TikTok Wrapped: The 2021 Food Trend Report

Since gaining popularity in lockdown, easy-to-follow food hacks, recipes and challenges have taken over TikTok this year. The hashtag #TikTokFood has even been viewed over 43 billion times by individuals on the platform. 

The surge in popularity of food content on the video sharing platform, also known as ‘FoodTok’, has led numerous food trends to go viral in 2021. These trends have had the ability to influence millions of peoples’ buying, eating and cooking habits. They have also helped get younger generations into the kitchen to cook.

With this in mind, our team at Magnet have taken a deep dive into the most memorable TikTok food trends and influencers of this year. From Little Moons to salmon rice bowls, we can reveal the viral sensations that have been cooking up the biggest storm in kitchens around the world in 2021. 

Wrapped: The top 50 TikTok food trends of 2021

After compiling an extensive list of the most commonly cited TikTok food trends over the past year, we analysed each of their hashtags to reveal the top 50 most viewed food trends of 2021.

Rank

Food Trend

Hashtag

Number of TikTok views

1

Cloud bread

#CloudBread

3.3 Billion

2

Whipped coffee

#WhippedCoffee

2.4 Billion

3

Pancake cereal

#PancakeCereal

1.6 Billion

4

Frozen honey

#FrozenHoney

1.6 Billion

5

Dalgona candy

#DalgonaCandy

1.4 Billion

6

Feta pasta

#FetaPasta

1.1 Billion

7

Ice cream cake

#IceCreamCake

1.1 Billion

8

Nature's cereal

#NaturesCereal

933.4 Million

9

Baked oats

#BakedOats

929.2 Million

10

Tanghulu

#Tanghulu

740.7 Million

11

Fufu

#Fufu

727.4 Million

12

Salmon rice bowl

#SalmonRice

708.3 Million

13

Seitan

#Seitan

614 Million

14

Mug cake

#MugCake

577.7 Million

15

Overnight oats

#OvernightOats

371.6 Million

16

Banana bread

#BananaBread

363.9 Million

17

Little moons

#LittleMoons

339.1 Million

18

Hot chocolate bombs

#HotChocolateBombs

312.4 Million

19

Nacho Table

#NachoTable

269.5 Million

20

Pesto eggs

#PestoEggs

237.5 Million

21

Pickled garlic

#PickledGarlic

222.3 Million

22

Tortilla folded wraps

#TortillaHack

173.7 Million

23

Chlorophyll water

#ChlorophyllWater

166.8 Million

24

Fried pickles

#FriedPickles

97 Million

25

Vodka pasta

#VodkaPasta

67.7 Million

26

Edible flowers

#EdibleFlowers

45.1 Million

27

Honeycomb Pasta

#HoneycombPasta

37.9 Million

28

Acai bowls

#AcaiBowls

36 Million

29

Protein coffee

#ProteinCoffee

32.1 Million

30

Salami rose

#SalamiRose

31.9 Million

31

Focaccia bread

#FocacciaBread

29 Million

32

Sushi bake

#SushiBake

26.9 Million

33

Cookie cereal

#CookieCereal

19.6 Million

34

Rice paper rolls

#RicePaperRoll

16.2 Million

35

Pasta sticks

#PastaSticks

15.3 Million

36

Corn Ribs

#CornRibs

14.7 Million

37

Boursin pasta

#BoursinPasta

10.3 Million

38

Carrot 'bacon'

#CarrotBacon

8.9 Million

39

Accordion potatoes

#AccordionPotatoes

8.3 Million

40

Croissant cereal

#CroissantCereal

7.5 Million

41

Upside-Down pizza

#UpsidedownPizza

7.4 Million

42

Pasta crisps

#PastaCrisps

5.9 Million

43

korean cheese corn dogs

#KoreanCheeseCorndog

5.6 Million

44

Boat dip

#BoatDip

5.3 Million

45

Wine glass cake

#WineGlassCake

4.7 Million

46

Flamin' hot Cheetos salad

#HotCheetoSalad

3.1 Million

47

Creamy ramen

#CreamyRamen

2.7 Million

48

Ramen lasagna

#RamenLasagna

2.3 Million

49

Donut cereal

#DonutCereal

1.4 Million

50

White Claw slushie

#WhiteClawslushie

1.3 Million

 

TikTok has revolutionised the way trends circulate around the globe. What started as a collection of mostly dancing videos on the platform, has now transformed into informative, entertaining and creative content for every niche and age group - with ‘FoodTok’ expanding its very own fan base massively in 2021.  

