Foods and drinks became popular for various reasons. Often, they are specific to a certain time in history or a certain generation.
But there are some foods and drinks that we all remember, even if vaguely, that no one really buys anymore.
While there are many reasons behind it, let’s dive into some of the once-popular foods and drinks that barely anyone purchases these days.
Just like fashion, food trends come and go. Because of that, many foods and beverages are no longer as popular as they used to be.
While some of us might look at the list and say, “Well, I still eat it,” research actually shows that, unfortunately, these foods are decreasing in popularity year by year.
10 Once-Popular Foods and Drinks We No Longer Buy
1. Cottage Cheese
This one might not seem real, but unfortunately, it is. The origins of this dairy product go as far back as the times where nothing was wasted, including the leftover milk.
It became incredibly popular in the 1950s and was not only eaten on its own but also as part of many dishes. Its popularity came to its demise when people started buying yogurt in more flavors and a better texture.
But luckily, you can still get some cottage cheese as it’s pretty healthy.
2. Congealed Salads
Even though barely anyone eats this dish these days, I must admit that it’s still one of my favorites.
Congealed salads, sometimes called aspic jellies, are basically anything from meat to veggies encased in a jiggly Jell-O.
Traditionally, gelatin made from calf was used, but once the dish became more popular, it was replaced with ready Jell-O.
They were popular because they were an efficient way to use up leftovers while making another dish. Currently, they’re mostly made in several European countries for special holidays.
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3. Ready-to-Serve TV Dinners
While frozen meals are still available at all markets and grocery stores, full-on frozen dinners aren’t actually as popular as you may think.
These days, if you’re not in the mood to make dinner, you’ll most likely order takeout. But, back in the day, ordering food wasn’t that popular, so ready-to-serve frozen dinners were all the craze.
In the age of health consciousness, people also value freshness over convenience, which definitely goes against frozen dinners.
4. Hubba Bubba Bubble Tape
If you were a kid in the 1980s and 1990s, you definitely remember bubble tape.
Most children used to trade flavors at school and roll it all out during breaks and after school, much to their parents’ and teachers’ annoyance.
While it was fun, sugar-free gum started to become more popular during those times, so it replaced this sugary treat.
On the bright side, you can still purchase bubble tape under the name Hubba Bubba if you’d like.
5. Ambrosia Salad
Ambrosia salad used to be served almost everywhere, from barbecues, cookouts, family reunions, and even holidays.
There are many ways to make it, but most involve Jell-O, whipped cream, cream cheese, and bits of fruit and nuts.
It used to be a Christmas special, but while similar exotic foods became popular, ambrosia salad slowly disappeared from our tables.
If you don’t remember or haven’t eaten it, lard is a semi-solid white fat obtained by rendering a pig’s fatty tissue.
It was often used as a cooking fat and on bread instead of butter or margarine. It was much cheaper than other cooking oils and fats, so it was a staple in many kitchens in the late 20th century.
After that, it started to be considered less healthy than vegetable oils and fats, so it became less used.
7. Jell-O Pudding
Jell-O pudding is simply Jell-O mixed with pudding and used to be served as an easy and quick dessert. In the 21st century, it was replaced by other, also readily available desserts as many frozen desserts have become more popular.
In most countries, you can still buy Jell-O pudding, and it’s often given to children as a lunch snack.
8. Rice pudding
While rice pudding is still popular in some regions of the world, it has mostly become extinct from our menus.
It’s a dish made from rice mixed with water or milk and often topped with cinnamon, vanilla, or stewed cherries.
It lost a lot of popularity due to its high sugar content and the production of other easily-made desserts and sweets.
9. Sunny Delight
It’s weird to think that this drink was so popular since it was essentially 95% watery, sugary syrup.
Regardless, it was incredibly popular both in America as well as Europe, and kids everywhere were obsessed with it.
While you can still purchase this drink, it’s not popular at all after the manufacturer got called out for false claims that the drink had any nutritional value.
Fondue, or simply melted cheese, was incredibly popular in the 1970s. It was a staple of many house parties, and people enjoyed dipping bread in the cheesy delight.
But, as years passed, the dish was considered too difficult to make, and the cleanup after wasn’t worth the trouble.
What is it exactly that makes a food or beverage popular?
Foods are just like everything – sometimes they fall out of popularity. More often than not, it happens due to a new fad diet or a celebrity endorsing a certain food or drink.
This usually causes a craze that makes people interested in the product and makes it incredibly popular.
But, unfortunately, it doesn’t mean that the food or beverage is healthy or even tasty.
Many foods, including dishes, have once been popular, but now barely anyone buys or makes them.
In fact, if you were to ask the younger generations about your favorite childhood foods, they would probably not know what you’re talking about. In the same way, you probably didn’t eat and drink the same things as your parents.
As you can see, many foods that used to be popular are no longer in demand. Whether it’s because they’re no longer considered healthy or simply became obsolete, we can definitely see how food trends change.
Luckily, even though these might not be as popular as they used to be, you can still buy or make most of them if you miss them.
I’ve been interested in food for many years, and nutrition is my passion. From cooking healthy meals to educating myself on the health benefits of food products, there’s nothing that I don’t enjoy writing and learning about.