Deep fried pickles, deep fried mac n’ cheese, deep fried Oreo’s – these foods are hallmarks of the deep fried movement. (The movement can either be defined as a group of massive people demanding fried foods or the foods’ rapid movement through your gut.) State and county fairs throughout the United States seem to be the bedrock for launching or trying out new fried foods based on American food items, much the same way as street food vendors throughout Asia play host to their own deep fried goodness (or lack of them). Whether it’s deep fried Coca-Cola or avocado in the states or deep fried cockroaches and seahorses in Asia, the world has some pretty gross deep fried foods. Maybe you’ll like some of the items on the list – deep fried strawberries don’t sound so bad though we’ve heard the taste is horrendous – but it’s likely you’ll scrunch your face and feel a sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach for some of these oddities. Open wide and say “Bon Appetit” as you dig into this list of 25 unusual deep fried foods that might gross you out.
By the way, if you are itching for even more weird food items, check out these 25 disturbing food facts.
Deep Fried Butter
First served at the 2009 Texas State Fair, deep fried butter (a deep fried coronary attack!) was invented by Abel Gonzales, Jr., the same inventor of #21’s gross deep fried food.
Deep Fried Guinea Pig
A traditional Peruvian dish, deep fried guinea pig isn’t a dish most Americans would want to dig into.
Deep Fried Strawberries
To negate all the goodness you get from eating them, try your strawberries deep-fried next time.
Deep Fried Cockroaches
The gross little bugs may be able to survive a nuclear holocaust, but cockroaches can’t escape the deep fryer.
Deep Fried Coke
First appearing at the 2006 Texas State Fair, deep fried Coca-Cola was also created by Abel Gonzales, Jr. and has been copied at numerous other fairs around the country. (It’s not pure liquid that’s fried but rather a batter heavily infused with Coca-Cola.)
Deep Fried Grasshoppers
When we eat deep fried foods, we prefer them to come without legs.
Kentucky Fried Chicken's Double Down
This deep fried food is available to gross you out and give you a heart attack all at the same time. KFC’s Double Down is heaping amounts of bacon and cheese smooshed in-between two fried chicken patties.
Deep Fried Pork Intestines
Fried pork chunks is a delicious meal popular throughout Latin America. But that’s the pork meat. Deep fried pork intestines? We’d rather pass.
Deep Fried Fish with Spicy Mango Salad
Drawing on a long Thai tradition of fried fish in meals, some cooks deep fry an entire fish – head and all – and serve it up with a nice mango salad.
Deep Fried Kool-Aid
Many a kid’s favorite sugary, flavored drink, Kool-Aid has even been deep-fried at some state fairs into a sugary, overly sweet fritter.
Deep Fried Carrot Cake
The Chinese will deep fry anything. Who’s up for trying deep fried carrot cake?
Deep Fried Bubble Gum
Taken at the 2011 North Carolina State Fair, deep fried bubble gum somehow made it on the menu (far right). Didn’t our mothers tell us not to swallow bubble gum though?
Deep Fried Mars Bar
Grosser than a deep friend Twinkie, deep fried Mars bars have popped up at fairs throughout the United States.
Deep Fried Burger
As if a burger didn’t have enough grease (not even counting the fries), some restaurants have taken to deep frying them to draw in customers.
Deep Fried Starfish and Seahorse
Something that will rarely (if ever) be seen in the Western Hemisphere, some Pacific islands have taken to deep frying starfish and seahorses (and other gross foods as seen in #9 and #3).
Deep Fried Bamboo Worms
A Thai dish, deep fried bamboo worms aren’t a delicacy we’ll be digging into anytime soon.
Deep Fried Squid Feelers
If you’ve ever chewed on your toothbrush, you’ll have the same experience from this gross deep fried food: squid feelers. Make sure to floss!
Deep Fried Chicken Joint Cartilage
Fried chicken is a gift from the heavens to mankind – if (that’s a big if) certain parts of the chicken are used. In some countries, the tough cartilage which holds joints together is deep fried and served to order.
Deep Fried Pigeons
Hunters may be more familiar with eating pigeons than the general populace. In some parts of Asia, pigeon is deep fried and served up as a common source of meat.
Deep Fried Chicken Feet
Another example of a good chicken being taken too far, some stalls even serve deep fried chicken feet.
Deep Fried Pizza
Pizza is delicious. Bread, cheese, and toppings make it a versatile and portable snack. Though it’s not too healthy to begin with, some people have glazed over this fact and proceeded to dip their slice of pizza into batter before dunking it in a deep fat fryer.
Unknown Deep Fried Intestines
One of the scariest words to include before deep fried intestines is the word unknown, as in “it’s unknown what kind of animal these fried intestines have come from”.
Deep Fried Crickets
A popular street food in Southeast Asia, many a backpacker has sunk their teeth into this gritty, noisy critter.
Deep Fried Tarantula Pile
Most humans are scared to some degree of spiders and of things that can kill us. Tarantulas seem to combine the worst of these two worlds, making us wonder why anyone would want to pass these gross deep fried tarantulas past their lips.
All Kinds of Things Fried
In case we’ve missed any gross deep fried foods, this stand at the Los Angeles County Fair also sells deep fried avocados, deep fried peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and deep fried Klondike bars.