The 10 Best Tips and Recipes We Learned from TikTok in 2021

Surely you've heard of baked feta pasta?

Meaty One-Pot Penne Alla Vodka

The Spruce / Bahareh Niati

Whether you’re a lurker, a content creator, or you simply refuse to make an account, it’s hard to avoid the influence of TikTok. This entertainment-heavy social media platform is great at putting songs, dances, and memes into the zeitgeist, but we’re really there for all the cooking tips and recipes. And sure, sometimes the hacks can feel a little gimmicky, but we’ve also learned a ton (pesto eggs, anyone?).

Because TikTok has such a strong influence over pop culture, we found it hard to resist putting the most popular trends and recipes to work in our own kitchens. Turns out, there were some real winners. These are the 10 best TikTok-sourced trends of 2021, and yep: We’ll be cooking and eating them well into the new year.

  • 01 of 10

    The Tortilla Hack

    Corn Tortillas on a towel

    The Spruce / Maxwell Cozzi

    Is it a quesadilla? A nontraditional burrito? Something else entirely? Whatever you call it, the eggs and cheese tortilla hack snowballed earlier this year. It’s easy to do: Cut a strip halfway into a large tortilla, then fill its quadrants with scrambled eggs, shredded cheese, and bacon. Fold it for maximum layers, then fry it up. Crispy and delicious.

    TikTok creators also used this recipe template as a way to showcase their creativity, from a kimchi-stuffed version to a cheeseburger-inspired take. TikTok, you definitely understood the assignment on this one.

  • 02 of 10

    Ranch Pickles

    fermented dill pickles in a jar

    The Spruce / Ana Maria Stanciu

    Wait, don’t go! We know that “Ranch Pickles” may not immediately inspire cravings, but darn it if this isn’t actually delicious. The idea comes from the aptly-named user @snackqween, and it could not be simpler. Just dump a packet of Hidden Valley ranch seasoning into a jar of pickles, shake it up, and let the ranch dust do its thing in the refrigerator overnight. 

    TikTok creators could not stop making this snack, but we drew the line at Kool-Aid pickles.

  • 03 of 10

    The Easiest Pumpkin Bread

    2-ingredient pumpkin bread with butter

    The Spruce Eats / Abby Mercer

    Being fans of all things pumpkin, we were especially eager to jump on the bandwagon for TikTok’s 2-ingredient pumpkin bread. It’s a very easy recipe, featuring just boxed spice cake mix and canned pumpkin. Although we decided it’s best with the addition of an egg or two, 3-ingredient pumpkin bread is still pretty impressive. This simple and delicious recipe is going to be on rotation in our kitchens for many autumns to come.

  • 04 of 10

    Baked Feta Pasta

    baked feta pasta

    This trend became so big that even major news outlets got in on the fun. (Of course, we did, too!) To make it, you need a brick of feta—none of that pre-crumbled stuff. After baking it with olive oil, garlic, and cherry tomatoes, it gets tossed with cooked pasta, more olive oil, and seasoning. Some creators reinterpreted the recipe with things like Buffalo chicken seasoning or strawberries with balsamic vinegar.

    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
  • 05 of 10

    Gigi Hadid's Vodka Sauce

    Vodka Sauce

     Elaine Lemm

    While we’re on the topic of saucy pastas, we’ve got to talk about Gigi Hadid’s viral vodka sauce. While Hadid made her sauce sans alcohol, TikTok creators often added that signature splash of vodka. One creator even noted that it’s crucial to the recipe. One thing’s for sure: You shouldn’t skimp on the heavy cream and Parmesan.

  • 06 of 10

    Pesto Eggs

    Pumpkin Seed Pesto in a bowl with a spoon

    The Spruce / Cara Cormack

    This is so clever, we wish we thought of this one ourselves: Instead of using oil to make fried eggs, add a spoonful of pesto to the pan. There’s typically a large amount of oil in basil pesto recipes, so this makes so much sense. Why cook with just oil, when you could add tons of extra flavor? Even people who eat a vegan diet got in on the trend with pesto-fried tofu.

  • 07 of 10

    Salmon Rice

    rice, salmon, cucumbers and garnish in a bowl

    The Spruce / Maxwell Cozzi

    This viral video by Emily Mariko inspired us to put a little extra love into our typical #saddesklunch. While there are many ingredients—cooked salmon, rice, avocado, Sriracha, and kimchi, to name a few—the genius of the idea lies in its use of already-prepped staples. By keeping cooked salmon and rice in your refrigerator, you’re more than halfway to this hearty, satisfying lunch. The sleeper hit of the video is the idea of putting an ice cube on top of the rice before adding it to the microwave. The cube will melt and steam for perfectly fluffy grains.

  • 08 of 10

    Pasta Chips

    what is farfalle

    Getty Images 

    Like any proper viral trend, pasta chips were controversial. Depending on your take, the original idea—using traditional hot oil or air fryer to crisp up cooked pasta—was either a snack made in heaven or an abomination. Whether you’re pro- or anti-pasta chip, you’ve got to hand it to TikTok creators for coming up with the most craveable and creative dip ideas.

    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10

    Accordion Potatoes


    The Spruce / Mateja Kobescak

    It felt like everyone and their mother was making accordion potatoes in 2021. The recipe is relatively simply: You essentially cut a russet potato into thick slices before making shallow vertical and diagonal cuts to get that accordion look. After that, you just season and bake the potatoes. The result is the a crispy, crunchy snack you'll want to make on repeat.

  • 10 of 10

    Corn Ribs

    Shuck the corn and remove the silks

    The Spruce / Kristina Vanni

    We never saw this one coming. The TikTok creator @spicednice shared their recipe in a video that racked up millions of views and over 14,000 comments. To make the recipe, you need to cut a cob of fresh corn lengthwise into quarters, season each quarter, and then pop them into the air fryer. The quarters curve slightly while cooking, which gives them a ribs-adjacent look. (Although more than a fair share of TikTok commenters argued that they should be called “corn strips,” not ribs.) Whatever you call ‘em, this recipe for snackable corn is definitely at the top of our list.