Top 10 Food Trends And The Cookbooks To Make Them

Wednesday, June 24, 2020


Stay at home. Remain six feet apart. Wear a mask. What keeps us healthy these days seems to threaten our human need for connection. With countless reminders of what we’ve temporarily lost, it may help to eat a delicious, homemade meal. It’s still time to follow safety guidelines, but it’s a good time to cook and eat.

Here at Jacksonville Public Library we have thousands of cookbooks and many more available in digital form. To access a cookbook on your smartphone or tablet, you don’t even need to enter the library. Whether you’re a professional or a beginner, if you know what you want to cook and have a JPL library card, we can loan you a book that can help. Just look through our online catalog or tell a staff member what you’re interested in making. We have both new and old cookbooks that feature current food trends. To help give you some ideas, I’ve listed 10 of these trends below with some notable examples of related cookbooks.

Note: The asterisk (*) at the end of some of the titles indicates that they’re also available in digital form. 

1. Mediterranean foods

The food trends for 2020 include a continued rise in the popularity of diets focused on whole foods and healthy fats.  Many people have tried the ketogenic or paleo diets, but according to U.S. News and World Reports, the Mediterranean diet remains both the healthiest and easiest to follow. It topped the list a trend-worthy three years in a row.


Mediterranean Cookbook by Marie-Pierre Moine

The Complete Mediterranean Cookbook by America's Test Kitchen*

The New Mediterranean Diet Cookbook by Nancy Harmon Jenkins 

The Ultimate Mediterranean Diet Cookbook by Amy Riolo 

Digital books: 

Delicious Mediterranean Diet Recipes by various authors (Hoopla)

Mediterranean Diet Cookbook by Valerie Alston (Hoopla)

Mediterranean Diet Cookbook for Dummies by Meri Raffetto (EPUB/HTML)

2. Street foods

Simply put, street foods are the kinds of foods cooked and sold by street vendors. Locally, this usually involves a food truck. Jerry Watterson, the founder of Jacksonville Restaurant Reviews, told the Jacksonville Business Journal that we’ll probably see more food trucks in 2020, since it remains the most affordable way to start a new restaurant.  For both recipes and information on our local scene, see the book Jacksonville Food Trucks by Nancy White. If you’re more adventurous and want to cook foods from around the world, check out Susan Feniger’s Street Food. For recipes from actual food trucks across the U.S., see Food Truck Road Trip by Kim Pham. If you want fancier tailgate party food, go with Eat Street: The ManBQue Guide to Making Street Food at Home.  


Eat Street by John Carruthers 

Food Truck Road Trip by Kim Pham

Jacksonville Food Trucks by Nancy White

Susan Feniger's Street Food by Susan Feniger*

Digital books: 

Chinese Street Food by Howie Southworth (Hoopla)

Latin American Street Food by Sandra A. Gutierrez (Hoopla)

Dos Caminos Mexican Street Food by Ivy Stark (Hoopla)

3. Plant-based meals

Lauren Titus, the editor of Edible Northeast Florida told the Jacksonville Business Journal that diners in 2020 will see more plant-based options as vegetables become a more important part of the plate. You don’t have to be vegan or vegetarian to love this food. There is something for everyone. If you like barbecue, check out VBQ by Nadine Horn. If you want hip, look for the Superiority Burger Cookbook, which was created by the NYC fast-food vegetarian restaurant. For healthy protein for your busy life, see Protein Ninja by Terry Hope Romero.


Grilling Vegan Style by John Schlimm*

VBQ by Nadine Horn*

How to Cook Everything Vegetarian by Mark Bittman*

Protein Ninja by Terry Hope Romero 

A Plant-Based Life by Micaela Cook Karlsen

Digital books: 

Plant-Based Cookbook by Trish Sebben-Krupka

Vegan for Everybody by America's Test Kitchen 

4. Fusion

Sometimes chefs get creative and fuse flavors together with delicious results. According to Erin Byers Murray in her Thrillist essay The New Southern Cuisine: Don’t Call It Fusion, chefs in the south are increasingly combining foods and flavors from their native countries with local ingredients. Fusion might be different, but with a good cookbook, it isn't difficult. JPL has books on ways to combine foods not usually paired together. Don’t just look for recipes, though. Many of our best fusion cookbooks also involve immigrant chefs telling interesting personal stories. 


Asian-American by Dale Talde

Hip Asian Comfort Food by Dennis Chan 

My Two Souths by Asha Gomez

Smoke & Pickles by Edward Lee

Fusion Food in the Vegan Kitchen by Joni-Marie Newman

L.A. son by Roy Choi  

Digital books: 

Fiesta Latina by Rafael Palomino (EPUB/HTML/Kindle)

Haute Dogs by Russell Van Kraayenburg (EPUB/HTML/Kindle)

Milk Street by Christopher Kimball (EPUB/HTML/Kindle)

5. Filipino foods 

With our growing Filipino population, it’s likely Jacksonville will continue to see an increased interest in Filipino food.  JPL not only has cookbooks with the unique flavors of the Philippines, it also has some friendly staff members who can offer a few tips on the subject. 


