8 hot food trends to try this summer

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Sarah Whitten | 

1 Hour Ago

Clothes aren’t the only things that go out of style. This year has been filled with fun food trends that have started to simmer come summer time.

Items like vegetable-pasta, rainbow bagels and sushi burritos are going out of style and diners are craving sweeter treats and more diverse culinary adventures.

Perhaps the biggest driver of these new trends is social media. Photographs of quirky colored ice cream and carefully arranged acai bowls have dared diners to test these dishes out themselves and share their experiences with their followers and friends.

Here’s a look at 8 delectable summer food trends that Instagram can’t get enough of:

    • Queso

      From Wendy’s to Chipotle, restaurants are embracing queso and diners are cheering.

      The ooey-gooey cheese has been a staple in Tex-Mex chains for years but has recently exploded onto menus at burger joints and bars.

      Last month, Wendy’s launched three queso-topped items: a Bacon Queso Cheeseburger, a Bacon Queso Chicken Sandwich and Bacon Queso Fries.

      Chipotle recently began a limited test of its own queso. It ditched artificial stabilizers typically found in the dip in favor of all-natural tapioca starch, which some say, gives the queso a bit of a gritty feel.

      In addition, TGI Fridays has added Loaded Bacon Nachos to its menu that are topped with a white poblano queso. Stephanie Perdue, the former chief product marketing officer at Taco Bell, helped bring this dish to life at the Dallas-based chain of restaurants and bars.

      Moe's Southwest Grill Famous Queso.

      Source: Moe’s Southwest Grill
    • Rolled ice cream

      Mesmerizing YouTube videos of this Thai desert have brought rolled ice cream parlors to cities across the U.S.

      Watching the treat get made is almost more exciting than actually eating it. A milk-based ice cream is poured onto a frozen metal plate and it’s kneaded and spread across the surface with little paddles. When the ice cream freezes into an even layer on the plate, it is scraped into rolls and placed into a cup.

      The dessert is then covered in whatever toppings you choose, from marshmallows and gummy bears to shaved coconut and hot fudge.

      The craze is similar to the explosion of frozen yogurt shops that cropped up a few years ago. Not to mention, these creations look great on Instagram.

      Marius Hepp | EyeEm | Getty Images
    • Frosé

      If you’ve been craving a sweet and refreshing alcoholic drink to cool you down in the summer heat, you might want to order a Frosé.

      Frosé, or frozen Rosé , has been a huge staple at wine bars and restaurants this year, with diners ordering so much of the beverage that many locations have sold out of the wine altogether.

      The cool drink was popularized on social media sites like Instagram and helped boost sales of Rosé up 60 percent to $258 million in the last 12 months, according to Nielsen.

      Chef Anthony Pino, who owns a handful of restaurants in New Jersey, told CNBC that Frosé has been a best-seller at his restaurants this summer. He attributed the beverage’s success to its sweet and refreshing taste, its photogenic appearance and how it pairs with menu items like oysters.

      While Pino sees Frosé as a seasonal drink that will fizzle out by mid-September, he said that Rosé will remain a popular wine for the rest of the year.

      “I guarantee you’ll see a Halloween Rosé,” he said.

      Frose from Porter Collins

      Porter Collins
    • Charcoal

      Often called “goth” or “anti-unicorn,” black-colored foods have been a hit on Instagram in the last year. From cupcakes and ice cream to pasta and bread, the internet cannot get enough of this dark trend.

      While many chain restaurants abroad have resorted to squid ink to create a rich, dark black color for burger buns and pasta, others have gravitated toward activated charcoal. The ingredient, which gives food an ashy color, is touted as a “detoxer” and has lead to some incredibly decadent Instagram photos.

      Perhaps the most popular iteration of this trend is charcoal ice cream. Shops like Little Damage in Los Angeles have gained a cult-like following online for offering up this sweet treat in an inky black cone.

      Charcoal lemonade has also become popular in the wake of the juice cleanse trend, with many companies selling a black-colored version of the tart drink.

      But, folks should be sure to eat and drink charcoal in moderation. While the ingredient is often used to remove toxins, aid in digestion and, in extreme cases, treat drug overdoses in a hospital, too much charcoal can cause vomiting and constipation. Not to mention, it can also make some medications ineffective.

      Charcoal ice cream cone from Little Damage

      Little Damage
    • Edible cookie dough

      What’s better than an ice cream cone on a hot summer day? A cone of edible cookie dough.

      This safe-to-eat treat has cropped up in cities across the U.S. in recent months, with confectioners doling out scoops of dough in a variety of flavors. Edible cookie dough has been around for a few years, but only recently became a highly sought after dessert thanks to Instagram.

      The trend is kind of a no-brainer considering how many people lament about not being able to eat cookie dough when they’re baking cookies.

      Shops like Do in New York, Tart Sweets bakery in North Carolina and Dough Boyz in upstate New York aren’t the only ones getting in on this trend. A number of grocery stores now carry edible cookie dough from brands like The Cookie Dough Cafe, Edoughble and The Cookie Jar, among others.

      Cookie Dough Confections

      Source: Cookie Dough Confections
  • Poke

    This Hawaiian specialty has cruised to the mainland and is quickly spreading across the U.S. Traditional poke, pronounced “po-kay,” is cubed, fresh raw seafood (usually tuna or octopus) mixed with soy sauce, green onions and sesame oil and served over rice.

    Last December, the National Restaurant Association named poke a hot trend for 2017 after surveying almost 1,300 professional