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Brand-Name Recipes

Welcome. You just found copycat recipes for all of your favorite famous foods! Bestselling author and TV host Todd Wilbur shows you how to duplicate the taste of iconic dishes and treats at home. Todd's recipes are easy to follow and fun to make. Search for recipes by brand name here. New recipes added every week.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 2

    Nestle is the world's largest packaged food manufacturer, coffee roaster, and chocolate maker. It is the largest single company in Switzerland today, but Nestle derives only 2 percent of its revenue from its home country.

    The company is quite diverse. Nestle's product lines include beverages and drinks, chocolate and candy, dairy products, and frozen foods. The company also operates more than thirty Stouffer Hotels and owns 25 percent of the French cosmetics giant L'Oreal. In the United States, where the company is called Nestle USA, it ranks third behind Mars, Inc., and Hershey in chocolate sales.

    This candy bar was introduced in 1966 as the $100,000 Bar, then its name was changed to 100 Grand Bar in 1985.

    Source: More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    In 1972, brothers-in-law Leonard Marsh and Hyman Golden had become tired of running a window-washing business. They contacted their friend Arnold Greenberg and told him they wanted to start selling bottle fruit juices. Greenberg had a health-food store and thought their idea for all-natural beverages was a good one, so together they started selling pure fruit juices under the name Unadulterated Food Products. It took the trio about a decade to acquire the name they really wanted, Snapple, for $500 from a guy in Texas who has used it on an apple soda that bombed. Snapple's big break came in 1988, when the company started bottling ready-to-drink iced teas. It took only five years for Snapple to become the leader in the iced tea market, blowing away giants Lipton and Nestea. The Snapple iced tea phenomenon helped the company increase sales between 1988 and 1992 by nearly 1,300 percent.

    Source: More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 3.00. Votes: 1

    In 1914, Charles H. Miller came up with this molasses and peanut butter candy and named it after his favorite aunt. His candy company flourished, selling many confections, but none as popular as the Mary Jane. Eventually all other candies were discontinued and Mary Janes were the only candy produced by the Miller company. Miller tried playing with the formula to improve the candy, but none could compare to the original. In 1985, Stark Candy Company bought the Miller company and added the Stark name to the wrapper. Even though ownership has changed, the Mary Jane recipe is the same as it was over 100 years ago.

    Source: More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 8

    If you're a ginger snap fanatic, clone the cookie giant's store-bought version in a, uh, snap. And if you're watching the fat, four of these cookies check in with a total of around 2.5 grams of fat.

    Nutrition Facts
    Serving size–4 cookies
    Total servings–30
    Calories per serving–110
    Fat per serving–2.5g

    Source: Low-Fat Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 3

    The beginning of the graham cracker goes back to the early 1800s when Sylvester Graham thought his new invention was the secret to a lifetime of perfect health, even sexual prowess—certainly extraordinary claims for a cracker. But this came from the man thought to be quite a wacko in his time, since he had earlier claimed that eating ketchup could ruin your brain. So, while his crispy whole wheat creation was not the cure for every known ailment, the sweet crackers still became quite a fad, first in New England around the 1830s and then spreading across the country. Today, graham crackers remain popular as a low-fat, snack-time munchable, and, most notably, as the main ingredient in smores.

    You don't need to use graham flour for this recipe, since that stuff is similar to the whole wheat flour you find in your local supermarket. Just pick your favorite variety among these three clones of Nabisco's most popular crackers, and be sure to roll out the dough paper thin.

    Nutrition Facts
    Serving size–2 crackers
    Total servings–22
    Calories per serving–120
    Fat per serving–3g

    Source: Low-Fat Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 5

    Beneath the chocolate of Nestle's popular candy bar is a chewy, peanut-covered center that resembles Hershey's PayDay. To clone this one we'll only have to make a couple adjustments to the PayDay clone recipe, then add the milk chocolate coating. Even though the wrapper of this candy bar calls the center "nougat," it's more of a white or blonde fudge that you can make in a saucepan on your stovetop with a candy thermometer.

