Can We Please Stop Turning All Our Food into Unicorns?

Can We Please Stop Turning All Our Food into Unicorns?

Ariel Knutson
Jan 11, 2017
(Image credit: @teamsparkle)

2016 was full of strange trends, including oh-so-many rainbow-themed foods. No, I'm not talking about eating the rainbow like with vegetables — I mean literally rainbow-dyed foods you'd never expect to look, well, so colorful. There was the rainbow bagel, of course, and then there was this rainbow latte that everyone was obsessed with for some time. And then there was this rainbow grilled cheese that made the Instagram rounds.

As the year came to a close I thought for sure that our obsession with artificially dyed foods was on its way out. But I was wrong. Instead, this trend just morphed into another rainbow-obsessed food trend. Now everywhere I look I see "unicorn-themed" foods, which is basically a way to hold onto the whole rainbow thing even longer.

A photo posted by Mac Lab Bakery (@mac_lab) on

What the Heck Is Unicorn Food?

As far as I can tell, the only difference between plain "rainbow-themed food" and "unicorn-themed" food is a bunch of sprinkles. The first thing I noticed last year was this unicorn hot chocolate that was floating around Facebook. It's essentially white hot chocolate that's been dyed pink and then topped with marshmallows and rainbow sprinkles.

I think I might have fainted from the mere thought of all that sugar entering my bloodstream.

The trend took on a stronger, more literal meaning with these unicorn macarons that blew up on Instagram earlier this week. These macarons look like unicorn faces and are covered in fruity pebbles. Sure, they're pretty cute, but they also feel like an attack against my soul.

(Image credit: Delish)

A simple search on Pinterest reveals that almost any food can be turned into a unicorn if you try hard enough. There's this unicorn cheesecake that Delish decided needed to enter the world; this unicorn ice cream from Bread, Booze, Bacon that is covered in sprinkles and glitter; and then some unicorn bars from Cookies and Cups, which have a shocking blue frosting.

The worst offender of all, however, has to be this unicorn poop veggie dip from Totally the Bomb. Are you seeing this thing? The recipe is essentially ranch dip mixed with food dye and topped with star-shaped sprinkles. To be honest, I'm less offended by the colors in this one, and a little more threatened by the actual name of the recipe. Our carrots deserve better than this.

Unless you're throwing a birthday party for a kid under 10 years old, consider maybe not creating another recipe that has five colors, sprinkles, glitter, and breakfast cereal. When you're making a birthday cake, for example, maybe just choose one of these unicorn ingredients and run with it — like sprinkles. Less really is more.

Let's try to remember that hot chocolate is pretty special on its own. It doesn't need to be covered in sprinkles to feel like a special unicorn.

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