Photo: Eric Helgas
[infobox subtitle=”Foods Worth the Hype” bg=”green” color=”white” opacity=”off” space=”30″ link=”no link”]Trending, Trending![/infobox]

Just like fashion trends, foods come and go in cycles. Some fade in and out while others completely disappear off the food map. As 2014 begins to slow down, we’re here to predict the next trendy foods.

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NBV: The Next Big Vegetable— 2013 was the year of kale. Kale was everywhere– salads, sandwiches, soups, you name it. Although this vegetable is going strong, we’ve noticed brussel sprouts sprouting (get it?) in menus far and wide. Once the vegetable no kids wanted to eat, these beauties are making a name for themselves. Perfectly roasted alone or with other vegetables, they are possibly one of the most delicious vegetables you will eat.

Photo: SimplyFreshCooking

Tacos. When I say taco, most people automatically think of hard-shell tacos topped with cheese and lettuce. Good? Yes, but not authentic. Hailing from Mexico, tacos are traditionally made with some sort of meat (although vegetables are just as delicious for you veggies), topped with fresh seasonings like cilantro, onion and a squeeze of fresh lime. For you New Yorkers and Brooklynites, our favorites are Brooklyn Taco and La Esquina on Kenmare Street.

Photo: Stefan Karlstrom

Ramen. Though Ramen has been in and out of the food scene for the past two years, it is most commonly associated with the inexpensive meal made by college kids on the “broke college student” budget. Perfect for winter nights, ramen is suddenly the hottest food around. Our favorite New York spots? Momofuku and Minca downtown. Ready, set, slurp!

Photo: Michael Vito

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Cupcakes– will they ever be out? Cupcakes for me are like Starbucks stores. Everywhere I turn, there seems to be a cupcake shop, and while I may not always want or need them, it is comforting to know that I can find them with ease. These treats dominated the dessert scene for several years and continue to fade in and out when the newest “It” dessert makes an appearance. Yet, they never quite disappear. Will there ever come a time when they completely fade out? Only time will tell.

Photo: Stefan Karlstrom

The fascination with The Cronut™ (and it’s competition). Okay, time for a confession. The first time I heard about Cronuts, I was both completely amazed and baffled. A croissant and a donut? Yes, please! I was so in awe of this dessert that waited outside of the store at 6am for Dominique Ansel’s bakery to open in the pouring rain until 8am. No shame, right? All for a day’s treat (or so I tell myself). The fascination was (and is) so great that companies all over the world have attempted to recreate the secret recipe, scalpers have sold them for upwards of hundreds of dollars and lines form around the block on Spring Street in Soho every morning. But it really comes down to you. What do you think– are they worth the hype? Rumor has it that Rubin’s City Bakery off Lower fifth is vying for the title of “Dessert King” with its pretzel croissant (pictured above). Which hybrid will win the long-fought battle?

Photo: Niko Triantafillou

Macarons and doughnuts– a battle for attention. Before I could get my hands on a Cronut (even though I  told everyone about them), I was on the lookout for the next big dessert all by myself (If I wasn’t going to get a Cronut, I was gone to have something amazing), and the competition ultimately came down to the war between macarons and doughnuts. Though they never made it quite as big as cupcakes, macarons and doughnuts offer a variety of flavors that you simply can’t get with other desserts. Rose, orange, coffee and gumdrop macarons? Tiramisu, creme brûlée, and hibiscus donuts? I want all of the above!

Photo: Stefan Karlstrom

Our prediction? Churros– West Coast goes East Coast. Forget the movie stars, churros (and especially churro ice cream sandwiches) are the true stars in Los Angeles recently. Combining two amazing treats (seems like the best ones are two-in-one combos, right?), we’re going to be bold and say these delicious cinnamon-y treats will slowly make their way to the East Coast soon. Make sure to keep an eye out!

Photo: Churro Borough

What side are you on? Are you loyal to one trendy food? Share your favorites in the comments!

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