Stock Yuck

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Kids will be kids...
"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 kid's "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; 25% are non-tasters, who don't mind anything. Another reason children grow up hating vegetables is that parents often overcook them, losing much of the taste, texture and nutrients in the process.

Compare If It Tastes Bad, It Must Be Good for You.

Examples of Stock Yuck include:

Dairy products[edit | hide | hide all]

  • 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.
  • 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; the mosquitoes that specialize in human feet have been shown to be attracted to Limburger.
    • Looney Tunes shorts are 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.
  • Skim milk. Most would agree that it's an acquired taste, but it is all-too often grouped with tofu in media as "disgusting health food". Buttermilk isn't well-liked either, although most modern consumers use it to cook with, rather than simply drinking it.
    • In Animaniacs, it was hinted that buttermilk was what made Slappy so grouchy and bitter.

Fruits[edit | hide]

  • Coconut is oddly frequent, especially when it's a filling for chocolates. This is more pronounced in the anglosphere, where fresh(er) coconuts are rare.
    • 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 Mad TV hates coconut and spits out any cake that has any in it.

Meat, organs, etc.[edit | hide]

  • 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 discover they were fed 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.
  • 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.
    • 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 (calves' or lambs' testicles), and brains ("I can't bite down on nothing nobody's been thinking with.").
  • Anchovies. In fiction, when a pizza order is phoned in, "no anchovies" may be specifically mentioned.
    • In the first Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles movie, Michaelangelo, on the phone with the pizzeria, is saying: " anchovies, and I mean no anchovies. You put anchovies on this thing and you're in big trouble, okay?"
    • Inverted in the Garfield and Friends episode "Nighty Nightmare," where Garfield complains because a pizza doesn't have anchovies on it.
    • Played with in Futurama. Fry buys the last can of anchovies in existence to serve to his friends on a pizza. He enjoys them, but his friends (except Zoidberg) do not (which he puts down to them being an "acquired taste").
      • It is - they taste like little meaty strips of pure salt, or at least they do if you've never eaten them before.
    • An episode of M.A.S.K. featured a Blob Monster that was vulnerable to salt. This was discovered when it always passed on Anchovies in foods it consumed. A Running Gag throughout the episode was someone saying "I can understand about the anchovies!" every time they came up.
  • For some people, any fish at all is gross.
    • It has to be said most children in the UK will only eat cod and tuna, so the idea of eating other fish is offputting for them.
  • 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.
  • The heroine of Gai-Gin hates seafood and complains that one of the things she hates about living in Japan is that "they eat absolutely any crap that comes crawling out of the ocean". She also hates tomatoes, and this causes problems when eating with a very traditional Japanese family who consider leaving food on the plate to be very rude.
  • 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. This is all the more apparent when you consider how people who readily consume clams (which are also mollusks) may show disgust at eating snails.
    • In an episode of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Trini cooked escargot (which she made into brownies for some reason) for the Rangers, who loved it - right up until Billy told them what it was, at which point they spat it out.
  • Frog legs are another French dish that Americans often find hard to stomach. The thought of eating amphibians sounds unpleasant to folks in the States, although in certain parts of the Deep South, frog legs are a popular local delicacy.
    • In Mighty Morphin Power Rangers (again) both Zach and his girlfriend are put off by this after going to a French restaurant. On the other hand, Skull loves them; it's hinted his family is Secretly Wealthy and he's used to unusual dishes.
  • In the United States military, creamed chipped beef on toast (a common breakfast food, made by rehydrating chipped beef in a pale imitation of a bechamel and pouring it over toast) is the subject of a lot of jokes. In army slang it is known by the dysphemism "S.O.S.", meaning "Shit On a Shingle", "Stew On a Shingle", "Same Old Stuff", "Something On a Shingle", or occasionally "Save Our Stomachs". Jokes about it were common among other humor about the bad chow on M*A*S*H. Strangely, people actually pay to eat this stuff in certain parts of the East Coast; chipped beef on toast is a typical breakfast item at diners in New Jersey.
  • It's hard to find anyone who will portray Spam (or canned meat in general) in a positive light, despite its popularity as a precooked food. When used in the U.S. Army during World War II, it was often called "ham that didn't pass its physical" or "meatloaf without basic training", and one of many interpretations of the name is an abbreviated form of "spare meat". Most notable was a Monty Python sketch portraying Spam as tasting horrible (the Trope Namer for Does Not Like Spam), and it eventually became the word for unsolicited email messages.

Multi-ingredient dishes[edit | hide]

  • The Scottish dish, Haggis, is another one that shows up from time to time - appearing a few times in the Earthworm Jim animated series, as well as Shanghai Knights.
    • "What is... haggis?" "Sheep's stomach stuffed with meat and barley!"
    • Also used in one of the Outlander books. The (very British) John Grey writes home about it with some alarm.
    • When Johnny Bravo went to Scotland, he defended his haggis valiantly against the Loch Ness Monster...until a Braveheart parody told him what was in it, at which point he gladly handed it over to Nessie.
    • When told by his fellow engineer that all haggis tastes like ass, Kenneth Donnelly of Mass Effect 2 responds that, when prepared by the right chef, "it can taste like mighty fine ass."
    • Inverted by Florence of Freefall. She thinks microwaveable haggis is a good idea. Then again, she is an uplifted wolf, so her genetics my be colouring her tastes in food.
    • In some recent Scooby Doo movies, Haggis is the one food that Scooby and Shaggy won't eat in any quantity. This, from a dog with a palate for sandwiches taller than he is, and a man who eats what are essentially milkbones.
    • Daphne from Frasier once scared the rest of the family out of the house (so she could have a date over) by loudly announcing she was going to cook haggis and sheep's head stew for dinner.
  • Fruitcake in general (at least in the United States; "Christmas cake" has similar connotations in Britain) is depicted as something everyone gives during the holidays but nobody actually likes. The old joke goes that there's only one fruitcake, and we've all been passing it around for decades and decades. It usually looks like a brick in wrapping paper and, when set down, makes a sound like metal clanking or glass breaking.
    • Comedian Jim Gaffigan mentions fruitcake in one of his bits about cake in general: "Fruit: good. Cake: great. Fruitcake: nasty crap."
    • In the 1960s, the Irish Rovers recorded "Miss Fogarty's Christmas Cake", a song about a singularly inedible holiday fruit cake. Given that it was written in 1883, this shows that this subtrope is Older Than Radio, at the very least.
    • Fruitcake is only nasty if one makes it using a lot of candied fruit and sugar to yield a very sticky, dense, sugary cake. There are recipes for fruitcake which call for dried fruits (e.g. dried apricots and cranberries) and less sugar that actually make a tasty fruitcake.
    • It crops up in an unexpected dating and baking metaphor on Little Mosque on the Prairie:

