When we asked for submissions about the funniest cooking fails our readers have ever experienced, we had no idea we’d get so many responses! We wish we could give prizes for every single one, and we had so much fun reading them all! And to spread the laughs, we compiled a list of the 10 stories that still have us laughing (with you, of course, not AT you). We hope you find them as funny as we did!
1. When the best-laid plans go up in flames.
“Back when microwaves were new technology and unshielded, I put a paper bag with popcorn kernels and oil in mine. Everyone did it, and it worked just fine by folding the top over. However, I couldn’t et my bag to stay folded, so I secured it with a paper clip. I shut the door and took one step before the damn thing blew up. The door shot all the way across the room and dented the fridge. The inside cover of plastic and the bag were blazing. Being of a very calm nature, I grabbed the door and held it in place until the fire went out. Just as I had the fire out, and was starting to clean up, my idiot husband came running in in a panic and sprayed me and everything else with a fire extinguisher. I never said a word,but I went and got a pair of white gloves, came back and showed them to my hubby. I went to watch TV, he started Cleaning!! What a God-awful mess! LOL”
-Submitted by Sue
2. When you inadvertently make a new discovery.
“When I was just learning to cook I wanted to make batter fried chicken. I remembered watching my mom so I carefully made a batter and dropped chicken legs into the batter and then dropped in hot oil. To my amazement the legs began to grow as they turned a lovely shade of brown and began to look like chicken leg balloons. When I removed from the oil and let cool a few minutes, I then picked up one of the legs and it sounded like something was rattling around inside. I cut it open and found a still partially raw chicken leg inside of a beautiful battered balloon. Nobody had told me not to use self rising flour. On the bright side I had invented the first Chicken leg Maracas.”
-Submitted by Mark
3. When you learn a lesson the hard way.
“I was age twelve and under the tutelage of my mother in the kitchen. I was making macaroni and cheese from scratch for the first time. I was making the cheese sauce and kept adding flour. My mother kept advising me to “add a little more…don’t be shy”. Well, I did just what she told me to do. When we sat down to enjoy dinner, we all dug into the homemade mac and cheese and all the faces said it all. Something was epically wrong. I took my bite and realized the awful truth. Instead of adding what I thought was flour to the sauce, I was actually adding powdered sugar! Ever since then, over thirty years later, I clearly label my flour and powdered sugar in my pantry and when I go to use one in a recipe, I take a little on my finger to make sure it’s the correct ingredient. Lesson learned!”
-Submitted by Donna
4. When you’re reminded why the holidays are stressful.
“One October we decided to have a turkey dinner with all the trimmings. We prepped and popped the turkey in in our gas oven. Since we had some time to kill before we had to get the sides ready, my Mom and I decided to go shopping. We left my hubby to to keep an eye on the turkey and baste it periodically. We came back in time to start the sides, only to find out hubby had fallen asleep and the dripping were at the point of overflow. Opening the oven door was just enough to slosh the drippings and cause a chain reaction that ended with the turkey bursting into flames. We called the fire department and the next thing we knew the blackened turkey was in the pan on the sidewalk and the ruined stove was in the yard. Half the neighborhood came out to see why two fire trucks an ambulance and the police had arrived. It was about then we noticed two things. First that only the surface of the turkey was blackened and second the turkey was now fully cooked. Once the air cleared, we served our very expensive but delicious “smoked” turkey dinner.”
-Submitted by Julie
5. When a late-night snack goes so, so wrong.
“When in high school my bestie & I were craving some late night brownies. We gathered all the ingredients and whisked them up (all 3 ingredients required for box brownies, we weren’t advanced enough for scratch made). Soon the brownies were warm right from the oven and smelled super yummy. We each grabbed a big bite….and immediately spit it back out. A little side note, I’m from the south so when my dad cooks bacon he saves the grease to later use for flavoring other meals like squash, cabbage, etc. We grabbed the bacon grease and poured into our brownie mix thinking it was vegetable oil. After a good laugh, those brownies went straight to the trash.”
