Comfort Food sees a Renaissance During the Pandemic
The COVID-19 Pandemic has altered nearly every aspect of our lives. From working remotely to virtual hangouts with friends and family, 2020 flipped everything on its head. However, perhaps one thing that remained the same during all this change was the familiarity of comfort food.
The love of comfort food, and pasta as a mainstay in that category, is nothing new. For decades consumers have been turning to pasta during hard times. According to a recent Grain Foods Foundation survey of over 1,000 US adults representing a cross-section of the population, approximately one-third of US consumers named pasta (36%) and bread (29%) as foods that are comforting during a stressful time. More significantly, it also revealed that roughly the same percentage recognize bread and pasta among the most nutritious of all the comfort foods they turn to.
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, pasta experienced a renaissance in comfort food. The National Pasta Association reported consumer upticks in modernized versions of classic dishes, notably “comfort food with a twist.” Popular items included vegetarian lasagna and healthy chicken parmigiana. However, during the pandemic, comfort foods and pasta dishes prepared in a more classic style have become a top food trend. This was evidenced by a recent survey conducted by the NPA. The survey found that out of the 1,986 respondents who answered, nearly 24% of them noted their favorite pasta dish was the tried and true classic, Fettucine Alfredo. Other classic dishes quickly followed, with just over 11% opting for Chicken Parmigiana and lasagna, and 9.2% selecting classic carbonara and spaghetti and meat sauce as their favorites.
Further, according to a recent Wall Street Journal article, “the world’s largest makers of packaged foods say frozen pizza, pasta sauce, and mac and cheese are rising in favor as consumers in lockdown eat at home.”
To enjoy your very own classic comfort food favorites during quarantine, try out a few recipes from Pasta Fits! This Turkey Noodle Soup is a twist on a beloved classic but will still leave you feeling cozy and full. Looking for something even more traditional? Give this Baked Spaghetti and Meatballs recipe a try. It’s packed with all the flavors and ingredients you loved, just baked to finish it off.