Dessert Trends

By TriMark R.W. Smith

Looking for an exciting and clever way to boost sales? Try putting first what usually comes last: dessert.

Often overlooked, even the tiniest of treats can enhance the dining experience. Whether showcasing large or small confections, foodservice operators can add subtle elegance or upscale sophistication to any dessert with the right glass dessert dish. From dessert tables to buffet spreads, here’s a glimpse into some of the dessert trends happening now, and discover the greater San Diego area haunts that are already on board.

Health(ier) Bites

No matter the dish, guests are opting for healthier choices. We’re all familiar with traditional carrot cake, but many varieties of produce are making their debut in modern desserts. Create lighter versions of brownies and compotes with beet puree and baked rhubarb.

Another tasty idea—give your desserts a lower-calorie makeover with Greek yogurt. While often used as a substitute for many appetizer and main course recipes, Greek yogurt can be mixed with fresh berries or honey for a simple, standalone treat. Add a bit of glamour by creating a creamy yogurt mousse with frozen berries and a sweet-flavored topping.

Local Dessert Menu

Flavor Del Mar – Frozen Greek Yogurt Mousse

Classic Comebacks – with a Twist

Chefs are giving traditional desserts a contemporary twist. Cream puffs are two-bite pastries filled with custard. Update them by incorporating fruit, ice cream, and flavored whip toppings, or give the classic puff a chocolaty glaze or drizzle.

Whether stacked up high or mini size, when it comes to layer cakes, it’s all about the element of surprise. Reinvent this retro dessert with creative interiors, such as rainbow-colored layers, fruit mousse filling, or with ingredients like ricotta cheese and extra-virgin olive oil.

Local Dessert Menu

Mille FleursCreampuff Swan “Profiteroles”

WhisknLadleMeyer Lemon & Olive Oil Layer Cake

Childhood Throwbacks

Nostalgic treats will certainly tickle any sweet tooth and stir childhood memories. While ice cream sandwiches were once a summertime staple for kids, the frozen treat has grown up and joined the ranks of posh desserts. Go gourmet by using house-made cookies and ice cream, or use the sandwiches to create frozen layer cakes.

Doughnuts and doughnut holes are continuing to undergo a revival. Experiment with flavored glazes, brightly-hued toppings, and creamy fillings. Plus, old-school floats and boats are making a comeback with jazzed up versions aimed at tantilizing adults.

Local Dessert Menu

Croce’s – Cookie Ice Cream Sandwich

Union Kitchen & Tap – Ricotta Scented Doughnuts with Meyer Lemon Jelly

Sbicca – “Adult” Rootbeer Float

Table 926 – Caramelized Banana Split


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