Grubhub Releases Annual Year in Food Report Detailing the Top Trends of 2021

December 8, 2021

See what Grubhub trends reveal about our eating habits, the restaurants that served us, and the positive impact the Grubhub community has made this year
CHICAGO, Dec. 8, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — The end of the year is near, but before we say goodbye to 2021, we’re rewinding to see how we ate and drank our way through another year of change. Grubhub, a leading online and mobile food-ordering and delivery marketplace, today released findings from its annual “Year in Food” report. Grubhub analyzed orders from over 32 million diners to see what rose in popularity throughout the year while highlighting Grubhub diners’ generosity and how they gave back to communities and restaurants in need. In addition, diners will receive their personalized “Taste of 2021” recap to get a glimpse of their favorite cuisines, menu items, and order habits throughout the year. Grubhub diners can also visit the Taste of 2021 website to browse trends and win an exclusive deal for their next order.

The Impossible cheeseburger is this year’s top food of the year!


2020 was the year of comfort foods, and 2019 was full of vegetarian-friendly orders, and 2021 gave us a mix of both! The Impossible cheeseburger rose to prominence, increasing 442% in popularity, providing diners with a healthier version of an iconic food staple.

  1. Impossible cheeseburger (+442%)
  2. Shredded pork taco (+310%)
  3. Apple pecan chicken salad (+287%)
  4. Detroit-style pizza (+263%)
  5. Margarita (+240%)
  6. Pub mac and cheese (+174%)
  7. Pork dumplings (+173%)
  8. Chicken burrito (+166%)
  9. Poke nacho (+158%)
  10. Lettuce wrap (+155%)

Side Dishes: chips and your favorite dip were the perfect complements to a good meal.

  1. Chips and pico de gallo (+205%)
  2. Stuffed garlic knot (+174%)
  3. Mac and cheese (+173%)
  4. Cornbread (+171%)
  5. Chips and queso (+155%)

Dessert: a blend of delectable classics and delivery staples proved to be the most popular.

  1. Strawberry shortcake sundae: (+378%)
  2. Cookie dough cheesecake (+315%)
  3. Chocolate chip pizza (+287%)
  4. Cookie dough burrito (+255%)
  5. Flan (+244%)

Fun Fact: A diner purchased 200 bacon cheeseburgers in one order! Why?! That’s for you to guess.


Breakfast: early birds ordered traditional favorites to start the day.

  1. Sausage, egg, and cheese sandwich
  2. Long john donut
  3. Chorizo breakfast burrito

Lunch: a mixed bag of trendy foods and a seasonal favorite.

  1. Birria taco
  2. Clam chowder
  3. Impossible burger

Dinner: familiar foods were ordered after a long day.

  1. Burrito bowl
  2. Cheese pizza
  3. Beef sliders

Late night: night owls flocked to Hispanic foods to end their nights… or early mornings.

  1. Al pastor taco
  2. Chicken tenders
  3. Chimichanga


New York City

  1. Pork and crab soup dumpling: (+397%)
  2. Aloo gobi matar (+394%)
  3. Pasta bolognese (+394%)
  4. Olive oil cake (+393%)
  5. Broccoli pizza (+386%)

Los Angeles

  1. Lobster taco: (+399%)
  2. Adobada taco (+359%)
  3. Spaghetti bolognese (+355%)
  4. Korean fried chicken (+345%)
  5. Lamb samosa (+336%)


  1. Shrimp poboy (+399%)
  2. Chili dog (+391%)
  3. Fajita de pollo (+378%)
  4. Spaghetti al pomodoro (+350%)
  5. Flourless chocolate cake (+317%)

San Francisco

  1. Mango habanero wing (+393%)
  2. Snickerdoodle cookie (+391%)
  3. Strawberry green tea (+384%)
  4. Shrimp dumpling (+379%)
  5. Iced Vietnamese coffee (+379%)


  1. Cheesesteak sandwich (+397%)
  2. Cookie and cream milkshake (+396%)
  3. Lump crab cake sandwich (+392%)
  4. Cheesesteak pizza (+383%)
  5. Turkey avocado wrap (+382%)


  1. Pork chop (+400%)
  2. Torta cubana (+398%)
  3. Chicken and waffle (+386%)
  4. New York strip steak (+376%)
  5. Red velvet cupcake (+363%)


  1. Cheese enchilada (+395%)
  2. Vermicelli bowl (+393%)
  3. Brisket taco (+386%)
  4. Italian cannoli (+374%)
  5. Smoked mac and cheese (+373%)


  1. Tuna tartare (+392%)
  2. Veggie pizza (+389%)
  3. Mushroom barley soup (+379%)
  4. Chicken cacciatore (+372%)
  5. Chicken ranch pizza (+345%)


  1. Rib tips (+391%)
  2. Caramel fudge cheesecake (+385%)
  3. King crab roll (+380%)
  4. Tikka masala (+380%)
  5. Grilled steak sandwich (+340%)

Washington D.C.

  1. Chicken nuggets (+375%)
  2. Steak burrito (+373%)
  3. Butter chicken (+347%)
  4. Chicken tikka masala (+345%)
  5. Pad thai (+324%)


While it’s hard to predict the future of food, we’ve given it our best shot by analyzing hundreds of millions of orders over the past three years to provide you with our prediction on the top foods of 2022. In no particular ranking, here are the orders that are bound to rise in popularity next year.

  • Margherita flatbread pizza
  • Buffalo chicken tots
  • Peanut butter protein smoothie
  • Cajun steakburger
  • Apple cobbler


This year, diners settled into their new morning routines, which saw coffee orders rise 100% in popularity. Alcohol orders increased by 11% and the margarita was the first alcohol order to crack the top orders of the year.


