"These were the most tasteful
wedding invitations I could find. (licks one envelope)
Mmm... whipped cream flavor... (licks another)
Mmm... mango passion fruit... (licks another)
Mm— Eeyuck! Spinach! How did that get in there!?"
Some foods are just far more likely to show up as a hated (or outright universally hated) food for a character, be they Picky Eaters
or not. Weird allergies are a form of Televisually Transmitted Disease
The foods which generate Foreign Queasine
falls into this trope by default.
It is not
being forced to eat a food generally considered disgusting in one's culture, that's Alien Lunch
or Eat That
Strangely enough, there's a reason
certain foods, such as liver and leafy greens, tend to show up on a lot of kids' "Most Hated" lists—they actually taste different to children, and generally, they taste worse. Children are more receptive to bitter compounds in foods than adults (likely an evolutionary measure to prevent us from dying of plant poisoning while young), and tend to be put off by the bitter taste. Also, about 25% of people are "supertasters," having a higher concentration of taste buds than others: they tend to be repulsed by sprouts, spinach, coffee, alcohol, grapefruit, green tea, olives, soy, chili, soft drinks and tonic water. 50% are medium tasters, who have "normal" likes and dislikes, and 25% are non-tasters, who don't mind anything. Another reason children grow up hating vegetables is that parents often overcook them, removing much of the taste, texture and nutrients in the process.
Compare If It Tastes Bad, It Must Be Good for You
, Does Not Like Spam
, Haggis Is Horrible
, and You're Drinking Breast Milk
. If the character is unaware of what they've eaten until it's too late, that's "I Ate What?
- Has its own subpage. It's an odd duck (or fish) because it's rarely eaten in western society and is rarely noted except as a pizza topping. Yet in that context, it is near universally used as the ingredient of contentious in the Hold The Unsolicited Ingredient trope.
- Blue cheese, especially stinky Gorgonzola.
- In The Muffin Fiend by Daniel Pinkwater, the muffin thief is deduced to be an extra-terrestrial, because even the Gorgonzola muffins were stolen and no human would ever eat a Gorgonzola muffin.
- UHT milk is looked down upon in Europe and elsewhere.
- Jokes about Limburger cheese are common due to its very strong smell. It doesn't help that it literally smells like feet (the same compounds responsible for foot smell are found in Limburger)
- Looney Tunes is full of gags about limburger. For example, in one short where Sylvester is trying to keep Speedy Gonzales from stealing cheese from a ship, Speedy tricks him by locking him in a room full of the stuff. Poor Sylvester almost suffocates before he is able to free himself.
- In Mark Twain's "The Invalid's Story" a shipping box containing a corpse being brought home to the deceased's parents by train was accidentally switched with one containing rifles, which had had a piece of limburger left on top of it at some point. The smell eventually became so strong that a railroad employee riding in the same car remarked to the title character that the burial really ought to have been carried out the previous summer.
- Chubby's Limburger cheese is a Running Gag in The Little Rascals.
- Coconut is very frequent; this is probably from how old (1990s and earlier) "coconut" filling for chocolates was acrid, foul, and not very coconut-like. The stringy texture certainly didn't help.
- Angelica Pickles from Rugrats said she hates coconut when she took a box of chocolates (with the help of Chuckie who was her slave after she saved him).
- In Codename: Kids Next Door a little girl grew to Hulk-like proportions because the Delightful Children from Down the Lane had a coconut cake at their birthday party.
- And after Peter Griffin (Family Guy) cut into a giant cake, he was more upset that the frosting was coconut than the fact that he cut into the stripper who was hiding inside the cake.
- Most of the characters in Peanuts hate coconut, just as creator Charles M. Schulz did.
- There's a line in a Heroes deleted scene revealing that Matt hates coconut. And is allergic to avocado, which suggests that getting out of L.A. may have been the best thing he could possibly do for himself.
- Tallahassee is rather upset to find a Hostess truck full of Sno-Balls when he was hoping for Twinkies. He hates coconut, you see. Not the taste - the consistency.
- Fuck coconuts.
- Stuart from MADtv hates coconut and spits out any cake that has any in it.
- At Susie's birthday party, Calvin makes an offhand remark about how he hates it when "the birthday kid chooses something gross [for their cake] like coconut."
- Raisins are a common one.
Meat, organs, etc.
