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What childhood foods have you outgrown?


The other day I made myself a fluffernutter sandwich, thinking that because I enjoyed it as a kid, I would enjoy it as an adult. Wrong! It was disgusting.

Which got me thinking about this topic ...

Foods I loved as a child, but have outgrown:

1. Fluffernutter sandwich
2. Hot dogs with mayo and ketchup
3. Kool-Aid and Tang
4. Cheez Whiz and Fritos corn chips

  1. Spaghettios and those Chef Boy-Ardi canned pastas. EW!!
    I still like Kraft Mac and Cheese though!

    2 Replies
    1. re: AnneM

      I will always love my Kraft Mac and Cheese :-)

      1. re: AnneM

        There are a zillion places to chat on the Internet, but Chowhound is different. We aim to be a data trove, not a chatroom.

        This discussion isn't helping folks eat better, and will be no use to users coming to us for chow tips, or for hounds later searching our archives. Our great signal to noise ratio is what makes this site useful. Please help us maintain the qualities that brought you here in the first place by resisting the urge to chitchat. There's a whole Internet for that, but there's only one Chowhound, so please keep it chowy (to ensure a highly informative forum for all).

      2. Bubble gum ice cream!

        My boyfriend had been talking up Vienna sausages forever, which I had never experienced. Finally he bought some, & was so excited to have me try the little nuggets of sausagy goodness that he remembered so fondly from his childhood. He was absolutely aghast at the nasty, slippery little faux-meet chunks. So, naturally, he's decided that sometime between the 70's & now they must have dramatically changed the product :)

        3 Replies
        1. re: Hunicsz

          Oh, those vienna sausages are nasty (I won't even say what they look like!) My boyfriend's grandma has a whole pantry of them! Urp!

          Definitely with you on the bubble gum ice cream! My rather gruff Grandpa always used to take me to B&R when I was little, and I would always get something different and he would always get Pralines N' Cream. Well, after a few bites, I would always turn to him and sweetly say, "Grandpa, can we switch?!" After I ordered the bubble gum ice cream one time, he said he would never switch with me again, and if I wanted Pralines N' Cream, I had just better order it myself!! :-)

          Things that I've outgrown:
          - Brown Sugar and Cinnamon Pop Tarts
          - Top Ramen
          - Nutri-grain bars (My mom would never let me have these when I was little, because they were "too expensive!" Now, I think, what's the big deal?!)

          1. re: Hunicsz

            As the products have changed, so has my grandma; she now buys the "lil smokeys" that are sold by boarshead and the like in the refrigerated hotdog section. She still eats them cold right out of the package, not something I could ever do! Grandmas, gotta love them!

            1. re: Hunicsz

              These little pups have always been nasty! I vividly remember tasting one at a slumber party back in the early sixties -- extreme disgust. Why do people eat these things?

            2. 1. Big Macs - I swear they were bigger 10 years ago.
              2. Chef Boyardee canned pastas. Can't believe I ever liked them
              3. Oscar Mayor Bologna and hot dogs. (not fit to feed the animals they come from.

              1. I think there's an on-going process of outgrowing foods - not just from childhood, but because our palates expand as we learn more, and technology (from transport to packaging) and newly gained knowledge changes things. Once you have real ramen, the instant noodles are a real drag. Once you have real fish and chips, Long John Silver's becomes the furthest thing from your mind.

                That doesn't mean that you can't go back and appreciate something from your past, but perhaps that you have a new perspective on what, where, and when that particular food was all about. Maybe it's something your parents liked or thought of as being great - maybe it's something that the entire country thought was great at one time, but that we've collectively learned so much more about - like Morton's Salisbury Steak TV Dinner or a Dunkin Donuts jelly donut. I recently read an article that said that DD used to make 80% of their profits from donuts in the 1970's, but that they make over 65% of their profits from coffee today. That's a collective paradigm shift - doesn't mean I don't crave a DD jelly donut once in a while.

                2 Replies
                1. re: applehome

                  TV dinners ... I remember I used to salivate over the Swanson's Salisbury Steak Dinner with the compartmentalized mashed potatoes, green peas, and cranberry-thingy for dessert ... ah, memories ...

                  1. re: applehome

                    Good thought....I like to think that my tastes have changed a lot but sometimes I think that the process for making the foods we once loved changes to make it cheaper and takes away some of the flavors we used to love.

                  2. I'm pretty much done with sugary cold cereals. Captain Crunch, Sugar Smacks (now Honey Smax I think), and Apple Jacks were some of my faves. I agree with the others about Chef Boy-ar-dee stuff, although now that I'm thinking about the Spagetti-o's with little hot dog slices, my mouth is getting watery...

                    I think I've recently broken a lifelong addiction to Coke (the brown liquid kind). This new allergy medicine I'm on makes it taste wierd.

                    I also haven't had a hostess fruit pie in decades... so that's good I guess.

                    Man, I ate crappy as a kid.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: The Engineer

                      Agreed on most of the sugary cereals, but I still like Cinnamon Toast Crunch!! :-)

                    2. I used to love Kaboom cereal as a kid and recently saw it on a store shelf so I wanted to try it again. Once was enough.

