Confessions Of A Facebook Food Video Junkie

You’ve seen them all over Facebook. They’re pinned on everyone’s “Must Make” recipe board on Pinterest.

Time-lapse cooking videos have become as ubiquitous on Facebook as engagement and pregnancy announcements. Move over, Food Network. People aren’t watching your 30-minute cooking shows anymore. Now, they’re viewing minute-long videos that use super speed and easy on-screen instructions to demonstrate how to make delicious food.

BuzzFeed Food, Tasty, Tip Hero, and Tastemade conquered the allure of social video in 2015, and they show no signs of stopping. According to a Shareablee article, five of the top 20 Facebook videos were recipes:

According to Shareablee, the Apple Roses post was the most engaged Facebook post of the year—not just video, but of any type of content, including photos. That post garnered nearly 7.7 million total actions, with more than 70 percent being shares.

Why are these videos so popular? Because everyone eats. While other content creators find marginal success sharing niche content (think workout videos, makeup tips, parenting advice, fashion trends), food is universal.

“Food is an easy thing for people to bond over on social media no matter if they know each other really well or only know each other a little, if they’re constantly in touch or have been out of touch for a while. It’s a lighthearted topic, it’s not too serious or overtly political (most of the time),” BuzzFeed Food co-creative director Emily Fleischaker told Digiday.

We can thank Buzzfeed for all the delectable videos (and so much more) filling our newsfeeds. The media organization was an early adopter of Facebook’s auto-play feature for videos, and they have the stats to prove their success. Atlantic reported last year that Buzzfeed gets 200 million monthly unique visitors, and 1 billion video views a month.

I’m guessing I account for several thousand of those video views because I cannot stop watching them. I want to make nearly everything all of those sites share, but they appear so quickly that the one I’m most intrigued by often gets lost in the ocean of delectable dishes they pump out at a mind-boggling pace.

One recipe that stuck in my mind was the Chicken Parm-Stuffed Spaghetti Squash. Why? Three reasons:

  1. The dish looks delicious, yet simple to make.
  2. I’m curious whether vegetables can truly replace carbs in any recipe. (Ask me about the nasty cauliflower pizza crust I made. I dare you.)
  3. I want to give spaghetti squash a chance to redeem itself (I made one years ago, but it was the most unappetizing and strangely textured food I’ve ever eaten. And I’ve tried tripe!)

Imagine my pleasant surprise when I discovered that this recipe was actually easy to make and turned out as delicious as it looked in the Tasty video I saw on Facebook. I’m glad I finally made this one…and now I can’t wait to tackle more. Here’s a quick video explaining how the process went for me:

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While this recipe is the first I’ve actually documented and written about, I’ve also made these tasty treats as well:

I’m curious – have you tried any of the recipes from videos you see on Facebook? What’s your favorite?

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