TikTok’s top 5 viral food trends of 2021 explained:

1. Cloud bread (3.3 Billion views)

Out of all the food trends that have taken over users ‘For You Page’, it was cloud bread that came out on top as the most viewed viral food trend of all time! The viral bake has been viewed over a staggering 3.3 billion times by users on TikTok. The recipe first gained popularity as part of the Atkins diet in the 1970s and was made into a TikTok trend last year. Even though the hype has simmered down in 2021, people have continued to create gluten-free and low-carb recipes in different shapes, colours and flavours to share on the platform. 

 

Image: lapetitchef Instagram

2. Whipped coffee (2.4 Billion views)

Nearly a billion views behind in second place is whipped coffee, also known as dalgona coffee. This creamy caffeinated beverage first became popular during lockdown, and since has gained over 2.4 billion views on the video sharing platform. It’s convenience has helped it stay a firm favourite amongst TikTok users as you only need three ingredients to make it. In a bowl, whisk together 2 tablespoons of instant coffee, 2 tablespoons of sugar and 2 tablespoons of boiling water until the mixture is fluffy and light. Add the mixture to a glass of milk with ice and enjoy! 

Image: benchihome Instagram

3. Pancake cereal (1.6 Billion views)

Rounding off the top three is pancake cereal, with a whopping 1.6 billion views. These mini pancakes have fascinated TikTok users and influenced many to try their own - including celebrities such as Jason Derulo. Since pancake cereal, there have been many other variations. From cookie cereal (19.6 million views) to croissant cereal (7.5 million views), many sweet treats have been shrunk into ‘cereal size’ this year - with 4 of them making the top 50.

Image: 100kitchenstories Instagram

4. Frozen honey (1.6 Billion views)

In August this year frozen honey became the must-try trend of TikTok, and has gained over 1.6 billion views since. The ‘summer hack’ saw users freezing squeezy honey (or honey poured into in water bottles) to turn it into a gelatine texture popsicle. Be careful with this one though, many who tried the trend did not know that consuming large amounts of honey can cause discomfort, stomach ache and sickness. 

Image: Pixabay

5. Dalgona candy (1.4 Billion views)

In fifth place is dalgona candy with over 1.4 billion views on TikTok. The popular Korean street snack is made from melted sugar and baking soda. Dalgona candy became a popular TikTok food trend following the release of the Netflix series Squid Games in September this year. Many TikTok users filmed themselves replicating the challenge from the show, with the aim to carve out the delicate symbol printed on the candy, without damaging the shape. 

September also saw the rise of the infamous salmon rice bowl, popularised by content creator Emily Mariko. Despite only becoming a viral trend at the end of September, the simple and healthy meal hack has been viewed over 708.3 million times on TikTok and ranks in 12th place on our list. This trend has helped Emily Mariko become one of the most well known food influencers in the world. 

However, Emily Mariko isn’t the only influencer who has found fame on the video sharing platform. Many chefs and foodies have taken to TikTok to share their knowledge and love for food, whilst also influencing others. According to research by Mintel[1], four in ten UK TikTok users purchased food or drink items after seeing it promoted by influencers on the platform last year - but who has been the most popular food influencer in 2021?

Image: hanskoreankitchen Instagram

The most successful TikTok food influencers of 2021

We also pulled together a list of over 100 well known content creators that regularly post about food on their TikTok accounts. Analysing their follower counts and potential earnings, we can reveal the top 50 most popular ‘food-fluencers’ of the year on TikTok. 

TikTok has opened the gates to fame for many creators in the food industry. Racking up billions of views between them, some food influencers on the platform have been able to earn some serious money from the TikTok creator fund and associated brand deals. From famous chefs to cooking amateurs, many have reaped the rewards of the world's fascination with food videos. 

