2021 Trending Foods: Where To Enjoy Them In New Jersey

As one year rolls into the next, expert tastemakers share their predictions for the months ahead. Below are the four food trends we’re currently craving—plus tips on where to enjoy what’s new and now, top-to-bottom in New Jersey.

1. Comfort Foods

When times are uncertain, we can always count on timeless tastes. Think of it as the culinary equivalent of wrapping yourself in a fluffy blanket still warm from the dryer. You can take solace in knowing these comfort foods are here to stay.

Northern New Jersey: Treat yourself to a golden grilled cheese sandwich at the Melt Factory in Morristown. Their menu showcases dozens of variations on this classic staple, as well as make-your-own options with a choice of bread, cheeses and extras.

Central New Jersey: Craving some good old-fashioned fried chicken? It’s Nutts, a roadside stand in Titusville, is famous for their recipe. You can order it by the piece or in combos up to a 16-piece dinner that is more than enough to feed the whole crew. You can also order hoagies, tomato pie, burgers and breakfast.

Southern New Jersey: The Red Hen in Swedesboro features burgers aplenty, but for the king of comfort foods we recommend The Red Hen Burger, which is indulgently topped with a sunny-side-up egg, bacon and beer cheese sauce.

2. Plant Power

Just because Veganuary has come and gone doesn’t mean plant-based foods are going anywhere. Whether folks are committing to being full-on vegan or vegetarian or slowly adopting this diet by degrees with #MeatlessMondays, plant-based entrees are popping up on menus everywhere.

Northern New Jersey: Dig in to vegetarian Asian specialties at Veggie Heaven, with locations in Denville, Montclair and Teaneck. We suggest trying the General Tso’s Chunks of “Chicken” in Denville or the Sesame “Chicken” in Montclair or Teaneck. Don’t worry—both dishes are plant-based even though they have chicken in their names!

Central New Jersey: For 100% vegan, 100% natural, 95% organic made-fresh-daily selections, try Veganized in New Brunswick. Kick off your meal with their Timbale appetizer — black beans, sweet potato, guacamole, and topped with fresh tortilla strips!

Southern New Jersey: From beets to tempeh, you’ll find plant-based deliciousness at Leaf in Haddonfield. Spice things up with their cauliflower that’s been breaded and doused in Buffalo sauce!

3. Bodacious Breakfasts

Nutritional experts always claimed breakfast was the most important meal of the day—and it seems we’re finally taking them seriously. People are passing on cold cereal and packaged breakfast bars to start their day with hot, made-to-order goodness.

Northern New Jersey: It’s a winner for lovers of sweet AND savory flavors! The menu at Toast City Diner in Montclair (with additional locations in Red Bank and Asbury Park) features one-of-a-kind creations including Disco Eggs, Carrot Cake Pancakes and Bananas Foster French Toast.

Central New Jersey: The breakfast menu at Gronsky’s Milk House in High Bridge features stick-to-your ribs selections such as their Jersey Omelette, Gronsky’s Breakfast Burrito, Loaded BaconCake and their famous, ever-changing Pancake of the Month.

Southern New Jersey: Cape May is home to two wildly popular breakfast spots that are sure to dazzle even the most die-hard foodies—The Mad Batter inside the Carroll Villa Hotel or George’s Place.

4. International Cuisine

With restrictions on overseas travel, our cravings for the flavors of far-flung countries are peaking. The good news? There are no bags to pack. No passports to renew. Just an enjoyable journey for your taste buds.

All Around The State: Take your pick from restaurants specializing in Spanish, Portuguese, South American, Japanese, Mexican, Italian and French food served with flair.

Before you chow down on your favorite food trend, be sure to contact the restaurant of your choosing for the latest hours of operation, takeout options and any restrictions for dining in—because being prepared is always on trend!