People Are Cracking Up At These 30 Stories Of People Committing “Kitchen Crimes” Out Of Good Intentions
Eating is kinda, sorta unavoidable in this life of ours. It’s what keeps us alive, quite literally. But if you want a more romantic approach to it, it’s what makes life worth living.
Not only is it the spice of our daily routines, creating pleasurable moments where we can rest or giving us a reason to see a friend whom we haven’t seen in ages — if anything, it’s a way to improve our quality of life.
But some folks love to see the world burn and shove their claws where they don’t belong. That is, friends, family or just randos have the full potential to make a simple sandwich taste like sun-faded plastic.
Yep, folks this week were upset with the dishes their friends and family ruined by tampering with them. It all started with Reddit user u/RioA who shared their unfortunate story of how their mother increased the temperature on their sous vide chicken breast and it ended up tasting like leather. This in turn inspired a slew of people to share their own family mishaps, and it seems food crime is surprisingly common in the world.
In any case, check out our lovely curated list below, and why not vote on the best submissions and share your food horror stories in the comment section below!
More Info: Reddit
My mother, since I was born, never used any garlic in any recipe. The only thing she ever made with garlic was garlic bread and she put the tiniest amount on it. When I moved out, she gave me a copy of her recipe binder. Every single recipe list garlic as an ingredient, but she has written "(optional)" next to it.
Now, years later, I cook her own recipe, except that I put garlic in it and she started saying how proud she is to have raised a boy that can cook better than her.
20 years I was denied the best vegetable on this planet. If that's not a sin, I don't know what is.
I almost had an aneurysm dealing with both my parents one evening.
We were having family over at their place and my mom asked me to come by 10-15 minutes early "to help with a couple things." I know my mom, and if she's being coy or asking for a little favor, it's normally something she doesn't understand or can pull off; so I go over 30 minutes early.
Turns out she wanted me to chicken alfredo for 12-15 family members. Not a problem in itself, alfredo is super easy and quick. But this woman has nowhere near the correct amount or proportion of ingredients. She has like 1 cup of heavy cream and enough Parmesan to kill a god. And NO F*****G CHICKEN. I send her to the store to get a couple pints of creme, lemon, a few baguettes, and THE F*****G CHICKEN.
I tell my dad to start his gas grill for the chicken. He argues charcoal would be better. I agree, it would, but we don't have time for that. He doubles down, and I have to bring up that every time he's in charge of cooking we eat 90 minutes late. F*****g start the grill. He finally relents.
I've been there for 10 minutes I already am about to pull my hair out with them.
My mother returns with the correct ingredients (this was actually a surprise). Family starts to arrive. Now my mother desperately wants to give our family the impression that we lovingly cook together all the time and we're a well-oiled machine where the opposite is true. All current and former chefs know this frustration. She has no sense of space, does not clean as she cooks, and has a small kitchen. I normally ask her to run food to distract her, but she's not having that today. She's determined to show how she "helps."
Her range is super under-powered. I have put it on max and find her heaviest pan just so I can get enough heat in the pan to warm this mass of creme. I have it on for maybe a minute and she goes over and loudly says, "You have the heat up too high! Let me help you with that!" F*****g turns it down. I explain to everybody why I did that, and told her politely but sternly, "Please do not do that."
My dad enters with the cooked chicken about 15 minutes later. I set up a cutting board at the end of the kitchen area and I start slicing it. My mom want to help so I show her the cuts I want: thin, even, and across the grain. She f*****g butchers it.
My dad wanders into the kitchen, and what does he do? "You have the pan on too hot!" F*****g turns it down. I am visibly frustrated at this point and my Aunts and Uncles can see it. They are starting to laugh because my parents are being comically stupid. Thank God for my dad's cousin Eve. She was able to distract them for long enough for me to get everything portioned and served.
I considered on three occasions of leaving my parents to their fate, and I probably should have.
We used to always bring a bunch of side dishes for Thanksgiving, but we had to keep my mother away from them, because her attitude toward everything is to just cook it as long as possible. That's the reason I grew up hating vegetables - because they were always boiled to mush.
We would always take control of the sides we brought, which offended my mom because we didn't trust her cooking, and she was always trying to grab them and sneak them into the oven or microwave. I remember one Thanksgiving we brought our special green beans in butter, garlic, and rosemary, but not cooked too much, so they'd still have their snap. They just needed about 30-60 seconds in the microwave.
So we're putting everything out on the table, and I realize that the green beans are missing. My mom tells me she put them in the microwave. "How long ago?" "Oh they still have a few minutes to go, they've only been in there about 8 minutes." So there were our beautiful fresh green beans, cooked to flaccidity, ruined.
Then there was the Thanksgiving that I carefully packed up all the leftovers we were taking home, but they weren't in the fridge when it came time to leave. She had moved them to the top of the dryer in the mud room so we wouldn't forget them. They'd been sitting there for about 8 hours, going bad. We just took it all home and threw it out.
