'Tornado Omelette' Tik Tok trend sees egg sales soar

Jessica Carpani
·3 min read
Tornado omelette
Tornado omelette

A 'Tornado Omelette' Tik Tok trend has seen eggs sales increase by 22 per cent in a year, Waitrose has revealed in their annual food report.

Since 2016, egg sales have risen by up to three per cent each year, until 2020 when a viral trend for ‘tornado omelettes’ saw them skyrocket, the supermarket said.

Following the social media buzz in the US and now Britain, Waitrose’s Food and Drink Report 2021 said sales of the “ever flexible key ingredient” were up by 22 per cent this year making it the highest growth they’ve seen for the product “by a long way”.

The tornado omelette is created by using chopsticks to twirl whisked eggs in a hot pan.

As it cooks, the omelette spirals, taking the form of a tornado or flower.

The egg is part of a traditional Korean dish called ‘tornado omurice’, where it is placed over a mound of rice, and surrounded with curry, according to the recipe blog My Korean Kitchen.

But the staple Korean dish has now exploded in popularity in the western world after videos of how to make it were posted on Tik Tok.

Other users quickly took part in a challenge to make the omelette, with successful attempts receiving thousands of views and likes on the app.

Waitrose said that while “it may resemble a giant yellow Walnut Whip” it tastes “sensational”.

Martyn Lee, Executive Chef at Waitrose & Partners, noted that Tik Tok “encourages participation”, subsequently resulting in the egg boom but warned that “it takes a little bit of practise to get it right”.

“You have to be quite dexterous,” he said and added: “eggs are relatively inexpensive so you can practise and if you get it wrong you still end up with a delicious plate of scrambled eggs.”

Mr Lee said the biggest reason the tornado omelette had resonated in this country is because “eggs are pretty much ever present in much of the population’s lives”.

“For quite a number of years - other than the poached egg, scrambled egg and traditional omelette - the applications are pretty standard and probably a little bit dull, whereas the tornado omelette looks quite impressive when executed well,” he said.  

Kevin Coles, from the British Egg Industry Council (BEIC), said: “Eggs have seen whirlwind sales this year as we look for healthy, filling options in the kitchen.  

“Over the past decade we’ve seen consumption grow by more than 2bn eggs to 13bn eggs, so that, as a nation, we now eat 36m eggs every day.  

“Every now and then we get a boost, whether that’s internet sensations like Cloud Eggs and now Tornado Eggs on TikTok – eggs and TikTok are the perfect partners both quick and easy to prepare but maybe eggs are just a little more tasty.”

Tornado Omelette recipe by Waitrose Exec Chef Martyn Lee
Tornado Omelette recipe by Waitrose Exec Chef Martyn Lee

Britons also took to foraging this year with UK-wide social media searches for ‘foraging’ up 89 per cent.

The trend took off during lockdown as it kept children occupied and, the report said, came with “a large dollop of nostalgia”.

Families picking everything from blackberries to sloes and fungi, also looked for ways to preserve their foraged finds for the winter.

Searches on Waitrose.com for ‘pickling’ are 222 per cent higher, while UK social media mentions of preserving and fermenting are up by 28 per cent and Mr Lee said that the trend was driven by people reconnecting with nature.

With swaths of the population working from home, “cooking has become the new commute” he added and many people took the time to cook up healthier dishes. Searches for healthy recipes on Waitrose.com, was up 134 per cent compared to pre-pandemic times.