- Puffed rice cakes, the tough, flavorless staple food that Americans on diets have to suffer through. Expect jokes comparing them to coasters, as well maybe a joke about "putting a little something on them for flavor," which is usually something like cheese or bacon.
- In Family Guy, Peter is trying to lose weight and attempts to eat a rice cake because of it only to spit it out. In a characteristic cut-away, an evil Chinese man knowingly mentions [Peter] does not like rice cakes to have a jingle play: "Ricey ricey rice, no-one likes rice cake."
- In FoxTrot:
- Roger goes on a diet. His wife thoughtfully allows him to have a strawberry with his rice cake on account of having had a bad day.
- In an earlier strip, Roger is complaining about how dry and raw his throat is and earlier that week he had been pushed into exercising, but it turns out to have been caused by rice cakes.
- In The Simpsons, Homer goes on a diet, and Marge gives him rice cakes. She tells him to put something on them for flavor, and Homer loads it up with cheese, ham, bacon, and such, topped off with an olive.
- As recently the 70s, tongue was frequently foisted on unsuspecting kids because it was the cheapest cut of meat on the market. That's where it got its stock yuck status from (there's a famous scene in one of the Ramona Quimby books where the sisters enjoy their "pot roast" until they discover that it was actually tongue and revolt). Then, word that it was actually quite tender and tasty got out. Although most people still wouldn't eat it on a dare, enough people would that they now sell it at gourmet prices.
- It also makes a nice lunch meat, especially with mustard.
- Lobster and oysters had this happen to them as well, and now they're the most expensive things at the fish counter.
- In anywhere but the English South, jellied eels. In the manga of Girls und Panzer, when one Anglophile character serves them, they are actually blurred out, to save the audience from looking upon their hideousness. Of course, this means the British have a seafood that the Japanese consider weird, which should make one proud to be British.
- For that matter, it seems like most of the meat from any given carcass (be it beef, pork, chicken or anything else) that is readily consumed is the skeletal muscle while most of the organs and other body parts are usually met with disgust. Mostly due to reminding people that it was once a living animal. However, depending on the culture and the resourcefulness of the chef, all of these parts can be used in something rather then letting it go to waste. Oxtail Soup is a good example. There's also a sect of chefs and foodies who are trying to bring organ meat back into chic status.
- Bill Cosby has a bit where he expresses distaste for various animal parts, including chitterlings (pig intestines; "That's part of the lower tract. Ain't no food down there!"), tripe (sheep's stomach), sweetbreads (albeit with the popular misconception that they are calves' or lambs' testiclesnote ; "It took me ten years just to kiss my wife, no way am I gonna have the stomach for THIS!"), and brains ("I can't bite down on nothing nobody's been thinking with.")
- Odd organ meats are the main ingredients chef Aimsbury uses in Making Money because he became a chef for a dog, and they're very much Moist's Stock Yuck. On the other hand, they're virtually Adora's Trademark Favorite Food, and she asks Moist, "Do you think the head goes off thinking 'well at least he didn't eat me'?"
- Liver in particular tends to get a bad rap, usually in any work of fiction where parents try to make children eat it. Despite the fact that it's a delicacy in some places (like France, Germany, South Africa, and Lebanon, where they have dishes where it's prepared raw) and it's high in iron and vitamin A, many people are turned off by organ meat, and documented cases of incredibly high doses of vitamin A being toxic are sometimes mentioned. (In truth, the only way that would become a problem is if you ate the livers of polar bears, walruses, certain seals, moose, and huskies, not beef fish liver like most do.)
- The bitter taste it can get may also be a factor in the hatred by children, whose tastebuds are more sensitive to bitterness.
- For Norwegians (and Americans of Norwegian descent), lutefisk tops the list. It's cod soaked in lye until it resembles fish-flavored gelatin. To make it more bearable, it's usually drowned in butter and wrapped in potato flatbread called lefse.
- For some people, any fish at all is gross.
- Escargot is often viewed unfavorably outside of Europe, as the thought of eating snails makes a lot of people uncomfortable. It's one of the very few foods that Garfield will not eat. This is most likely due to the fact that in most people's minds, snails are often lumped in with "bugs", which aren't readily eaten or really considered a food in western cuisine.
- Dave Barry, in several of his writings, claims that the French do not actually eat snails, but get a huge laugh from tricking tourists into eating them.
- In World Mosaics 4 the player character discovered a fire pit and some empty snail shells while visiting the prehistoric era. The diary entry concerning this commented that if escargot was all the nearest human settlement had to offer, they'd rather eat their shoe.
