Foods you love but shouldn’t


I know what you’re thinking: how can you, Dana McCauley, cookbook author and scathing critic of chemical-filled, manufactured abominations say that you love these cookies?

My answer: it’s easy!

Although I generally do strive to eat foods (including cookies) made from fresh, whole foods, I am human and these marshmallowy cookies filled with fake flavoured jelly will always be a pleasant once-in-a-while indulgence since they remind me of my grandmother. She used to buy them for us to have together as a treat and even looking at this picture reminds me of being splayed out at the end of her bed, eating these cookies and drinking too-sweet orange pekoe tea.

Do you have food that you love but shouldn’t? Something that reminds you of a wonderful time in your life that tastes better than it should just because you once shared it with someone special?


30 Responses to Foods you love but shouldn’t

  1. I think it shows your genteel ways that you are able to eat the cookie in multiple bites rather than gulping it down in one bite…of course that wouldn’t make as good of a picture!

  2. Jennifer MacKenzie says:

    Unbelievable! I thought I was the only one that had fond memories of getting those cookies at my grandmother’s house! Coming from a home with a mom who made everything from scratch and snuck wheat germ, whole wheat flour and bran into everything (including cookies), we thought mallow cookies were the greatest thing on earth when nana gave them to us (Nana never baked a cookie from scratch, I’m pretty sure). I haven’t tried them in years because I’m worried they won’t live up to my elevated memories and I don’t want to ruin that. I might just continue to live on thinking they’re fabulous.
    Now my guilty indulgence is Pop Tarts (because I never, ever even got to taste one as a kid…no memories to ruin).

  3. danamccauley says:

    Jen,I love a poptart once in a while, too. I like them untoasted, right out of the bag. They have to be fruity though. I don’t dig on the chocolate ones at all.

    Peter, I’ve likely never been called genteel before – I like it! Thanks.

  4. Bugles. They’re actually quite awful, but I used to have them at my grandparent’s house. My parents never bought chips so they were a real treat. I bought a bag recently during a nostalgic pre-holiday moment. Won’t do that again.

    And rainbow sherbet. I used to mix the flavours together until it turned a khaki green. I loved watching the colours swirl but the final results grossed my sister out — BONUS!!

  5. danamccauley says:

    Char, did you ever put the bugles on the ends of your fingers so that you could pretend you had witch fingers? My cousin and I used to do that when our mom’s bought them for a holiday party treat.

  6. Yes, Dana! I forgot about that. We’d wave our fingers about and cackle like the Wicked Witch. Then we’d eat them. Great fun. Thanks for jogging my memory.

  7. Elra says:

    Yes! Bacon!

  8. Jen Melo says:

    Hot Tamales, Gobstoppers, sour keys, Triple Chocolate Chips Ahoy cookies, Ringolos…I could go on!

    I’m glad someone else remembers Bugles. They were a temporary crush, though. Coca Cola Classic is more of a long-term affair.

    I should be ashamed. I’m typing this as I’m eating a Granny Smith apple, though. Does that make my confessions any better?

  9. Cheryl says:

    Nacho cheese Doritos. I eat them once a year, on Super Bowl day, and can’t stop until my fingers are bright orange.

  10. Amy says:

    Unfortunately, I no longer have a fondness for Bugles – just out of school I ran a camp kitchen and some generous soul donated case after case of the snacks. By the end of the summer we couldn’t even force the kids to eat them….

    My Grandma always had those Pirate peanut butter cookies on hand – loaded with calories – yet oh so yummy!

  11. Diva says:

    I don’t think you have enough bandwidth for me to start listing my forbidden favorites. Pinwheel cookies, not entirely dissimilar to your cookie above, would certainly be on the list – a childhood favorite that I, fortunately, can no longer find in stores. I’ll second … or is it 3rd by now? … the Bugles. Horrible, awful, unhealthy and entirely delicious treats that they are! I steer well clear of them, but I’ll always love them.

  12. cherie says:

    How come I’ve never had these cookies??? There’s something seriously wrong with me.

  13. danamccauley says:

    Nothing wrong with you Cherie! You just come from a family that likely had less common taste than mine!

    If you try them, let me know what you think!

