Top 12 Food Fads of 2013

Leah Bourne
Top 12 Food Fads of 2013
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2013 had some breakout pop culture moments: Miley Cyrus twerking, the Harlem Shake. But it was also the year of incredible food fads. Who would have thought that a bakery in New York City would get people to line up in droves to eat carbs. Yes, we are talking about the Cronut, and yes it happened in 2013.
Scroll through the gallery above for the top food fads of 2013, Cronuts included.
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You can't talk about food fads in 2013 without talking about the cronut. While some insist that this deep-fried croissant has been around for decades, trademark rights go to the Dominique Ansel Bakery in New York City, where people line up each morning, endure long waits, and pay $5 per cronut (with a limit on how many you can buy). Cronuts at their peek became so popular that people were willing to spend over their retail price to score them on Craigslist, and they even popped up at fashion week in September. 

Bantam Bagels

It is no surprise that mini bagel balls that are filled instead of topped with everything from lox, tomato, and red-onion cream cheese to sweet chocolate-chip cream cheese were a breakout food hit in 2013. The bagels on offer at Bantam Bagels in New York City's West Village have been written up in national publications and even made a cameo on the Today Show. One word to describe this food fad: yum. 

Chia Seeds

2013 is undoubtedly the year of the chia seed among the health conscious. In grocery stores you can now find ground chia seeds, chia bars, chia snacks, and even chia drinks. If you have turned in a huge chia fan this year, you are certainly not alone. 

Frozen S'mores

World domination by cronut was not enough for New York City's Dominique Ansel, so he's come up with the frozen s'more. It features a vanilla ice cream center wrapped in a chocolate wafer and covered in marshmallow. Served on a smoked willow branch and torched to order, we totally know why someone would wait in line for one of these.

Almond Butter

You may have noticed that the once rather sparse peanut butter section at your grocery store is now overflowing with about a hundred kinds of deliciously thick and creamy alternative nut butters. From its sweet and nutty flavor to its superb nutritional profile, it's official: almond butter is a new favorite. The sweetness of raw almond butter is the perfect partner for whole-grain toast in the a.m. or whipped into a stir-fry at night.

Gluten-Free Pasta

Who isn't gluten-free these days, and restaurants are adapting in a big way. 2013 was the year of gluten-free options on every menu, including tons of Italian restaurants offering gluten-free pasta. Even Mario Batali's Del Posto is now offering an entire gluten-free pasta menu. 

Umami Burgers

Topped with shiitake mushrooms, caramelized onions, roasted tomato, a parmesan crisp, and "umami ketchup," the burgers from the chain Umami had everyone's mouths watering in 2013. While the chain started in Los Angeles, it has been in expansion mode in 2013, and opened up in New York City in July. More Umani Burgers for everyone!


This classic summer treat native to the Philippines has started to catch on in America in a big way. Halo-halo, which looks like a technicolor ice cream sundae, contains some combination of sweet preserved beans, coconut meat, yam, flan, jackfruit, plantain, ice, milk, and ice cream. Find halo-halo at Filipino restaurants and some ice cream and boba-tea shops.


Estimates approximate the origin of kombucha, a fermented tea, to around 2,000 years ago. It may be an old recipe, but it really shining now, everywhere from grocery chains to bar menus where it is popping up in cocktails. 


Part cookie, part croissant? That's right, and no surprise that the crookie was a giant hit in 2013. Available at Toronto's Clafouti Patisserie et Cafe, the crookie is made by packing crushed Oreos into croissant dough. Yelp reviewers call the crookie "heavenly" and say, "It was kind of like eating a chocolate croissant but a gajillion times better."

Ramen Burgers

It took the vision of Japanese-American ramen aficionado Keizo Shimamoto to pair a crispy-noodle-bun with a beef patty, a soy-based sauce, and plenty of scallions, and the rest is foodie history. Currently only available in limited quantities at the Saturday Smorgasburg market in Brooklyn, expect to wait in line if you want to indulge in this foodie fad. 

Sriracha Sauce

Undoubtedly the coolest condiment on the table, Sriracha Sauce was a major hit in 2013, and even got a profile in Bloomberg's BusinessWeek. Not only do fans of Sriracha love eating it, people are seriously obsessed with it. You can buy everything from sriracha water bottles to sriracha lollipops. 

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