If you can’t find feta at the grocery store, blame TikTok

feta in supermarket
Photo: ARIS MESSINIS / Stringer (Getty Images)

While TikTok can sometimes feature content you might consider a food crime (I am referring to the nacho table here), just as often you can find some genuinely useful tidbits like this tortilla folding technique. Whether or not you follow food TikTok, the occasional video will pop up and take off like wildfire. This month, it’s this baked feta pasta dish from that shows no sign of slowing down:

The recipe is simple: just roast cherry or grape tomatoes with olive oil, salt, pepper, and an entire block of feta in a baking dish, then add some fresh garlic and basil at the end. Mix your pasta of choice (fully cooked) into the dish, and you’re done. I have a friend who tried it to great results, and food writers have confirmed that it is indeed delicious.

Turns out that a lot of people are trying the recipe now, and the run on feta at the grocery store has been making it harder to acquire the briny cheese. The Charlotte Observer reports that finding a block has been increasingly difficult lately. The Fresh Market, a grocery store chain based in Greensboro, North Carolina, said that its feta sales have shot up by 45%, likely due to this TikTok phenomenon. I wonder if there’s a black market for feta now.

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One Charlotte native, Natasha Anandani, said that after her initial success making the pasta, she went back to the grocery store to find another block of feta. To her surprise, Trader Joe’s, Publix, and Harris Teeter were all sold out. Local news outlets confirmed the same thing.

The dish actually made its debut in Finland, thanks to Finnish food blogger Jenni Häyrinen, who adapted the recipe from Tiuu Piret. That’s getting to be a long chain of custody for this recipe, huh? Anyway, if you’re looking for feta in Charlotte (or maybe anywhere else that people enjoy cheesy pasta, for that matter) and you find the shelves bare, chalk it up to dang ol’ social media.

Staff writer at The Takeout. Also: Saveur Humor Blog Award Winner, professional pizza maker, and insufferable troublemaker.

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DISCUSSION

Dr Emilio Lizardo

That does look easy and delicious.