When Chef Dominique Ansel created the Cronut, the half croissant, half donut hybrid, a star was born. But, of course, you already know that. News outlets ranging from The New York Times to The Washington Post have covered this flaky pastry, tracking its rapid, meteoric rise.
Three years after its inception, a line still forms around the Dominique Ansel Bakery in New York’s SoHo neighborhood. So strong is Cronut’s pull that New Yorkers and tourists alike wait hours for a chance to purchase this $5 pastry, and it has even fueled knock-off Cronuts from chain bakeries.
But the Cronut is just one example of a food that went viral.
While certain foods have risen in sales thanks to pop culture references (the gourmet cupcake trend is often attributed to a scene from Sex and The City, where character Carrie Bradshaw nibbles on one from Magnolia Bakery), modern food trends are increasingly spread via visual social media platforms like Instagram and Pinterest.
Posting food online is nothing new. But look closely and you’ll find that trendy tastemakers who frequently follow special diets are at the forefront of healthy innovation—food innovation that manufacturers can use to inform new product ideas.
Here, find a sampling of food trends blooming on Instagram and Pinterest to help you get with the times.