The turn of the new millennium brought us many significant events, notable personalities, and important inventions, and pop entertainment. From MP3s to reality TV, many other 2000s pop culture trends help define the decade. Yet, we shouldn’t forget pop culture foods that rose during that particular time, as they not only satisfied people’s taste buds but also served as perfect storytellers of history. In this post, check out the popular pop culture foods in the 2000s that will bring nostalgia to your palate.
Cupcakes existed way before the 2000s. Often prepared only during special occasions, they became a massive craze in the decade. It all started from an episode from the wildly popular series, Sex in the City, featuring Carrie and Miranda, two of the show’s main characters, enjoying these deserts in Manhattan’s cupcake mecca Magnolia Bakery. Over the next few years, cupcakes were absolutely anywhere, with many countless cupcake stores sprouting all over the country. At home, people stayed up late baking, icing, and decorating cupcakes to share with family and friends, proving how these little treats became big in the 2000s.
While they’ve been around in the White Castle since the 1920s, it’s in the 2000s when sliders rose into massive popularity. Commonly seen in fast-food chains, hamburgers shrank and became gourmet, after they’ve been adopted into haute cuisine. Filled with nearly anything from beef ribs, meatballs, to buffalo chicken, these little buns became a popular option on restaurant menus, often served in groups of 3-4, and filled many hungry stomachs in the decade.
People always loved bacon as a breakfast side. In the 2000s, these delicious strips were seen round-the-clock when they became a part of many other foods, recipes, and even drinks. From bacon chocolates, bacon donuts, bacon cakes, bacon ice cream, bacon vodka, to anything bacon-wrapped, bacon was simply ubiquitous in the 2000s and will certainly be a trend in the foreseeable future.
Before the advent of spinach, kale, and other vegetable smoothies, people from the 2000s used their home blenders to blend different kinds of fruits, such as banana, mango, strawberries, and blueberries and added them with low-fat milk or yogurt, sorbet, or gelato. The best lesson to take from the smoothies of this time is to freeze all ingredients first, to prevent the use of ice, resulting in a richer, foamier, tastier smoothie.
Atkins was the most popular diet trend in the 2000s. It is quite similar to the Keto diet, but carb intake in Atkins tends to gradually increase through time, while it stays very low on the former. Like with many other diet plans, however, experts warned of various health issues and side-effects that may result from following such eating patterns.
Many people shifted to being a locavore in the decade. It entails only eating food principally produced in their community or region, taking advantage of the seasons, and preparing food without the need for preservatives. The trend became so popular that Oxford American Dictionary hailed the word “locavore” as the 2007 Word of the Year. Farmer markets grew incredibly in the next few years, as people acknowledged how shifting to locally grown food can benefit them and the community.
With the disasters happening, there were times people in the decade turned into anything comforting, be it a delicious chicken pot pie, pizza, mac n’ cheese, or meatloaf, or something that moms or grandmas would prepare with love and care and will provide a feel of a warm, nice hug as you eat it.
Coffee shops and coffee flavors, such as cappuccino, macchiato, and lattes, became more popular in the 2000s, making mornings simply incomplete with a cup of them.
Artisan food, which existed centuries ago, made a comeback in the decade, as many people geared towards crafting food using non-industrial processes. It includes scratch-made cheese, meats, and bread in their unwrapped forms, serving as a suitable alternative to overly processed, mass-produced food.
Propelled by the rise of artisan foods, whole grain products also became popular in the 2000s. Whole-wheat pasta, bread or crackers were served on the table in many homes.
With its nutty, toasted aroma, brown butter served as a lovely complement to desserts, cookies, bread, and especially pasta dishes – simply everywhere in the 2000s.
Cake pops became popular towards the culmination of the decade. They perhaps cupcake mishaps transformed into beautifully decorated, sweet cake balls impaled on a stick, seemingly like a tasty lollipop. Cake pops became a real fad, with some coffee houses even incorporating them in their menu in the following decade.