An RD weighs in on the biggest viral food trends right now

TikTok is an endless treasure trove of recipe inspiration, from baked feta pasta and salmon bowls to gut-friendly sparkling coffee. It is almost to easy, TBH, to look at the clock and realize that you’ve spent over an hour on the app fantasizing about what delicious dish you’re going to cook tonight. But when it comes to some of the biggest TikTok food trends blowing the airwaves right now, it’s not always clear if the recipes are as nutritious as they are delicious. Everything is fine – who says everything has to be healthy? — but for those curious about the true nutrient density of things like viral green goddess salad or custard toast, you’ve come to the right place.

To help us unpack the health benefits of some of today’s biggest TikTok recipes, we caught up with Stephanie Nelson, MS, RD, and MyFitnessPal’s Lead Nutritionist to learn about her favorite trending dishes. “These viral, healthy TikTok videos make it so easy to find creative and delicious recipes,” says Nelson. She’s clearly a fan, adding that she loves how many of the recipes on the app come directly from registered dietitians. “You can find these recipes by searching the hashtag #dietitianapproved,” she says. And even if you’re not exactly looking for heart- or gut-friendly recipes, there are some easy ways to make many of the other popular dishes even more nutritious. Check out just a few of their favorites below.

The 4 TikTok viral food trends a nutritionist loves the most

1. Green Goddess Salad

@bakedbymelissa Answer @ieshaworthen__ The OG Green Goddess🌿 #vegan #bakedbymelissa #saladrecipe #greengoddess #salad #cooking ♬ Original sound – Baked by Melissa

“This twist on a green goddess salad is a super creative and delicious way to add more heart-healthy veggies to your diet,” says Nelson. “Traditional Green Goddess dressing is often made with mayonnaise, which in and of itself isn’t bad for you, but it tends to be quite high in saturated fat and preservatives.” This version, on the other hand, uses olive oil and walnuts instead. “These ingredients offer many more health benefits than mayonnaise due to the fiber, omega-3s, and anti-inflammatory fats found in walnuts and olive oil,” adds Nelson.

For maximum health benefits, Nelson suggests playing with the type of greens you use in the base and adding extra leafy greens to the cabbage base. “Kale, kale, spinach, Swiss chard, and romaine lettuce all provide different types of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, so you can cover all your bases by mixing different types of greens or switching each time you prepare it,” she says. “Also try adding some sort of protein source if you’re enjoying this as a full meal to make it more balanced and filling.” Some marinated chicken breast works well for meat eaters, or marinated tofu for my vegetarians.”

2. Pudding Toast

@cookingwithayeh chocolate or berries?? #yogurttoast #custardtoast ♬ Up Beat (married life) – Kenya

While custard toast might sound like dessert, Nelson notes that this dish definitely has some healthy elements, including the protein from the yogurt and egg. “Plus, any opportunity to add your favorite fruit to your breakfast is great, and you have an opportunity to add fiber if you opt for whole grain breads,” she adds. Keep in mind, she says, that you won’t get the yogurt’s gut benefits because cooking the egg requires the dish to reach a temperature that kills the probiotics in the yogurt. To circumvent this mess and cut down on the sugar, Nelson suggests trying a deconstructed version: “A scoop of plain Greek yogurt with some fruit and a scrambled egg with toast makes a deliciously filling, balanced breakfast. That way you don’t have any added sugar and you preserve the probiotics in the yogurt for maximum benefit,” she says.

3. Jennifer Aniston’s salad

@frederikkewaeren’s new favorite salad🥗 #jenniferanistonsalat ♬ I’m here for you (TV version with dialogue) – The Rembrandts

“This salad is more balanced, filling, and nutritious than your average green salad because of the chickpeas and grains it contains—and I’m totally here for that,” says Nelson. The beans and whole grains both serve as excellent sources of plant-based protein and fiber, making this recipe super heart and gut healthy. “Another great thing about this salad is the use of herbs, which add fresh flavor and antioxidants to the dish,” adds Nelson.

Although Jennifer Aniston obviously never got bored of this recipe if you’re feeling meh After the tenth time, Nelson suggests swapping the grains. “Couscous is quick and easy, but try to play around with the grit you use,” she notes. “Whole farro adds a nutty flavor and some protein, while bulgur brings a lot of fiber. For a gluten-free option, try quinoa. I also recommend adding some shredded cabbage to pack in some extra veggies and keep the crunchy vibe of the pistachios.”

4. Hailey Bieber’s pizza toast

@haileybieberhad to share my quick easy pizza toast ✨✨♬ GOOD VIBES – Ellen Once Again

“Pizza toast is one of those dishes that wouldn’t love this dish,” says Nelson. “It’s a convenient and hearty snack, providing energy from the carbs in the bread and a bit of protein from the burrata. The burrata’s creaminess is some of the best comfort food out there, and the truffle oil adds an even more delicious umami-rich flavor. This recipe is quite high in fat, so it’s great when you’re busy all afternoon and need something to keep you full and energized while you deal with whatever your crazy day throws at you. Bonus points if you use whole grain breads, which have more fiber and help you avoid a sugar crash,” says Nelson.

5. Crab Rangoons

@tiffycooks Extra Crispy Crab Rangoon #recipes #fyp #chinesefood #asianfood #food #crab #crabrangoon ♬ VACATION – Lil Nas X

“This is the ultimate comfort food that brings richness through crab and cream cheese, and who doesn’t love the crunchy texture of crispy wontons,” says Nelson. “Crabmeat certainly adds protein as well. This could be a comforting snack on a movie night, or a filling afternoon snack if you don’t have time to eat later.” If you’re making crab rangoons at home, Nelson suggests baking them rather than frying the little packets of joy to make the increase nutrient density.

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