Frieda's Specialty Produce lists vegetables for dessert and produce as the main protein in meals as upcoming trends. ( Courtesy Frieda's )

As healthy, colorful food grows ever more trendy in 2019, expect to see produce used in all sorts of crazy ways, according to Frieda’s Specialty Produce.

The new year will open the door for more desserts made with vegetables, fruit as the main protein in meals, pop-able produce, rainbow-colored everything and dragon fruit, according to predictions by Frieda’s, Los Alamitos, Calif.

“Fads become trends when they resonate with consumers beyond their 15 minutes of fame,” Frieda’s director of marketing and innovation Cindy Sherman said in the release.

To determine those trends, the company factored in consumer attitudes with what they learn in the fields from growers and in the kitchens with chefs “to predict what will really stick.”

Pumpkin and sweet potato pie, as well as carrot cake, are nothing new in the vegetables-as-dessert category, but Frieda’s said consumers will see this idea branch out even more. Think ice cream flavored with corn, avocado, cucumber, beet or ube.

Portabella burgers, cauliflower steaks and jackfruit tacos are some of the new takes on how vegetables can replace meat in meals. Vegetables and fruits are shrinking into bite sizes so people can pop them in their mouths with ease: Teeny tomatoes, mini citrus and baby Brussels are a few examples.

Instagram’s notorious unicorn-food craze with its rainbow bagels will remind consumers of the natural way to #eattherainbow — with fresh produce. And lastly, there’s the dragon fruit, also called pitahaya. The fruit is appearing fresh-cut, among fruit salads and in smoothies, with more varieties, according to the release.

 
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