Top 10 Craziest Food Challenges Ever

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Top 10 Craziest Food Challenges Ever

VOICE OVER: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: Jeff Kronenfeld
Who's hungry for a challenge? For this list, we'll be looking at menu items so huge that finishing them comes with instant bragging rights and possibly other prizes. Our countdown includes The Zellagabetsky Challenge, The 9 Pounder, The Fat Food Challenge, and more!
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Top 10 Craziest Food Challenges


Welcome to WatchMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Craziest Food Challenges.

For this list, we’ll be looking at menu items so huge that finishing them comes with instant bragging rights and possibly other prizes. Since we’re focused on US tests of digestive endurance, we’ll be excluding eating contests from other countries.

Which of these gut busters turns your stomach? Let us know in the comments!

#10: The Zellagabetsky Challenge

With a name nearly as big as the sandwich itself, this eight-decker Houston heavyweight tips the scales at roughly four pounds. Kenny & Ziggy’s New York Delicatessen combines the Big Apple’s flavor with Texas-sized portions. Nearly a loaf of rye bread holds together this sandwich’s six-types of meat. These include corned beef, pastrami, turkey, roast beef, salami and every little kid’s favorite, tongue. Interspersed in this edible mountain are loads of swiss cheese, coleslaw, Russian dressing and red sweet peppers. The challenge here is simply for one person to eat the sandwich in a single sitting. Winners receive a free slice of cheesecake, though they would probably have to get a stomach pumping before being able to enjoy their prize.

#9: The Rocky Top Challenge

This dessert is a meal all on its own, or maybe a week's worth of meals. In either case, 16 cups of ice cream are just the beginning of this brain freezing blizzard. The bucket-sized bowl also includes three brownies, three bananas, chocolate sauce, crushed up sugar cones, marshmallows, whipped cream and even more sweet treats. It’s served up at a storefront shared by Hilton Head Ice Cream and the It’s All So Yummy Cafe in Knoxville, Tennessee. Contestants have one hour to shovel all the sweet snow into their mouths. For the bold few who complete this ultramarathon through Candyland in time, their meal is on the house.

#8: The Carnivore Challenge

Big Pie in the Sky Pizzeria gives meat-lovers the chance to put their money where their mouth is. While most tasty games of chance are solo affairs, you’ll need a friend to play at this Georgia pizza place. It costs 50 bucks to step to the plate, but you can win 250 dollars if you’ve got the guts. Your and your friend’s meaty mission, should you choose to accept it, is to eat an extra-large Carnivore pizza in an hour. Sound easy? Think again. This pizza is thirty inches wide and weighs around 11 pounds. True to its name, this pie is piled with pepperoni, ground beef, Italian sausage, ham, and bacon. Adam Richman from “Man v. Food” couldn’t stomach this savory behemoth. Can you?

#7: The 15-Dozen Oyster Challenge

New Orleans may be known as the Big Easy, but there’s nothing easy about getting into the Fifteen Dozen Club. Founded in 1910, the Acme Oyster House has a half-dozen locations sprawled across multiple states. Each has its own chapter of the club, though the rules to join are the same. A person has to eat 180 oysters in 60 minutes. These delectable mollusk morsels are small, but that math sure does add up fast. This challenge was also featured on “Man v. Food.” Richman won this round, and some diners have actually exceeded 15 dozen. At the Acme location in the French Quarter, one hungry seafood aficionado downed 44 dozen, or a mind-blowing 528 oysters.

#6: The Kodiak Arrest Challenge

Humpy’s Great Alaskan AleHouse in Anchorage delivers a seven-course feast as formidable as any giant bear or towering mountain peak. Four pounds of Alaskan king crab, seven crab nuggets, and 14 inches of reindeer sausage provide plenty of protein, while an assortment of side dishes, a wild berry crisp and a big bowl of ice cream add even more heft. The massive meal must be completed in an hour or less if one wants to join the alehouse’s hall of fame and claim a free shirt proudly declaring that its wearer got crabs at Humpy’s. Richman from “Man v. Food” was the first person to conquer this edible obstacle, doing the deed in only 47 minutes, once again proving himself a true master of mastication.

