Hit-Or-Miss Tastemade/Snapchat

How Color Can Be Used To Affect Your Perception Of Food

From the beginning of time, color has always been something that has drawn us to particular foods. Nowadays, that attractiveness has evolved into expecting certain hues, brightnesses, and varieties when we select fresh produce from the grocery store or order food off of a restaurant’s menu. We want to see the food before we select it, because we make many judgments about whether food will taste delicious or not based on how it looks. It’s why chefs emphasize presentation in restaurants.

To help make food appealing to our eyes, chefs and grocery stores have developed methods and tricks thanks to technology, patterns, or varieties. Here’s just a few of the ones you may have (or have not) noticed that help you pick what you believe to be the perfect steak, juiciest orange, and a whole host of other food options.

Bright White Backdrops

Chocolate dessert by @pastrybydaniel #TheArtOfPlating

A post shared by The Art of Plating (@theartofplating) on

Whenever you go to an upscale dining establishment, there’s a good chance your meal is going to be served on a bright white plate. That’s done on purpose, as white serves as the perfect backdrop to every other color out there. As acclaimed New York chef Charlie Palmer told Today, “When you use a bright white plate, the food really stands out, its colors seem more vibrant, and it makes the food more appealing. It seems simple, but it’s true!”

Strengthening An Orange’s Sheen

You may be accustomed to seeing vibrant, deep orange hues on this classic citrus, but that’s not always the case originally. Oranges from Florida, from example, tend to be noticeably paler, especially earlier on in the harvesting season for these popular fruits. As a result, the FDA has allowed a specific dye called Citrus Red no. 2 to be sprayed onto these oranges to give them their more characteristic shade of orange. This dye is a potential cancer-causing compound (at least, according to the state of California), so it’s best to toss the peels out. But the fruit inside is safe and delicious, and if you’re eating it, Citrus Red no. 2 has done its job of getting you to select perfectly wholesome oranges that just don’t look as bright.

Contrast On The Plate

Roasted lamb, tempura courgette, mint, and hazelnuts by @chefdanielwatkins #TheArtOfPlating

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When plating food, it’s important to play around with colors. Utilizing sharp contrasting, or nearly opposite shades to enhance a plate could help make it look way more delicious. A bright orange sauce, for example, could coat a piece of cooked meat and be surrounded with a dark green, with the orange and green colors playing off of each other perfectly. It creates a visual balance on the plate that helps your eyes draw to each part of the dish better and prepare for every exciting burst of flavor you’re about to consume.

What A Package’s Color Says About Its Food

Did you know that the food industry uses different colors to evoke specific emotions with their food packaging? Sounds crazy, but think about how you feel the next time you look at a box of food colored with a certain hue. Blue-packaged products like OREOs and Kraft Mac and cheese, for example, are designed to be a memorable product because they were the colors originally used to market to children. Green packages represent health and naturalness of the food inside, and yellow should make you feel happier when looking at it. Don’t believe me? Experiment for yourself and see how you feel next time you’re at the store.

The Redness Of Steaks

In the United States, we love to see steaks that are a bright red color, as that is believed to be indicative of the optimum freshness and taste. Grocery stores have caught onto this, and have actually developed a couple of methods to accentuate the redness of their steaks. While one of these methods, spraying steaks with carbon monoxide, has been banned in the US, we can still shine red lights over meat to bring out their red color. Pretty crazy, right?

Show Off Your Caramelized and Cooked Sides

You know how steaks and other meats are typically served in a “fan” pattern on a plate, with slices overlapping each other? That method has been developed specifically to show you the two parts of the meat you’re going to critique the most with your eyes instantly: the sear and how well it’s cooked on the inside. The perfect medium-rare steak, for example, has a deep brown crust on the outside, but a luscious pink on the inside that’ll leave your mouth watering. When both are visibly present at once, you can envision the crunch and caramelized flavors of the sear with the juiciness and flavor bursting from the center of the steak the best, whetting your appetite for the delectable gourmet treat just set in front of you. This works for pork and chicken as well, with the only difference being that you want a moist white interior for those meats. Master the cook and the cut, and you’ll be well on your way to serving up fine-dining quality proteins.

Turning Poorly Marbled Steaks Into Works of Art

One of the best visual quality parameters of a steak is its marbling, or the streaks of white fat that run through the raw piece of meat. Fat translates to flavor, so the more of those you see, the better the steak will be. Some meats of a lower quality don’t have as much marbling, so to help make them look more flavorsome, a technique called artificial marbling is used. Hot, melted fat is injected into freshly butchered meat that then runs throughout the entire cut, creating some additional marbling effects that make meat fattier than it actually was to start with. This kind of meat has to be marked as such on grocery store labels, so if you’re interested in seeing what this looks like compared to other steaks of the same caliber, pick one up and experience it for yourself.

