Olives and halloumi fries are replacing salted peanuts and traditional crisp flavours as the nation’s favourite bar snacks, new data has shown.
Pubgoers in the North are also leaning more towards artisanal snacks according to a study of more than one million table service orders found.
The findings come as punters have had to increasingly order food and drinks online via table service apps during the pandemic, giving a clearer picture of the nation’s evolving bar nibble preferences.
A study of 1.5 million orders carried out by ServedUp, a mobile app for order table service, found a marked increase in purchases of healthier snacks since pubs started to re-open in April.
Purchase of healthier baked crisps rose by 23 per cent compared to before the pandemic, cashew nuts by 20 percent and popcorn by 12 per cent.
Meanwhile, demand for gourmet flavoured crisps shot up by 16 per cent and olives by eight per cent.
Purchases of snacks popular with adherents of low-carb diets, such as the paleo and keto regimes, also rose with demand for the cured Biltong meat strips rising by seven per cent.
Conversely, more traditional bar staples saw a decline in popularity, with purchases decreasing for pickled onions, salted peanuts, Mini Cheddars, and prawn cocktail crisps.
Data from the app also noticed that upmarket snacks were becoming increasingly popular in northern towns and cities such as Manchester, York and Aberdeen.
Beer-battered fires and tempura prawns
In York, beer-battered fries appeared among the most popular snacks post lockdown and in Manchester tempura prawns saw a rise in popularity.
However, more traditional snacks such as packets of Monster Munch or Mini Cheddars still remained an popular accompaniment to a pint in places such as Middlesborough or Swansea.
Hugo Tilmouth, chief executive at ServedUp said: “While there will always be a place for traditional bar snacks it is clear there is a revolution underway as smart, upmarket bars and restaurants open offering a wide range of more eclectic snacks.
“Obviously our data reveals a snapshot of life in Britain’s bars and pubs, but could it be that the North has overtaken the South and is now the epicentre of the upmarket bar room nibble?”
As well as the nation developing a more sophisticated palate, pubgoers could also be opting for healthier snacks in an effort to shift lockdown weight gain.
Research by Public Health England Earlier this year found that more than 40 per cent of the population had put on weight over the last year, with people gaining on average half a stone.