The best recipes for Back-of-Box and Back-Of-Bag

“I always thought it was an old family recipe passed down from my grandmother. When I discovered the truth, I fell to the floor.

Chances are you have a family recipe or a favorite that holds a special place in your heart. But what happens when you realize that this dish contains a secret you never suspected? People from the BuzzFeed community and the r/Cooking subreddit share the amazing cooking secrets they learned to be true that have since rocked their culinary worlds.


“My grandmother would always show up at the holidays with her special cheese dip and tell us it was a special family recipe. Two years ago, my mom finally gave me the recipe. I found out it’s just Rotel dip.”


“I used to work at a high-end restaurant that was known for their cheesecake. It was just cream cheese and marshmallow fluff mixed together and then placed on store-bought graham cracker crusts.”


“The spinach dip recipe in the Knorr vegetable soup mix package is my secret weapon. People always ask for the recipe whenever I make it. They look shocked when I tell them to go to the grocery store and buy the soup mix to find out the recipe.”


“My grandmother is from Italy and people always assume that she must make delicious, authentic Italian food. It turns out that our ‘family sauce recipe’ is very basic and not at all unique. Anyone could make it. What makes her practice makes good and just letting it simmer all day.”


“I begged my grandma for her brownie recipe and she finally gave in. It’s Betty Crocker’s super fudge, but she mixes the fudge packet instead of putting it on top. All these years, and I just realized that my favorite treat came from a box”.


“My secret fudge recipe that’s been locked away for decades is literally melting chocolate chips and pouring condensed milk in. Everyone in my family thinks I’m this professional fudge maker.”


“For decades, I thought my grandmother’s pumpkin pie was homemade and the best I’d ever had. Nope, just the recipe from the back of a Libby’s pumpkin can!”


“My wife came back from Norway and told me how she fell in love with a magic spice that made everything taste amazing. We looked everywhere for it. It’s MSG. A sprinkling of MSG powder can really elevate a dish. People can be so afraid of it because have been fed misinformation about its health effects. So unless a guest specifically reports an allergy, I will continue to add MSG to my food without telling anyone.”


“Everyone thinks I make the best of the best chocolate chip cookies. I just follow the recipe on the back of the Tollhouse chocolate bag to the letter.”


“I begged my grandmother for her recipe for banana pudding, and now people are begging me to make it. It’s the recipe from the back of the Nilla wafer box.”


“My boyfriend is always amazed at how good my omelets taste. He’s convinced I have magical powers in the omelet. I finally realized he didn’t know I use a lot of butter and I feel like I can’t reveal it now.”


“My snickerdoodle recipe is a family favorite. Everyone loves them. They’re actually Pillsbury puff pastry pieces, rolled in cinnamon and sugar. It’s stupid easy, but I’ll never tell.”


“We had a recipe for oyster dressing that was like a family tradition when I was a kid. On my first Thanksgiving away from family I called my aunt for the recipe with pen and paper in hand. Her secret: “Take a can of stuffing and throw in a can of oysters.” Surprisingly, it never tasted so good after that conversation.’


“My mom made the BEST banana bread when I was growing up, and later told me she used the recipe on the back of Gold Medal Flour. It turns out delicious every time!”


“On the back of the Crisco vegetable quart label, there’s a recipe for Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies. Even people who claim to hate oatmeal cookies always tell me that my ‘homemade’ version is the only one they’ll eat.”


“My grandmother’s ‘secret’ fudge recipe is the one on the back of the marshmallow fluff jar.”


“I inherited my grandmother’s cookbooks when she passed away, which are all handwritten recipes. Then I learned that her famous baked beans start with, well…a can of baked beans.”


“I got my grandmother’s recipe box and I was so excited. Then I realized it was almost exclusively scraps from the back labels of quick-cooking foods.”


“I have a friend who’s a baker. Turns out she just adds sour cream to boxed cake mix.”


“My ‘secret recipe’ for green bean casserole is literally the recipe from the back of the box of French onion fries, with bacon and grilled onions. It’s a hit every year.”


“My favorite chocolate cake is from the recipe on the back of the Hershey’s Cocoa Mix box. People love it every time I make it!”


“I knew this old lady who was famous for her cookies. One day, a restaurant asked her to make their cookies, and as a result, they started doing very well (they always sold cookies). Everyone knew that her cookies had their Bisquick, but no one knew her exact recipe. Turns out she was using the recipe on the back of the box!”


“My mom makes the most amazing chocolate chip cookies. I ended up asking her where her recipe came from, assuming it was passed down from my grandmother or something. She says it’s the Toll House recipe. I was. OVER.”


“After my grandmother passed, there was an argument back and forth about her pecan pie recipe. Turns out it was in the back of the bottle of Karo syrup the whole time.”


“If I’m cooking anything that requires breadcrumbs, I use Stove Top chicken-flavored stuffing instead. I also use them as mini croutons in my salads.”


“Whenever I make a cheese sauce, I add a dollop of processed cheese like Kraft singles. It basically turns it into Velveeta. It’s revolutionized my homemade mac ‘n’ cheese game.”

So, what’s one surprising cooking secret or recipe hack that made you say, “Wow, I didn’t expect that.” Tell us in the comments below!

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