    Source: Even More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 1

    A while back when I was rummaging through my pantry I came upon several bottles of flavored Yoo-hoo that I had picked up from Wal-Mart and tucked away for over a year. Each of the bottles was covered with a little dust and needed a pretty fierce shaking, but the contents were well-preserved and still tasty. After some Web browsing of a few unofficial Yoo-hoo websites, I discovered these worshipped "Mix-ups" variety of the famous chocolate drink had since been discontinued and I was holding onto a few rare bottles. I immediately got to work on some hacks, and soon figured out how to resurrect these Dead Foods with some delicious and simple home clones.

    Source: Top Secret Recipes: Sodas, Smoothies, Spirits & Shakes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 3.44. Votes: 9

    Although the drink is 99 percent sugar water, that other 1 percent is the key to the drink's unique taste. The tangy citrus flavors, from lime juice, citrus oils, and citric acid (today the citric acid has been replaced with phosphoric acid), was used by pharmacist John Pemberton to overcome the inherent unpleasant bitterness of cocaine and caffeine. Even after removing the cocaine from the drink, it was still necessary to conceal the ghastly flavor of kola nut and coca leaf extract from the taste buds with the sweet, tangy syrup.

    To make an accurate clone of Coca-Cola at home, I started with the medicinal ingredient, probably just as John did. But rather than harvesting kola nuts, we have the luxury of access to caffeine pills found in any grocery store or pharmacy. One such brand is Vivarin, but it is yellow in color with a thick coating and it tastes much too bitter. NoDoz, however, is white and less bitter, with a thinner coating. Each NoDoz tablet contains 200 milligrams of caffeine, and a 12-ounce serving Coke has 46 milligrams in it. So, if we use 8 NoDoz tablets that have been crushed into powder with a mortar and pestle (or in a bowl using the back of a spoon) we get 44 milligrams of caffeine in a 12-ounce serving, or 36 milligrams in each of the 10-ounce servings we make with this recipe. 

    Finding and adding the caffeine is the easy part. You'll probably have more trouble obtaining Coke's crucial flavoring ingredient: cassia oil. I was hoping to leave such a hard-to-get ingredient out of this recipe, but I found it impossible. The unique flavor of the Coke absolutely requires the inclusion of this Vietnamese cinnamon oil (usually sold for aromatherapy), but only a very small amount. You'll find the cassia oil in a health food store (I used the brand Oshadhi), along with the lemon oil and orange oil. The yield of this recipe had to be cranked up to 44 10-ounce servings since these oils are so strong—just one drop is all you'll need. Find them in bottles that allow you to measure exactly one drop if you can. If the oils don't come in such a bottle, buy eyedroppers at a drug store. Before you leave the health food store, don't forget the citric acid.

    This recipe, because of the old-fashioned technique of adding the syrup to soda water, creates a clone of Coke as it would taste coming out of a fountain machine. That Coke is usually not as fizzy as the bottled stuff. But if you add some ice to a glass of bottled Coke, and them some of this cloned version, the bubbles will settle down and you'll discover how close the two are. You can keep the syrup in a sealed container in the fridge until you are ready to mix each drink with soda water. 

    Because subtle differences in flavor can affect the finished product, be sure to measure your ingredients very carefully. Use the flat top edge of a butter knife to scrape away the excess sugar and citric acid from the top of the measuring cup and teaspoon, and don't estimate on any of the liquid ingredients.

    Source: Top Secret Recipes: Sodas, Smoothies, Spirits & Shakes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 4.56. Votes: 9

    The name of this tomato-based sauce belies its taste. There's not even a hint of spiciness here that someone might associate with "chili." Instead you get a sweet and sour sauce that's got more tang than ketchup, and more chunks. And what are those chunks? According to the label they're dehydrated onions, so that's exactly what we'll use in this formula. Be sure to get the kind that say dried "minced" onions, because dried "chopped" onions are too big. The recipe is a simple one since you just combine everything in a saucepan and simmer until done. And if you cruise down to the Tidbits at the bottom of this recipe, I'll show you a super-easy way to turn this saucy clone into a beautiful carbon copy of Heinz Seafood Cocktail Sauce.

    Source: Top Secret Recipes Unlocked by Todd Wilbur.

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I'm Todd Wilbur,
Chronic Food Hacker

For 30 years I've been deconstructing America's most iconic brand-name foods to make the best original clone recipes for you to use at home. Welcome to my lab.

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