"Ingredient Household" Is the Latest Phenomenon to Take Over Social Media

'Ingredient household' is the latest phrase to catch on on platforms like TikTok, and it refers to a house with no ready-to-eat-food in the pantry.

Allison DeGrushe - Author

Sep. 21 2023, Published 3:56 p.m. ET

The Gist:

  • The latest phrase to go viral on platforms like TikTok is "ingredient household."
  • An "ingredient household" is a home that stocks up on the ingredients used to make meals.
  • In simpler terms, an "ingredient household" doesn't have ready-to-go meals or snacks.
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If you're chronically online like us, you've definitely come across the latest food phrases, including "girl dinner" and our personal favorite, "boy cookies vs. girl cookies." But now there's a new one, and unsurprisingly, it's taking TikTok by storm. So, without further ado, let's delve into the discourse surrounding a so-called "ingredient household."

What is it? What does it mean? Read on because we have all the answers you're looking for!

Food ingredients spread out on a counter.
Source: Getty Images
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So, what is an "ingredient household"?

For those wondering, an "ingredient household" is exactly what it sounds like: A house full of ingredients. Wait, don't most homeowners have ingredients in their pantries? Yes, but here, there's a catch.

According to Today, an "ingredient household" is a home that only keeps stock of the ingredients used to make meals from scratch. This means they don't have any pre-made meals or snacks for occupants to eat. OK, this sounds equally exciting and terrifying; we hope to do this one day, but we can't live without Snyder's pretzel snaps.

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The hashtag #ingredienthousehold has accumulated more than 195.6 million views and has thousands of TikTok users sharing their (horror) stories.

TikTok creator @onenationunderavibe is the latest person to share what it's like growing up in a so-called "ingredient household." She took to the platform on Aug. 25, 2023, and posted a short video about finding "naughty snacks" in the pantry. In this case, "naughty snacks" refer to whole-grain wheat crackers and sourdough pretzels.

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"When you want a snack but live in an 'ingredient household,'" reads the text overlay of a short video posted by TikTok user @heyxbean on Dec. 3, 2022. The brief clip then switched to the creator's sparse refrigerator, filled with items like olives, meat, coffee, creamer, butter, bagged salad, Parmesan cheese, and eggs.

Kaitlyn Hernandez (@curri_cherri) shared a video in November 2022 and revealed that whenever she and her brother wanted something sweet, they would snack on chocolate chips. OK, we didn't grow up in an "ingredient household," but we did that all the time (and still do it to this day).

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Kaitlyn's video received over 18,000 comments from fellow "ingredient household" residents sharing their experiences as well as their go-to snacks growing up.

"I used to eat the French's crispy onions like CHIPS bc they only ever got used on Thanksgiving," one person wrote.

A second TikTok user said they "used to eat BAGS of croutons."

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"I almost ate baker's chocolate 'cause I was so desperate once," another user shared, while a fourth person added, "I ate the 3-year-old sprinkles by the spoonful." Ugh — that just sounds so sad.

Well, we sincerely hope that someone who runs an "ingredient household" never steps foot in our house because the amount of extremely "naughty snacks" in our pantry would probably leave them shrieking in horror.

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