A number of grocery categories are thriving thanks to recessionary woes that have forced US consumers to eat at home more, according to a report out today (8 April).

The market research report by Mintel showed that while some markets are struggling with the sluggish economy, others are thriving, including bread, sweet spreads and frozen meals.

“Over the past year, we’ve seen people trying to save money on food by either dining out less, cutting supermarket bills, or both,” said Bill Patterson, senior analyst at Mintel.

“As consumers spend less and stay in more, certain food markets are benefitting. These recession-proof, or rather recession-fuelled, industries are destined to do well throughout the economic downturn, but it will be interesting to track their sales after the nation recovers.”

Mintel said it sees the bread market faring the recession “quite well”. Originally predicted to grow 2.1% in 2008, the market researcher’s latest figures show the bread market having grown 7%. Mintel now predicts higher growth for bread through 2013.

In the sweet spreads market, peanut butter is expected to drive the category’s sales, with an anticipated 26% jump from 2008-2013, up from Mintel’s initial prediction of 12% growth.

The frozen meals market is also expected to benefit from the recession with a predicted total sales increase of 4.5% in 2008, a jump from its original -0.3% expectation.