Well, yes — as our intrepid critic and recipe tester discovered, you can. There’s just one catch: It won’t taste exactly like your favorite franchise foods. It’ll taste even better.
KRISPY KREME DOUGHNUTS
Provided you are comfortable with deep-frying, Wilbur’s recipe offers a shockingly easy substitute. The homemade doughnuts were crispier, chewier, and, according to one Krispy fan, ”10 times more delicious” than the real thing. This would be splendid news — except a clone is not supposed to be better, it is supposed to be identical.
CHEAPER? Yes, if barely.
STOUFFER’S MACARONI & CHEESE
To replicate this dish, Wilbur requires you to grate cheese, stand at the stove stirring for 30 minutes, freeze the casserole until solid, then reheat for an hour. The experience of making a frozen dinner from scratch defines perverse. What’s more, everyone could tell the wholesome, tangy clone from the original.
CHEAPER? You save a dollar.
BURGER KING ZESTY ONION RING SAUCE
Wilbur’s pleasantly spicy, coral-colored dip bears little, if any, resemblance to Burger King’s preservative-laden original, an oily, virulent yellow substance packing a brutal horseradish kick. No one wanted to eat any more of the real thing after sampling the clone.
CHEAPER? Definitely not. Burger King gives its sauce away.
STARBUCKS MAPLE OAT SCONES
The 500-calorie Starbucks scone has a smooth, tawny brown blanket of icing that some of us have fetishized for years. Wilbur’s clone, in contrast, yielded a thin white icing that slid into the scone’s crevices. However, it tasted lovely, and the scone itself was deemed ”less wooden” than the original.
CHEAPER? Half the price.