Top 20 common kitchen calamities faced in the kitchen – including missing ingredients

The biggest mealtime mishaps include propelling pancakes onto the ceiling which don’t make it back to the pan and cooking everything for a Sunday roast – except the chicken.

In a survey of 2,000 adults, respondents shared their biggest fails others confessed to over spicing a dish to the point it was too hot for guests to handle.

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It was also revealed the most kitchen calamities were caused by lack of enthusiasm to cook (27 per cent), missing ingredients (22 per cent) and lack of time (18 per cent).

While one in six were left rueing overcooking elements of their dish.

The research was commissioned by Tesco, which has expanded its new express delivery service called Whoosh, bringing food to the door within 60 minutes should you ever find yourself in a moment of disaster.

A spokesperson for the supermarket chain, said: “Whether it’s a special date night or a cosy evening in front of the telly, mealtime moments are an important part of our day.

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“Though kitchen calamities can be dramatic, the research reveals that most mishaps are down to us simply not having what we need, when we need it – whether that’s a vital ingredient for a recipe, or a quick meal option when time, energy and enthusiasm are lacking.”

Easing kitchen stress

It also emerged more than a third (34 per cent) have been left flustered after their kitchen exploits, and 62 per cent have had to start again or order a takeaway thanks to burning the meal or forgetting a vital ingredient.

A further 14 per cent will also often start to prepare a dish and then realise they’ve forgotten the vital ingredient.

In this situation, more than half (53 per cent) try to use an alternative, 44 per cent carry on making the dish without it, while 38 per cent will run to the shops.

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When cooking for family and friends, 86 per cent feel it is important the meal is enjoyed by everyone.

But most kitchen mishaps tend to happen when people are preparing their midweek dish (22 per cent), cooking the Sunday roast (15 per cent) or when there are large gatherings of family and friends (10 per cent).

It was also found dinner time is the most common time for things to go wrong in the kitchen (49 per cent).

And 44 per cent wish there was a way that they could get the food they need for their meal delivered to them quickly as and when they need it.

Common kitchen calamities faced in the kitchen

Lack of energy/enthusiasm to cook

Missing ingredients

Not allowing enough time to prepare and cook

Overcooking elements


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Not having suitable food in and no time/energy to out and buy more

Finding a recipe too complicated

Trying to substitute an ingredient that doesn't quite work out

Reaching for something only to find it's out of date / gone off

Accidentally adding too much seasoning or spice

Presentation skills (i.e. The finished dish/meal doesn't look very appetising)

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Not having the right equipment (e.g. potato masher or tin opener)

Misreading a recipe

Kids getting in the way when I'm trying to concentrate

Too many people talking to me when I'm cooking

Undercooking elements

Not having suitable ingredients / items / alternatives for guests' dietary requirements or preferences

Trying to adapt a fish for different dietary requirements that doesn't turn out the same

Ruining ingredients/elements during the preparation because of an accidents (i.e. dropped eggs)

Setting the wrong time on the timer (or no timer)

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