Eventually we just started having Thanksgiving at our house so we had total control over it, and she couldn't sabotage it.
One Christmas, my grandfather's second wife sneaked into the kitchen when my mother left the stove for a moment and added a bunch of water to her gumbo because she felt it was "too thick".
My mom cried.
I was making a large amount of loaded potato soup, in an 18qt turkey roaster. My dad would wait until I had left the kitchen so it could simmer and thicken and add seasonings to it without tasting it. More salt here, more pepper there... until he finally decided it wasn't thick enough and added some mashed potato flakes to it. he then had the AUDACITY to complain it was too salty. I very nearly threw my bowl at him I was so [upset]. Never cooked at his house again.
I came back into the kitchen and my sister in law said she checked my stuffed mushrooms and they "looked a little dry" so she added some olive oil to them. Opened the oven to see that they were swimming in oil. Like, a half inch of oil in the baking dish. She ruined the mushrooms and used up the last of an amazing bottle of olive oil a friend brought back from Greece for me.
I was a professional chef so people call me a lot for recipes, etc. One time my dad called and asked me for a salmon recipe. He started the conversation with “I put it in the oven about 30min ago”
”He’s dead, Jim”
Just last night:
Grandma, who always hated cooking, lives with me. For reference, the only seasoning she believes in is salt, and she likes her steaks "well boiled."
I had to go out for an event last night but didn't want her to go hungry, so I made chicken and noodles in the crock pot. Seared the chicken, then threw in to slow cook with onions, garlic, and veggies, whole deal. Just before leaving the house, I added the noodles and appropriate bit of water so they could cook, and told her to give it a good stir in an hour, then dig in.
I got home several hours later and went to put the food away (she's great about turning down the crock pot to a holding temp after getting her own food) and was shocked to discover the noodles were still CRUNCHY! I asked her if something happened, and she said "well, after you left I went to check on things and it looked like you put too much water in there, it would be soupy, so I used a cup to scoop it out. Those noodles weren't very well done by the way."
I love this woman, but how she managed to raise a family on her cooking is beyond me.
Cilantro.... It tastes like soap to me. When my mom lived with me anytime I tried to cook something she would sneak cilantro in it knowing that I wouldn't eat it. More for her. Make a stew that is supposed to last for a week... garbage.
She was awful. Make steaks and sides and think it was 1 for everyone... she would nab 3 of them with her unwashed hands and not eat any sides. Had no shame... what was I gonna do kick her out and make her homeless? I finally did after 3 years of the b******t.
Your wok was all black so I scrubbed it clean for you.
I had a room mate who did that in college. She scrubbed an entire teflon pan clean with steel wool.
How long did that even take??
I shudder to think. A few friends and I got back from class to find her just about done with it. Once we realized what she was doing, we knew it was a lost cause and let her finish. When she left the kitchen, I took the pan out of the drying rack and put it in the trash.
Mom once went to the trouble of making a ham & bean soup complete with ham bone during the cooking process. After we finished dinner my dad drained all the broth down the sink just so it would fit into the Tupperware container he randomly chose to use.
Was baking a pavlova for a cooking competition in a family holiday. And ‘someone’ also turned up the heat to quicken the process. Turned out in a delicious black burned piece of sugar. I’m still mad about it especially since that someone wasn't man enough to admit that they did it.
I was going to make perfect tender and juicy chicken breast with a sous vide stick but my mom decided to overrule me behind my back by turning the temperature up from 65C to 90C "just to be speed it up" (even though they would have been ready right on time for dinner at 19:00 as planned... It now has the consistency of stringy leather and taste like it too.
My father almost used my handcrafted Japanese cookingknife that I bought in Tokyo to open a beer bottle (not foodcrime pr se but a crime none the less).
After explicitly being told to not touch it, my MIL put mine in the dishwasher…TWICE. It’s hidden away now. [Blabbering] idiot.
And here I’ve been annoyed that my MIL will use mine and then just leave it on the counter to be washed later, covered in food debris. And then never actually wash it because she doesn’t ever actually do the dishes.
My mom intentionally blunts knives or throws them away when they're sharp because she's worried about injuring herself on the sharpness of the knife.
I made a gorgeous roast turkey for Thanksgiving one year at my Family's house. Brined it perfectly, assembled an amazing blend of aromatics and roasted to perfection. The pan drippings and juices had the most amazing flavor I've ever had from roasting a bird. Apples, Shallots, fresh sage leaves, celery, carrot, honey crisp apples, cinnamon all came together in perfect harmony. I salivated as I deglazed and strained every last drop of that magic with the intent of making the ultimate gravy.
20 minutes I leave the kitchen for it to cool so I could skim it, and my mother helped herself to a spoonful of it. She agreed that it was amazing, and decided it would be best to pour every last drop of it over HER turkey as a baste....
I had some leftover Passover wine, and decided to do a thing. I sauteed mushrooms and tomatoes into it, building up a nice sauce for my fancy pasta dish.
