Skip To Content

    19 Simple Foods That Rich People Have Totally Ruined, According To Cooks Around The World

    On today's episode of Rich People Ruin Everything.

    Remember the days when milkshakes didn't have five other desserts attached to the straw? Or when avocado toast was just something you made at home and didn't pay $18 for?

    Yeah, me neither. These days, it seems as if all of the great, simple foods have become bougie. In case you're unfamiliar with this word, says it's "relating to or characteristic of a person who indulges in some of the luxuries and comforts of a fancy lifestyle."

    My attention was recently drawn to the "bougification" of food by a Reddit thread that user u/burgher89 started a few months back. They asked, "What food, in your opinion, didn't need a 'bougied up' version, but food trends have caused it to happen anyway?"

    1. "Street corn. I don’t need it to be 'elevated.' Just give me a simple, non-canned elote/esquite, please, with everything."


    2. "Pho. Simpler is better, and I live in a city where everyone wants to add their own flair and double the price."

    Person eating a bowl of pho

    3. "Milkshakes. I just want drinkable ice cream. Stop putting so much stuff in and on it."

    A milkshake with lots of syrup

    4. "Cheap wings used to be a trick to get you to go to a bar and spend money on overpriced drinks. Now 'cheap' drinks are a trick to get you to go to a bar and spend money on overpriced wings and drinks."

    Buffalo wings

    5. "I'm near a local place that is essentially just grilled cheese variations. But they do not consistently have basic grilled cheese — just every variation of it. And no tomato soup. WTF is that about?"

    Grilled cheese and tomato soup

    6. "This may be controversial, but french fries. You're going to charge me an extra 5 bucks for 'truffle' that I can't even taste over the Parmesan? I certainly like to spice things up, but I hate the insane charge for what is essentially just a little basic seasoning."

    French fries with seasonings

    7. "Cupcakes. They have gone from a nice excuse to eat cream cheese frosting to a full-blown art scene."

    Cupcakes with diverse colors and designs

    8. "I first discovered arancini (deep-fried rice balls) at dumpy, fast food–ish spots in train stations in Italy for like 2 euros for a giant one. You’d grab one as a snack for the train ride. Imagine my surprise when they become trendy in the US for $20 for three tiny ones covered in tomato sauce. Not bad, but I’ll take the cheap, big ones every time over what we have here."

    Rice balls in a paper container

    9. "Bloody Marys have become a 'Shove stuff in them and call it a delight' mess."

    Bloody Marys with cheeseburger garnishes

    10. "Shrimp and grits. I don't want to pay $18 for shrimp and grits just because you added some 50-year-old aged cheese to it!"

    Shrimp and grits in a pot

    11. "Avocado and bread — aka avocado toast. It was the poor people's breakfast, then they started charging $15 a pop."

    Mashed avocado on toast

    12. "Maybe it’s just me, but I like a simple, plain, fudge brownie — crispy on top and gooey in the center. Not these brownies with layers of Oreos and peanut butter and Biscoff and so many other things."

    Brownies with frosting and Oreo topping

    13. "Chicken Parm. I’ve tried 'gourmet' versions, and they’re good, but classic chicken Parm is a comfort food for me. It’ll always trump any attempt to bougify it."

    Chicken Parmesan

    14. "Caesar salad. Stop grilling it. Stop deconstructing it and serving it in a martini glass. I just want a damn salad."

    Simple Caesar salad on a plate

    15. "Poutine. The world does not need poutine with lobster or truffles."

    Poutine on waxed paper with dip

    16. "Hot dogs. I work at a craft brewery, and the number of people who have started high-end food trucks based on hot dogs (and have failed) is staggering. Nobody wants to drop $13 on a hot dog topped with sushi/BBQ/noodles/whatever that all just falls apart after the first bite. Just a chili dog or dog with mustard will make people happy."

    Hot dogs on a plate with onions and other condiments

    17. "Burgers, but specifically the brioche bun variant. Slightly different bread, massive markup."

    A thick cheeseburger on brioche with red onion

    18. "The South is crawling with restaurants that serve $30 plates of 'elevated' Southern food, when the soul food place down the road serving meat and three for $10 is probably a million times more flavorful."

    A pot of okra and rice soup

    19. And finally, "Not all caramel needs to be salted! I don't know if this really fits here, but I've been waiting for someplace to complain about it. LOL."

    Salted caramel

    H/T: r/Cooking.