-Submitted by Amber
6. When you (or your spouse) realize how fragile life really is.
“One time I was doing braised lamb and i stepped away and asked my husband to watch the lamb for a second he replied okay. I said turn up the heat a bit and add in the red wine and onions; i walked away and heard screaming so i quickly ran back in to the kitchen. He turned the heat up to 8 (as high as it goes), and quickly poured lots of the red wine in and it blazed up and burned off his eyebrows. Then he said” Why did you not tell me to step back before adding the wine?!” I couldn’t do anything but laugh….”
-Submitted by Nicole
7. When Halloween gets extra scary – and not because of the costumes.
“It was halloween and my boyfriend and I were spending a nice evening in cooking dinner and trying a new recipe for a cookie bar. We realized we didn’t have any candy right as a hoard of about 5 Elsa’s and 6 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles started crossing the street to beg for candy. We hurriedly flipped of all the lights and hit the ground and army-crawled out of sight. The group of kids was about 20 feet from the door when smoke starts billowing out the oven. The cookie had rose to ungodly heights, spilled over the edges of the pan and resulted in a not so tame sized fire. We threw open the door which released my boyfriends dog. As the dog is barking and corralling the kids in a terrified mob, smoke is gushing out of windows and the doors. Eventually the dog pranced back inside, the fire died down, and the kids moved to a less smoky house. Needless to say, the cookie had a subtle smoky flavor to it and a black carbonic layer.”
-Sumbitted by Ivanna
8. When you become a legend – and not necessarily in a good way.
“This story starts about 35 years ago. I was making holiday dinner and decided to make biscuits from scratch. When they were done cooking I put them on the table with dinner. My husband choked down one before I started to consume one. It was hard as a rock and impossible to eat. We took them to the local pond to feed the ducks. The biscuits skidded across the frozen pond as the ducks chased them trying to eat them. Apparently I killed the yeast. Years passed with no dinner rolls at holiday dinners. The kids started to bring home their partners for holiday dinner so I decided to try the prepared and heat rolls. I actually managed to start the rolls and the oven on fire. Many additional years passed with no dinner rolls at holiday dinner. I figure I cannot mess up brown and serve rolls – they’re already precooked, just have to heat. Into my daughter’s oven they go. Out they come completely burned on the bottom and inedible. I am now not in the kitchen when they are cooked at my daughter’s house. She tells me to stay in the other room!”
-Submitted by Windy
9. When your family is there for you…even when things get really rough.
“My daddy hated pumpkin pie. But I was his baby and I made a pumpkin pie just for him so he HAD to have a slice. I must have been 9 or 10. I read the directions and worried over that pie like it was my first child. After dinner that night, I cut the pie and divvied up the slices to my family. Everyone took a bite and I noticed something peculiar in my bite and the expressions on their faces. My mom looked like she might faint. My sweet daddy took the fork back out of his mouth and began removing the WHOLE cloves I had used not saying a word but smiling at me so sweet. He announced that it’s the best Pumpkin Pie he’s ever had and he thinks it’s because I used whole cloves – it’s the only Pumpkin Pie he’s ever had that he liked. I was saved until the table erupted in laughter and they all started teasing me! Oh the woes of being the baby and cooking your first pumpkin pie. (The directions didn’t say GROUND cloves)! Bwahahhaha”
-Submitted by Cathy
10. And finally, when sometimes the inexplicable happens.
“My friend called and asked me to make her a chocolate chip cake for her brunch at the last moment. I said yes and I hurriedly made the cake. Just as I was to put it in the pan, the door bell rang and I went to answer it. Little did I know, my young niece had come by and threw her bubble gum into the pan. When I came back, I threw the cake batter into the pan and put it in the oven. I then went and took a quick shower. When I came back to take the cake out of the oven, I found out it had exploded in the oven with cake bits everywhere. It took my niece and myself about 3 1/2 hours to clean that oven!”
-Submitted by Linda
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Some submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.