Flavor Trends, Strategies and Solutions for Menu Development

By Charlie Baggs
January 14, 2022

Today’s consumers are looking for convenient food options that are packed with flavor. Hand pies deliver a diversity in fillings and pastry doughs that offer an easy and affordable way for them to experience trending cultural cuisines.

Elevate the experience by answering the desire for personalization. A choose-your-style mini-pie promotion could be interesting. Provide a selection of components and apply a speed-scratch prep approach that projects likely best sellers. Identify curated “chef’s favorites” combinations to help guide decisions.

Here’s a round-up of ingredients with great potential for this concept:

  • Doughs: whole wheat, masa or yam flour
  • Meats: chicken tinga, picadillo, chorizo, plant-based sausage
  • Sauces: Parmesan béchamel, arrabiata, chicken velouté, truffle demi-glace
  • Starches: yuca, russet potato, sweet potato, hummus
  • Garnishes: poblano chiles, picadillo, olive tapenade, roasted bell peppers, sun-dried tomatoes
  • Cheeses: barrel-aged feta, smoked provolone, sharp cheddar, blue cheese, pecorino and Parmesan

About The Author


CHARLIE BAGGS is Executive Chef/Founder and creative fire behind Charlie Baggs Culinary Innovations in Chicago, leading a team of chefs, food scientists, nutritionists, brand specialists/marketers, food stylists and photographers to develop innovative foodservice solutions. For more than 20 years, he has consulted on product development, with a focus of integrating an innovative, quality approach that ensures every client meets their culinary business goals. Building strategy, managing finance, creating and implementing marketing plans, sales forecasting and planning, and designing technical and culinary programs are just a few of the skills he has honed running his company. He deploys his skills with Culinary in Motion virtual tasting using his BASICS taste and flavor model to drive home craveability. Charlie has a B.S. in management and an A.O.S. in nutrition from Purdue University, as well as an A.O.S. in culinary from The Culinary Institute of America, where he is a newly inducted Fellow. He is also an Adjunct Professor at Illinois Institute of Technology. [email protected]