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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.

Worse is that even today, many parents insist their children eat these "yucky" foods before they can have their dessert. Many parenting and diet articles call this out as a mistake, as it encourages kids to resent vegetables (no matter how well they're prepared) and see sugary treats as more appealing rather than appreciating vegetables as perfectly good food.

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

Examples of Stock Yuck include:

Dairy products

  • 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.


  • Coconut is oddly frequent, especially when it's a filling for chocolates.
    • 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.

  • 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 MASK 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.

Multi-ingredient dishes

  • 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 the more 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 palette 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.
  • 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.


  • 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 Sim City 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.
    • Peter Brady once griped about finding broccoli on his lunch tray alongside his sandwich.
    • 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.) In another episode, she actually did admit to throwing Drew's office papers out the car window because he made her eat it.
    • 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.
    • The Tiny Toon Adventures episode "Return to the Acme Acres Zone" has a segment called "Real Kids Don't Eat Broccoli," in which Buster as a detective figures out his friends have been replaced by evil droids when he sees them eating the vegetable.
    • A short story in a children's magazine had the protagonist freaking out at the prospect of eating brussel sprouts, made worse by his older brother taunting him about how nasty they are and how he'll be stuck at the table forever unless he eats every bite. The problem is solved when the boy pours gravy over the sprouts, masking the taste.
    • A Sara Lee cheesecake commercial showed two kids seated in front of plates of creamed spinach. The first kid wouldn't touch it, the second one obediently ate it and was rewarded with the advertised dessert. This prompted kid #1 to grudgingly give in and eat his.
  • 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 Howls 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.


  • Even chocolates aren't spared from this trope. Every box will have an undesirable piece, often the one filled with orange creme. 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.
    • Inverted in All-of-a-Kind Family, where the black jelly beans are Charlotte and Gertie's favorite. It's the white ones they hate, and the kind they end up getting a lot of whenever they buy 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.
  • 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".
    • Among Americans, licorice is called "the liver of candy."