  1. Pumpkin spice latte (+363%)
  2. Vanilla latte (+256%)
  3. Cold brew (+116%)
  4. Flat white (+110%)
  5. Nitro coffee (+68%)


  1. Margarita (+240%)
  2. Mexican beer (+174%)
  3. Mango mojito (+110%)
  4. Cabernet Sauvignon (+106%)
  5. Prosecco (+102%)


Similar to 2020, vegan and vegetarian-friendly orders continued to steadily improve. In 2021, vegan and vegetarian-friendly orders grew by 16% and 13%, in comparison to 2020.


  1. Vegan hot cocoa (+320%)
  2. Vegan passion fruit mochi (+236%)
  3. Vegan mint chocolate chip cookie (+236%)
  4. Handmade vegan chorizo taco (+236%)
  5. Black bean arepa (+152%)


  1. Cheddar scallion biscuits (+362%)
  2. Plum tomato broccoli parmesan risotto (+320%)
  3. Flaxseed and date specialty smoothie (+320%)
  4. Vodka margarita pizza (+236%)
  5. Butternut squash parsnip soup (+236%)

Most Vegan-Friendly States

  1. California
  2. New York
  3. Florida
  4. Texas
  5. Georgia


With more time spent at home these days, it’s important to have all of your convenience and grocery essentials whenever you need them.

Top Convenience Orders

  1. 2% milk (+190%)
  2. Toilet paper (+190%)
  3. Instant ramen (+143%)
  4. Paper towels (+130%)
  5. Pepperoni pizza rolls (+103%)


  1. Gummy bears (+98%)
  2. Peanut butter cups (+92%)
  3. Caramel shortbread chocolate bar (+82%)
  4. Cookies and cream chocolate bar (+73%)
  5. Sour candy (+71%)

We’re making it even easier for diners to grab all of their convenience and grocery essentials. We’ve partnered with Instacart for a limited time to offer existing Grubhub diners two months of Instacart Express for free and $10 off of their first Instacart order over $35. Annual Instacart Express members can also receive 12 months of Grubhub+ for free, including unlimited free delivery on Grubhub orders over $12 from more than 300,000 restaurants nationwide, exclusive perks and members-only deals, and donation matching when members donate their change to a charity at checkout.


Not every state eats equally, so a few states received high honors due to their specific ordering habits throughout the year.

  • Most generous state: New Mexico has the highest average tip percentage.
  • Most outdoorsy state: California has the highest percentage of pickup orders.
  • Most chill state: Hawaii has the highest percentage of weekend orders.
  • Wildest state: Rhode Island has the highest percentage of late-night orders.
  • Most high-rollin’ state: Alaska has the highest average spend per order.
  • Most romantic state: North Dakota has the highest percentage of two-dish orders.
  • Most celebratory state: Washington, D.C. has the highest percentage of alcohol orders.
  • Hungriest state: New York has the highest number of orders


We took a look at some delivery staples and the restaurants across the country that took home the title – “Best of Grubhub” – for each dish.

  • Burgers: Mel’s Burger Bar – a casual bar and burger joint in Manhattan, NY that serves up a variety of delicious bar fare like the spicy Hot Mess Burger.
  • Pizza: Joe’s Pizza – the iconic pizza shop has been serving some of the best pizza around in Brooklyn, NY for over 37 years.
  • Tacos: Baja Valley Fish & Tacos – a casual restaurant, known for its signature Baja Cali style fish tacos & delicious aguas frescas in suburban Los Angeles.
  • Dumplings: Su Xing House – offers authentic Chinese vegetarian cuisine in Philadelphia, PA.
  • Chicken wings: Hartbreakers – A fast-casual, 70’s inspired all vegan restaurant in Brooklyn, NY.


As the world continues to recover from the pandemic, we haven’t slowed our support for restaurants and local and national charitable organizations. Through the Restaurant Strong Fund, Donate the Change and Grubhub Community Relief Fund we’ve raised over $30 million in 2021.

Restaurant Strong Fund: Grubhub and The Greg Hill Foundation’s Restaurant Strong Fund have supported restaurants across the country to help them survive the pandemic and beyond. In 2021 alone, Grubhub and the Restaurant Strong Fund have given $6 million in grants to restaurants.

Donate the Change: For diners that opt-in to Donate the Change, Grubhub will round up their order total to the nearest dollar and donate the change to a charitable organization. Grubhub also matches all donations on Grubhub+ orders. In 2021, the Grubhub community raised over $24 million through our Donate the Change feature.

Grubhub Community Relief Fund:  We also created the Grubhub Community Relief Fund to give proceeds to organizations that provide relief for our restaurants and drivers. To date, the Grubhub community has raised $18 million to help support charitable organizations that support restaurants and drivers.

Methodology: Grubhub’s “Year in Food” report is based on trends gathered from tens of millions of orders on the Grubhub platform. Order trends detail the rise in popularity of food items placed by Grubhub diners from January-November 2021, as compared to the same timeframe in 2020.

About Grubhub
Grubhub is part of Just Eat (LSE: JET, AMS: TKWY, NASDAQ: GRUB), a leading global online food delivery marketplace. Dedicated to connecting more than 32 million diners with the food they love from their favorite local restaurants, Grubhub elevates food ordering through innovative restaurant technology, easy-to-use platforms and an improved delivery experience. Grubhub features more than 300,000 restaurant partners in over 4,000 U.S. cities.