Header image courtesy of @the_lazyfoodie
It seems that the current health crisis has got everyone’s creative juices flowing in the kitchen, and we’ve been getting heaps of fun and easy cooking and baking inspiration from social media. If you’re looking for something new to cook, check out our favourite viral recipes with everything from fast-food menu copycats to simple desserts. Don’t forget to tag us on Instagram if you try your hand at any of these recipes!
One of our favourite Japanese dishes is the simple chawanmushi, a savoury steamed egg custard in a cup usually filled with seafood or noodles. It is usually quite a meticulous recipe to get right, but according to Nissin’s official site, all you need is the salty leftover broth from your cup noodle, an egg, and a microwave-safe bowl (a deep teacup or mug would work perfectly) to make your own chawanmushi in less than five minutes. Watch this step-by-step video by @pigoutvyr to see how it’s done.
When you’ve got about a quarter of the soup left in your cup, crack an egg into it and whisk until smooth and combined. Pour the mixture into the microwave-safe container of your choice, nuke it for two to three minutes, and you’ve got yourself a personal portion of creamy egg custard!
We’ll admit that this recipe had us scratching our heads a bit: Is it really safe to put a bag of chips into a pot of boiling water? For those of us not looking to take that risk, you can recreate this omelette recipe by simply folding the crisps into a regular omelette mixture. It won’t come out in the shape of the crisp packet, but it’ll be a delicious omelette nonetheless, with the saltiness and light crunch of the crisps packing lots of flavour and texture.
It might take a couple tries to get the soufflé omelette right, but even if you can’t whip your eggs into the light fluffy cloud that it’s meant to resemble, the results are still tasty. We reckon the hardest part is still separating the yolks and whites: If you’re struggling, use the discarded eggshells to keep them apart and into different bowls.
There’s a lot of whisking involved in this recipe, so make sure you’ve got decent arm strength or an electric mixer at low speed. We recommend adding cheese to your soufflé omelette for that extra indulgence when one bite just melts in your mouth.
Vegan cook Tabitha Brown went viral with her quick and easy vegan bacon recipe on TikTok, amassing over 12 million views. The vegan bacon in question is made with simple ingredients: carrots, maple syrup, onion powder, garlic powder, smoked paprika, and pepper.
Liquid smoke would also come in handy here for that extra BBQ flavour that comes with smoked bacon, but it’s not exactly a pantry staple for most of us, so no worries if you don’t have it! While the carrot slices don’t come out tasting exactly like “real” bacon, they’re a healthy snack to munch on while working from home, and are packed full of umami flavours to satisfy your savoury cravings.
South Korean director Bong Joon-ho’s black comedy film Parasite swept the awards show this year and also introduced the world to “ram-don.” Ram-don is actually a classic Korean instant noodle dish by the name of jjapaguri, a combination of two Nongshim noodle packets: Chapagetti (Chinese-inspired jajangmyeon) and Neoguri (Japanese-style udon in a spicy seafood broth topped with beef).
In the movie, the rich Park family eats it with top quality Korean Hanu, similar in cut to sirloin and in price to Japanese wagyu. You can easily make this comfort food at home even if you’re not providing commentary on class differences by following this recipe, or you can elevate the simple dish with any fancy toppings you’d like.
It’s quite interesting how KFC became synonymous to celebrating Christmas in Japan: In 1974, KFC Japan ran a promotion around Christmastime to have fried chicken in lieu of a turkey dinner, and since then the classic bucket has become the staple meal there during the most wonderful time of the year.
This viral recipe came from a need to use up leftover pieces after Christmas and makes for a heartwarming and humble rice dish that might have you turned off from eating plain cooked rice. Simply cook your rice and leftover fried chicken in chicken broth and soy sauce, and you’ll have a perfectly moist bowl of rice with succulent shredded chicken.
McNuggets are not only a childhood favourite but probably one of the best menu items from McDonald’s when you’re just craving sinfully good fast food. Now there’s a lot of stories surrounding McNuggets, the most common one being that they’re made of chicken paste that comes from “blending up entire chickens, bones, and all!”
