Argentina seems to be a prolific land for baked goods. With all its attractive pastries and baked confectionery items, the South American country offers a wide range of culinary attractions.
Chocotorta – Chocotorta is a standard Argentine cake for birthday celebrations. It is made by soaking chocolate cookies in coffee or milk. It can include dulce de leche and cream cheese.
Pastafrola is an Argentinian layered shortcrust pie filled with jam. It features a crust topping in a pretty lattice pattern.
Palmeritas are ear-shaped Argentinian cookies, flaky and sweet and typically covered in sugar. They can be found at local Argentine bakeries known as panaderias.
Torta Frita means fried cakes in translation. They are traditionally enjoyed with some yerba mate. Torta fritas are made of fried dough sprinkled with sugar and usually served along with some dulce de leche or fruit jam.
Pastelitos (main picture) are a popular Argentine pastry, also known as facturas. When they are fried in hot oil, the dough separates into numerous layers, giving the pastelito its unique look of a flower. Sometimes they are filled with dulce de batata but more often dulce de membrillo is the filling of choice.
According to the research company Technavio, some of the most popular baked good (savory and sweet) products in Argentina are:
Empanadas are available with both sweet and savory stuffing. Sweet empanadas are filled with quince jam and sweet potato paste or dulce de leche and are sprinkled with cinnamon, sugar, or sweet raisins. Savory empanadas, on the other hand, are stuffed with stewed and spiced ground beef, chicken, goat, cheese, and/or vegetables.
Alfajores: These cookies are made of two sweet cornstarch biscuits, which are joined together with dulce de leche. They are mostly coated with dark or white chocolate and coconut or sugar powder. They are traditional sweets not only in Argentina, but also in Chile, Uruguay, Paraguay, Colombia, Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Andorra, Spain, Venezuela, and Southern Brazil.
Medialunas: Medialunas are the most popular Argentinian pastries. They are similar to French croissants but are sweeter and doughier. Argentinian medialunas are commonly topped with dulce de leche and other sweet sauces.
The demand for baked goods in Argentina is majorly driven by the tradition of consuming freshly baked goods on a daily basis. The majority of the Argentinian consumers prefer locally-available, fresh, unpackaged baked goods to the branded ones. The freshness and the low price of unpackaged baked goods are driving the sales of baked goods in Argentina, according to Technavio.
Guava and Quince Flavors
Argentinian consumers have an inclination toward bold and ethnic flavors when it comes to baked foods. They opt for flavors such as smoked, caramelized, and roasted. The increasing demand for natural flavors is resulting in the inclusion of tropical fruits in various types of baked desserts. For instance, guava and quince are two of the most popular fruits used in baked desserts such as empanada-style pastries.
Argentinian consumers also prefer spicy flavored baked goods. For instance, empanadas, one of the country’s favorite baked goods, are mostly consumed with a spicy beef stuffing mixed with other natural herbs and spices. The majority of bakeries in Argentina use locally available fresh ingredients, such as dried herbs and spices, as toppings in various baked products. Argentinian consumers prefer a diverse range of flavors to choose from, when it comes to baked goods, Technavio told us.
The Argentinian baked goods market has been witnessing significant transformation, owing to a number of innovations, over the past few years. Manufacturers operating in the baked goods market are taking up various new ways of producing and processing baked goods. For instance, they are adding new ingredients to traditional products to improve the products’ nutritional value. Manufacturers are also adopting various new approaches, such as reformulating baking techniques and expanding product offerings by including local favorites, to garner consumer attention.
The demand for innovative baked goods is increasing in the country, which is encouraging manufacturers to offer high-end and organic products. Also, local manufacturers have expanded their offerings by including whole grain and gluten-free products, which are highly appealing to consumers. This also helps them thrive in a highly competitive landscape.
The Argentinian baked goods market is fragmented with the presence of some global and local vendors. Some of the major vendors in the country are General Mills Argentina SA, Grupo Bimbo, Kellogg Co., Bagley Argentina SA, Kraft Foods Argentina SA, Mondelēz International, Agrofert AS, Associated British Foods Plc, and Alimentos Granix SA, Technavio listed for us.
New Eating Habits
The Argentinian food market is undergoing constant evolution, as various new trends are influencing the eating habits of consumers in the country. There is a growing demand for non-GMO foods among Argentinian consumers, owing to increasing awareness about the health benefits of consuming these foods. In order to address the growing consumer demand, producers are increasing the supply of various types of non-GMO food products.
Additionally, the growing health-consciousness among the Argentinian consumers is creating demand for natural and healthy ingredients. Protein-rich food products are also gaining popularity, owing to the health benefits associated with protein consumption. The reduced rate of carbohydrate intake is another health-related trend, which is driving the demand for low-carb food products in the country. The trend of clean eating has led to a growing demand for less-processed and healthier food products. People are increasingly opting for food products made of natural or unprocessed fats, which are considered important ingredients of a healthy diet.
The Argentinian baked goods market is primarily driven by the high demand for nutrition-based convenience food products. Consumers are increasingly shifting to healthy food products, particularly those with low trans-fat and low fat, and are non-GMO, gluten-free, and organic. This provides an impetus to manufacturers to focus on producing baked goods according to consumer preferences. Certain sections of the population prefer authentic traditional bakery products such as empanadas and medialunas, which increases the popularity of such bakery products and contributes to the growth of the Argentinian baked goods market. However, a few constraints, such as the presence of various restraining food-related regulations and high prices of raw materials, are expected to slow down the growth of the baked goods market in the country in the coming years, Technavio forecasts.