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Even though we are in the middle of a season known for bringing joy and happiness, I’ve been struggling to find the festive cheer this year. Life’s stresses have been getting me down, and I’ve failed to put myself in the holiday spirit—that is, until a few days ago when I stumbled across Dolly Parton’s TikTok account while doom-scrolling through my phone.
The queen of country music has been on TikTok for a total of three days and already has over a million followers. Her introduction video, which is a montage of iconic photos and videos set to one of her most famous hits “9 to 5” has 4.3 million views and 1.1 million likes so far.
This comes as no surprise, seeing as there’s never been a shortage of love for Dolly. She is an icon of southern accent, charm, and hospitality, and one of the most famous country singers in history. Parton is also known for decades of philanthropy, openly supporting the LGBTQ+ and Black community, giving scholarships to help students afford college, donating to wildlife relief, and giving money toward diabetes research. She also received the Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy in 2022.
Now that Dolly is gracing us with her presence on TikTok, we can add that to the list of charitable giving as well. Every single one of her videos will put a smile on your face, but it’s her food-related and holiday baking-themed videos that brightened my day and kicked me into the holiday spirit I had been missing.
Her TikTok isn’t a cooking account, so you won’t find in-depth recipes made by Dolly (at least not yet—never say never). What you will find, however, is video after video of her baking, laughing, messing up and laughing some more, and the adorable Dolly one-liners our holiday season needs.
Here are some of my favorite Dolly holiday baking moments from TikTok, which I think you should bookmark for days when you need a little dose of holiday cheer. Also, for more food-focused TikTok trend information, be sure to also read TikTok Wants You To Try a Dirty Soda—But What Is It?
Dolly Parton shares how she learned to cook
“And I learned to cook from my mom, and my grandmas, and my aunts, and my sisters. We all get together and compare recipes,” Parton explains to her followers via a TikTok video. “But nothing better than a good ol’ coconut cake, or a banana pudding, or a banana cake.”
“If you are what you eat, then why not be sweet?” Dolly coyly asks viewers, reading the rhetorical inquiry from what appears to be a dish towel.
A handful of the these TikTok videos, this one included, feature the country singer surrounded by boxes of cake mix and jars of frosting from the Dolly Parton Duncan Hines Baking Collection, the line of limited-edition baking products that Duncan Hines says was “inspired by Dolly’s famous southern recipes.” The partnership between Parton and Duncan Hines was reportedly announced earlier this year, and clearly they are selling like hot cakes. While the full baking set is currently sold out, according to the Duncan Hines website, you can still find individual cake mixes and frostings in your local grocery store.
Dolly gets candid on her own cooking skills
Rather than being set in a kitchen, this TikTok video is set up interview style. And if Dolly’s red and gold outfit isn’t what catches your attention right away, her honestly and sharp wit certainly will.
“I’m a really, really good cook,” Parton shares. “I’m not a gourmet cook; my food is not pretty—but it’s good,” she assures TikTok viewers.
Although I’m impressed by chefs who put their heart and soul into the presentation of a dish, the fact that a star like Dolly Parton—whose looks have helped contribute to her longstanding celebrity status—cares more about how a dish tastes than its appearance is incredibly refreshing. The music icon’s commentary in this particular TikTok video is a relatable reminder that at the end of the day, Parton is just like any other down-home, southern home chef.
Dolly Parton reboots ‘Berry Pie’ for TikTok
Dolly fans will likely recognize the song “Berry Pie,” which is off of Parton’s 2008 album Backwoods Barbie. What better song to play in the background of this precious TikTok video of Parton baking in the kitchen, looking beautiful in a holiday-inspired outfit and apron?
You can’t help but giggle with glee while witnessing her carefully pick up a cookie with ease and toss it toward the camera, in spite of her long manicured hot pink nails. This clip may seem like an insignificant moment, but I promise taking a moment to watch is a light pick-me-up that will likely put a smile on your face.
Dolly on dieting temptations
“Every diet I’ve ever fell off of has been because of a potato,” explains Parton. “Either french fries or mashed potatoes, or baked potatoes. Potato, potato, potato. I never met a spud I didn’t like.”
You and me both, Dolly. In a culture inundated with celebrities talking about their rigid diet plans, expensive beauty products, and intense workout routines, I appreciate moments when anyone who has achieved fame can relate to the rest of us on topics like feeling tempted when attempting to diet. The fact that this message is coming straight to us from the queen of the country music charts makes that sentiment all the more poignant.
‘I refuse to settle for anything less than cake!’
“I refuse to settle for anything less than cake,” Dolly says, as she places a Christmas tree decoration into a slice of cake and lets out one of the best, most resonate laughs I’ve heard in quite some time. “That didn’t do what I wanted it to do but it’s still good.”
I don’t know if it’s the laugh, her perfectly coordinated and festive outfit, the thick southern accent, or a combination of all three, but if you weren’t already a fan of Dolly, I fully believe this video is the one that could change your mind.
Dolly’s TikTok account is exactly what I needed this holiday season, and I’m looking forward to what we’ll get to see from her next. If this hasn’t been enough to convince you of the pure joy brought on by her videos, you may want to go see for yourself.