UK Millennials Favor Italian Food Because It’s Prettier on Social Media

To no one's surprise, pizza is the most 'Instagramable' of all Italian meals.

A recent study of 2,000 adults in the U.K. revealed that 63% of respondents between ages 22 and 35 (the millennial group) claim Italian as their favorite food, as compared to 42% of those over 55 years old.

“Italian cuisine remains the most popular cuisine in the U.K., driving 2.2 billion meal occasions in the last year,” said Neil Brownbill, commercial director of Princes Group, an international food company. Brownbill commissioned the survey and said that one of Princes’ brands, Napolina, will undergo a rebranding where new packaging will have recipes for the Italian cuisine-loving millennials.

Related: How to use Instagram to market your pizzeria

Almost one in 10 said they enjoy Italian food because of how photogenic it is on social media, especially Instagram. Below is a complete list of what the millennials found to be the prettiest foods to post online.

1. Pizza (41%)
2. Bruschetta (20%)
3. Lasagna (19%)
4. Spaghetti Bolognese (16%)
5. Caprese salad (14%)
6. Spaghetti carbonara (12%)
7. Calzone (11%)
8. Prawn Linguine (10%)
9. Tagliatelle (8%)
10. Pesto pasta (8%)

The multi-generational study found that the millennials said pizza looks most appealing on social media, followed by bruschetta, lasagna, and spaghetti bolognese. The millennials also love posting photos of calzones, prawn linguine, and pesto pasta on their Instagram accounts. The average millennial posts pictures of Italian food at least three times a month on Instagram, and 45% of millennials use social media to find inspiration for new Italian recipes. The data also showed that millennials ate Italian food 11 times a month, more than twice a week, while the older generations only sought out up to five Italian meals a month.

The majority of the millennial group (62%) said pizza was the best Italian dish, followed by lasagna and classic bolognese.

Millennials may love pizza more, but toppings like pepperoni, ham with pineapple, and mushrooms aren’t as popular as they used to be. Pepperoni’s popularity has decreased by 5% over the last decade, with ham and pineapple dropping to fourth on the list. New flavors like barbecue chicken, sundried tomatoes and prosciutto, along with goat cheese, halloumi (cheese made from sheep and goat milk) and seafood, are making their way up the list of favorite pizza toppings.