Overated and Overused Foods

Joined Jan 10, 2010
There are many foods that a lot of people feel are wonderful or important to use, but that some people may find overated or not particularly worth all the acclaim they get, or overused. For me, one of those foods is bacon - more specifically, the typical American bacons found in supermarkets, butcher shops, and mail order. Another is chipotle and jalapeno chiles, even though I like and use them, they seem to be used almost everwhere a chile is called for, yet the world is filled with so many other, more interesting varieties.

What food items do you find to be overated or overused?

Joined Apr 3, 2008
Lobster, chicken breasts, and filet mignon - these are all good, very good indeed. But they are the safe route. The only thing that can go wrong here is to overcook. They don't require much skill and I don't think they relinquish the best flavors. I'm much more interested iin seeing what you can do with a squid, dark meat, or chuck; the cheaper parts.

Truffles - I don't get it. The flavor doesn't enthuse me.
Joined Aug 11, 2000
I'm with you on boneless chicken breast....a uphemism for flavorless low-fat protein option.

Truffle too.....it's used to increase btm line and is rarely the "good shtuff" used to it's advantage. Many use it because it's price says it's SPECIAL.

Ciabatta or artisan breads put out at generic grocery stores.....some really bastardize the name of something that can be delicious.

yogurt. what the heck is white chocolate/raspberry, low-fat, pro biotic, glop in a container? When did the real deal become so gross?
Joined Feb 1, 2007
I've got a list, I do. Right at the top is truffle oil, an ingredient I see no use for at all.

I also think balsamic vinegar is way overused. There's nothing wrong with it. But there are a whole lot of other vinegars that often would be better choices. Unfortunately, now that the celebrity chefs have discovered it, Sherry vinegar is moving in the same direction.

I don't quite agree with Nan about boneless, skinless chicken breasts. They're quite the thing when you want a tasteless, all but nutrient free protein. :lol:

I wouldn't say bacon, per se, is on my list. But pancetta certainly is overused big time.

If we're to believe restaurant menus and celebrity chefs, mango is the only tropical fruit available. Ease up, guys, and explore some of the other great flavors.

I don't begin to understand the American fascination with filet mignon, when there are so many other better beef cuts available. I never had a filet mignon that could hold its own against even a mediocre rib eye, for instance.

Koukougavia: regarding your comments about squid, I would say that all the cephalopods are underused in the U.S. When, for instance, is the last time anyone on this thread had cuttlefish? Squid is probably the most used, but, thankfully, octopus is growing in popularity. I say thankfully because it makes it more available. I even have a reliable source of baby octopi in Lexington. If I can get it there I figure you can get it anywhere.
Joined Feb 13, 2008
Scallops. Like so many of the things mentioned here, good, wonderful even, but done to death.



Staff member
Joined Jun 11, 2001
You know what's overused? Sweet/sour Asian appetizer sauces. Forgive me for being jaded, but every other "Asian inspired" salad dressing or cold appetizer dipping sauce have the same elements. It's as if people have come to expect that flavor.
Joined Apr 3, 2008
endive, what the **** is so special about this friggin overpriced green? tuna - seared, served as poke, crusted with whatever can get stuck in yer teeth blah blah blah, overused and so done with. Shrimp, like i need to say it. also tired of chipotle, ciabatta bread and cheesecakes, not together, just in general.

what i would like more of is stuff like cabbage rolls, lumpia or other peasant fav's
Joined Oct 18, 2007
Chipotle, roasted garlic, capers, grass fed beef and, while not a food, the words artisan and Tuscan (or Tuscany).
Joined Apr 3, 2008
What is wrong with grass fed beef? If only I could afford it on a regular basis.... by the way, cows are supposed to eat grass (not corn!) and now they're acting like they're doing us a favor by selling us grass fed beef at 4x the cost.

I have cuttlefish all summer long when I visit my folks in Greece. Squid is rarely available at that time of year. It's a nice mild protein. I've eaten more octopus and sea urchin in my lifetime than salmon, tuna, and scallops combined. Large fish are new to me.
Joined Sep 5, 2008
I thought cows were supposed to eat the remains of other animals? Oh no wait.... that didn't work. Back to GMO corn. You can breathe now. :rolleyes:
Joined Dec 2, 2009
Drat...all the "good" ones are taken. I love bacon. That sounds so good that I'll say it again. I love bacon. I love my bacon with eggs and biscuits and good thick flabby white bread and tomato, lettuce and MIRACLE WHIP! My guilty pleasure...crisp bacon stuffed between 2 slices of really crispy buttered toast slathered with grape jam. HA! Take that Bobby Flay!
Joined Oct 18, 2007
Didn't say anything was wrong with it.
If you like it, great!

I personally don't care for it, I like flavor.
It has such a lack of marbeling it can't be graded.
Is it healthier?
You betcha.
But I'll eat my marbled corn fed ribeye, and drink water instead of soda to get my health benefit.

Nothing wrong with Chipotle or anything else I mentioned either.
I just think they're overused.
Perhaps I touched a nerve, my apologies.
Joined Mar 21, 2008
Can't leave out the bacon dipped in chocolate :lol: bacon is a food group of its own so quit picking on it! And my quarter of grass fed beef will be ready for delivery Feb. 1st, I am paying $2.17 a pound :p
Joined Apr 3, 2008
I wouldn't worry about it. this is an opinions thread, not your word is as law thread.

as an aside, as a kid, to finish off the pigs we raised, my parents would switch to a corn feed the last 2 months it was alive. they swore it added flavor. Personally I like grass fed beef, honestly i find it plenty flavorful, maybe i should buy some of both and do some side by side comparisons.
Joined Nov 6, 2004
opinions thread? haha :lol: While reading I felt like defending some of the items under scrutiny. I'll get over it...I will :lol:

Doing a side by side comparison is kind of nice. There's really no doubt that there's a different flavor profile going from corn fed to grass fed beef. But you can really appreciate what both have to offer when trying them side by side.

I remember my wife and I did a taste test with beef a while ago. We had choice, dry aged, grass fed, and prime NY strips. Cooked on a gas grill with only salt added after they were done. It was really neat to run through the different flavors and textures as well.

keep eatin!
Joined Jul 24, 2009
The Pad Thai can go away any time soon. Talk about the most boring example of a countries culinary contribution. What about the million other Thai dishes that have way more flavour and texture etc etc etc..... there a billion things you can do with Thai curry for example And why is it on the menu's of American style bistros and bars right next to the penne with sausage and lingune alfredo.

And i ageee 100% about the fillet steak and the boneless breast of chix...boring boring boring
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