  14. Cheryl A says:

    My husband loves those cookies! I can’t stand them. Give me an Oreo and I’m happy. Let me rephrase that. Give me an Oreo before all the zero transfat requirements. It isn’t so much that the taste has changed, but they have almost no icing on them now in order to meet regulations. I’m not sure I’ll buy another again.
    To this day I have a craving for Beep – a disgusting orange drink – whenever I get sick. It was the only time we were allowed such a concoction in our house. Of course, I also want white wine at the same time. I swear my parents gave it to us so we would pass out and not bug them – shhh, don’t report them.

  15. ash says:

    Keebler rainbow cookies. i don’t know what it is i just love them. with a huge glass of milk. cheap choc chip cookies with 2-3 M&Ms… not sure why i find them so fabulous but i buy a package a few times a year cause homemade is good but these… i just gotta have them!

  16. Heather says:

    I have far too many confessions, I love junk food, but I can honestly say that I really don’t like those cookies. I’m a buggle lover too, we used to bite the small end off and pretent they were “buggles” or stick them on our fingers for long finger nails. I remeber Beep, I loved it, but it wasn’t allowed in the house as it was too sugary. I also used to love Tahiti Treat…haven’t seen that in years. After a number of years away from it, my current fav. is one of my earliest favs…Old Dutch Ketchup Chips MMMMMM!

    It was my grandma who made everything, not my mom, but then my mom worked out of the home. I remember Grandma’s crab apple jelly, and poppyseed buns most of all, wish she could still make them, so that I could learn her tricks.

  17. Sheryl says:

    Caught red-handed. Philadelphia cream cheese dips. I usually don’t buy ’em because well, they’re owned by Kraft which is owned by Phillip Morris, but sometimes, I really, really need chips and dip.

    Plus also those coconut macaroon chocolate lumps that are still $1 a box at Dollarama. I put them in the snack cupboard next to the $10 Amedie chocolate bars and hope they’ll all get along. The chocolate in them is horrible and waxy but they remind me of my Grandparents who always had a dish of them on the coffee table.

  18. danamccauley says:

    Seems like grandparents have a big influence on our food loves! Thanks for sharing everyone!

    By the way: where was Beep popular? That’s a new one on me.

  19. Cheryl A says:

    Tahiti Treat! I loved that stuff and now I don’t really drink pop. Also reminds me of the days we used to go to the Pop Shoppe.

    Thanks Sheryl, now I’m craving macaroons. They were a treat when we were a kid too.

  20. Laura says:

    How’s this for total teenage debauchery? A box of rich’s frozen chocolate eclairs (we couldn’t wait for them to thaw) devoured on my best friend’s parents’ water bed after school while watching the Young & the Restless. Oh those things were pure heaven! I haven’t had one since about 1984 and I’m wondering if they still make them?

  21. danamccauley says:

    Waterbed! Ha – that is a while ago.

  22. Oh I’m with you on this one! I’m a pastry chef and of course I love (and prefer) things make with good natural ingredients, but sometimes I crave such stupid things I’m not gonna even bother mention, ahahah! I guess memories play a big part on that…

  23. Donna says:

    Oh god Whippets (yes I too have had the same craving!)

    For bad foods with good memories, Creton on toast and Sugar Pie, always reminds me of being at my grandmothers.

    For just over bad but with kind of a purpose I have to admit to a love of Sour Cream Pringles (to be consumed only during long drives) for some reason a car trip just isn’t the same without them.

  24. Jacklyn says:

    Pirate cookies, Amy! Those are my favourite 🙂 I forgot about them!

  25. Sheryl says:

    Dana, Beep was big in the Maritimes and Manitoba. It was/is similar to Sunny D. It was my favourite drink as a kid – loved the little bird in the logo.

    It’s even got a blog dedicated to it…

  26. danamccauley says:

    Wow – I feel so left out! Thanks for the info and link Sheryl!

  27. Candice says:

    Let’s see…

    Kraft Dinner. Arrowroot cookies. Munchie Mix (you know, with cheetos, pretzels, sun chips, doritos). Cadbury Minieggs.

    Fortunately we don’t buy any of those things often.

  28. danamccauley says:

    I love arrowroot cookies, too!

  29. Definitely bacon… it’s got to be my number one “not good for you but it’s just so tasty!!” food. I also align with the Kraft Dinner lover! 🙂

  30. Rosa says:

    Peanut Butter!



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