#5: The 9 Pounder

BGR The Burger Joint is a multistate restaurant chain that minces meat, not words. Its biggest burger is The 9 Pounder, but this sandwich is even larger than its name implies. A massive patty of ground beef is just the beginning, with it also including 60 slices of cheese, 10 pickles, eight onions, eight tomatoes and several cups of Mojo sauce. The brioche bun is baked in a 20-inch deep-dish pizza pan. If you can scarf down this supersized whopper in one sitting, the restaurant gives it to you gratis. If not, be prepared to stomach the bill. For a more manageable meal, there’s always the 8th Wonder, a two-pound burger available at Watson’s Soda Fountain and Cafe in Orange, California.

#4: The Inferno Bowl Challenge

Four pounds of soup filled with noodles, chicken, carrots, Napa cabbage, broth and a dozen of the planet’s hottest peppers. A thirty minute time frame to slurp it all down with a $350 purse waiting for the winner. At Nitally's ThaiMex Cuisine in St. Petersburg, Florida, you can become a fire-breathing legend. However, statistically you’re a lot more likely to end up puking stomach acid. On January 27, 2021, the restaurant reported that of the 589 folks who had dared to lock horns with the lava-like stew, only six successfully finished it. Vomiting and even other bodily evacuations are not uncommon reactions. This fiery feat is not for the faint of heart or belly.

#3: The Chupacabra Challenge

We’re back in the Lone Star State for another monstrous meat eating contest. The Taproom Pub & Grub in San Marcos, Texas offers diners a tempting test of their guttural grit. This flesh eating marathon gives competitors 45 minute to polish off a full rack of ribs, two dozen nuclear hot wings and a burger, plus heaping baskets of fries and onion rings. It’s named after the mythical Chupacabra, a creature rumored to kill and drain the blood from livestock animals. For vanquishing this formidable array of savory snacks, champions don’t have to pay for their meal and get a Chupacabra Challenge t-shirt, and that ain’t no bull.

#2: The Bomb Challenge

This five-pound mass of flesh is a crowd favorite at Paddy Long’s, a Chicago bar and restaurant. Making one involves many steps, the first of which is creating a thick bacon weave. Next, an even thicker layer of beef-pork sausage and crispy pepper bacon is piled on. After getting dusted in a dry rub and smothering in beer barbecue sauce, it’s rolled up like a giant burrito, coated in brown sugar and roasted for four hours. Normally serving six to eight, brave gluttons can test their gastrointestinal fortitude by trying to eat the whole hog, plus a pound of fries, in 45 minutes or less. Winners get the meal for free, receive a t-shirt and are immortalized on the bar’s wall.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

The Moby Dick
This White Whale of a Sandwich Overflows With Sausage, Sauerkraut & Other Fixings

The Pho Garden Challenge
Before This SF Spot Closed, Its Giant Bowls of Noodle Soup Swelled Stomachs

The Free 80oz. Steak Dinner Challenge
Few South Carolina Diners Dare Cowboy Up to This Five-Pound Steak Plus Sides

The Kitchen Sink Sundae Challenge
Beat the Record Time for Eating This Massive Dessert & Get Free Ice Cream for a Year

The M.A.C. DADDY PANCAKE CHALLENGE
A Pile of Pizza-Size Pancakes Packed with Pounds of Toppings Batters All Challengers

#1: The Fat Food Challenge

The Big Fat Ugly from the Fat Sandwich Company of Champaign, Illinois is no doubt a huge hoagie, but it’s just a mini-boss compared to our big winner. Fat Sal’s Deli is a Los Angeles landmark, and the Big Fat Fatty is a big part of the reason why. It’s 27-inch long bun is piled with over a dozen pounds of greasy delights. Ground beef, bacon, pastrami, steak, chicken fingers, fried eggs, mozzarella sticks, onion rings, chili, marinara sauce, jalapeno poppers and fries make this sandwich an absolute culinary unit. If you somehow shovel it all down in forty minutes, you get the sub on the house, but the real prize is the honor of devising your very own sandwich for the deli.
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