Hit-Or-Miss Sweets

Rainbow-Colored Macarons Might Be Too Beautiful To Eat

Macarons (not to be confused with macaroons, the soft coconut cookies) have always been notorious with color. A large part of their allure, outside of whatever delicious heavenly matter they’re made of, is their bright and vivid colors.

Screen Shot 2016-07-19 at 3.37.31 PM

Who wouldn’t be attracted to that?

Redditor spartan1977 decided to make macarons at home one day while employing her 4-year-old son as her culinary assistant. She decided to shake things up and try to create something new and special, and did she ever.

Screen Shot 2016-07-19 at 3.26.47 PM

The macarons she made turned out to be a hit, garnering loads of adulation and praise all over the internet. Many Redditors jokingly accused her of parading around on the website as Spongebob Squarepants trying to peddle his Pretty Patties, which actually pose a striking resemblance to regular brightly-colored macarons.

On the other hand, many user were grateful for the beautiful creation, some even vowing to make them for their own social gatherings.

For more information on how to make these bad boys, check out the Reddit thread here.



Photo Credit: Flickr

Packaged Food

General Mills Is Getting Rid Of All Artificial Colors From Their Cereals


General Mills has announced they’re getting rid of artificial ingredients. This means the company’s cereals will no longer feature all the bright colors at typically come with artificial flavors and colors.

No longer will the brand be associated with artificial dyes like Blue 1, Yellow 6 and Red 40. Among the cereals that will be affected with this change are Cocoa Puffs, Reese’s Puffs and Trix. Changes will be implemented by the end of this year.

According to General Mills, the cereal’s colors will now come from fruit and vegetable concentrates as well as spices.


General Mills released a product shot of Reese’s Puffs as they look now with a projected look as to how they’ll look once the artificial coloring is removed and natural colors are utilized.

The two look pretty much identical.

However, cereals with blue and greens in them like Trix will no longer feature the two colors. The difficulty in replacing the artificial blues with a natural alternative means that General Mills is dropping the color entirely. No blue means no green, either.

Expect to find the new, more natural cereals in grocery store shelves sometime at the end of this year.



Beertone – Beer Swatches for Color-Conscious Beer Snobs


Check out the Beertone (named for the color guide, Pantone). This is like one of those paint swatches, except that instead of helping you paint the accent wall in your kitchen, it helps you choose your beer. Creators Alexander Michelbach and Daniel Eugster put together a flip book of more than 200 beers (on the original Swiss edition). Each tab, aside from moving down the gradients in color from light to dark beers, includes the name, brewery, description, and of course, color of the beer, depicted in RGB, CMYK and others.


In my head, I’m flipping through the book and finding a color I like, then demanding a beer that exactly matches the tab. Although, I think that’s using it backwards. To each her own, I guess.

Anyway, a Beertone booklet (perfect, says the website, for people who like beer, colors, or both) will run you $39.00 direct from the website.

I want one for coffee and espresso drinks. Oh, please, someone, make one for coffee and espresso drinks.

H/T Design Taxi


This is What a Bacon Rainbow Looks Like

I think it’s safe to say that if the Double Rainbow Guy had seen this, he might have had an actual out of body experience.

Colored bacon is such a simple, eloquent idea, we should all be ashamed that it was graphic designer Neil Caldwell, and not the average bacon consumer, who had to come up with this first.

Apparently, you get some food dye, water, and foresight (if you want your bacon, as most of us do, RIGHT NOW, this won’t work–you need 24 hours of color-bath time), and voila: A beautiful breakfast.

In the meantime, you can ponder all the wonderful applications of a bacon rainbow. Just remember, Lady Gaga already has the monopoly on wearing meat.


Via Bacon Today


In-N-Out Burger by Terry Richardson

The colors in this photo really give a definition to why In-N-Out is so incredible. Terry Richardson, one of my favorite photographers known for his obscure random fashion photos, shot this. Not much needs to be said about this picture, so how about you just continue to drool. (Thx Wallychamp)


The 'FOOD' Douche Card


This should have been invented a long time ago, probably around the year hair gel for men was created, or when Ed Hardy started. Technically this is the Douche Card, but I added my own twist to it to relate to a recent post; The Making of a Food Douche. Are you tired of arguing with complete morons? Tired of getting into bar fights over stupid, pointless shit. Now you can avoid all of that with one simple business card. Simply hand it to the asshole in question and walk away. Problem solved. Purchase your own stack here. (Thx Coolmaterial)