- The Fairly Oddparents:
- In the episode, "Christmas Every Day", Timmy is on his way to save Santa Claus from the lesser holiday mascots. When he reaches Quebec, he runs out of food. Fortunately, the web-enabled kids there got his message to help him, and bring him baguettes and snails, the former he accepts, but the latter he tells them they can keep. And it's probably a good thing they did, too, as one of the snails was used to knock out the Grade-AA explosive egg The Easter Bunny was about to use on Santa Claus.
- In the episode, "Fairy Friends and Neighbors", Timmy gets dragged into going to a fancy french restaurant when the Turners' neighbors bail on them. To add insult to injury, it's hard for Timmy to swallow the snails he doesn't like with a neck brace he has to wear from a game of Twisty he got dragged into the night before.
- In an inversion of the usual trope, hot dogs and chicken nuggets are a favorite of many children and picky eaters... Until they find out how they're made and what they're made with. They'll end up being put off by these foods when they're adults.
- Brussels sprouts, and other greens like broccoli, cauliflower or spinach. The quote at the top of the page is from a New Yorker cartoon about broccoli, covering two at once.
- If you read the news tickers, you'll see how the SimCity games since 3000 turn broccoli into Serious Business. Good humor for an otherwise hyper-realistic game.
- The second Megamorphs book established that broccoli was introduced to earth by vegetarian aliens who colonized the planet during the time of the dinosaurs. After the defeat of rival colonists, they planted broccoli as a sort of victory dance. That's right kiddies, broccoli is a sacred alien plant and that is why we hate it so much.
- One of the "Treehouse of Horror" episodes of The Simpsons revealed that Broccoli is in fact a deadly poison that "tries to warn you off with its terrible taste."
- The Powerpuff Girls had an episode where the children of town had to help them defeat the evil Broccoloids by (shudder!) eating them.
- They had giant vats of cheese to help.
- Brussels sprouts are a traditional accompaniment to the British Christmas Dinner. No-one knows why. They are traditionally prepared, like so many British vegetables, by "boiling them until the vitamins give up," goes the traditional joke. (This is, of course, the entire cause of the problem. Properly cooked sprouts are awesome - overcooked sprouts are reeking mush.) A Running Gag on Terry Wogan's morning radio show is people complaining that it's June already and they've left it too late to get the sprouts on for Christmas.
- In Fallen the mother of one of Harry's friends commented that "Nobody likes them and they just ruin good food."
- From Bottom:
Richie: Will you stop whingeing, Eddie. Nobody likes sprouts.
Eddie: Well why are we 'aving them then?
Richie: Because it's Christmas!
- Numbah 4 of Codename: Kids Next Door accidentally ate a brussel sprout once while blinded by boredom, causing the rest of his team to undergo an "Fantastic Voyage" Plot to get it out before it caused a viral infection that would make him an obedient, well behaved child. Broccoli is also universally disliked, adults hate them and pawn them off on kids but can handle them, but to kids, it's kryptonite, when 362 is forced to eat through it to stop an Evil Plan, it sends her into a coma for two weeks. Father has a childhood trauma from when his father used to force-feed him broccoli.
- Recently, as TV cookery shows and celebrity chefs make an increasing impact, the Brussels Sprout has made something of a comeback as people learn to cook them properly - lightly blanched and then tossed with some bits of bacon and onion.
- Or one could simply sautee brussels sprouts cut in half in a little rendered bacon fat along with onions and fresh garlic, sprinkle a little salt and pepper, and serve them with crumbles of the reserved crispy bacon on top. Delicious.
- In Family Guy, Stewie once created a weather-controlling machine so he could wipe out broccoli.
- While he was president, George H.W. Bush once famously declared that he hated broccoli. Histeria!! naturally did a skit about this.
- Reportedly, American broccoli farmers sent him several tonnes of broccoli for saying that.
- One thing all those vegetables (except spinach) have in common is their ancestral plant: the wild cabbage. The bitter taste is a family trait for plants in the cabbage family. They also become nasty and sulphurous if overcooked which is somewhat easy to do.
- Just to be absolutely clear: Cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, collard greens, kale, kohlrabi, and gailan (a vegetable called "Chinese broccoli" even though people only really eat the leaves) are descended from one kind of plant that lived on the cliffs lining the English Channel. They are all one species. Scary, innit?
