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Written by:  Odile Fredericks
Date: March 11, 2011

Indulge the food prankster in yourself and impress your kids this April Fools' Day! We're making it easy for you by giving away two unique cookbooks: Fake Out Food, with recipes for wacky treats to fool your friends, and Disgustingly Delicious, with hilarious treats to freak them out. Comment in this blog, and you could win a copy of either book.
On April Fools' Day nothing beats playing a mischievous food prank. Published last year, Fake Out Food offers ideas for creating "counterfeit foods" that look like one thing but taste entirely different. The recipes are designed to happily amuse (and confuse) your guests and offer a deliciously deceptive cooking adventure that even young kids can pull off with a little help from adults.

Cook Up Giggles with Edible Illusions

If you're looking to surprise, try the recipe for fish sticks and fresh fries below. Typically, we expect salty, savory flavors when we bite into these foods. But when the fish sticks are actually made out of wafer cookies and the French fries are really fresh apples, our taste buds experience a shockingly sweet surprise instead.

From candy masquerading as cheese, crackers or vegetables, to meatloaf and mashed potatoes disguised as a frosted cake or ice cream sundae, food pranks are the perfect way to make tasty fun memories. The cookbook is spiral bound and comes with color photos, making it easy to see how your prank should turn out. (The photo above looks like fish sticks and fries, but it isn't!)

'Gross Never Tasted So Good'

But if you'd rather head straight for the shock factor, seek out recipes from Disgustingly Delicious, a 2010 cookbook that brags "gross never tasted so good!" The book is also spiral bound, with color photos on each page. I showed some of the photos to my husband, and he begged me to take them away. You just can't beat that! You'll find recipes for making edible water bugs, roaches, raunchy rodents, cow pie delights, monster q-tips (with dirt on them). Yum! Having two sons in my house, I know that these creations will be a hit at parties and come October, at Halloween.

Share a comment in this blog, and you'll be eligible for our cookbooks drawing. We'd like to hear some of your recipes—or memories—for April Fools' food pranks.

Odile Fredericks, Carolina Parent web editor, is mom to a tween and teen, who have inspired her to make deliciously gross creations.

Secrets to Food Pranks

Follow these helpful tips from CQ Products to create utterly delicious, totally deceptive foods that will tickle the funny bone and make everyone laugh out loud.

1. Pay attention to details so friends will believe the illusions you've created. Try to duplicate the same shapes and details of real foods in your fake ones.

2. After presenting the faux food and getting some laughs, divide any large foods into smaller serving portions for everyone to enjoy.

3. Add paper décor such as snack packages and fast-food wrappers that look like the real thing.

4. Recruit an accomplice to carry out the undercover operation. Your most important mission? To have fun!


Fish Sticks and Tartar Sauce 8 sugar wafer cookie sticks, any flavor

½ C. creamy peanut butter

1 C. crushed cornflakes cereal

4 (1 oz.) squares white baking chocolate, chopped

1 tsp. chopped pistachio nuts

French Fries

2 large apples

2 T. lemon juice

1 tsp. cinnamon

¼ C. sugar


To make "fish sticks," spread about 1 tablespoon peanut butter in a thin layer over all sides of each cookie stick. Roll in crushed cereal until well coated. Place two fish sticks on each serving plate.

To make "tartar sauce," microwave white chocolate for 60 seconds; stir and repeat as needed until melted and smooth. Stir in nuts. Place a spoonful of tartar sauce on each serving plate, next to fish sticks, or divide among condiment cups.

For "French fries," peel, core and quarter each apple. Use a crinkle cutter to cut apple pieces into sticks that look like French fries. Toss gently with lemon juice; drain on paper towels. In a medium bowl, stir together cinnamon and sugar. Add apple slices to bowl, a few at a time, and toss to coat apples well. Arrange some fries on each serving plate. Serve promptly—and let the giggles begin!

This recipe was provided by CQ Products. For more fun food pranks, look for Fake Out Food or its companion book, Disgustingly Delicious, available online at or at gift, toy and bookstores nationwide.

Dog Food

Makes 9 cups

4½ C. Kix cereal

4½ C. Corn Pops cereal

1 ½ - 2 C. Nestlé Nesquik powder

½ C. creamy peanut butter

¼ C. butter

1 C. milk chocolate chips

1 tsp. vanilla extract

In a large bowl, stir together Kix and Corn Pops cereals.

Put Nesquik powder in a large paper bag.

In a small saucepan over low heat, combine peanut butter, butter and chocolate chips until chips are completely melted; stir in vanilla. Pour melted mixture over cereal mixture and stir until all cereal pieces are coated.

Dump entire mixture into paper bag with Nesquik powder, close the bag tightly and shake vigorously to coat evenly.

This recipe was also provided by CQ Products.


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