The cake could look good and still be crummy. Or it may be a fruitcake and you know how we all feel about fruitcake...

    • Traditional medieval-era fruitcakes were allegedly quite tasty. The ones we hand around now are missing the most important ingredient from those days, which is alcohol. Submerging a traditional fruitcakes in an alcohol-spiked syrup tends to improve their texture and flavor. Torta negra, the Latinamerican equivalent of Christmas cake, have the dried and candied fruit on in macerated in alcohol for months, which may have contributed to the dish having less of an stigma in the region
    • The fruitcake Link can make in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, is a subversion, as it's a very hard-to-make dish that requires specific ingredients. (An Apple or Wildberry, one other fruit, Tabantha Wheat, and Cane Sugar.) The result is Fruitcake which gives Link a buff depending on the specific "one other fruit".
    • In general, baked products made with candied fruit tend to be something of a stock yuck. Traditional fruit panettone has the same status as fruitcake in Europe and Latinamerica (when not being victim of warring fandoms between the people who do like traditional panettone and the people who prefer either chocolate panettone or the fruit-less pandoro).
  • The classic British Stock Yuck is the Pot Noodle, which is borderline inedible without precision preparation. Red Dwarf did this one (where Lister declined eating one in favour of dog food), while in a Skins episode, Johnny White proved to Thomas how HARD he was and how he was a man Not To Be Fucked With by eating one.
  • Rhubarb Pie. Frequently used by Disney Comics, where it's depicted as a pie filled with gray-green sludge. In reality rhubarb may be an acquired taste, its tartness being comparable to that of a lemon, but its actual appearance is something like a celery stalk with a very pretty shade of red. Rhubarb being a vegetable, there are many more ways to cook it horribly than to cook it properly, also contributing to its' status as a yuck.

Vegetables[edit | hide]

  • 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 Girlshad 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.
    • From Bottom:

Richie: Eddie, stop whingeing. 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.
    • 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.
    • President Bush (Senior) 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.
      • 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/ThePiranhaClub, broccoli is the only thing Sid's pet piranha and live trash can Earl has ever refused to eat.
    • In Inside Out, Riley's least favorite food is broccoli, and her emotions treat it as serious business. Needless to say, having a broccoli pizza as first meal after a traumatic moving only adds to her apprehension over it.
  • 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 Mobile Suit Gundam 0083: Stardust Memory 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.
    • 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.
  • Turnips.
    • Jim Qwilleran in The Cat Who... books. Loathes turnips and doesn't hesitate to say so-was convinced that 'something underhanded' had been done to make a dish containing turnips palatable.
    • Sophie in the film version of Howl's Moving Castle hates turnips, and remarks on this when meeting the scarecrow Turniphead:

"It's been nice meeting you! Even if you are my least favorite vegetable!"

    • In Meet Molly, Molly's housekeeper serves her and her siblings mashed turnip. Molly is the only one who refuses to eat it (especially after Ricky describes it as "old, cold, moldy brains"). Thankfully, her mother is able to make it taste better by warming it up and adding sugar, cinnamon and butter.
  • 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 relativly tasty). Notwithstanding the side effects.
  • 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.
    • For Western readers unfamiliar with natto... the blog "Steve, Don't Eat It" featured it once. Needless to say, it would probably be a Stock Yuck in any country if it were actually popular anywhere else.
    • Natto is really popular only in the Tohoku region, where it originates from, and even there it's something of an acquired taste. Hell, the stuff was born because some soldiers didn't like the idea of throwing away a spoiled horse forage, for God's sake!
  • Lima beans.
  • 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.
  • 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.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • For the Japanese release of Inside Out the good people of Pixar visually changed all the instances of broccoli with green peppers to keep with the Stock Yuck, as Japanese kids tend to be more accepting of broccoli.

Sweets[edit | hide]

  • Even chocolates aren't spared from this trope. Every box will have an undesirable piece, often the one filled with orange creme or 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
  • Black Jelly beans.
    • 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.
  • White chocolate (which technically really isn't chocolate as it does not contain cocoa solids) gets a bad rap too. Part of the reason is the bad quality of mass-produced white chocolate, who substitutes a high proportion of cocoa fats (the thing that give its flavors and make it chocolate in a technicality) with cheaper fats like palm oil, making it oily and flavorless. Even good quality white chocolate can be too sweet for people more accustomed to the bitter taste of dark chocolate.
    • In the Harry Potter franchise, a popular game among Hogwarts students is to release a large box of Chocolate Frogs and try to catch the milk chocolate ones while avoiding the white chocolate ones.
    • In Undertale fanworks, there is the widespread fanon that The Fallen Child specifically despises white chocolate, despite loving chocolate otherwise.
  • 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".