Flavor Trends, Strategies and Solutions for Menu Development
Trend Insights: Mustard
Trend Insights: Mustard

By Flavor & The Menu
January 8, 2023

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Mustard has the ability to be a bit of a chameleon as an ingredient. It loves to be spicy but is equally at home on the sweet side of the menu. Utilize the name and type on the menu to increase the “credibility” of a burger, dog or sausage.

MIKE LEITNER, Chef/Founder, Mike Leitner Consulting

Mustard has been getting love from influencers who are pairing this classic condiment with everything from marshmallows to watermelon, exploring the space where most people would not venture… but should.

MICHAEL BUONONATO, Senior VP of Creative Food Solutions

In addition to its familiarity, mustard tends to be very versatile across many applications and provides a nice acidic balance, along with flavor to a variety of classic and new dishes. Look into local, artisan or small-batch sources to pull in a story of provenance or craftsmanship. Craft beer fits nicely within mustard blends, allowing chefs to create “flavor bridges” between food and beverage pairings. Another trending opportunity is hot honey mustard, a crossover of the hot honey trend with spicy mustard.

ADAM MOORE, Chef/President, Flashpoint Innovation

Mustard’s familiarity makes it an easy “gateway” ingredient to innovate around, and with so many varieties, its versatility is endless.

CHRIS AQUILINO, Chief Culinary Officer, Further Culinary Group

Flavor and familiarity are but two drivers of mustard’s recent increase in menu adoption. In addition, most cultures feature a native expression of mustard, which opens the door to intra- and inter-cultural innovation with this versatile and clean-labelled ingredient.

DANIEL CARPENTER, Managing Director and Partner, Sterling-Rice Group

The focus on craveability is reliant on condiments that have an acid and salt component, and mustard easily delivers.

CHARLIE BAGGS, President/Executive Chef, Charlie Baggs Culinary Innovations

As an avid fan of mustards, I love the complexity they bring to dishes. Mustard’s high acid content adds “pop” and “lift” to dishes, lending a brightness without taking over like vinegar or citrus might. Creole mustard is the perfect mustard to add to a simple chicken or lamb jus for depth, a spike in flavor and a rounded finish.

JOHN FRANKE Chef/Founder, Franke Culinary Consulting

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