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14 Foods You Could Be Eating Wrong

We've been eating food for basically our entire lives, so you'd think we'd pretty much have it down. Yet we see people making eating mistakes everywhere we look. Here's how not to be "that guy."

A girls eating Chinese food (noodles)with sticks.LionSingto/Shutterstock

You could be eating wrong

Why does something so primal as eating have to be so darned complicated? Well, it really can be. Sometimes it’s a function of silly old etiquette rules (although these legit dinner party etiquette rules are guaranteed to ingratiate you to your hosts) or it’s nothing more than a lapse in common sense that created such unworkable customs as peeling your banana from the stem or sticking your fingers into pomegranates to get the seeds out (here’s the right way to cut and serve pomegranates). Whatever the cause, we’ve got all the hacks you need right here.

pressure cooker chicken enchilada soupTaste of Home


If you think about it, the way most of us eat soup is just a recipe for dribbles. The proper way to do it is to place the spoon in the bowl at the far side of the bowl with the bowl of the spoon facing you, scoop the spoon toward you, bring it to your mouth and sip (not slurp). If the soup is served in a cup with handles, you may bring it to your lips like a two-handled tea-cup. Give this a try with one of these classic recipes.

pressure cooker memphis style ribsTaste of Home


Don’t worry—you don’t need to use a fork. Fingers are perfectly acceptable for eating ribs, just be sure to hold them by their bony edge and to take smaller bites. Make sure you’ve got a napkin close by to keep the mess under control, but know that there will be at least somewhat of a mess. It’s simply inevitable. Make sure you don't believe these food myths that are wildly untrue.

shrimp cocktailTaste of Home

Shrimp cocktail

Shrimp cocktail can make any meal feel kind of fancy, and yet two general rules go out the window when partaking. The first is the rule against double-dipping. The shrimp cocktail sauce on your plate is yours to double dip, so dip away! The second is the rule against not cutting your food; but when shrimp is served upright, it is almost impossible to cut with a knife, so it’s OK to spear it with a fork and eat it one bite at a time.

artichokesTaste of Home


Artichokes can seem intimidating—even the California Artichoke Board admits this. Using your hands, pull off a petal, dip it into the accompanying sauce, and pull through your teeth to remove the soft pulp. Place what remains of the petal to the side of your plate—don’t eat it all! Continue until all petals have been removed. Spoon out the fuzzy center and place to the side of your plate. Cut what remains (the heart) into small pieces with a knife and fork.

chicken pizzaTaste of Home

New York-style pizza

When it comes to New York-style pizza (as opposed to Chicago deep-dish), eating it with your hands is the only acceptable method of food delivery, particularly if you’re in New York. You don’t have to fold it in half, but if there are lots of gooey toppings or some danger that the toppings may topple as you lift the slice, then please go ahead and fold that slice.

chocolate eclairsTaste of Home


An eclair may look like finger food, but it’s not. It should be eaten with a knife and fork, according to Etiquette Scholar. Be gentle so the filling doesn’t squirt everywhere. If you’re so inclined, make eclairs at home! (We won’t tell if you eat them with your hands in the privacy of your own home).

baconTaste of Home


If the bacon is crisp, it should be eaten with the fingers. If it’s limp, it should be eaten with a fork. Here are dozens of recipes every bacon lover must have.


Soft-boiled eggs

When a soft-cooked (soft-boiled) egg is served in an eggcup, the pointed end should be in the cup, and you should crack the shell with a knife in a swift horizontal movement. Then lift the shell using the tip of your knife and place it alongside the plate. Dip your spoon into the egg and sprinkle seasonings (like salt and pepper) over each individual spoonful. Here’s your how-to-cook-an-egg-perfectly guide.

chocolate caramel cupcakesTaste of Home


While it’s perfectly acceptable to eat a cupcake exactly as it’s served, some find it a bit cumbersome to bite right into a mound of frosting. For when you’re seated a table, it’s perfectly acceptable to slice it in half horizontally and turn the icing upside down to create a mini layer-cake cupcake-eating-experience.

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Originally Published on Taste of Home