The New Filipino Kitchen by Jacqueline Chio-Lauri

Fine Filipino Food by Karen H. Bartell

Quintessential Filipino Cooking by Liza Agbanlog

Pulutan! by Marvin Gapultos 

Filipino Cookbook by Miki Garcia

Digital books: 

Authentic Recipes from The Philippines by Reynaldo G. Alejandro (Hoopla)

6. Probiotics and fermentation 

With all the talk about microbiomes and gut health, it’s no surprise that the popularity of probiotic foods continues to rise. Many of these foods are fermented and can be expensive or hard to find, but it's possible to make them at home.  JPL has great books on the subject, including The Noma Guide to Fermentation, a stylish book with drawings, photos and step-by-step instructions on how to ferment a variety of foods. If you’re working with vegetables, see Fermented Vegetables by Kirsten K. Shockey and Christopher Shockey.  If you want to be an expert on the subject, read The Art of Fermentation by Sandor Ellix Katz.


The Noma Guide To Fermentation by René Redzepi

Fermented Foods for Health by Deirdre Rawlings 

Mastering Fermentation by Mary Karlin

Probiotic and Prebiotic Recipes for Health by Tracy Olgeaty Gensler

The Korean Kimchi Cookbook by Man-jo Kim

Digital books: 

Fermented Foods at Every Meal by Hayley Barisa Ryczek (Hoopla)

7. Vegan comfort food

No stranger to the Atlanta food scene for years, the popularity of vegan comfort foods is on the rise. Real Simple lists vegan comfort food as one of its six food trends for 2020. Some chefs spend their careers working to prove that food without animal fats can comfort, and JPL has impressive cookbooks by some of them. Pay close attention to find the recipes right for you, and remember that sugar and frying aren't necessarily out of bounds. If you want to treat yourself, start with Hot for Food Vegan Comfort Classics. The food in it looks so good, you’ll want to make it. If you're looking for healthy but still comforting, try Sweet Potato Soul by Jenné Claiborne. 


Hot for Food Vegan Comfort Classics by Lauren Toyota

Gluten-Free Vegan Comfort Food by Susan O’Brien

Sweet Potato Soul by Jenné Claiborne 

The Ultimate Vegan Breakfast Book by Nadine Horn

Healthy Happy Vegan Kitchen by Kathy Patalsky

Digital books: 

Quick & Easy Vegan Comfort Food by Alicia C. Simpson (EPUB/HTML/Kindle)

But I Could Never Go Vegan! by Kristy Turner (Hoopla)

But My Family Would Never Eat Vegan! by Kristy Turner (Hoopla)

8. Asian bowls

You don’t need a plate for a great Asian meal. Whether soups, noodles or even salads, many come in a single bowl. According to Business Insider, some are surging in popularity. JPL has books for exploring the possibilities of Asian bowls, including the colorful beauty of their presentation. I've been most impressed by Bowl: Vegetarian Recipes for Ramen, Pho, Bibimbap, Dumplings, and Other One-Dish Meals by Lukas Volger.   


Ramen Otaku : Mastering Ramen at Home by Sarah Gavigan

Bowl by Lukas Volger

Japanese Cooking Made Simple  

Noodles Every Day by Corinne Trang 

Digital books: 

Asian Noodles by Maki Watanabe (Hoopla)

Quick & Easy Asian Tapas and Noodles by Periplus Editors (EPUB/HTML/Kindle/Hoopla) 

9. Innovative ice cream and non-dairy frozen desserts

Jacksonville has restaurants that serve artisanal ice cream, but you can make it at home. The trend here is in the new, sometimes ethnic flavors added. We’re also seeing new creations of ice cream-like non-dairy desserts. For a fun weekend kitchen project, see Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream by Laura O’Neill.


Van Leeuwen Artisan Ice Cream by Laura O’Neill,  

Vice Cream: Over 70 sinfully Delicious Dairy-Free Delights by Jeff Rogers

Ice Cream!: Delicious Ice Creams for All Occasions by Pippa Cuthbert 

Digital books:

Ice Creams and Sorbets by Lou Seibert Pappas (EPUB/HTML/Kindle)

Ice Creams, Water Ices, Frozen Puddings by Sarah Tyson Heston Rorer (Hoopla)

Making Vegan Frozen Treats by Nicole Weston (Hoopla)

Making Artisan Gelato by Torrance Kopfer (Hoopla)

How to Make Ice Cream by Nicole Weston (Hoopla)

Make Your Own Ice Cream by Sarah Tyson Rorer (Hoopla)

10. Brain foods

When it comes to getting our minds to work their best, we’re increasingly thinking about our stomachs. Cooking Light points out that we can expect to hear more about the gut-brain connection in 2020.  There’s much we don’t know, but it’s hard to find a downside to so-called brain foods, especially since most tend to be heart-healthy as well. Please consult your physician for actual health advice, but for books with great recipes, JPL has you covered.


Power Foods for the brain by Neal Barnard 

Brain Power Cookbook by the Reader’s Digest Association

The Brain Warrior's Way Cookbook by Tana Amen

The Grain Brain Cookbook by David Perlmutter

Digital books:

The Healthy Mind Cookbook by Rebecca Katz and Mat Edelson (EPUB/HTML/Kindle)

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