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“How to eat Fried Worms” (vegan-style)

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Does anyone remember the book from elementary school: How to eat Fried Worms?

That’s what came to mind as I assembled today’s lunch. I started out with a monster salad (mixed greens, spinach, and lots of chard), with sesame-ginger dressing and crunchy almonds. So far so good. But then, when I cooked up some of my newest-favorite high-protein spaghetti, things got ugly.

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Really ugly. Above, the spaghetti and salad, along with garlic-y zucchini, which I sautéed using this healthy method. Nothing wrong with how my lunch tasted!

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Do you know how hard it is to make that pasta appear appetizing? Looks like a plate filled with earthworms!!


Katie is the baker, photographer, and author of the popular blog Chocolate-Covered Katie. Her favorite food is chocolate, and she believes in eating a balanced diet that includes dessert every single day. More about Katie—> 

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  1. Faith says:

    Thank you for admitting you’ve tried Milk Bones! I remember once when I was very little – like 6 or 7 – I was SUCH a picky eater that my mother told me if I didn’t want to eat the dinners she made me, she’d just start serving me dog food…so what did I do? JUST to be a petulant little imp I stuck my hand in the bag of Alpo and started crunching the kibble…and she swears I was smiling like I liked it :/ That right there is far more worrisome than worm noodles! (Which look absolutely fabulous, for the record).

  2. GabyE says:

    When I was a kid I ate mud on a dare, and I’ve definitely had Milk Bones before, its very unfortunate that Scooby Snacks look so similar.

    That banana bread in a bowl looks amazing! And so do the ugly noodles, I love ugly food, it’s so much fun!

  3. Yep, I too tried a dog treat once. That was about it though. I knew lots of kids who ate bugs but I always thought it was gross!

  4. Kiersten says:

    Bugs freaked me out so much when I was younger that I wouldn’t even read that book, let alone eat a worm! They still freak me out a little actually. I don’t remember doing it, but apparently I ate an eraser that looked like a hamburger when I was little. hehe.

    1. LOL oh my gosh, I am laughing so much at this, imagining a cute little Kiersten gobbling up an eraser!

  5. abby says:

    hahahahahaha oh this post made me laugh so much! when i was little, i was always afraid to eat watermelon seeds, because my mom said a watermelon would grow in my tummy!

  6. Katie says:

    Haha, I loved that book in elementary school – and my kiddos still love it today! And now it’s even a movie.

    I ate cat food when I was little, just to see what it tasted like. :-) No worms, though…

  7. Valerie says:

    My dear little daughter has you all beat: about a year ago, she ate a red ant. Picked it up and just plopped it onto her tongue. I was horrified! And not just because we’re vegetarians ;).

  8. KeepItSweet says:

    makes me think of that dirt dessert- where you have pudding, cookie crumbs and gummy worms haha

    1. MMm I remember that stuff. Maybe I should look into a vegan version, as now you’ve given me a craving. I haven’t had that in years!

      1. VEGirl says:

        You know, I bet you could use your agar pudding base to make a chocolate pudding, then use the vegan gummies (they have vegan BEARS? It could be like a forest pudding– with dirt and bears!). Then use vegan chocolate cookie crumbs for the rest!?

        1. My favorite part was always the cool whip. Weird, huh? It’s not even the chocolate!
          Anywhoos, I’m going to try your idea!! Maybe with my homemade whip too.

  9. eatandrun says:

    Another milk bone eater here!

  10. Sarahishealthy says:

    Oh those banana cereal pictures DO look good! I’m off to check out Marianne’s blog now.
    But Katie, I also think your lunch looks good :).

  11. Lindsay says:

    Wow! Those fried worms actually kind of look like worms!

    The banana cereal looks yummy :)

    1. LOL I told you! Haha it’s like green ketchup: if you close your eyes, it tastes good. But if you look at what you’re eating… not so much!

  12. Albizia says:

    These spaghetti actually look appealing to me. But I’m weird so I suppose my opinion doesn’t count :) .

    I haven’t ever eaten real worms but I have also tried dog food and I must admit I liked it. Other weird things… Well, when I was 5 I ate a whole snow ball while my mom wasn’t looking at me. And I didn’t catch a cold 😛

    1. Oh your opinion does too count! Plus, taste is what’s important, and they tasted soooo good! :)

  13. VEGirl says:

    HAHA!! I read how to eat fried worms like four ears ago or something. Ick, I really didn’t get it (it was the year before I went vegan). Let me see… have I ever eaten anything strange. Well, I used to like sucking on coins! I really liked the metallic taste. And, um…. yeah can’t think of anything else. There’s probably a ton of gross stuff I’m not thinking of right now!

  14. What a Great book, I have not thought of that book in so long. 😉
    Your Meals look good to me! I cannot find that pasta at Whole FOods- on many occasions too, Any tips on how to find it???They said they ordered it too….
    I might of taken a bite out of a cranyon once in K (ok I know I did for sure, it was purple) but that is better than a worm right?!Katie, I also have tried a milk bone! Glad to know we have another thign in common!!

    1. Sadly, my WF doesn’t have it either. I found one package at a little hfs near my grandma in NY. But now I am completely out :(.
      I’m contemplating breaking down and just ordering it online. ( is the website, I think.)

      1. Stefanie says:

        I don’t know if you checked, but my Whole Foods keeps them down by the asian noodles. They are a plenty by me unlike me beloved soba noodles. :)

        1. thanks for the suggestions- I looked in the Asian/Thai Foods but will try again.

        2. Sadly, I’ve checked. They’re m.i.a. around here. I guess Texans just don’t like eating worms! 😉

  15. mckella says:

    I ate ants once, cat food a few times, and Playdough quite a few times!

