This is the top song to cook to that might actually make your food taste even better

Iconic song A Sunday Kind of Love by Etta James is actually the most popular track among folks who spend time in the kitchen

Couple cooking together
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There are two very important music playlists to keep in mind when preparing for a dinner party: songs you should listen to once your guests arrive to set the mood and tracks that should play in the background while you cook and set everything up.

With that latter category in mind, Lakeland analyzed over 2,000 Spotify playlists boasting almost 250,000 different songs in total to figure out which tunes are most popular in kitchens all across the world. So, in addition to focusing on easy dinner party recipes, you’ll want to play these tunes while preparing for guests to come over. 

According to recent research, the "right background music can increase our enjoyment of food by up to 60%," reports the outlet. It should come as no surprise, then, that chefs both pro and amateur take the results pretty seriously.


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Appearing a total of 168 times in their data, Etta James' iconic A Sunday King of Love tops the list of most popular songs that folks listen to while cooking. The jazz tune was first published in 1946 but was featured in Etta's 1960 album At Last! 

Fun fact: the song was featured both in the movie and musical iterations of Jersey Boys as well.

With a total of 122 appearances, Elton John's Don't Go Breaking My Heart, originally sang as a duet with Kiki Dee, lands in the number two spot. 

The top five ranking is rounded out by by Grover Washington, Jr. and Bill Withers' Just the Two of Us (119 appearances), Put Your Records on by Corinne Bailey Rae (107 appearances) and The Temptations' My Girl (106 appearances).

The study also broke it all down by artist, trying to discern which singer is most popular among at-home chefs. With a total of 5 songs on the list each, three different artists tied at number one: Elton John, Frank Sinatra and Stevie Wonder. All wonderful picks, if you ask us. ABBA and Harry Styles followed with four songs each.

Top songs to cook to

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Things look a bit different when analyzing data surrounding top dinner party playlists, a survey that sought to answer the question: which songs do hosts mostly play when hosting a dinner event? 

Fleetwood Mac's instantly recognizable song Dreams, first released in 1977, topped the list by 60 appearances. Van Morrison's Into the Mystic landed at number two followed by Put Your Records On by Corinne Bailey Rae, At Last by Etta James and You Are the Best Thing by Ray LaMontagne. 

Other honorable mentions across both lists include Van Morrison's Brown Eyed Girl, Landslide by Fleetwood Mac, Sunrise by Norah Jones, This Will Be (An Everlastic Love). by Natalie Cole, Vienna by Billy Joel, Here Comes the Sun by the Beatles and Valerie by the late, great Amy Winehouse.

There’s just something about music and food that resonates with the majority of humans all around the world - and can you blame us? They’re both wonderful additions to day to day life. 

Anna Rahmanan

Anna Rahmanan is a New York-based writer and editor who covers culture, entertainment, food, fashion and travel news. Anna’s words have appeared on Time Out New York, the Huffington Post, Fortune, Forbes, Us Weekly, Bon Appetit and Brooklyn Magazine, among other outlets.