Top Food Trends for 2022

Fire and smoke, balsamic, world pepper and the return of umami! We predicts the biggest food trends for 2022, based on top search trends and customer favourites.

What to expect in 2022:

  1. Sriracha
  2. Balsamic
  3. Fire and smoke
  4. Baijiu
  5. Cookbooks are back
  6. Umami
  7. Yuzu
  8. World peppers
  9. Make it from scratch
  10. Built to Last

Top 5 ingredients for 2022:

  1. Sriracha +153% sales vs LY
  2. Kimchi the #1 search term on souschef.co.uk in 2021
  3. San Marzano Tomatoes our #1 top selling product by units in 2021 
  4. Aleppo pepper +125% sales vs LY
  5. Pistachio paste +39% vs LY

  1. Sriracha

The breakout sales for sriracha were hard to ignore in 2021! Move over LGM chilli oil, the hottest hot sauce for 2022 is Thailand’s Flying Goose. And crucially, it’s all about flavour variations, with booming sales for Extra Garlic Sriracha (+26% vs LY), Green Sriracha (+18% vs LY) and Sriracha Mayo (a huge +259% vs LY).

Plus, 2021 was the year Sous Chef launched the world first 12 Days of Sriracha! Our fastest-ever selling launch, this selection of 12 different srirachas sold 700+ in its first few days!

  1. Balsamic

Balsamic is having a resurgence! No longer a drizzled after-thought, customers are looking for nuance and complexity in this artisanal Italian ingredient. And they're willing to invest in incredible quality. Sales across Sous Chef’s balsamic category are up 80% vs LY, with customers opting for aged bottles from small Italian producers. Giuseppe Giusti’s Historical Collection of balsamic shot up by a whopping 1855% this year, while sales of the extraordinarily good 25-year aged balsamic also rose by 225%.

  1. Fire & Smoke

Three of our top 10 selling products from the entire Sous Chef range in 2021 are BBQ smokers, with the ProQ Complete Hot & Cold Smoking Set selling nearly 10x more than last year, at +926% YoY. Other smoking products in the best-sellers list are the 3in1 BBQ smoker, with 138% lift in sales and the Bradley Digital Smoker +260% vs LY.

  1. Baijiu - Chinese Fire Water

The number one selling spirit in the world, but almost unknown in the UK. It’s a uniquely-flavoured, clear alcohol and plays a key role in Chinese culture – traditionally drunk in a series of toasts before a celebration meal. And with a selection of fabulous baijius newly available at Sous Chef, it’s time to add this complex, fiery spirit to your cabinet! 

Baijiu is a deeply regional drink, and distilleries fiercely guard the secrets that make theirs special. Explore the range and find your favourite from the five main flavour categories - ‘sauce’ (with savoury almost soy sauce notes), strong, light, rice (with earthy sake flavours) and mixed (a combination of the other flavours). 

  1. Cookbooks are back

Customers are also taking time to step away from the screen and enjoy paper again. At Sous Chef, sales of our Cookbook and Ingredients Sets have been soaring – up 236%. Our Dishoom Cookbook Set has sold 5x more, +366% on 2021. 

  1. Umami

2022 will be all about umami flavours, as customers seek out more and more of these deep, earthy flavours. Miso, fish sauce, Korean gochujang and dried mushrooms have flown off the shelves this year, and are looking set to continue. Miso sales are up 11% YoY, while fish sauce sales are up by 53%. In light of this, we’ve started importing Thailand’s Red Boat Fish Sauce - the world’s purest fish sauce, with a devout following from chefs across the world, with sales eclipsing all other fish sauces the moment it arrived.

PLUS - discover the brand new range of Poon's Sauces at Sous Chef. Deeply umami, rich soy flavours that are incredible with dumplings, steamed fish and rice dishes. COMING SOON!

  1. Yuzu

A flagship flavour at Sous Chef, we love yuzu in Japanese ponzu dipping sauce, yuzu kosho seasoning for sushi, and even yuzu couverture for patisserie work. Sales of all yuzu products are up 57% at souschef, with pure yuzu juice and yuzu kosho ranking among the top sellers.

  1. World Peppers

Customers are demanding more flavour from their pepper – and looking for more nuance in the pepper mill. In 2021, Sichuan pepper was our #1 selling pepper with its distinctive cool-heat, while the Sous Chef World Pepper selection was up 81% on last year. Kampot pepper (+74% YoY), Sarawak pepper (+34% YoY) and Passion Berry Pepper (+175% YoY) all shot off the shelves too.

PLUS - discover our peppers for pairing, with Terre Exotique's pepper blend tailored for seasoning oysters. Along with pepper that complements the flavours of Sauvignon Blanc and Cabernet Sauvignon wine. 

  1. Make-it-yourself products

And it’s not just kimchi, customers are making their own vinegar, cheese and beer at home. Sales of our iconic vinaigrier continue to boom, with 2021 one of the best-selling years yet (+73% YoY). The Ultimate cheese-making set was one of our consistent best-sellers of the year, while our beer-brewing kits boomed at +100% YoY.

Meanwhile, fermenting is here to stay. How to make your own kimchi was the second most-visited blog of the year at Sous Chef, while our beautiful fermenting crock sold 10x more than last year (+1157% YoY).

  1. Products Built to Last - Natural materials

Goodbye disposable kitchenware, customers are looking for products that will become part of the family. De Buyer’s Copper Frying Pan sold +670% YoY, while this Dutch Leather Apron is up 71% YoY. Customers are investing in the best products that really last. 

And say goodbye to batteries, as customers are opting for hand-held tools and gadgets that help get closer to your ingredients. Sales of pasta rolling pins and our best-selling hand-held spice grinder have soared this year. Tagliatelle rolling pin +95% YoY, Skeppshult cast iron SPICE grinder + and Skeppshult cast iron Pestle & Mortar spice grinder +362%.



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