Well, if you’d still like to indulge in some nuggets at home, try Joshua Nishi’s famous “coveted nugget” recipe that has over 27 million views on TikTok. All you need is chicken breasts, and two easy dry and wet batters from pantry staples like cornstarch and garlic powder. You can up your nugget game by shaping your meat into whatever shape you want—in the video, Joshua’s gone for some dinosaur shapes, a true nostalgic throwback.
Aussie chef Rob Nixon has been cooking up a storm all over the Internet for years, gaining popularity with his fast food copycat recipes that many people reckon are even better than the real thing, but he really launched himself into the viral recipe stratosphere with his Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut copycat recipe on TikTok.
The video now has over 81,000 likes and we reckon it’s because of how easy it is: All you need for the doughnuts themselves are milk, sugar, eggs, self-raising flour, soft butter, yeast, salt and some nutmeg, all ingredients that you probably already have in your cupboards. Krispy Kreme left Hong Kong more than a decade ago, but now you can bring it back in the comfort of your own home.
White rabbit candies are a local childhood favourite, originating from Shanghai during the war when milk was in short supply and you could allegedly make milk for the tots out of seven of these candies and a cup of water. Last year, L.A. ice cream shop Wanderlust Creamery went viral with their White Rabbit candy ice cream, an iconic treat that you can easily make at home and you can definitely leave that rice paper wrapping on. The consistency is close to soft-serve and makes for a nostalgic cooling dessert as the weather in Hong Kong heats up.
This viral recipe combines two of our favourite things: Oreos and cheesecake. And the best part is you don’t even need to bake it! You only need three main ingredients: Oreo cookies (or any chocolate and vanilla sandwich cookie) for both the crust and filling, whipped cream, and cream cheese.
This is a very indulgent recipe, so if you’re one of the fitness-first home quarantiners, you might want to save it for a cheat day. If you don’t have a full cake tin, you can grab some cupcake liners and build mini cheesecakes instead. You can have a couple of mini ones relatively guilt-free, we reckon.
Don’t be alarmed! This cheesecake is meant to be burnt. This recipe was invented 60 years ago at La Viña Restaurant Basque Country in Spain and is impossible to mess up. Contrary to a regular cheesecake we know and love, the Basque recipe has no crust and loves high heat. The original recipe from La Viña uses just five ingredients: cream cheese, heavy cream, sugar, eggs, and flour, and all you’ve got to do is mix it all up and bake. The intensely caramelised top will satisfy any sweet tooth.
We’ve talked about Dalgona coffee before, but it’s just so creamy and delicious we just had to mention it again. Named after a Korean toffee candy, all you need to recreate Dalgona coffee at home is instant coffee, sugar, and hot water, as well as any milky base you’d like. In addition to instant coffee, you can also make this painstakingly whipped topping with matcha or cocoa powder. It’s aesthetically pleasing and provides a much-needed sugar and caffeine rush to get you through the day.
Crème brûlée seems like a difficult dessert to master, but with this viral recipe, all you need is sugar, an egg yolk, and vanilla ice cream. If you don’t have a blowtorch or broiler at home, simply heat up a large metal spoon and press it to the top of the sugar to create that signature caramelised cracked topping.
If you’ve ever been to Disney World or any carnival in North America, you’re bound to have tried Dole Whip. A simple icy treat made with Dole pineapples, Disney has officially released their recipe for us all to make during social distancing. If you want to make this dairy-free, you can just use frozen or fresh pineapple with coconut milk or cream. We may not be able to get to Disney during this time, but we can still get a taste of the Happiest Place on Earth right in your own kitchen.
Last but not least, banana bread, the greatest way to use up those overripe bananas that have been sitting in your fruit bowl since last week. Everyone’s making banana bread these days, and it’s not hard to see why: It’s a super forgiving recipe where you can use any kind of flour, omit eggs, add as much chocolate or nuts as you’d like, and you’d still get a delicious and filling loaf of dense banana bread. The only hard part about making this is trying not to eat all of it in one go.