one-handed food

one-handed food
Food that is small enough to hold in one hand and is not messy to eat so that it can be consumed while driving or working.
Example Citation:
"Fast-food restaurants have succeeded best with 'one-handed food,' because the majority of fast-food patrons eat in the car."
— Mary E. Corcoran, "Changing a habit isn't an issue of immediate gratification," The Kansas City Star, September 10, 1996
Earliest Citation:
More Americans than ever are trying to 'eat and . . . ' — eat and walk, run, read, work or watch television, or even drive a car. They need what market researchers call 'commuter food,' 'finger food' or 'no-think food.' Mona Doyle, president of the Consumer Network in Philadelphia, which monitors the attitudes of 3,500 shoppers, calls it 'one-handed food.' Ideally, she said, it requires no utensils and does not drip, crumble or demand inordinate attention on its path from hand to mouth.
— Trish Hall, "Now, Food For the Otherwise Engaged," The New York Times, April 15, 1987
I first saw the phrase one-handed food used in a story earlier this year about a new product being carried by 7-Eleven: macaroni and cheese covered in dough and served on a stick. [Insert shudder of disgust here.] Delving a little deeper into this phenomenon (that is, the one-handed food phenomenon, not the macaroni-on-a-stick phenomenon; the latter I'm hoping to soon shove into an unused corner of my brain where it will hopefully never impinge upon my consciousness again), I traced the concept all the way back to 1987.
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