Expat Life

Expat Life || Foods I miss from America

There are a few American foods that get stuck in my head like a culinary itch that I can’t scratch. My list usually includes: chicken biscuits from Chick-fil-A, anything from the Frontier Restaurant in Albuquerque, the turkey salad from Dion’s Pizza in Albuquerque, Oreo Blizzards from Dairy Queen, purple (aka Wild Berry, and yes, the UK version tastes completely different) Skittles, green chile anything, and Rainbow Chip frosting. 

Thanks to my recent parcel from Hatch, I can cross green chile off that list. Pretty much anything restaurant related I have to let be, but once a year I get to indulge in splashing a ridiculous amount of cash on some imported American groceries.  I always choose before Thanksgiving as the time of year to splurge on American foods; it seems only right. 

So this weekend I stocked up: a bag of purple Skittles, a Take 5 Bar, a box of Stovetop Stuffing (so gross and so good all at the same time), American pancake syrup, and a tub of rainbow chip frosting. I’d died and gone to high cholesterol heaven. My recommendations for getting American food selections in London: big Tesco’s have semi-decent American food aisles. Waitrose carries canned packed pumpkin. But the American food mecca in London has to be Partridges in Sloane Square, where I make my annual pilgrimage.  

Likewise, if you have a bit of extra time on your hands, Not Without Salt has much better recipe for homemade rainbow chip frosting than I could ever come up with. 

rainbow chip cupcakes
spoonful of rainbow chip frosting
rainbow chips
rainbow chip cupcake

What tastes like home to you? Or if you live in another country, what foods do you miss the most?

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  • I have never had the delight of any of these things! However, I once went to India for 6 weeks and got stupidly excited about finding a bar of dairy milk, just such a disappointment as it didn’t taste the same at all!! I’m glad to see you don’t miss hersheys, I think it tastes like goat sick (not that I know what goat sick would taste like, I can only imagine!) xxx

    • Nah, I like Hersheys but you can get it here- for example Reeses Peanut Butter cups are Hersheys and Iove ’em. X

  • I miss all kinds of mexican food. Real flour tortillas, chilaquiles, pozole, green salsa, tacos, ugh.. the list could go on and on. Nothing makes me happier than finding mexican food at the local supermarket!! Yay for cholesterol fests!

  • Rainbow chip reminds me of so many childhood birthday parties, if you brought in cupcakes for your birthday for school without rainbow chip frosting it was a big fail.

  • My freshman year roommate at university had a huge stash of pocky- so good! X

  • Oh, yum! Strawberries are the best! X

  • Oh man, I remember spending $25 on a pack of oreos and a can of ginger ale once. So unnecessary, so worth it!!

  • I had no idea that rainbow chip frosting existed but now I want it! I definitely need me some poutine and some maple syrup every once in a while – but damn the maple is expensive here, so I bring it from Montreal whenever I go! It’s worth the luggage weight haha

    • Haha, I’m not going to lie, my luggage always has food wrapped up in clothes when I fly back. Usually sweeties and goldfish 😉 x

  • So awesome that you got a Hatch package 🙂 I found a restaurant here that makes Hatch green chile enchiladas yuuuummmm!!!

    • Amazing!!!!!! That’s such good news for you. I could definitely go for a good tortilla right now! x

  • Funfetti, oh man, haven’t had that in ages! RANCH! I can’t get flipping hidden valley ranch anywhere around me. I actually stock up on pancake syrup at TKMaxx, they’ve got tinned pumpkin sometimes too.

    • In big Tescos theres some tinned pumpkin sometimes too! What are your thanksgiving plans this year? x

      • We have a big friendsgiving every year, and I normally make pumpkin cheesecake but I’m lacking pumpkin this year! Still have a week to find it though. I make all the classics though, including green bean casserole with cream of mushroom soup haha. I do go as far as making my own cranberry sauce though.

        • I make a green bean casserole with Campbell’s too! Weirdly it’s Sam’s favourite thing about Thanksgiving! x

  • What does rainbow chip frosting taste of, does it have a specific flavour? Most supermarkets i’ve been too all over the country seem to stock a selection on American foods now. I wonder why that is, as they never used to!

    Amy: Amy & More

    • Rainbow chip is kind of like a cream cheese/white chocolate blend. My local doesn’t have an American selection, bummer for me 😉 x

  • Jenn Sie

    Laffy Taffy – I miss it. Jolly Ranchers. Mint oreo cookies. Sometimes my friends send me BBQ crisps. I’ve gone off them a bit now. There’s an awesome american food store in aldershot just outside london.


  • I miss Swedish Fish and proper buffalo chicken from the States for sure!

  • There are so many tasties that I miss living over here…!

  • I will gladly have a Chick-fil-a chicken biscuit in your honor tomorrow 😉

  • I thought I had it bad not being able to find good fried chicken in Colorado, haha. A lot of friends who have lived in Germany always get excited to eat at the airports when traveling home.

    • I definitely stuff my face the second I land when I have a layover. I can’t help it! 😀 x

  • Usually people write these things and I’ve heard of most of the stuff because of movies and tv. But this is all new to me. What the hell is Stovetop Stuffing? Rainbow Chip Frosting sounds magical… do I need a fresh unicorn? Because mine are all vacuum packed. And I thank you for not mentioning Twinkies. I’m currently annoyed at them.

    • Stovetop is this “just add water and heat” sage stuffing. It is kind of disgusting but it also tastes like childhood. Rainbow chip frosting is so magical that I sometimes eat it with a spoon and forego the cake. Don’t tell anyone else that. It makes me disgusting. Why are you annoyed at twinkies? xx

  • Miu

    When I lived in London I missed tomato sauce powder. I had my parents bring me quite a stock when they visited 😉

    • I’ve never come across tomato sauce powder, but it sounds really interesting! How and when do you use it? x

      • Miu

        You pour it into water, stir and then let it cook. And then you have tomato sauce 🙂 I used it mostly for spaghetti 🙂

        • That sounds so amazingly convenient! x

          • Miu

            Yes, it is. It was so hard to believe that I couldn’t buy it there 😀

  • Rachael Brennan

    Living in Japan, I miss MANY foods from Australia, but mostly things like good cheese, dips (hommus etc), baked beans and tinned spaghetti 🙂

    • Ohh what’s tinned spaghetti like? Is it like a spaghetti soup? (I’m picturing something like SpaghettiOs xx

  • I actually really really miss chocolate chip cookies!! I feel like that cookies is mostly an American thing because I don’t really see them anywhere else (I don’t mean the packaged grocery stores ones). And of course I miss street tacos too! Another American/So-Cal thing!