                      1. As a kid, I use to love Flinstones cereal, cheese-filled hotdogs, and Hostess anything. Thank goodness, I've outgrown those craings!

                        1. Franco-American Spaghetti in a can, used to love it!
                          Hostess Ding-Dongs

                          1. Pogos aka corn dogs. Had them at amusement parks as a kid; considered it a treat.

                            Bought them at Costcos a few years ago out of nostalgia.

                            Yech!!! What happened? Is it me or is it the company?

                            1. -hot dogs with chili
                              -turkey loaf
                              -anything with cream soup
                              -swiss steak
                              -mock chow mein
                              -sugar cereals
                              -Hostess anything.....recently tried a fruit pie for old times sake and nearly gagged, and I won't even touch a Twinkie anymore
                              -Fritos, Doritos etc
                              -potato chips
                              -Burger King
                              -Ramen noodles

                              I bet this post could go on and on.......

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: cooknKate

                                what is mock chow mein out of curiousity?

                              2. Velveeta! My favorite sandwich as a kid was Velveeta, lettuce (iceberg of course) and mayonnaise on white bread.

                                1. Ditto the Velveeta.
                                  Also - those gigantic Costco muffins. Ketchup/mayo dip. And anything in a colour that doesn't occur in nature.

                                  1. I have NEVER seen anyone put mayo on a dog!

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: pikawicca

                                      really? They offer it at every condiments bar at every event I've been to that offers hot dogs, if that makes sense. Tasty :D

                                      1. re: pikawicca

                                        "I have NEVER seen anyone put mayo on a dog!"

                                        Drop around and watch me sometime. Don't eat dogs so much anymore, but there's ALWAYS mayo on it when I do. And on the fries, of course...

                                        1. Besides the strange yet vast array of oddly coloured candies, wagon wheels, cereals in which the main ingredient is toasted air...I think the main thing I have outgrown is mustard and mayo sandwiches.

                                          My highschool lunch repetorire consisted of a bagel smeared with mustard and mayonaise.

                                          I couldn't even think of that now!


                                          1. Fruit Loops (tried it again a couple of years ago - eww)
                                            And as ipsedixit reminded me, TV dinners!

                                            1. I am SO with most of you:
                                              ---TV dinners (or did they just BECOME nasty?)
                                              ---canned pasta
                                              ---packaged snack cakes
                                              ---french fries (I just don't like potatoes anymore, go figure)
                                              ---soda (actually I stopped drinking soda when I was about 10, not sure why....the only liquids I drink now are seltzer, coffee, water, and the occasional glass of wine)

                                              1. -- TV dinners
                                                -- any fruity/marshmallowy/overly sweetened packaged cereal (think Count Chocula and Booberry and Lucky Charms, Cap'n Crunch or Frosted Flakes)
                                                -- Pepsi (never drank Coke)
                                                -- bubblegum
                                                -- all fast food except french fries

                                                There's more, but it's just easier to say that most of the packaged stuff I ate when I was young just doesn't appeal now. But I still get a cravy for Fritos on occasion, so I can't give those up.

                                                1. -Beefaroni and Spaghetti O's
                                                  -Fish sticks
                                                  -Peanut butter and banana sandwiches
                                                  -Fried bologna sandwiches on Wonder Bread with yellow mustard
                                                  -Hostess products

                                                  The ones I still love or at least like and get an occasional craving for
                                                  -Kraft Mac and Cheese
                                                  -McD's hamburger, fries and chocolate shake
                                                  -Grilled cheese made with Kraft Singles or Velveeta

                                                  1. I basically no longer eat anything packaged which is a far cry from my childhood.

                                                    1. I used to love Planter's Cheese Balls. They were always a special treat at various great-aunts' houses, and we'd always have them after we went swimming. I don't even know if they still make them, but the last time I had them they tasted so salty and chemical-ly. Horrible! Not to mention I'm not sure I can make myself eat bright orange "cheese" powder any more. But now that I know how to make gougeres, I don't miss the fake things at all.

                                                      I've also totally lost my sweet tooth.

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: Catherine C in NYC

                                                        OMG i used to **love** planters cheese balls. I'll have to do a re-run to see if you're right :)

                                                      2. most breads, chips, cookies, cakes, and just about all things with (wheat/rice, not yummy things like almond meal) flour. While I don't eat potato chips any more, I can still look back on my favorite savory snack (potato chips with kimchi) with fondness.

                                                        But if you look at my posts, you can see that I still post about bready/desserty things anyway. My policy is to take a bite or two if it looks like something worth recommending to others. After I've tried it, I go on to eat the reason the bready/cakey shell exists-- the filling. Mm.

                                                        I figured out in high school that I had disliked all noodles but had only eaten them for the sauces/soups they accompanied.

                                                        1. A lot of my choices have already been mentioned; Chef Boyardee and the like, poptarts, day-glo sugary cereals, Kool Aid, Tang and Twinkies.

