The Baker Who's Captivated TikTok With His Depression-Era Recipes

The types of recipes made in a typical era often offer a fascinating glimpse into the daily lives of people during that time. If you've ever flipped through vintage cookbooks, chances are you've been puzzled by the amount of foods suspended in gelatin, or combinations of ingredients that seem downright bizarre to the modern palette. There's one particular baker on TikTok who has turned his attention to recipes made popular during the Depression era — and TikTok is loving the creations he whips up on his account.

B. Dylan Hollis took to the social media platform armed with vintage recipes and an equally vintage style of delivery — Eater reports the TikTok creator is apparently heavily influenced by radio of the 1930s and 1940s, which is evident in the signature chatter that graces his videos. As he made recipe after recipe, his follower count continued to grow, and as of June 2022 he has 8.6 million followers, with his videos amassing more than 190 million likes.

While Hollis creates recipes from different eras, there's a reason the ones from the Great Depression are particularly captivating and often end up turning out quite well. As a Tumblr user speculated, since there were a lot of food shortages in that era and many cooks had to make do with whatever they had, any recipes that turned out to be worth making were often written down and shared so others could benefit, as well.

B. Dylan Hollis's top recipe — and what fans thought of it

B. Dylan Hollis has made countless recipes during his time on the social media platform, with varying results for the retro dishes created in "Dylan's Kitchen," as the sign above his red open shelving proclaims. However, there was one that particularly captivated audiences and holds the distinction of being his most popular recipe, according to Eater — a very simple peanut butter bread recipe circa 1932. The video in which he made the bread racked up 5.3 million likes, over 295,000 shares, and more than 26,000 comments from TikTok viewers who couldn't get enough of the unusual take on a staple ingredient.

Hollis whips up the recipe on camera, noting the reasoning behind some substitutions — for example, since sugar was scarce during the Depression, but there were some shelf-stable ingredients like peanut butter available, the recipe is largely sweetened by the peanut butter rather than sugar. When popping the dough in the oven, he expressed some skepticism about how it would turn out, but after taking a bite, he was shocked and even a bit emotional at just how delicious the final product was.

As the comments section proved, many fans rushed to their own kitchens to make the recipe themselves. One fan who did just that wrote that the peanut butter bread's taste was "chef's kiss," while another added that her kids loved it. Many others adored the recipe, just as Hollis did, singing its praises (and Hollis's praises) in the comments section.