- In one episode of Rugrats, Angelica took her hatred for broccoli Up to Eleven by suing her parents for trying to make her eat it. (Though the episode turned out to be All Just a Dream.)
- Played with in Return to Ravenhearst, with a list of rules the tyrannical Charles Dalimar imposed on Rose's young daughters. To showcase just how child-unfriendly their diet was, one of the rules is: "No broccoli until you finish your cauliflower".
- In the comic strip Ernie/The Piranha Club, broccoli is the only thing Sid's pet piranha and live trash can Earl has ever refused to eat.
- In Ed Eddn Eddy, Eddy scares and chases Ed with some broccoli. Then Ed attempts to chase Eddy with it. Then at the end of the episode Edd chases the other two away with it.
- An episode of Tiny Toon Adventures had Buster Bunny spot evil robot duplicates on the basis that they like broccoli.
- Some Popeye stories are about the titular character trying to convince someone to eat spinach. In the Popeye and Son cartoon, the son doesn't like spinach but will eat it on occasion since it's as much of a Power-Up Food for him as it is for his father.
- U.S. Acres: A worm tries to eat spinach but doesn't like the flavor. The remaining spinach moans over the fact "Nobody likes spinach".
- Oddly enough, in Japan carrots are considered a Stock Yuck for picky children.
- Usagi from Sailor Moon doesn't like them either; ironic as her name sound exactly like the word "rabbit".
- Ryo Hazuki from Shenmue didn't like them as a child, until his pop schooled him on all the hard work it took to put them on his son's plate.
- Kou Uraki from Gundam 0083 is famous for his hatred of carrots.
- Omochao says something about promising to eat all of his/her carrots in Sonic Adventure 2 (Battle) if held long enough.
- In the Harvest Moon series, most children (and even a few adults) respond disfavorably to being given carrots.
- In Tales of Symphonia, carrots are Bratty Half-Pint Genis' least favorite food. The only recipe in the game that requires carrots has the lowest stars possible of Genis' otherwise very high chef skills.
- Even giant Zentraedi children hate them in Macross Frontier. Although these particular carrots are rainbow-colored and the size of preteens, so whether or not they have a point is up for debate.
- A little girl in Tampopo has one with a hole in it strung with a piece of a string and a sign that says "Do not feed me sweets". A man getting over a toothache gives her his ice cream.
- Aguri Madoka and Ai-chan both hated carrots at one point in DokiDoki! Precure.
- Alton Brown of Good Eats has a habit of addressing why so many vegetables are Stock Yuck, and seeing if he can't turn them into something edible. The Stock Answer is usually that somewhere along the line, some parent who couldn't cook worth monkey feces did their horrendously substandard best, so that's how their kids learned to prepare it, and so on and so forth, until modern kids are subjected to something hellish and only nominally identifiable, prepared so horrendously wrong that all the nutrients have probably been wrung out of it anyway, defeating the purpose and proving that forcing your kids to eat their veggies is just another sign you don't really love them.
- The canned version of anything here, and everything that isn't. If it's good, they've found a way to ruin it. If it's bad, Eldritch rites have been employed to keep it in stasis, and what they sacrificed was what little the vegetable had that was worth preserving.
- The exception to this is Baked Beans (which are considered the stereotypical student food in Britain, being cheap but relatively tasty). Notwithstanding the side effects.
- Particular exceptions also include corn and beets. While not as good as the fresh variety, most children (and adults) won't mind eating either in their canned form.
- Tofu, especially in the context of those accustomed to a Western diet forced to eat healthier. However it's the texture of tofu that many people find disagreeable, not the taste.
- As well as natto.
- Lima beans.
- An episode of The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh has Tigger mention his dislike of lima beans several times.
- On The Simpsons, when Marge is praying while awaiting the impending nuclear meltdown, she promises that if she survives, at the next canned food drive she will give the poor something tastier than old pumpkin and lima bean mix.
- In a different The Simpsons episode, Bart stacks his plate high with lima beans and then refuses to eat them. He does this to annoy Lisa.
- In The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron, Carl Wheezer hates lima beans so much he has nightmares about a killer one, so he can't sleep.
- Mushrooms. To many people, they look horrible unprepared, and the fact there are poisonous ones in the wild which can kill you is enough to put anybody off. There's also the fact that they start off as mold.
- The Stock Yuck for children in Japan is green bell peppers.