                                                          A couple of others that haven't been mentioned are...first, condensed soups. Cream of fill in the blank soups are too salty and bland for my tastes now, but when I was a kid I loved them. Secondly, I have outgrown spray cheese. Looking back I'm not sure if I ever liked the taste, or if anyone does, but it is very fun to be able to write your name in cheese.:-)

                                                          2 Replies
                                                          1. re: lizzy

                                                            I never liked the spray cheese, but I always liked those little packets that came with mini bucket of cheese, club crackers, and the little red spreader stick! I tasted those recently... nasty!!! It tasted like eating a stick of butter!

                                                            1. re: Katie Nell

                                                              I fondly remember those, gotta love those red sticks. I haven't had them in years, and after reading your description I think I'm good.

                                                          2. anything fake blue. Like:
                                                            - popcycles/ice cream
                                                            - kool-aid/gatorade
                                                            - cereal
                                                            - jello


                                                            1 Reply
                                                            1. re: mtampoya

                                                              Ooh, cereal-- that's right. I actually used to like cereal (sweetened puffed rice, Kix, and various Muesli). I used to like fruit juices too...

                                                            2. Sugared cereals most especially Captain Crunch - how on earth did I ever eat that? It's no wonder I have dental issues as an adult.
                                                              Cool whip (or any fake whipped cream)
                                                              Frequently hot dogs (after reading "The Jungle") - although I do break down occassionally
                                                              Canned corned beef hash - I used adore that stuff, couldn't even look at it now
                                                              Milk chocolate. I'm all about the dark stuff now.
                                                              Frozen chicken croquettes and pot pies (but that maybe because they's mucked with the formulas since I was a kid)

                                                              1. Chef Boyardee spaghetti and meatballs (the only spaghetti I would eat until I was in high school)

                                                                Swanson fried chicken dinners; I loved the mashed potatoes!

                                                                And speaking of mashed potatoes, I grew up on the reconstituted dried kind and thought they were great. Even after thirty years of adulthood, I still appreciate real mashed potatoes as one of the truly great, indispensible comfort foods.

                                                                Sugar Smacks and Trix

                                                                1. Things I used to eat(0r drink) but don't anymore:

                                                                  Soft-serve ice cream
                                                                  3 Musketeers candy bars -ack, they're so sweet!
                                                                  Jello instant puddings
                                                                  Frozen pizza
                                                                  Other frozen snack foods, like pizza rolls, chicken nuggets, etc.
                                                                  Microwave popcorn-the really "buttery" kind

                                                                  1. Peanut butter & butter sandwhiches on wonder white.....what was I thinking? Oh and Pop Rocks :-)

                                                                    1. I can't remember if I outgrew Geno's pizza rolls or if they went under before I was grown.

                                                                      1. The first thing that came to mind was cotton candy. I loved it as a kid, but cant stand the thought of eating it today.

                                                                        Then I thought of Cocoa Krispies (in fact, any chocolate flavoured breakfast cereal), American cheese, my mother's orange juice chicken (most combinations of fruit and meat leave me cold today), rocky road ice cream, cauliflower with melted cheese.

                                                                        Coming full circle, I loved braunschweiger when I was little. then from the age of around 10 until I was well into my 30s, I couldnt look at it. Now I love it again.

                                                                        So who knows... Wisconsin State Fair is coming up soon; I just might suddenly be inspired to hit the cotton candy booth (but I hope not).

                                                                        1. Stouffer's french bread pizzas. I remember these as being pretty good if they were cooked properly, but there would be strips of seared flesh hanging from the roof of your mouth after finishing. Now they're so expensive compared to a real pizza what's the point?

                                                                          Did anyone ever make one of those Chef Boyardee pizzas that came in the kit, with dough, cheese and pizza sauce?

                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                          1. re: wontonton

                                                                            great post. i totally agree. but its not that they're expensive it's that the don't taste very good. when you're a kid they're like crack, but now, not so much.

                                                                            1. re: wontonton

                                                                              My Mom made the Chef Boyardee (or Appian Way) pizzas from the box occasionally. I loved them as a child.

                                                                              1. re: wontonton

                                                                                Whenever my parents went out to dinner without us kids, we would make ourselves one of those pizza-in-a-box things. We considered it a great treat. Don't know if they even make them now.

                                                                              2. Pop-tarts. Big Macs. Instant ramen soup.

                                                                                1. I guess what I no longer crave at all is most candy. We did not have pre-sweetened cereals in my childhood, except for Sugar Crisp, a sugar-coated puffed wheat which has been off the market for eons now, and so we contented ourselves with sneaking an extra spoon or two of sugar onto our corn flakes or whatever. Don't eat that much these days, either. As for the canned pasta and the TV dinners, I never really liked those. I ate them when they were served because I was a child, and therefore required to eat what was put before me without complaint. This so warped my tender sensibilities that now I eat almost everything as cheerfully as I used to pretend to...

                                                                                  I do in fact like a lot of stuff I used to hate: hardboiled eggs, scalloped potatoes, peanut butter, eggplant. Some things I developed a passion for in childhood, against all odds, and have maintained since then are oysters of any kind, tripe, turnips in the pot roast and rhubarb. And I have maintained my adoration of that much-maligned midwestern mainstay, the tuna-noodle casserole. YUM!!