TikTok’s top 3 food influencers of 2021:

1. Gordon Ramsay (@GordonRamsayOfficial)

British chef Gordon Ramsay is the most successful and popular food creator on TikTok in 2021. Known for his fiery TV appearances, Ramsay has taken to TikTok like a natural, and gained over 29.8 million followers in the process. From sharing cooking tips, recipes, and the occasional dancing video, Ramsay has the potential to earn up to £22,471 ($29,800) per video on the platform - which is just under the annual average wage of a full-time chef in the UK, at £27,000 a year according to Total Jobs[2] .

Image: gordongram Instagram 

2. Bayashi (@bayashi.tiktok)

Video creator, Bayashi ranks in second place with over 14.3 million followers on TikTok in 2021. Bayashi’s account increased in popularity after one of his many attempts to complete the Squid Game ‘dalgona candy’ challenge. One of his most viewed video attempts was seen by over 129.2 million people, and received 12 million likes on the single 30 second clip. When he is not taking part in challenges, he makes process videos of him cooking and eating extreme dishes, such as chocolate katsu and mozzarella donuts. Bayashi’s ability to build such a large fan base on the platform helps him make up to an estimated £10,622 ($14,101) per video this year.

Image: Bayashi Instagram 

3. Newton Nguyen (@newt)

Newton Nguyen, also known as Newt, rounds up the top three. From fashion to food influencer, Newt has become a well-known star of FoodTok and has gained an impressive 9 million follower count. The Vietnamese TikTok chef shares regular recipes from various cuisines on his account and has even brought out his own merch. It is predicted that he can make up to £6,788 ($9,002) per post on TikTok.

Image: milktpapi Instagram 

TikTok food trends have boosted company sales and caused food shortages in 2021 

Amongst the billions of views and followers, viral food trends have had a huge influence on users' purchasing habits this year and have helped benefit many brands through natural user-generated content. The Little Moons brand is a prime example of this, which gained popularity at the beginning of 2021 after their Japanese-inspired mochi dessert went viral on TikTok. Following its rise to fame on the video-sharing app, sales for the products also saw a 700% increase in one major UK supermarket, proving that FoodTok is even influencing consumer behaviour[3]. The hashtag has since been viewed by over 339.1 million users and ranks in 17th place on our trends leaderboard. 

The rise in sales of certain items from TikTok food trends has also had a huge impact on the supply chain, as demand has been created at volume in short periods of time. February this year saw the rise of the feta pasta craze on TikTok, which has received over 1.1 billion views. The one-pot pasta recipe was tried out by so many users that it allegedly caused feta cheese shortages in some parts of the US[4] highlighting the power of the platform.

 

Feeling hungry and inspired? 

If this tasty inspiration has got you wanting to contribute to the TikTok food scene, why not make the first step to get your kitchen photo-ready! Book a free consultation with one of our friendly experts to help you design the backdrop of dreams for future videos.   

 

Methodology 

To discover the most popular TikTok food trends and influencers of 2021, Magnet compiled an extensive list of the most commonly cited food trends and food creators from the platform over the past year. 

Analysing hashtag data for each viral food trend, the most popular were revealed by ranking each trend’s hashtag by the number of TikTok views each received. The most popular TikTok chefs and food influencers were ranked based on their number of followers on the platform. Their potential earnings were then calculated using Influencer Marketing Hub Tool’s TikTok money calculators. 

Only the top 50 trends and influencers were included in the studies results. Currency was converted from US dollars to pounds as on 1 December 2021. All follower and viewing figures were correct as of this date too.

References

[1] mintel.com/blog/food-market-news/5-viral-food-and-drink-trends-that-emerged-from-lockdown

[2] totaljobs.com/salary-checker/ (Correct as of Dec 2021 - based on a sample size of 9,434 chefs across the UK) 

[3] independent.co.uk/extras/indybest/food-drink/little-moons-mochi-ice-cream-tesco-waitrose-b1796420.html

[4] nytimes.com/2021/02/26/dining/baked-feta-pasta-tiktok.html

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