Nadia Lim's top ten food predictions for 2020

The last decade has been defined by many things, not least of which is the rise and fall of many different foodie fads. Kale, bizarre pastry hybrids (are cronuts still a thing?) juice cleanses and pulled pork everything were the du jour for many years throughout the 2010s. 

Now there are a lot of predictions about where our dining will be going in the next 10 years - just recently we dubbed 2020 the 'Year of the Board' if these pavlova and pancake boards are anything to go by. 

But the experts have their own ideas. Kiwi celebrity chef Nadia Lim and the team behind My Food Bag have put their heads together to reveal where the Kiwi foodie landscape is headed in 2020: 

Mindful eating 

Nadia Lim's top ten food predictions for 2020
Photo credit: Getty.

With considering health and being more eco-conscious on the rise, mindful eating in 2020 is about choices reflecting personal philosophies. When it comes to our food choices, people are more aware of what they're putting in their bodies and their footprint on mother earth. Mindful eating is also about being present while we eat, appreciating food and spending quality time at the dinner table.

Out with fad dieting

When it comes to health and weight loss, sustainability in all things is the way forward. Understanding the tried-and-tested method of eating real, nutritionally balanced food with a vegetable focus will become the ultimate goal, which is why plant-based diets have been on the rise, for those cognizant of the wider impact the food they consume has. 

Home food fast not fast food

Convenience is key. With Kiwis short on time, they want to be able to prep and cook food fast, but this doesn't have to mean eating badly. Homecooked and veggie-packed ready meals are in hot demand. 

Zero-waste and home composting

Women preparing vegetable meal for cooking, everything is so green, healthy and freshly harvested from garden. Making compost from leftovers.
Photo credit: Getty.

Over the past decade 'nose to tail' and 'stalk to tip' have become commonplace in both restaurant kitchens and the home. This year we're continuing to lessen our waste from the beginning to the end of our food's journey. Home composting is also on the rise with composts and urban worm farms becoming more common in gardens across New Zealand. 

Mezze plates are the new platters

The bowl reached its peak in 2019 and although this movement isn't going anywhere, the platter is catching up - think Middle Eastern influences, elaborate grazing platters and mezze plates. Haven't you seen burrata pop up on just about every trendy new menu in Auckland? Kiwis love a platter and they're starting to have a presence at mealtimes across the board. They're a great way to get family and friends involved in the cooking or assembly process and a fantastic means of driving conversation and socialness. We're talking platters beyond the staple cheese and crackers of course. 

Mini foodies

The next decade will see kids' palates continue to change and evolve. Forget chicken nuggets and chips! Thanks to the rise in popularity of baby-led weaning, olives and sushi are becoming everyday staples for many youngsters. New Zealanders are raising a generation of foodies interested in eating and cooking nutrient-dense foods with bold flavours. 

Nut butters

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Photo credit: Getty.

New Zealand's nut-butter industry has taken off in the last five years with several artisan suppliers such as Pic's and Forty Thieves providing a range of simple, minimally processed nut butters free from sugar and added vegetable oils. Peanut, almond, cashew and hazelnut butters, as well as tahini are not just a topping for sourdough - they're becoming more and more common in cooking, adding flavour and texture to sauces and dressings. 

Alternative flours

Alternative flours have been used as replacements in baking for years, but now they're going mainstream and forming the bases of staple food items like pasta and bread. Rapidly growing in popularity due to the rise in gluten-free and coeliac and the want to eat more diverse foods, these flours are becoming regular supermarket purchases for those who don't have dietary requirements. Kiwis simply want to introduce a wider variety of foods and flavours into their diets and enjoy experimenting. Pastas made from chickpeas, lentils, split peas, spelt or quinoa flour will continue to grow in popularity in 2020.


Kombucha and sauerkraut are so 2019! However, the rise and focus on gut health is here to stay in 2020 and this will see an increased focus on improved digestion from prebiotics, the non-digestible starch our gut bacteria feeds off, which is typically known as fibre. Think lots of veggies and fibre-rich foods like broccolini, sweetcorn, whole grains and chickpeas. 

Is smashed avo out? 

We'd be lying if we said avo on toast is on the out, but the bready base is changing and Kiwis are becoming increasingly creative when it comes to their avo toppings and add ons. We're moving from ciabatta and rye to bespoke sourdoughs made from fermented oat and potato, as well as gluten-free almond, turmeric and cricket bread. Favourite toppings in 2020 will include whipped pumpkin & feta, tahini or almond butter and kimchi mushrooms, crushed peas or crispy buckwheat and hummus. Although not entirely new, extras like this showcase the growing Kiwi passion for a plant-based spread.