Boyfriend goes behind my back and adds AMARETTO COFFEE CREAMER.
Well, his idea was to thicken up the sauce, and I didn't have cream, so he figured being cooked with wine, the amaretto would "compliment"...
The s**t was disgusting. I took only a couple bites. It gave me diarrhea like immediately after.
I'm still mad to this day.
Turning up the heat on my barely simmering Bolognese, because they didn't think it was "simmering enough".
Was making quesadilla's for my parents. I left the kitchen for FIVE MINUTES. I come back, open the kitchen doors, and the air is burning my eyes. Like, onions jacked up times 100. I look at my dad, and ask 'What did you do?'.
He looked at me, very sheepishly, and said 'I only added three...'
A while before, a friend of my mom's had gifted me a jalapeno pepper plant. Dad put three peppers, seeds and all, into the sauce.
We adulterated that sauce with a full container of plain yogurt, with another one on the side, and it was still insanely hot. Mom took the leftovers, put them in ice-cube trays, and used *one* per pot of soup/stew/sauce.
I miss my dad. Good memory.
Just the other day we were bbqing chicken legs. We went to the butcher and got these amazing delicious fat legs. They turned out perfect! Luckily we got to snag one each before my grandma put the rest in the oven because in her opinion they "needed to be cooked more."
What is it with old people wanting dry, chewy, overcooked chicken!? Now no one has touched the leftovers because she ruined them when she could have just cooked *her* portion more rather than all of it!
I was cooking a prime rib. I used the method of blasting it at 500 for 30 minutes and then shutting off the oven and letting it coast without opening the door for a couple of hours. I was very clear not to use the oven, and I put a sign on the oven door to not open.
My son decided that he need to cook a frozen pizza because he was hungry. Turned the oven on at 425 and cooked his pizza for 15 minutes. Took it out and did not shut off the oven.
I was making tacos. My room mate waited for my back to be turned to pour a large can of marinara sauce into the meat because "that's how we make tacos at my house..."
For f**k's sake, man you could have just said that and we would separate some for your weird a*s taste buds.
My first time hosting Thanksgiving after my mom passed, I was boiling turkey guts for the gravy. My mom taught me to always do this to have flavored water to add to the drippings if needed, which was often needed. I took the pot off the heat and set it aside to cool a little and walked away for a few minutes. When I returned, my stepmother gleefully informed me that she strained the turkey guts for me. My partner said my face utterly deflated as I grasped for words. I couldn't even think of something to say other than, "but... I needed that liquid.." Stepmom left the kitchen for the rest of the day. The gravy turned out fine, but there was much less of it to go around.
Well-meaning family member hacked into my perfectly puffed up sweet potato soufflé, turning it like she was tilling a garden, turning my work of art into a plain old stirred up casserole. "I just wanted to make sure the heat was evenly distributed."
“That ‘really heavy black pan’ you have was pretty dirty, had stuff burnt on all over it. so i ran it through the dishwasher for you 😊”
Sorry, not a meal but a mishap related to cooking.
I have a chili recipe that's been passed down for 3 generations. It calls for 8-10 hours in a slow cooker on **low**. Each and every single time I make it my roommate will go and turn it up to high while I'm at work because she wants to eat earlier and doesn't think it makes any difference. *It does, it very much does.* And nothing I can say can convince her not to do it. She does it every single time no matter how much I ask her not to.
Many things were seasoned when they were perfectly good, many times the temperature went up when I wasn't looking and things got burnt...
On a more serious note, once I was taking oil up to temperature to make pancakes, started chatting with my mom and my sister and went away from the stove for awhile to get something from a cabinet, my mom saw the oil smoking and thought the Teflon was smoking, she had the mad idea of shaking the pan to cool it, not realizing there was oil inside, my sisters legs got burned pretty bad (it was a small amount of oil, but it was HOT), I only got a splash on my ankle and that hurt like a m**********r, both my sister AND my mom cried a lot that day.
I know I'm partly to blame for leaving the stove unattended, but I still don't know why she decided to shake a pan without checking what's inside it...
I was making a soup and my GF decided it needed chicken in it. She grabbed skin on chicken thighs and threw them into the mix. I didn't realize it until I was eating it and there were what tasted like snot bubbles in it. It was slimy gross unrendered chicken skin in just about every bite.
My ex-girlfriend's father was something very special in the kitchen. He cooked meatloaf completely covered with water. The 'meatloaf' was wet and soggy. He cuts at least five thin slices out of a normal steak. Not that he wanted to save money. He said the paper-like slices cooked more evenly that way.
Paella had to be cooked from a frozen fish mix. The water that forms in the bag during defrosting was collected and later poured over the individual finished portions. "This is how the original paella taste is created".
Mother ran out of sugar to make a cake and replaced it with jello crystals. Don’t try it at home.
Kinda reminds me of how my mom keeps spare cans of orange Fanta in the fridge in case of a "cake emergency." I don't really know because I never bake but its just kinda weird to me lol.
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