If you’ve ever felt a pleasant, tingling sensation in your scalp and neck when you’ve heard a chip bag crinkle, or the spritz of a spray bottle, you’ve most likely experienced ASMR (or autonomous sensory meridian response). While there have been many attempts to describe how ASMR feels and what causes it, the phenomenon is perhaps most easily understood as “brain tingles” (like Pop Rocks in your brain!)
You may have also encountered ASMR in the form of the social media slime trend, which has taken the internet by storm It may seem like a strange craze, but there’s just something so oddly satisfying about watching someone poke, pop, fold, and squeeze the fluorescent, sticky slime for minutes at a time.
But it’s not all about the slime—anyone who has spent time in the kitchen may realize that there are a ton of triggers for ASMR that crackle, crunch, and pop in the various stages of cooking. We’ve rounded up five examples of ASMR-inducing food prep actions will give you a taste of the trend, complete with video.
Kneading bread dough
The act of pressing, folding, and massaging dough for bread is probably the closest you can get to recreating the trending slime videos in the kitchen with real food. And just like with slime, it’s the sounds of the kneading that triggers those super satisfying ASMR feelings: the light popping of the air bubbles bursting as you knead; the crackle as you pull your fingers away from the sticky dough.
If you want to try it out for yourself, this simple guide to homemade bread will have your brain tingling (and mouthwatering) in no time.
Spreading frosting on a cake
Frosting a cake evokes a more visual aspect of ASMR satisfaction. There’s something about smoothing icing in even strokes over the blank canvas of a cake that’s so satisfying to watch—and do! Pro tip: be sure to take it slow, if you really want to reap the full, brain tingly effects of smoothing creamy swooshes of frosting against the rough terrain of the cake.
Baking this Ultimate Birthday Cake for your next party (whether for a birthday or not) will give you plenty of practice in ASMR frosting (plus, sprinkles!)
Making homemade whipped cream with a standing mixer is an activity that’s full of ASMR triggers, like the clicking of the beaters against bowl, and the fluffy swoops of cream as air gets slowly folded in. The best part about using a standing mixer is that it’s hands off, so you get to sit back and fully enjoy the ASMR effects, without having actively having to do any work. Though we also won’t judge you if you prefer to ditch the ASMR and make this super easy, ready-in-a-minute mason jar whipped cream.
Though we mostly think of mashed potatoes as a fall side dish (hello, Thanksgiving), once you realize how satisfying the sounds and textures of creating this dish are, you’ll likely be tempted to make it all year round.
The delightful squishing sound of your fork or masher pressing into the soft, cooked potatoes is a major part of this ASMR experience, but the soft plop made by scooping a hefty spoonful of the finished dish onto a plate is pretty satisfying, too. This customizable mashed potatoes guide will give you plenty ideas for how to incorporate this ASMR-friendly dish into your recipe rotation throughout the seasons.
Snapping asparagus ends
If you’re still trimming your tough asparagus ends by cutting them with a knife, you’re missing out on a seriously gratifying ASMR food prep experience. With every stalk of asparagus, there’s a natural breaking point where the tender, upper portion of the vegetable meets the woody base—if you gently bend the stalk in half, it will snap at this vulnerable point, no knife needed. That satisfying snap produced by this trimming method is pure heaven for anyone who’s sensitive to ASMR feelings.
Better yet—listen to someone else prep the asparagus, so you can sit back, relax, and enjoy the tingles.
Once the asparagus is trimmed and ready to go, try roasting it with parmesan and topping it with a fried egg for a great breakfast, side dish, or light dinner.
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