The 10 Most Popular Genius Recipes of 2022

The 10 Most Popular Genius Recipes of 2022

Behold! The Food52 community’s Top 10 Genius Recipes of 2022.

As I tend to report every year, cookies and cakes strutted to the top spots of the list, but there were plenty of surprises, too—the very best chicken Caesar, a duo of Hawaiian pupus, and crispy chickpeas as satisfyingly sticky and spicy as Korean fried chicken.

This year, for the first time, we’re including the videos, too, so you can see how these recipes earned their star status, and how they can easily fit into your kitchen. Which one will you make first in 2023?

10. Epic Snickerdoodles From Jessie Sheehan

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This chewy, crisp-edged bakery-style cookie is ready in no time flat. No surprise the author of Snackable Bakes (and long-reigning queen of easy-peasy desserts), Jessie Sheehan, knows all the genius tricks for making an utterly epic snickerdoodle, without an epic wait time. The one trick that delighted me most? Melting and cooling butter at the same time.

9. Shoyu Dip With Sesame Crunch & Kim Chee Dip From Sheldon Simeon

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For the Super Bowl, we doubled down on dips with Top Chef fan favorite Sheldon Simeon. His creamy, salty, tangy pupus—both ready anytime from the pantry—are so simple and joyful, I had to give you two from his debut cookbook Cook Real Hawai‘i: Shoyu Dip With Sesame Crunch and Kim Chee Dip. Make one, make both, definitely make the sunshiny lemon oil and microwave fried garlic on repeat.

8. 5-Minute Tomato Sauce From Heidi Swanson

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The star of Heidi Swanson’s go-to tomato sauce? A subtle lift from lemon zest. It doesn’t turn the sauce particularly lemony or more acidic, but will make any tomatoes taste brighter and juicier. Her other wrist-flick of efficiency is adding a good amount of olive oil, minced garlic, red pepper flakes, and salt together to a cold pan before plunking it on the heat and stirring until it sizzles. The garlic and chiles start infusing into the oil from the get-go without the usual threat of burning.

7. Basic, Great Chocolate Chip Cookies From Tara O’Brady

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Seven Spoons author Tara O’Brady made at least 700 cookies on the path to this internet-famous recipe. She’d tinkered with her chocolate chip cookie recipe since high school and—inspired by the one-bowl-and-go technique of your average brownie—discovered that instead of creaming softened butter with sugar for a standard, cakey cookie, she likes to pull butter straight from the fridge and melt it for a denser, chewy-crispy texture (that also happens to be easier to make the moment you want one). Because you don’t need an electric mixer, this is the recipe that heroically kicks off the “Desserts Anyone Can Make” chapter of the Simply Genius cookbook.

6. Not Just Another Chicken Caesar Salad From Ali Slagle

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It’s fitting that in her debut cookbook, I Dream of Dinner, former Food52 editor Ali Slagle called this Not Just Another Caesar Salad, because it redefined what I’ve come to want in the classic. Ali’s most notable trick is in using half of the feisty dressing for a quick marinade for chicken, then pan-frying with even more of the dressing—mayo, Parmesan, and anchovy all frizzling and browning along. Then she brings in bitter greens to balance the richness, and a clever crunchy crouton trick that means I’ll never skip making them again.

5. Crispy Yangnyeom Chickpeas With Caramelized Honey From Eric Kim

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Imagine all the crispy, sticky, sweet-hot joys of Korean fried chicken—but without the frying (and the chicken). The delightfully efficient yangnyeom chickpeas in New York Times staff writer Eric Kim’s debut cookbook Korean American unlocks them for us, fast. Once you get Eric’s sweet-spicy yangnyeom sauce—and the technique for a cooling, curling tuft of scallions—down, you definitely won’t want to stop at just chickpeas.

4. The Best Potato Salad Ever From Monifa Dayo

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While I was on a sabbatical earlier this year, guest host Brinda Ayer found this winner by chef Monifa Dayo; contributed to Bryant Terry’s anthology Black Food. It’s a light, even, delicate potato salad with Yukon gold potatoes for richness, aioli for velvety creaminess, yogurt and vinegar for tang, and—in perhaps the most dramatic deviation from grandma’s—gently poached eggs, rather than the crumbling chunks of a hard-boil.

3. Caramel Crunch–Chocolate Chunklet Cookies From Dorie Greenspan

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Also while I was on sabbatical, food stylist and author Samantha Seneviratne shared the genius of these charmingly-named cookies from Dorie Greenspan’s most recent cookbook Baking with Dorie. The caramel in their name comes not from adding caramel chunks to the dough, but from the caramelization of the sugar and butter on the edges of the cookies themselves when baked. Dorie’s genius hack for baking these cookies in a muffin tin instead of on a sheet pan gives the sides and the bottom plenty of contact with hot metal, creating a toasty, all-around golden, edge.

2. Blueberry-Thyme Yogurt Cake from Dorie Greenspan

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This French yogurt cake is so simple and ubiquitous; Dorie Greenspan explains in Baking: From My Home to Yours, that in France it’s usually measured simply by scooping up flour, sugar, and oil right into the yogurt container. But because yogurt comes in varied sizes in the United States, Dorie reverse-engineered a version of the recipe that could be baked worldwide—either by weight or with standardized measuring cups and spoons. For the Simply Genius cookbook, Dorie shared a brand-new riff with blueberries and fresh thyme. She smooshes the herb into the sugar alongside the lemon zest, releasing its fragrant oils to travel through your cake batter and, ultimately, your kitchen too.

1. Citrus Cake From Yasmin Khan

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This citrus cake—inspired by the tangy orange version at the Home café in Nicosia, Cyprus—for Yasmin Khan’s cookbook Ripe Figs is a stunner: It comes together in essentially one bowl and one step (two, if you count the extra-tangy frosting). And most shockingly, there’s no need to cream softened butter and sugar, add eggs one by one, or pre-sift dry ingredients. It all goes into the bowl together, with mindful mixing and full-fat yogurt to keep the crumb tender.

What’s your favorite Genius recipe of 2022? Tell us in the comments below!

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