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By XO Jane/Claire Lower
Updated Apr 29, 2016 @ 1:45 pm

I have a confession to make: I hate the rainbow bagel. I feel badly about it, but I just can't get into this multi-colored circle of dough. (The Funfetti cream cheese though, that I understand.) Something about the swirl of obviously synthetic food coloring makes me think of Play-Doh (plasticine, if you're British) and I just wasn't one of those kids who ate Play-Doh.

Seriously, is this a bagel or some sort of Flaming Lips project? Maybe I hate fun, but I think my issue is this: swirls of bright color don't add anything to the taste of the bagel. They're like those inedible garnishes that the judges on Chopped are always bitching about — basically useless, and slightly off-putting.

This probably seems fairly surprising, coming from me. If there is anyone who should be able to appreciate colorful whimsy in various foodstuffs, you would think it would be me, for I am a garbage person with no standards who will put almost anything in her mouth. But I'm just not a fan of food coloring for its own sake. I can barely hang with red velvet. Also — I have no science to support this — but dayglo cocktails always seem to make me more ill than the boring clear or brown kind, and I tend to want to blame to blame the food coloring.

But the rainbow bagel isn't the only unicorn-colored food to be blowing up the interwebs. There are many offenders, and none of them bring me the joy that a rainbow should.

Rainbow Pizza

Look. I actually love the blog Oh, Bite It!, but this pizza (which literally gets its look from food coloring swirled into melted cheese) looks like a unicorn barfed on it. The barf looks greasy too, like a greasy tie-dye pool of oily cheese. I'm not here for it. I'm not even sure Jerry Garcia would be here for it.

Rainbow Grilled Cheese

So, according to Eater, the different colors represent different flavors of cheese, which makes me MUCH more accepting of the Technicolor dairy, though it still doesn't sound particularly amazing:

Rainbow Latte Art

Okay, so this is actually very pretty. Even though living in Portland has made cynical and jaded in regards to these types of coffee shenanigans, I can't tell you that I don't enjoy looking at this.


Though the result is easy on the eyes, I worry about the time constraints here. What temperature will my latte be once this masterpiece has been completed? More importantly: what kind of milk foam mustache will this leave above my lip? Food coloring stains, and I am not about to walk around looking as if I just blew a clown.

So now tell me, my dearest dears, am I just being a stick in the mud? This is a very real possibility. Do these look appetizing to you? Perhaps my joy chip has been compromised.