As we move into full-on BBQ mode for the warmer months, certain grilling and BBQ trends emerge. The team at Pinterest took a look at some of these very trends, calculated by search terms from their community of more than 250 million pinners.
It turns out, no matter what region or state you live in—red or blue—BBQ and summer foods transcend cultural and political divides with 83% identical search terms across the country. Californians, Idahoans, folks from Connecticut and Alabama are all searching for (mostly) the same types of 4th of July food, and recipe inspiration.
Even more surprising is what people are searching for this summer! Among the list of trending BBQ-related recipes were some standards like Instant Pot BBQ pulled pork, and avocado corn salad. But a few oddballs caught our eye, too, like meatballs with grape jelly and barbecue sauce (?!) and the #1 trending BBQ-related food, trending up over 5000% was Sweet Potato Lasagna.
Sweet potato lasagna is clearly having a moment, but is it really lasagna? Yes and no. It’s actually a bit closer to potato au gratin; layers of thinly sliced sweet potatoes in place of the pasta, and a creamy bechamel where the red sauce would normally go. From there you can layer in any other vegetables, with popular additions including spinach, summer squash, mushroom or sausage. And finally, sweet potato lasagna is generally topped with mozzarella or another melty Italian cheese.
Creamy and filling sweet potato lasagna makes the perfect BBQ side or starch, but can easily serve as the main course for a vegetarian crowd, too. And though it’s in no way keto-approved, it’s healthier than traditional lasagna with its heaps of pasta. See one of our favorite sweet potato lasagna recipes here.
*Trends are calculated using normalized searches from May ‘18 to May ‘19. Top searches leading up to 4th of July, from June 24th ‘18 to July 4th ‘18. Top searches are leading up to July, from 6/28/18 – 7/3/18. Region 1 (Northeast): Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey. Region 2 (Midwest): Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri. Region 3 (South): Delaware, Maryland, District of Columbia, Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama, Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana. Region 4 (West): Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California, Hawaii.