- In Tales of Symphonia, every character has a least favorite food as part of the cooking mechanic; green bell peppers are Colette's. When she starts eating them without complaint, it's a sign that something is seriously wrong.
- BlazBlue: Bang Shishigami has just two things in this world that he cannot stand: lies, and evil, and LIES and BELLPEPPEEEERRRSS.
- Shin has a disgust for green peppers in Crayon Shin Chan.
- Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Strikers: Vivio doesn't like green peppers and initially refuses to eat them.
- Combining two Stock Yuck on one character, there are three things Misty from Pokémon hates: carrots (see above), peppers, and bugs. Ash immediately retorts that he likes carrots, peppers, and bugs.
- In the Garrett, P.I. novels, Garrett regularly criticizes Morley's vegetarian restaurant's fare, particularly the fact it serves green bell peppers. He sometimes points out that they're one of the very few foods even pigs won't eat.
- In Through Hell or High Water Neville refused to eat a green Bertie Botts bean because it might be asparagus-flavored and "They're disgusting! Especially when you cook them, all slimy and gross."
- In I Wish, I Wish Snape said that brussels sprouts were the work of the devil.
- In Noob the resident Man Child once wanted to "kidnap" and "torture" a friend to get him to leave his new girlfriend. After the kinapping part gets botched, it turns out that the torture part was meant to consist of Friendly Tickle Torture and force-feeding vegetables to the "prisoner".
- Vegemite has a fierce reputation for being Love It or Hate It. Any time Bizarre Foods With Andrew Zimmern covers Australia, Vegemite has to be brought up due to its infamy and its strong association with Oz. Most of the people Zimmern asks dislikes the stuff too.
- Even chocolates aren't spared from this trope. Every box will have an undesirable piece, often the one filled with orange creme or coconut (see Fruits for more regarding coconut). Sometimes one character searches futilely for the legend.
- In The Simpsons, one of Homer's attempts to get Mr. Burns to remember him failed after his face remained covered by a "sour quince log".
- The Revel adverts play with this trope making it into a Russian Roulette style game. Coffee
- Peanuts had a running gag with coconut chocolates, which no one ever wanted. Naturally, the subject of any gag would get nothing but.
- In Thief of Time, Susan Sto-Helit hates nougat. Guess what the first chocolate she pulls out of the box is.
- The main character in Jack Ritchie's "For All the Rude People" hated chocolate-covered cherries.
- Black Jelly beans.
- A guess at whose origin was ventured by an entry in this Cracked photoplasty contest.
- Many of Jelly Belly's beans are like this, due to the fact there are so many and naturally they have to stretch into unappetizing flavors.
- Jelly Belly "buttered popcorn" flavor beans are notorious for invoking this in some people - and for having equally ardent defenders. If buttered popcorn jelly beans are mentioned, expect two characters to get in an argument over whether they're a Stock Yuck or Ambrosia of the Gods.
- Subverted on The Office with Dwight who cleans out all the black jelly beans on Pam's desk dispenser, looking for more.
- Also subverted in All-of-a-Kind Family, where the black jelly beans are the favorite of Charlotte and Gertie. The white ones are their least favorites.
- In the Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog episode, "Musta Been a Beautiful Baby" a de-aged Dr. Robotnik sets a trap for a de-aged Sonic and Tails, using red jelly beans as bait. Sonic and Tails fall for the trap, but are taken away from it. Robotnik watches from the bushes, but the only jelly beans he has to eat are the black and green ones he doesn't like. He ends up falling for his own trap by eating the red jelly beans just as Sonic sets it off.
- Licorice, especially the aniseed variety.
- This is rarer in Scandinavian countries, where liquorice is quite popular.
- Numbuh Five kinda likes black licorice.
- The salmiak to almost anyone outside Finland. Then again, when you take a mineral salt and turn it into candy the reaction can't be that unexpected, at least until people get used to the idea of salty, bitter "sweets".
- A flash game on the Nickelodeon website involved you giving red licorice to trick-or-treaters and avoiding giving them black ones. Eventually, when you ran out of red licorice, you had to give them a piece of black licorice, which they would tell you they didn't like in a demonic voice.
- Candy Hearts. Either due to the sappy love messages, or their chalk-like texture.
- One Pokémon adoptables website allows its users to collect user-created trinkets, among them a set of three candy hearts, each with the description, "This chalky treat is universally hated for its flavor and loved for the little messages."
- Candy corn, likely due to the waxy taste or texture.