The Recipes Even The Worst Cooks Can Make


I can’t bake.

And I’m self-aware enough to know why. It’s because I’m not good at following instructions if they are too specific. I like to improvise and, according to my mum and my grandmother, you CAN NOT improvise when baking.

If a recipe calls for baking soda and I can only find baking powder in the pantry then I’m using the powder. And I’ll do so with no regard for the fact that they are two very different ingredients that will yield different results. I can’t tell you why they’re different, but I’ve been told that they are.

If a recipe calls for 1/3 of a cup of regular flour and I only have 1/2 a cup of self-raising flour, I’ll use the 1/2 and just not fill it all the way to the top. And if you’re reaaaaally quiet you can actually hear Mary Berry crying right now.

But I also know that even the worst bakers and cooks usually have a go-to recipe. That one they pull out when they simply can’t confess their shortcomings or when takeaways just won’t cut it. I asked all the worst cooks in The Twenties Club to send me those golden recipes and I’ve listed a whole bunch of them below for you (and me).

Thank you. And you’re welcome.

Tim Noakes’ Nutty Crackers

“This recipe is bomb if you want a healthy cracker for dips or platters. You can play around with the ingredients and add pumpkin seeds or half the amount of flax.” – Talia

Bill Granger’s Thai Chicken Noodle Soup

“I found this recipe on The Twenties Club’s monthly round-up last year and I’ve made it about six times without any f*ck ups. A heroic dish.” – Betty

Annabel Langbein’s Bacon and Egg Pie

“I am an awful cook and this is my go-to recipe. Hot tip: replace the potato with Kumara!” – Lauren

Naturally Ella’s Turmeric Rice with Coconut Kale

“This is my go-to recipe for dinner. I’ve successfully cooked normal rice in a pot exactly ZERO times without burning it, but every time I make this recipe it works!” – Kate

Julia & Libby’s Feta and Pea Falafels 

“All the ingredients go into a food processor…if you screw that one up then I’m done.” – Jenny

Italia Food Forever’s Pesto Pasta With Cherry Tomatoes

“Pesto pasta is amazing every time. Another hack is to make meatballs out of sausages: chop the end off the sausage, squeeze out the filling (kind of gross), roll them into balls and then fry them off in some oil!” – Emily

Jamie Oliver’s Tray Baked Chicken

“You literally chuck everything into a tray and leave it in the oven for an hour- no stirring or flipping required.” – Lauren  

Once Upon A Chef’s Banana Pancakes

“I have never been able to make pancakes successfully but these turn out really well every time.” – Courtney 

My Baking Addiction’s Best Ever Chocolate Cake

“Mix the wet things in one bowl, the dry things in another bowl, combine with a hand beater and Bingo! This recipe has saved my butt on many occasions from last-minute morning teas to forgotten birthdays.” – Taylor 

Annabel Langbein’s Spiced Chickpeas and Haloumi

“This takes five minutes to make and everyone is always super impressed with it at dinner parties.” – Ash

I Quit Sugar’s Oven-Baked Eggplant with Tzatziki and Pomegranate

“If you follow the instructions – I’m not usually good at this but for eggplant I’ll oblige – it’s a bloody good dinner and super healthy.” – Lucy