On the side panel of my cereal box is a recipe for a kind of trail mix. It calls for, among other things, cereal, dried cranberries, and peanuts. It notes that the peanuts are optional. Thanks for that.


This has no relevance; it's just funny.

Unless you’re baking*, I think everything in a recipe is optional. If you hate mushrooms, don’t disqualify a recipe that calls for them. They’re optional. If you don’t like tomatoes, use an alfredo sauce or olive oil on your pizza. If raisins make you cringe, add nuts instead.

*The exception is that if you’re baking, you’re essentially performing a chemistry experiment and almost all the ingredients are necessary. Never omit flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, eggs (unless you use egg substitutes), or yeast in a recipe. You can use chocolate chips in place of nuts, though. Yum.