Out with the old: Six Top Pastry Trends for 2021

Out with the old: Six Top Pastry Trends for 2021

Out with the old and in with the new! No doubt many people are keen to see the tail end of 2021 and step into a fresh new year, and what better way to start than getting a jump on the top pastry trends predicted for 2021.

According to Délifrance’s latest report Prove it: a viennoiserie focus, indulgence, convenience and health are among the top viennoiserie and bakery trends for 2021.

The report includes insight from a survey of 1000 UK adults who regularly eat pastry and highlights the changing consumer landscape as people juggle post-lockdown life with work, leisure time and family.

Délifrance marketing director Stéphanie Brillouet said: “While our research has shown convenience, health, price and ingredient quality are all factors in choosing viennoiserie, overwhelmingly, it’s taste which wins out.

“As a start, make sure you stock the traditional favourites – indulgent pain au chocolat, rich buttery croissants and flaky almond croissants – and call out their taste credentials in marketing and promotion.

“As the consumer has become more adventurous in experimenting with different tastes, they welcome more show-stopping treats to try. Consumers eat with their eyes.”

Predicted key trends identified in the report are:


Indulgence remains a top reason for eating viennoiserie and there are many elements that persuade consumers to buy pastries, including the smell of freshly baked goods as well as how good a product looks. In fact, some 82 per cent of consumers who haven’t already decided what pastry they want are influenced by the smell, look and level of indulgence of a pastry.


Health has always been a factor for consumers looking for a bite to eat, but the coronavirus pandemic has brought a new consideration to the table, with hygiene becoming a big focus.

The report showed 88 per cent of consumers seek bakery products with hygiene certificates while more than half (63 per cent) of adults surveyed would prefer to buy products with packaging to protect its contents from contamination.

Variety and health

Choice is becoming more important, with 38 per cent of pastry eaters seeking more options, 27 per cent looking for a wider choice of flavours and 19 per cent in the market for new or innovative pastries.

This goes for those with dietary requirements as well. Ninety-two per cent of those interested in plant-based or organic pastries expect more sweet options to be available.

“Combining familiar flavour profiles in new formats is a safe space for NPD, but we will also see innovation coming through in terms of global flavours (international inspiration to transport consumers elsewhere), savoury functional fillings (vegetables, grains) and innovative ingredients, especially with a nod towards plant-based and sustainable eating to create viennoiserie with a message,” said Lisa and Alexandra Hayes, food trends consultants from Harris & Hayes, who worked in partnership with Délifrance on the report.

Snacky Snacks

The report found that pastries are more likely to be consumed as a snack than as a meal, with 66 per cent of survey respondents admitting to snacking on viennoiserie, while only 29 per cent were eating pastries for breakfast.

“Increased homeworking has reshaped our rituals and blurred lines between home and work, snacks and mealtimes,” said Harris & Hayes.

Viennoiserie now offers a moment of self-care as a ‘second breakfast’ or an afternoon pick-me-up, they added.

“There is an element of personalisation here, too, as consumers value products that cater to their specific snacking needs, such as finish-at-home or frozen multipacks for families, small pastries for calorie counters, or mixed packs for variation seekers.”

Treat yourself

The pandemic has inspired an element of self-care as part of the general health and wellness trend; with two-thirds of consumers saying they eat pastries as a treat, reward or to cheer themselves up.


The convenience side of consumer activity has been driven to new heights by the pandemic and has the potential to become a long-term trend.

Some 40 per cent of survey respondents are interested in convenience, while 47 per cent are fans of on-the-go options. Convenience means different things to different consumers and a third would like a bakery closer to their location. This presents an opportunity for local convenience stores to up their bakery game and communicate their offer in order to drive differentiation and footfall. Meanwhile, 13 per cent would order online for collection or delivery. Again, on-the-go shoppers are key here, with 19 per cent of them most interested in ordering online for collection.

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