  16. I’ve tried cat food . . . and I thought Miracle Grow was crushed-up Oreo. :(

  17. I can’t recall eating anything strange, although I was rushed into the Emergency Ward because my parents thought I had swallowed a pound coin (UK currency) Luckily an x-ray exonerated me though 😉

    To me that spaghetti looks delicious! In fact, I could gobble your whole meal right off the screen. I wish I could find the spaghetti or something similar in backward old England!

    Hope you’re having a fab Sunday


  18. Vanilla says:

    Katie, I was just eating my snack and saw this title…:s


    1. hahaha oops! Sorry to ruin your appetite!

  19. Jenny says:

    Your lunch looks awesome to me, Katie! Wish I could try some of that black bean pasta – I LOVE your garlicky zucchini “recipe”/cooking method and have it with whole grain spaghetti… but I love black beans so…

    I remember eating black ants during recess. :S There was an ant-eating competition… and I was a tomboy, so I joined the boys in some of their weird competitions like that. I also lived in Asia when I was little, so I had lots of chances to eat strange things. XD Fried grasshoppers, scorpions on toasty flatbread, and some pretty horrific Filipino dishes…

    What are Milk Bones, though?!

    1. Dog biscuits. Really gross ones, too, with all sorts of awful ingredients!
      Ants are probably a whole lot healthier!

  20. radioactivegan says:

    I don’t remember eating anything too odd, although I do remember reading that book.

    My friend’s little sister ate a battery once (needless to say she went to the hospital for that one). And my Dot (grandmother) will readily admit she was a paste eater in her younger days.

  21. Fi says:

    I cant say Ive ever eaten worms, but I have eaten washing up liquid, thinking it was icing sugar, not a very good mistake to make, ha.

  22. I ate wet cat food once. I swear I remember my mom telling me it was good but she has no idea what I’m talking about. Maybe I asked if the cats liked it and she said yes..and then I somehow twisted that into “it tastes good.” I was 4 so that’s probably what happened. Granted, it.was.disgusting.

  23. You are so right about that pasta, but i keep coming back for more… Too bad it is so expensive and lacks fiber… I wonder why this is? It is made from pure black beans?

    1. Eh, I get more than enough fiber in other areas of my diet, so I don’t really care about that. Sometimes I have to worry about getting too MUCH fiber lol! I love the protein stats in this, as I’m more of a carb-loving girl who isn’t big on meat analogs.

      Yeah, the only ingredients are black beans and water.

  24. stylish1 says:

    While I’ve never had worms I’ve had my fair of spaghetti in my day lol. Hmm weird food? Um I’ve dipped dorito’s into plain vanilla ice cream loL! Oh man to make it worse, it was good!!

  25. I never ate any bugs but I did eat both cat and dog food and every type of plant. Grass, leaves, honeysuckle, and lots of wild green onions. Those were a significant part of my elementary school diet.

  26. 40apples says:

    Yeahhh I tried cat food once. And I remember at least like 5 kids every year “accidentally” swallowing worms (how that even HAPPEN?!) throughout elementary school. Haha. Some of our school lunches could be categorized as “strange”/inedible too (e.g. their “McRib” sandwich. nuff said.).

  27. Dianne says:

    Great. Now I’ll never try black bean pasta. 😉

  28. Namaste Gurl says:

    Mmmm, that black- bean paste looks yummmyy. Too bad it’s not available at WF. I do hate shipping costs, too, but lemme know if you find a cheap site to get them from!

    DO give the recipe for your semame- gingah dressing, looks good :)

    1. LOL it’s easy: open a bottle of Newman’s Own and pour. Hehehe easy peasy “recipe” 😉

    2. Namaste Gurl says:

      Newman’s own ginger dressing? My fav. ginger dressing would have to be Annie’s gingerly:)

  29. Kelly says:

    Yep, I definitely crunched on some Milk Bones in my day – I wanted to sample every flavor to see if they were really different!

    I also used to tear off a bit of paper, crumple it up, put it in my mouth, and pretend it was chewing gum. My mom was just a tad overprotective and was afraid I’d choke on real gum, so I wasn’t allowed to have it for the longest time. Good job, Mom; instead of hypothetically choking on gum, I probably ingested whatever nasty bleaches, dyes, and chemicals are in notebook paper! Gross!

  30. Marianne says:

    Perhaps I’m weird, but I don’t think the noodles look all that bad :) And thanks for the shout out! I would argue those aren’t exactly my best photos though 😉

    1. Haha well they’re better than any of mine! But I agree that some of your other photos are even more amazing… if that’s even possible…

  31. Kiki says:

    Haha I sooo remember that book! And when I was a little kid, I thought I was a dinosaur from watching The Land Before Time so much and ate the leaves off trees. Now I’m a vegetarian… go figure.

    And I actually really want to try that spaghetti! Did you find it at Whole Foods?

    1. I actually found it at a little hfs in NY. My WF doesn’t sell it :(. But some people say that theirs do. Look in the Asian section. I hope you have better luck than I do!!

  32. BroccoliHut says:

    Ha! I was about to write “Milk Bones” before I even saw your confession. Great minds think a like:) I thought they would taste like Wheat Thins at the time…

  33. Rachael says:

    Milk Bone confidential: I liked the yellow ones.
    I ate worms, bugs, dirt, clay, usually on a bet, and sometimes just because i was curious. Sadly, to this day I don’t wash the beets or carrots I dig up from my garden – just eat ’em raw with the dirt still clinging….don’t judge me :)

  34. Gena says:

    I love black bean anything! Must try this stuff.