual nut bowl or Chex mix.

A fresh twist on the charcuterie board, the butter board starts by spreading room-temperature butter on a clean, decorative cutting board or platter. Next, you’ll add both tasty and decorative toppings, and serve the spread with tasty crackers, crostini, or crusty bread. The shape of the buttery festive spread can simply be the board itself, or you can get creative by forming it into a drum, tree, or cornucopia.

Toppings can include chopped nuts and seeds, shredded cheese, herbs, spices, dried cranberries, citrus zest, sliced veggies, roasted garlic and roasted sweet peppers, hot sauce, honey, and gourmet jellies and jams.

Although butter boards are still hot in 2022, they’ve already inspired variations, such as burrata, hummus, or avocado spread boards. Dessert board variations, such as dulce la Leche or buttercream, can be topped or served alongside fresh fruit, lady fingers, or vanilla wafers. 

Bread Animals

What’s flavored butter without an equal standout bread, right? Bread shaped like animals not only adds whimsy to the festive table, but it’s a real delight for any little ones who might be attending your get-together.

You’ll find plenty of inspiration online, especially on trendy sites like TikTok or Pinterest. That’s where you’ll learn just how easy it is to sculpt your favorite bread recipe – or store-bought dough – into a frog or alligator. Of course, you can also make smaller versions, to create a charming basket of piggies, mice, or hedgehogs. 

Ramped-Up Sides

Don’t sideline your sides! Instead, top those veggie and starchy dishes with gourmet ingredients to give them extra glamor.

Consider drizzling truffle oil over chestnut stuffing or roasted mushrooms. Or add some kick to cauliflower or sprouts with a chipotle-spiked sauce. 

Really, any traditional side that can be topped with a new condiment or sauce is fair game – e.g., instead of the usual orange glaze on your roasted carrots, try out a miso sauce, jalapeno jelly, or a dollop of pesto.