Anatomy of America's Most Mouthwatering Mashup
This is a partnered post with the National Pork Board. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
If you spend any amount of time on social media, then you already know that we live in an age where food sharing is second nature. From Instagram, to Facebook, and even Twitter, my social streams are saturated with people sharing their love of food with their photos!
To uncover what makes the “ultimate American meal,” the National Pork Board examined the data behind what we share, why we share it, and how pork fits into the conversation. They did this using Crimson Hexagon’s ForSight platform which allowed them to gather over 30 million social media posts from Facebook, Twitter and Instagram over the course of a year.
Anatomy of America’s Most Mouthwatering Mashup
Based on the information gathered, they found that “nearly half of socially shared food content included smoked, hot and spicy flavors paired with popular proteins, while the most common ethnic flavor was Cajun – with Mexican and Asian close behind.” Using the data they gathered from these online conversations, they created the “Anatomy of America’s Most Mouthwatering Mashup.” Using the flavors, pairings, ingredients and cooking methods most often mentioned on social media, they created the Cheesy Maple Bacon Cajun Pulled Pork Sandwich!
Last week I actually had the opportunity to try the Cheesy Maple Bacon Cajun Pulled Pork Sandwich. The National Pork Board had a local chef create it for me and deliver it one day at lunch. I obviously enjoy eating pork, and this sandwich did not disappoint. I loved the mash-up of flavors! I’m usually a dill pickle kind of girl, but the bread and butter pickles really added a whole different experience for the taste buds. And the Sriracha yogurt for the smashed potatoes was totally unexpected, but oh so good!
All of the flavors worked together in perfect harmony to create a dish that went beyond the norm. Fusion cuisine definitely isn’t new, but it’s something that is gaining more ground and becoming more popular…because it’s so tasty.
The information collected from over 30 million social posts also revealed that:
- When it comes to culinary passions shared with #foodporn, the diverse flavors of the American palate have one thing in common: pork. Pork is by far the “spiciest” meat with 41 percent of pork posts including #foodporn. Only one in three posts about beef (31 percent) included #foodporn and a mere 23 percent of chicken posts included the sultry hashtag.
- Swiss, Cheddar, American or Brie: it doesn’t matter, so long as it’s cheese. It’s America’s most popular food topping.
- Bacon is the top-mentioned pork product in the majority of the U.S. When it comes to this nationwide favorite, 23 percent mentioned maple as a preferred seasoning and 35 percent want it crispy.
- Bread is the most frequently mentioned grain, pulling in 22 percent of mentions alongside proteins, which confirms that Americans are fans of foods that they can really wrap their hands around.
It also revealed that:
- #Foodporn is an evening affair. More than six in 10 individuals posting about a specific meal are posting about dinner – but it’s just as likely to be about a great meal at a restaurant as it is about one that is home-cooked. Twenty-six percent of posts were about a restaurant meal while 28 percent featured a home-cooked meal.
- Americans like it smoked, hot and spicy. The top flavors shared on social media associated with pork are hot (28 percent), spicy (18 percent) and smoked (16 percent) – and the most popular cuisines across all proteins include Cajun, Mexican, Italian and Asian.
- Side dishes remain standard, not sophisticated. While the American palate may have become more diverse over the last decade, when it comes to #foodporn Americans are still all about the meat and potatoes. Over one in three (38 percent) of all sides mentioned were about the potato – largely split between fries (16 percent) and other varieties of baked, mashed, sweet or gratin potatoes (22 percent). But vegetables have their share of the love as well. Almost a third (32 percent) of posts that mentioned a side mentioned a vegetable.
- You are where you eat. When it comes to conversations about food, geography matters. For example, New Yorkers lead all food conversations about protein and seven western states pair pork most frequently with eggs.
Simply put: American’s are excited about food and they like to express it on social media.
During the rest of the month I will be sharing more about the findings of the data collected, plus sharing an original Mash-Up recipe, using pork! I’m so excited about this partnership with the National Pork Board and I hope you find the information as interesting as I do.
Do you share your food on social media?