Chefs Tell Us Their Favourite Snacks

What do professional cooks eat in between meals? Some of them love fruit salad while others are partial to a bar of Dairy Milk. Here's what pro chefs snack on.
CAVITA 12

Snacks are personal. Unlike your main meals in the day – which are typically shared with the people you love or, in the case of most flatshares, four strangers you found on Spare Room – snacks are something you usually consume on your own. A snack is the rogue pack of Pom Bears you scoff while you’re waiting for the bus home or the heavily peanut buttered slice of toast you need to keep your energy up before another “ideation” session with your colleagues.

Everyone snacks, and everyone does it differently. Some people will “be good” and stick to crudités and sparkling water while others will load up on Haribo and Red Bull. I’m here to tell you that both of those approaches to snacking are just as valid as the other. How you choose to eat throughout the day is entirely up to you. But if you, like me, are the sort of person who suffers from eating ennui and is constantly seeking out new flavour sensations then you might be on the lookout for some hot new snacks.

I’ve already taken it upon myself to tell you about the greatest desk snacks of all time but I thought I’d go out and ask some of the top chefs in the country what they tend to snack on as well. Because if these are what award-winning cooks are eating in their spare time, then they’ve got to be good enough for you right?

These are your favourite chef’s favourite snacks.

Joe Laker

Joe Laker

"I don’t snack much at work I just drink a horrendous amount of coffee. But if I do then I buy those Trek bars. Mainly the original or fudge flavour. I have however tried to branch out to the new coconut and lemon flavoured ones but they’re pretty barbaric, to be honest. I’ll take white chocolate and raspberry if they don’t have anything else."

Adriana Cavita

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"When I’m rooting around the cupboards for a snack, I tend to take something light and fresh like watermelon, apple, or other types of melon and sprinkle it with lime juice and chilli. I use Tajin. I also like to do grated carrots and jicama with lots of lime and chile, basically, anything I can get my hands on doused with lime and chile powder is the best.

Something a bit more out there, but really popular in Mexico, is worm salt. I have it on fresh popcorn and it’s an excellent snack! Of course, I love guacamole as snack with totopos to dip in and, if all else fails, a quesadilla with just cheese and sliced avocado and salsa …. so quick and tasty."

Selin Kiazim

Selin Kiazim

“My all-time favourite snack goes against everything I stand for as a chef, and so it’s also a bit of a guilty pleasure: crisps. Of the salt and vinegar variety. Not the fancy kind, with balsamic vinegar and sea salt and all that jazz (although on occasion you will find me munching away on fancier varieties too) but good old-fashioned Walkers. A snack is best when it doesn’t overcomplicate things, and this one doesn’t one bit. It’s the cure for on-the-go snacking and hangovers alike.”

Ralph Rolle

Ralph Rolle

"Ever since I was a kid, my favourite snack has always been a chocolate bar. When I was in high school, my girlfriend actually wrapped a Snickers bar as a birthday gift and I kept it for so long that it turned to dust.

When I first went to Ireland, my manager, Anne McCoy gave me a bar of Cadbury’s Dairy Milk and I’ve been totally hooked ever since. The Cadbury’s Dairy Milk in the U.K. and Ireland has the best taste of any chocolate I’ve ever had anywhere in the world. The Cadbury’s chocolate we get in the States is different. I don’t know why but it’s different and if I haven’t been across the pond for a few months, Anne sends me some bars to New York."

Gary Usher

Gary Usher Channel 4 89 credit Lee Brown
Gary Usher is a top, top chef. Photograph: Lee Brown.

'We do a thing at Kala, our restaurant on King Street in Manchester, where when we're between shifts and ravenous we get the corner bits of the focaccia (best bits) slice them sideways and stuff them with our truffle and parmesan chips. We don't even bother with butter, just stuff the bread as full as it will go, and go - posh chip butty. Completely delicious. If I'm at home and I'm hungry then hopefully I'll have roasted a chicken and there will be a bit of that hanging about for me to pick at."

Pip Lacey

Pip lacey

"I love snacking on charcuterie: some slices of saucisson or kabanos…and olives I always have olives in the fridge. My new fav snack is pickled garlic. It’s not for everyone but I can easily eat a whole jar! Along with some tinned octopus or any tinned fish really. Normally this is a holiday snack but I’ve now managed to source some really good pickled garlic and fish tins that we sell at hicce market. Always noodles for a hot snack, I love the cheap packet noodles, which have been my go-to since university. I usually add some mushrooms, add chilli and soy, chuck it all in a pan with water, boil it for 4-5 mins and it’s ready!
I also have a local Japanese shop, Natural Natural, that do great homemade snacks like onigiri or chicken yakitori or octopus takoyaki. If I’m hungry and passing by I’ll always go in hoping they haven’t sold out!"

Adam Reid

Adam Reid

"I don’t snack a lot as I try and stay healthy, getting out for 10k runs each day and eating a balanced diet... but on the other 364 days of the year, I love a good snack. You can’t go wrong with mini pork pies! I also love a cheese cracker sandwich – but it has to be Ritz crackers and a cheap cheddar cheese! I could quite easily get through a pack of Ritz and a block of Cathedral City (extra mature obviously!). The quickest snack, though, has to just be a bag of crisps – just not plain or ready salted – I love a bag of Walkers Worcestershire sauce or Pickled Onion!

Elia Sebregondi

Elia S

"It sounds a little plain, but I usually snack on all different kinds of fruits between meals… Especially during summer, when it gets hot in the kitchen and we have so much more fruit on offer. Or, I love a fruit Haribo too!"

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