Snacks Might Just Be the Next Hot Menu Item

Next year, expect snacks on snacks on snacks

On their list of top trends to watch for in 2013, the National Restaurant Association listed "half-portions/smaller portions for a smaller price." Which basically translates to: snacks.

TIME has compiled all these predictions saying the exact same thing about snacks: they're next. Restaurant consultants Baum & Whiteman called it the "Snackification of America" in a trend report, saying plenty of smaller food options willl pop up at "fast-food chains, adding impulse revenue to between-meal shoulder hours." So those impulse cheesecake pops from Starbucks when you're having a bad day? All part of their plan.

Meanwhile, Andrew Freeman & Co. says smaller menu items will be big (read: snacks) like toasties (bits of toast with delicious toppings like prosciutto), or "one-bite wonders."

The snack trend may have evolved from the increase in bar food, which has become a staple at any classy booze establishment. So expect to see more sliders at fast-casual chains, and mac and cheese bites at your local bar.

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