A banana cake topped with caramel sauce and popcorn

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Cakes loaded with savoury toppings, such as popcorn, will win over cake consumers this winter

Middle Eastern flavours, savoury toppings and overloaded cakes are among the top trends set to play out on the cake market this winter, according to manufacturer BBF.

The business believes consumers will be looking for comforting flavours as the colder months draw in alongside premium feeling products.

“As we approach the colder months, consumers will be increasingly seeking small moments of joy,” said BBF CEO Jonathan Lill. “Our desire to seek out comfort in moments of stress is likely to lead many people to seeking out nostalgic, comforting flavours.”

He added that the World Cup, which kicks off on Sunday 20 November, could also have an impact on consumer preferences this winter.

“Normally, the sporting event takes place over the summer months, so we see summer snacking products in high demand with friends and families coming together to watch the game over a BBQ. But, with the sporting event taking place in winter this year, we’re expecting all year-round products – such as mini-rolls, cupcakes, and apple pies – being a popular snacking option,” he explained.

Here are the trends BBF expects to win over sweet bakery consumers this winter:

A blue cake with pink drip and topped with macarons and cream

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Overloaded bakes

Adding perspective to cakes has been one of the biggest trends of 2022 to date, according to BBF, and over the coming months it expects to see celebration cakes with lots of added decoration. Overloaded bakes are aesthetically pleasing but also offer value for money, it added, which will be a growing focus for consumers over the coming months.

Sweet but savoury

Brownie pieces, broken biscuits and sweets are expected to be ousted as cake toppings for something a bit more savoury. Think pretzels, popcorns, and waffles which BBF said will prove popular “as not only do they offset the sweetness, but they also offer colour contrast”.

A spiced pumpkin cake in a bowl with a star anise on top

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Warming spices will draw in consumers as the weather gets cooler

Warmer flavours

As the cooler months approach, consumers look for warmer, more comforting flavours from their baked goods. Spices such as cinnamon and cardamom will come to the fore, said BBF, while flavours such as sticky toffee, salted caramel and pumpkin spice will remain firm favourites.

Healthy balance

Cake doesn’t have to mean over the top indulgence as BBF notes demand from consumers for ‘healthier alternatives’ to traditional ingredients, particularly sugar. “The bakery sector is seeing a trend towards people looking for alternatives to sugars which are deemed healthier – think honey, fruit, seeds and nuts,” the manufacturer added.