13/01/2016 2:07 PM AEDT | Updated 15/07/2016 12:51 PM AEST

The Food Trends We Saw In 2015, And What You Can Expect To Be Eating In 2016

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WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 29: Tofu Scramble with Salsa Cruda for 1/6 Weeknight Vegetarian. Tableware from Salt & Sundry (Photo by Dixie D. Vereen/For The Washington Post via Getty Images)

As far as food trends go it's safe to say we're a nation obsessed with buzz ingredients, super foods and any 'it' diet doing the rounds at any given moment.

While trends by their very definition are things that come in and out of fashion, we have been observing a shift towards wholesome cooking and nourishing ingredients -- and that is always welcome.

Here, a look at what was hot in 2015, and what you can expect to see in stores and on menus in 2016.


Artisan chocolate

While it's not the end for good old Dairy Milk, the demand for bespoke, Australian made chocolate is on the rise.

"As consumers we’ve still got a sweet tooth, but we’re enjoying treats that come with transparency on ingredients, sourcing, and ownership," Kayla Blackmore, Retail Product Manager for Jones The Grocer Group told The Huffington Post Australia.

Middle Eastern and African spice blends

"Dukkah, Ras el Hanout, Baharat -- Australian’s love their ‘meat and three veg,’ but now we’re adding a spice twist to this," Blackmore said.

Not just for meat, dukkah is great with crusty bread and olive oil.

"We can thank food programs such as Masterchef and Spice Travels for our consumers new found creativity and sense of adventure when it comes to spices."

Delicious dukkah, in oil.


Cottee's? Not quite.

"Unlike supermarket brands, these are grown up drinks that the adults are getting into and not feeling bad about. We put this down to the move away from heavily sugared and unnatural sodas to looking for more natural alternatives," Blackmore said.

The Espresso Martini

"This popular cocktail saw a resurgence as Australian's love to combine two of their favourite things -- alcoholic beverages and caffeine! We kept them clean and classic, and they were enjoyed by both men and women, equally, after 5pm," Blackmore said.

Specialty Vinegars

We were once a country who proudly slurped white vinegar all over our hot chips, but more recently our palette has become a little more refined.

"Specialty vinegars are exciting the palates of home cooks, with sales of Champagne vinegar, triple berry vinegar, and aged balsamic growing in 2015. We’ve been told how good for our gut the acidity of these products are, so now a splash in our salads, or in addition to a meat glaze is just another way to incidentally add in something healthy," Blackmore said.


Vegetarian dishes

With more information available than ever before on the cost of the meat industry on our environment, more and more people are choosing to eat less beef, pork and lamb.

"We expect to see more people choosing vegetarian dishes as we observe clean eating and whole food trend which continues to grow. We can thank Yotam Ottolenghi in part for this -- Australians are loving his vegetable based main-course recipes!," Blackmore said.

Healthier ingredient options

"We will see consumers looking for healthy additions to their daily rituals, such as adding matcha or turmeric to their smoothies and juices, coconut oil and panella to their coffee, and choosing dark chocolate over milk," Blackmore said.

'Dude Food'

Don't fret -- your beloved ribs, wings and burgers are here to stay.

"This trend is still running strong in Australia as we see fried chicken shacks opening up, burgers getting bigger and better, and all varieties of chilli sauces taking pride of place alongside salt and pepper on the tables. This will have a great influence on our restaurant menus and retail lines in store," Blackmore said.

Wings are here to stay.

Local, boutique alcohol

"Heading into 2016, we’ve teamed up with a local distillery Archie Rose to continue with our desire to showcase local suppliers and artisans. We will be featuring Archie Roses’ Vodka, Gins and White Ryes on our drinks menus, as well as starting our first Whiskey Appreciation Club," Blackmore said.

"Again, this draws on the desire to know more about where our products come from and who made them. The terms ‘small batch,’ ‘single origin’ and ‘artisan’ will certainly still be buzzing about in 2016!"