Grubhub released its annual “Year in Food” report today, highlighting the most popular delivery orders from over 30 million diners.
Several of the items duplicated those tracked by DoorDash and Postmates, Grubhub’s third-party delivery competitors. Chicken sandwiches, fries and lattes seem to be favorites of quarantining consumers. But Americans seem to be as conflicted as ever about choosing between health and indulgence.
The top 10 orders of 2020 veered toward comfort foods and familiar favorites, with spicy chicken sandwiches leading the trend with a 300% increase over 2019.
1. Spicy chicken sandwiches; 318% more popular
2. Chicken burrito bowl; 299% rise
3. Chicken wings; up 287%
4. Waffle fries; 221% increase
5. Cold-brew coffee; 206% more popular
6. Steak quesadilla; 164% rise
7. Iced latte; up 157%
8. Fish and chips; 146% increase
9. Strawberry shake; 131% more popular
10 Roast beef sandwich; up 126%
Some of these items might have skyrocketed because they became more widely available on menus—spicy fried chicken sandwiches, for example. But Grubhub’s survey revealed a few surprises as the pandemic dragged on.
In March, consumers sheltering at home got off to a healthy start, with yogurt parfaits rising 356% in popularity over the previous March. April saw an increase of 212% in orders of vanilla chai tea lattes.
By summer, customers were going for the hard stuff, beating the heat with watermelon mojitos (up 382%). In fact, Americans caught on to celebrating happy hour at home throughout the past eight months—delivery of cocktails, beer and wine rose nearly 300%. Among the libations that became more popular were pina coladas (223%), hard seltzer (196%), Mexican beer (161%) and rose wine (150%).
Plant-based options kind of stalled in 2020 compared to their growth in 2019. But customers in New York, California, Oregon and Massachusetts kept up the trend as they continued to eat vegan. Tofu spring rolls were 263% more popular, and vegan ramen rose 183%, showing a preference toward global plant-based options.