Unravelling the Top Dessert Trends of 2021 for Franchise Expansion

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Dessert Trends 2021

With more and more customers starting to move away from traditional desserts and getting drawn towards the extravagant, creative and aesthetically pleasing, new and revolutionary desserts, it is important for businesses in the food and beverage industry, especially those looking to expand to more locations, to understand the new dessert trends in 2021. With the often complex and confusing layers of information surrounding the foodservice industry, Brizo has made it easier to access data on the current dessertscape, enabling businesses to structure their expansion plans in line with what’s on trend.

In this article, we will discuss the top dessert trends for 2021, with the aim of helping franchisors develop a deeper understanding of what is currently trending and how they can capitalize on it to expand their businesses. To begin, let’s start by discussing what ingredients, flavors, colors and aesthetics are likely to dominate the dessert scene in 2021.


One of the major trends driving desserts in 2021 is the focus on alternative ingredients and healthier options. As people are becoming more aware of their health and the environment, they are gradually moving away from unhealthy ingredients and adopting healthier alternatives. As such, vegan, sugar-free, dairy-free, gluten-free, nut-free, and plant-based ingredients are becoming increasingly popular. Ingredient combinations like flavored oat milk ice cream or chia pudding mixed with food-grade essential oils also have a huge potential this year.

Organic, sustainable and local flavors are also on the rise. Consumers are increasingly turning toward locally-sourced, seasonal fruits and vegetables, as well as artisanal jams, honey, chutneys and syrups ranging from sweet and tangy to spicy and sour – all in favor of supporting more ethical and sustainable food production practices.


While traditional flavors like chocolate and vanilla are still popular, there is a growing demand for richer, more complex flavors. This has led to an increasing popularity of hybrid flavors like beetroot chocolate, rosemary-violet macarons, cream cheese-apricot tarts, and raspberry-vanilla sorbets. The growing trend of flavor engineering also comes into play here. Flavor engineering is a process of taking two or more existing flavors and combining them into one new flavor that has never been experienced before.

Colors & Aesthetics

The overall look and feel of desserts has been another major food trend in 2021. Pastels in particular have been making a huge comeback. Travel desserts, also known as “vacation desserts”, are also becoming increasingly popular and are all the rage amongst those looking for something new and exciting. Travel desserts are desserts that embody characteristics of other countries and cities, such as Vietnamese-inspired matcha flans and Mexican-inspired tequila tres leches cakes.

In terms of aesthetics, a trend that has been gaining a lot of traction in 2021 is the use of edible flowers, edible silver, and edible gold for garnishing desserts. Other decorations that give a dessert a special touch, such as colorful macarons, wafers, meringues, and decorative chocolate pieces, are also being used.

In the end

Ultimately, dessert trends in 2021 are moving away from classic options to more creative, innovative, and healthier alternatives. As the world turns to more socially conscious and environment-friendly food production practices, flavors from all around the globe are becoming popular, as well as colors, aesthetics, and alternative ingredients. By tapping into these trends, franchisors looking to launch in new markets can leverage them to make their expansion plans more effective.