2021 Recipe Disasters.
It’s my annual recipe disaster day!!
I mean, should we just chalk 2021 up to an entire disaster? MAYBE! Either way, here’s a handful of the disasters I had in the kitchen. I started sharing these over a decade ago, which is INSANE! You can find all the previous recipe disasters here:
2020 – 2019 – 2018 – 2017 – 2016 – 2015 – 2014 – 2013 – 2012 – 2011 – 2010
This is a just a fun way to share all my mess ups in the kitchen. I cook SO MUCH and many times, I redo takes on classic recipes I know and love. But because I’m in the kitchen so much, it’s not unusual for me to have failures. I mean, tons of failures. Let’s check them out!
The banana bread above was clearly not a winner… be sure to share your recipe fails of the year below.
I was really excited about this recipe. It was focaccia topped with burrata and well… it looks like focaccia topped with egg whites. Whomp whomp.
This tried to be a cinnamon swirl bread but clearly was not. You will see a theme throughout this post. Lots of bread mishaps.
This happens more than you’d think.
I mean… still good enough to eat? Maybe?
This citrusy fish with breadcrumbs was good in theory but looks terrible so bad to the drawing board.
I DESPERATELY wanted to make homemade crispy potato chips in the air fryer. I tried. I BOUGHT MULTIPLE AIR FRYERS!!! just to try and make it work. Alas, it did not. Not even close. Those recipes lie!
This was a peanut butter and jelly cake that was just so meh. Will redo and bring it to you soon.
Welp, I made three of the same versions of stuffed flank steak and every time it looked like garbage.
Here we have some sort of sad dijon chicken situation going on. I burned it from my memory.
More bread! Luckily I have an amazing banana bread coming to you next week.
Tried to make some curry ramen noodles and they were quite bland and boring.
This pot pie was, in a word, horrific. Spring vegetables. Like green beans and asparagus. It was a huge NO.
The driest of the dry turkey stir fry. Pretty sure I tried to add peanut butter and that was a terrible idea.
This lemon tart kind of looks cute but it was SO SOUR and the crust was made of macadamias and honestly awful. Thought some salt could save it but NOPE!
Let’s hope 2022 is much better!
35 Comments on “2021 Recipe Disasters.”
The stuffed flank steak looks great to me, but maybe just because beef is so expensive now we can’t afford it. Beef is my favorite and it’s probably been almost a year since I’ve had any!
it is a pretty good recipe, i just need to nail it down a little more!
YES! I just opened this page hoping it was this post! Recipe Disasters is my favorite post of the year (sorry lol)! :-)
thanks lori! xo
My annual comment but I love these posts every year! And makes me feel better always about my mishaps. For as much as you cook (always still amazed with 3 small kids) it’s bound to happen. Thanks for sharing them haha!
hahaha thanks girl!!
So many of the foods you said looked terrible actually looked so good! You’re being too hard on yourself.
As always, this is a fun feature each year to see. Thanks for sharing it!
I was going to say the same thing, Rebecca!! I think so many of these looks super yummy. Maybe there could be an “ugly delicious” post one a month or every few months for those of us who are here for flavor and not (just) looks? I love these posts and look forward to them all year, too. Thanks for all the blood, sweat, and tears you put into your blog, Jessica!
Most of these fails would be avoidable if you paid attention to what was actually happening in the recipe vs just blindly following a recipe.
The beef flank is a good example. You were making a rolled up end product, but the meat was too thick, A little bit of pounding would have gone a long way to help make it work. Meat products are going to be varied in sizes and dimensions for the same cut of meat. One person’s perfectly flat flank steak won’t be your experience.
Pete with the mansplaining.
every cow is different……🐄
LOL right jen? as if i’m blindly following other recipes… LOL.
Pete do you even know where you are?
Pete – What’s your food blog called? Would love to check it out since you seem to be such an expert!
Cool comment Pete. As if Jessica is an amateur cook? I’m sure you’ve *never * had a cooking fail (sarcasm). Take your mansplaining elsewhere.
I want someone to Kate Baer this comment.
A little bit of pounding would have gone a long way.
okay so my recipe fail of the year was actually my sisters….she made a lemon and blueberry cake and read the recipe wrong….it said 1/2 spoons of sugar and she read it as 1 and a half😣 but so so funny in retrospect!
love your recipe disasters!
What kind of cake has only a half a (table?)spoon of sugar?!? Did you mean cup? Otherwise I’d suggest finding a better cake recipe!
What is it they say on all of these food network competitions…..”even good chefs have bad days.”
I have been baking for over 40 years, the queen of chocolate chip cookies.
Last week I burnt them. It was the ovens fault! Ha,ha,ha!
This is how we learn…it’s good to show your kids what happens, then they learn too….on another note …..I can’t stop listening to Vince Guaraldi Christmas music…..it’s so Snoopy! Happy new year Charlie Brown!
love this!! we have been listening to that nonstop!
Omg the curry ramen noodles look amazing…Bring that recipe to us!
I also love this post. I love to cook but cannot follow a recipe to save my life- so baking is out for me. Pete would love to see my mishaps hahahah ! Thanks for always posting real and awesome content! Happy New Year lady!
not super related to this post, but I always wonder how many refrigerators you have and how full they must be at any given moment! thanks for sharing the mishaps!
Yes! Jessica I would love to see a post about your fridge and pantry organization system! And maybe how you deal with all the kitchen clean up? I enjoy cooking in theory, but it’s all the before and after stuff that gets me down. PS love your blog and cookbooks, I come here often for inspiration!
Ok, peanut butter and jelly cake sounds delicious though.
Thanks for sharing these every year. They certainly make the rest of us feel better! Like my great idea to combine two cookie recipes for a Christmas cookie exchange that resulted on the flattest, most spread out cookies that you’ve ever seen in your life 🙈
Jessica, it is heartening and inspiring to see proof that a blog writer tests her blog recipes as carefully as you obviously do. It gives you a credibility (with me, anyway) that goes a very long way.
So often I try a recipe that looks fantastic and just doesn’t work, and I suspect that the testing was either not very rigorous or nonexistent.
Now I will never feel that way about one of yours, and I feel like this annual post is one more gift to us — not just proof of your rigor and dedication, but inspiration to us to be the same way and to have confidence, determination and humor when we stumble. My own experience is that this is not easy.
I revere this, and so I figured the least I could do was buy your book, which I just did.
Those flipping homemade potato chips! My husb and I made them in the microwave one time just to see if it would work. It did and they were good, but they have to lie flat so you have room for like, 10 potato chips and they’re gone 30 seconds after you open the microwave. A fun experiment, but I will never do that again.
i bet you can save those flank steaks by adding a soft, white cheese (cream cheese, goat, mayyyybe fresh mozz?) and some fresh spinach. both would add a pop of color… and who doesn’t love a good melty-stringy-cheesey fork shot??
i also need you to figure out the stir fry, because quick turkey bowls are my JAM. other than cooking the turkey separately – ensuring not to overcook – and adding it back in at the end, i’m not sure how else to fix the dryness. maybe adding a thicker liquid like honey – but that might be weird…?
I LOVE that you do this!! It’s so nice to see that everyone has mishaps in the kitchen haha. Love your content!!
Love that you share recipe disasters!!
Every recipe everywhere is so perfect and nice to know even pros sometimes have disasters!
Just borrowed everyday dinners from the library (a great way to preview cookbooks btw). Everyday dinners is definitely going on my purchase list!
When I bake it and test lt then I am going to see what a great recipes are that..
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