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Nice work. You just found copycat recipes for all of your favorite famous foods! Bestselling author and TV host Todd Wilbur shows you how to easily duplicate the taste of iconic dishes and treats at home. Find all the best restaurant recipes from Waffle House to Zaxby's here. New recipes added every week.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 3

    Here's a recipe that comes from a challenge issued by the New York Daily News. The paper wanted to watch a West Coast dude duplicate the taste of an authentic New York City knish. But, mind you, not just any knish. This knish comes from one of the oldest knisheries in the Big Apple, a place that also takes pride in the low fat content of its knishes as opposed to the popular deep-fried variety. When I tasted the famous Yonah Schimmel knish (the first knish I had ever eaten), I realized that not only could a good clone recipe be created, but even more fat grams could be eliminated. The Daily News had a food lab analyze the fat content of the original knish and the clone, as well as the fat in a street vendor knish and a supermarket knish, just for comparison. The lab results are listed following the recipe.

    Source: Top Secret Recipes Unlocked by Todd Wilbur.

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    In the southwestern cities where Z'Tejas serves these incredible margaritas, they are truly legendary. The secret mixture is made fresh every day in a freezing dispenser machine with a dirt-cheap brand of tequila and custom-made sweet-and-sour mix. Perhaps that's the beauty of the drink. It's one of the most potent margaritas around, but with the addition of sweet liqueurs, its strength is well hidden. Even though the chain uses a special machine to make this one, preparing your own clone doesn't require any special equipment. It does take patience, however. Most good things do. But before long you'll be enjoying either a clone of Z' Big Stick with three layers of liqueurs, or a copy of the Famous Chambord Raspberry Margarita, the drink that earns "Best Margarita in Town" awards for the chain on a regular basis. 

    You can, of course, drink the basic margarita base without the liqueurs, but the added liqueurs give the drink its charm. To create the margarita, you must mix all the ingredients in a pitcher and put it in the freezer for at least 4 hours, even overnight if you can. The cocktail won't freeze solid since there's tequila in there. When it's frozen, you take it out, and give it a little stir until it's the perfect slushy consistency.

    This recipe clones the tall, 14-ounce drink served in a pilsner glass with layers of Chambord, Midori, and blue curacao. The restaurant limits customers to just two of these drinks per visit. Try it and you'll find out why.

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

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    Score: 3.50. Votes: 2

    Over 5,000 Wendy's restaurants around the world serve the hamburger with the square patty that hangs over the edge of the bun. It's the burger that inspired the 1984 award-winning ad campaign with a little old lady crying out, "Where's the beef?" This secret recipe to create a lower-fat clone of the famous burger asks the question, "Where's the fat?" By using super-lean ground beef, fat-free mayonnaise, and fat-free cheese, we have cut the fat to less than half of what is in the original. Now you can have two cloned burgers for less than the fat found in one original.

    Nutrition Facts
    Serving size–1 sandwich
    Total servings–1
    Calories per serving–335 (Original–420)
    Fat per serving–10g (Original–21g)

    Source: Top Secret Recipes Lite by Todd Wilbur. 

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 1

    To make a version of this frozen treat at home, with fat reduced by about 75 percent, you will need fat-free vanilla ice cream, Nestle Quick, and low-fat milk. Oh, and a blender.

    Nutrition Facts
    Serving size–1 16-ounce
    Total servings–2
    Calories per serving–470 (Original–440)
    Fat per serving–2g (Original–11g)

    Source: Top Secret Recipes Lite by Todd Wilbur.

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    The Classic Greek Pita used the same salad base and dressing as the clone for the Chicken Caesar Pita, but replaces the chicken and Parmesan with a Greek topping that's a breeze to make. Even though Wendy's uses a pocketless pita that can be tough to find in stores, you can use the more common pocketed pita, just without opening the pocket. Instead, you heat up the pita, then fill up the center and fold it like a soft taco.  

    Source: Even More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 4

    Early in 1997 Wendy's introduced its selection of cold "Fresh Stuffed" pita sandwiches—a nice change of pace from the typical fast food fare. Basically what you're getting is a small salad wrapped in a warm pita bread. You might be saying to yourself "That doesn't sound like much for 3 bucks!" Then I would say, "Perhaps, but what if you could make a clone yourself for a mere fraction of that?" You would say, "Cool, man! Lay it on me." And then I would say, "Here you go." 

    Source: Even More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 1

    In 1990 Wendy's not only added this new sandwich to its growing menu, but also added more international restaurants to the chain, including stores in Indonesia, Greece, Turkey, and Guatemala. Wendy's now claims more than 4,000 outlets around the world, with more than $3 billion in sales.

    This is an excellent sandwich if you like grilled chicken, and it contains only nine grams of fat, if you're counting.

    Source: More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Surely when Dave Thomas opened his first Wendy's Old Fashioned Hamburgers restaurant in 1969, and named it after his daughter, he never imagined the tremendous success and growth his hamburger chain would achieve. In 1989 Dave starred in a series of television ads that boosted Wendy's customer awareness level to the highest levels since its famous "Where's the beef?" campaign.

    In the same year, Wendy's introduced the Super Value Menu, a selection of items all priced under a buck. The Junior Bacon Cheeseburger was added to the selection of inexpensive items and quickly became a hit.

    Source: More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 1

    In 1984 the diminutive Clara Peller blurted out in a series of four television ads the memorable phrase that would pop up on T-shirts and in presidential campaigns: "Where's the beef?" The ad was devised by Wendys' advertising agency to attack the misconception that its Single hamburger was smaller than its competitors "big name" hamburgers. The campaign was so original that it stole the show at the 1984 Clio Awards, winning the advertising industry's highest honors and registering the highest consumer awareness level in the industry's history.

    Source: More Top Secret Recipes by Todd Wilbur.

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    Score: 5.00. Votes: 2

    Wendy's kicked it up a notch in 1996 when the burger chain introduced the Spicy Chicken Fillet Sandwich. The deep-fried chicken fillet is breaded with a secret coating containing just a bit of sting for those who like their food with heat. It's not knock-your-socks-off hot, but the spice gives the chicken a great flavor that's got customers coming back for more.

    In this Top Secret Recipes reduced-fat Wendy's spicy chicken fillet sandwich recipe, you'll learn how to get that heat in the chicken, and then how to use a special baking technique that will give the clucker meat a breaded-and-fried consistency without too much oil.

    Nutrition Facts
    Serving size–1 sandwich
    Total servings–4
    Calories per serving–380 (Original–410)
    Fat per serving–8g (Original–15g)

    Source: Low-Fat Top Secret Recipes 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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