Food52 Life

Too Many Cooks: Favorite Food-Related Movie Moments

February 20, 2015

You'll be hearing from the staff at FOOD52 every week in Too Many Cooks, our group column in which we pool our answers to questions about food, cooking, life, and more.

Sour candies, popcorn, cheese dip, chocolate-covered pretzels, and orange soda all help fuel our love of movies. But here at Food52, our food obsession extends beyond time-tested movies snacks -- we watch, analyze, and adore food-centric movie moments. If you're in our boat, you've planned a menu based on your favorite movie, you've seen Babette’s Feast multiple times, and you've started reconsidering your family’s eating patterns thanks to Boyhood. Which is exactly why we asked the Food52 staff:

What are your favorite food-related moments from movies? Bonus points if they are from this year's Oscars nominees.

Do you still eat peanut butter and Oreos because you watched The Parent Trap during your formative years? Or maybe you dream of having a box of flours delivered to your office? Did any of this year's Oscar nominees leave you salivating? Share with us in the comments below.

Sarah: My family can no longer eat cornbread because my dad will insist on re-enacting this moment from the movie Life.

Leslie: Sarah, I understand your cornbread problem: My mom is incapable of eating carrots without saying "With God as my witness, I'll never go hungry again!" -- it's thanks to this scene from Gone with the Wind. 

Shop the Story

Jane P: So racy, but, the Katz Deli scene in When Harry Met Sally.

Danny: "Can I fix you some sandwiches?" from Bad Santa.

Will: One of my favorites is from My Cousin Vinny -- "What's a grit?" 

Jenny: This bakery scene from Into the Woods is too cute: 

Ryan M: There are a lot of good food scenes in Mr. Mom -- including making a grilled cheese with an iron -- but the entire scene at the grocery store is my favorite

Karl: I recently enjoyed the grilled cheese scene from Chef. But who could forget the Uncle Buck shovel pancake flip?

Tim: "NO WHEEZING THE JUICE!" from Encino Man. 

Amanda S: The lobster scenes in Annie Hall! Plus -- Oscar bonus! -- that funny little pastel cake they used to smuggle things into prison in The Grand Budapest Hotel:

Nicole: Every family dinner scene from Soul Food, because Sunday family dinners were so important while I was growing up. And of course, the final scene of Goodfellas. Now, I'll always say terrible pasta tastes like "egg noodles and ketchup." Always. 

Lucy: Single girl struggles: the lone chicken wing from Waiting for Guffman.

RachelThe scene in Heavyweights when they take over the camp and go NUTS:

ChanningI'm so delighted each time I hear the narrator recount Amélie's favorite simple pleasures in La Fabuleux Destin D'Amélie Poulain. I, too, share a fondness for sticking my hands into vats of legumes and cracking the top of créme brûlée with a spoon.


Honorable mention: Big Night -- specifically this breakfast scene:

More: Recreate the dish that Big Night made famous: the timpano

What are your favorite food-related movie moments? Share with us in the comments below!

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • annika
  • J
  • Yogigirl
  • Hayleilei
  • witloof
Past Julia Child Fellow at Food52 || Believer in Brunch


annika June 1, 2015
No Reservations. The Tiramisu moment. Epic.
J April 18, 2015
Oh my,,,,Nobody remembers Flashdance, Alex eating lobster with her fingers in fancy restaurant?
Yogigirl February 25, 2015
I love the bakery scene in "It's complicated" with Meryl Streep and Steve Martin. Can't eat a croissant without thinking about it.
annika June 1, 2015
I have to agree with you. Loved that scene.
Hayleilei February 23, 2015
I really really recommend Bella Martha, which is a lovely German film about an uptight chef that experiences a personal tragedy, finds romance, etc. etc. Hollywood did something terrible with the premise and Catherine Zeta Jones but ignore that one and go STRAIGHT to Bella Martha (also known as Mostly Martha - very strange translation there) tonight. In fact, I just might.
witloof February 22, 2015
My favorite food movie is Tampopo.
g. M. February 22, 2015
I cannot believe that no one has mentioned the spaghetti carbonara scene with Meryl Streep and Jack Nicholson in 'Heartburn'. Simply the best movie food scene....ever!
Nancy February 22, 2015
Eat drink man woman, whole movie, esp father-chef alone in his kitchen, preppin ingredients. Yes to many others, esp feast at end of babette's feast, Jack Nicholson in 5 easy pieces.
Nancy February 22, 2015
Eat drink man woman by Ang Lee...chef and his daughters. whole movie, but esp lovely is long scene of chef father alone in his kitchen, prepping his ingredients. And yes to babette's feast, where old strict sectarians are enjoying their feast but can't admit it. & Jack Nicholson ordering the was it chicken sandwich w/o the chicken to get the toast.
Doug B. February 22, 2015
The scene from Elf when Buddy makes breakfast for everyone and when he puts syrup in his coffee. Also, the scene from The Birdcage when "Atticus Spartacus" makes dinner for the engagement party.
Ruby G. February 21, 2015
Juliette Binoche making her wonderful chocolates in the movie Chocolat and the look on people each time they taste them...
Kristin T. February 21, 2015
The Key Lime Pie scene in Heartburn.
Jessica F. February 21, 2015
Scarlett pulls a radish out of the ground, not a carrot. Radishes in the book, radishes in the movie. Sorry.
amysarah February 21, 2015
The infamous eating scene in Tom Jones. Young, beautiful Albert Finney...oh my.
Shelley M. February 21, 2015
Babettes Feast, of course. Love the prep scenes in the kitchen, and the coachman gets a little sample of each course as he sits by the oven. Also, the one old lady who eagerly drinks from a new-filled glass and is disgusted to find it's just water.
debbie February 21, 2015
Every food scene from "Fatso" !!!
Tita February 21, 2015
Like Water for Chocolate, Tita's Magical Meal
Grace February 21, 2015
Honorable mentions:
When Delmar is eating the pie in O Brother Where Art Thou and he looks sooo happy.
The end of Fried Green Tomatoes...secret's in the sauce.
So many from Napoleon Dynamite: Gimmie some if your tots, make yourself a dang quesadilla, build her a cake, I caught you this delicious bass...
Three words: Be Our Guest
Grace February 21, 2015
I agree with Bad Santa. "How much lettuce do you want?" "The normal amount. Whatever people do." Also "That's not a tostada..." "There, now it's a tostada."
Carson February 21, 2015
Mongo eating beans in "Blazing Saddles";_ylt=A86.J7vt2.hUozAAJPAnnIlQ;_ylu=X3oDMTB0c2puYm1xBHNlYwNzYwRjb2xvA2dxMQR2dGlkA1lIUzAwM18x?p=blazing+saddles+mongo+beans&tnr=21&vid=27E6DE71A180C83BBD1127E6DE71A180C83BBD11&l=96&
The L. February 20, 2015
My favorite is not just a great scene, but completely sums up the excess of an era when, in Wall Street, while in a restaurant Bud Fox receives a large check from Gordon Gekko to have some fun & spread it around, then has Gordon's favorite item - steak tartar with a whole egg yolk atop it. The 80s on a plate.

A shout out to the prison dinner scene in Goodfellas as honorable mention.