The world of gastronomy has grown exponentially in the last two decades, with foods on our plates that we hadn’t even heard of growing up. Bland salads and casseroles are a thing of the past as the world embraces flavors from different cultures. We take a look at 20 foods that we didn’t think we would be eating 20 years ago: 

Jackfruit

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Until recently, jackfruit was a staple food in Southeast Asian cuisine but has gained popularity worldwide due to its popularity among vegans. Unripe jackfruit possesses a neutral flavor and a meaty texture when cooked, making it a versatile substitute for meat in various dishes, such as pulled jackfruit buns. 

Edamame

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These green soybeans, once a niche Asian import, are now enjoyed in various ways. Whether roasted, steamed, or even shelled and sprinkled on salads, Americans can’t get enough of edamame beans. 

Unicorn Frappuccinos

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Frappuccinos first gained popularity in the 1990s with simple coffee and mocha flavors. Fast-forward to 2024, and you can now buy them in dozens of flavors, including the vibrantly colored unicorn frappuccino. Creating limited-edition coffee creations with unusual flavors and toppings keeps the coffee industry fresh and customers excited for new experiences. 

Kimchi

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This spicy fermented cabbage is a staple in Korean cuisine that is now consumed in abundance in the U.S. Figures seen by The Korean Economic Daily show that the Kimchi brand Jongga celebrated a 270% revenue growth from 2019 to 2022. 

Açai Bowls

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Pronounced ah-sigh-EE, these colorful breakfast bowls are packed with antioxidants, which is one reason they’re found in coffee shops and smoothie bars throughout the U.S. You can top acai bowls with granola, fruit, and nut butter, so there are endless ways to keep them feeling fresh.

Avocado Toast

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There’s not a trendy brunch place in the U.S. without avocado on the menu. The simple yet trendy dish of avocado on toast once considered a millennial extravagance, is now a breakfast (and sometimes brunch) staple for many.

Plant-Based Burgers

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According to the Plant-Based Foods Association, the U.S. plant-based food business is worth 7.4 million. Plant-based burgers are realistic alternatives that give traditional beef a run for its money in a world where people are conscious about how their food impacts the environment. 

Dragonfruit

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This vibrant pink fruit with black-speckled flesh has exploded in popularity recently, mainly due to the rise in juice and smoothie bars. The fruit can be eaten independently but is often blended into smoothies for its mild, slightly sweet flavor.

Sushi Burritos

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Sushi burritos are an example of the ongoing rise of fusion food. Fusion foods combine the best of both worlds and, in this case, offer sushi fillings like salmon and avocado wrapped in a convenient burrito format.

Cricket Flour

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People are looking for a sustainable and protein-packed alternative to meat, where insects come in. Crickets require significantly less land and water than traditional livestock for protein production, which is why they are used as ingredients in even Michelin Star cuisine. Cricket flour is made from ground crickets and finds its way into everything from protein bars to pasta.

Cauliflower 

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Cauliflower has been around for a very long time, but never has it been more popular. From rice alternatives to pizza crusts, cauliflower has become a versatile, low-carb, low-calorie ingredient for health-conscious foodies.

Activated Charcoal

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Activated charcoal is a fine, black powder produced by heating natural materials like wood, bamboo, or coconut shells. It is believed to be a natural way to detoxify the body and is consumed in everything from lattes to ice cream.

Kombucha

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This fermented tea drink has a slightly fizzy and tart flavor and has become a popular alternative to sugary sodas. Although the drink is expensive to buy, health-conscious people are brewing their own to save money and improve their health. 

Poke Bowls

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Hailing from Hawaii, these deconstructed sushi bowls feature diced raw fish, vegetables, and sauces over rice. They are popular lunchtime dishes, with poke bowl cafes popping up near workplaces across America.

Matcha 

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Match is a green tea powder with a distinctive taste that has gone viral. In addition to seeing tea places pop up in towns and cities, matches can be found in lattes, baked goods, and even beauty products.

Bone Broth

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This long-simmered broth made from bones and vegetables is said to be packed with nutrients and gut-healing properties. The broth has seen a surge in popularity in recent years, moving from a traditional dish in many cultures to a trendy health and wellness drink.

Oat Milk

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Oat milk is a rich and creamy alternative to dairy used in coffee shops around the world. It is popular with vegans and people with nut or dairy allergies as it offers a safe alternative. 

Nutritional Yeast

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This deactivated yeast adds a cheesy, umami flavor to vegan dishes. The flavor offers a satisfying cheesy fix without the dairy and is even found in some parts of popcorn. 

Freekeh

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Freekeh is an ancient grain made from roasted durum wheat. Its nutty flavor and chewy texture add variety to salads and grain bowls when people are tired of their usual ingredients. 

Pumpkin Spice

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Pumpkin spice blends warming spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and sometimes ginger. These spices have experienced a phenomenal rise in popularity, especially in the fall when people are looking for a comforting addition to their soups and coffee. 

18 of the Unhealthiest Cereals Lurking on Grocery Shelves

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Cereal is a breakfast staple enjoyed by children and adults alike. While this boxed treat is convenient, it is not always the healthiest of choices due to its high sugar and fat content. If you want healthy cereal options for your family, we explore the 18 unhealthiest cereals to avoid:

18 of the Unhealthiest Cereals Lurking on Grocery Shelves

15 Foods With More Protein Than An Egg

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In today’s world, it’s important to be mindful of what we eat. Research has shown that sugar is worse for you than fatty foods, and protein is crucial for good health. If you don’t like eating eggs or can’t have them, there are plenty of delicious, protein-rich alternatives to explore

15 Foods With More Protein Than An Egg

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