Classic Recipes That Are Certain to Activate Your Gag Reflex

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Most modern food creations are elegant. They balance flavor, texture and presentation in a neat, delicious package. But not all dishes are created equally.

Some recipes are so bad that they have the power to turn a stomach and test for a working gag reflex, all while making you question the nature of reality and the sanity of the general population. You may want to check out these awful, nauseating recipes and dishes on an empty stomach!

Hot Dog and Egg Heart

Instagram influencers are the new YouTube stars, and YouTube stars are the new celebrities. These social media kings and queens possess a lot of power over their followers — for better, or for worse. In this case, it’s the latter.

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A heart-shaped breakfast does sound cute, but when it’s made of a cut-up and lightly fried hot dog and an over-easy egg, the romance factor is quickly overshadowed by the yuck factor. There are hundreds of ways to make a charming breakfast for your partner — this isn’t one of them.

Pringles Jam

It’s hard to believe that this recipe wasn’t created while under the influence of heavy medication or psychedelic drugs. After all, it’s a jam made from crushed-up Pringles. If you’re already feeling your throat constrict and your stomach heave, you’re not alone.

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This recipe doesn’t require many ingredients. It’s mostly just water, Pringles crumbs and a ton of sugar. There’s probably more sugar and more water in this recipe than there are Pringles, which is somewhat comforting. But how exactly is this a jam, and what on Earth would you spread it on?

Spicy Haggis

Haggis is so awful that it’s actually banned in the United States. Every American can quickly breathe a huge sigh of relief right now, because that’s not even the tip of the disgusting iceberg: There’s also spicy haggis. That’s right, the shredded remains of sheep lungs, liver and heart can now be made even more unpleasant with mouth-burning sauces and spices.

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The shredded innards that make haggis what it is are typically encased in a sheep’s stomach — you know, for extra flavor! Maybe this spicy version is an attempt to make it more palatable? We’re going to go out on a limb and guess that it’s not.

Cranberry Jello Salad

Cranberry sauce is a common Thanksgiving side, and plenty of folks enjoy drinking cranberry juice or eating the tiny, sour berries on their own. But coarsely shredding them in a food processor and then levitating them in cranberry-flavored gelatin seems like overkill. Pairing the gory dessert with lettuce makes it so much worse.

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The concept of a salad has changed throughout the years and only continues to evolve as time goes on. But how this cranberry-centric recipe could ever be considered a salad is a complete mystery. When salad calls for gelatin, just say no.

Peanut Butter Pickle Popsicles

Peanut butter and pickles are an odd combination already, but blending them and freezing the sticky mix to make popsicles seems more like a culinary nightmare than a tasty treat. Strangely, this unique recipe is a recent abomination and went viral in no time.

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The real question is why? Is there a secret sect of the population that’s been enjoying peanut butter and dill pickles, and if so, for how long has this been going on? This recipe is like the end of a good X-Files episode. It doesn’t offer a lot of answers. It just raises tons of questions.

Velveeta Peanut Butter Fudge

Peanut butter tastes great with a surprisingly large number of ingredients, from grape jelly to chicken. But at some point within the last few years, people began to experiment with peanut butter even further in astounding and often disgusting ways. Perhaps one of the most stomach-churning recipes to emerge from this is Velveeta peanut butter fudge.”

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Firstly, Velveeta isn’t cheese. It’s a processed cheese product. Secondly, how on earth did this become a popular recipe? Just looking at this dish brings to mind the scent of stinky feet and the dread of inescapable doom.

English Peas

Humanity has a strained relationship with peas. Some people absolutely love them, but plenty of others detest the sight, smell and taste of peas with every fiber of their being. Paula Deen tried her best to sway the pea-haters with her English peas recipe released over a decade ago.

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It may have done the trick — but at what cost? This recipe requires two ingredients: Two cans of peas and half-a-stick of butter. Basically, it’s salt, peas, and butter. A recipe this unhealthy may sway those who dislike peas, but if a food needs lots of butter to salvage it, then it probably wasn’t a good idea in the first place.

Tuna and Waffles

Sure, chicken and waffles are delicious together. The combination of sweet and savory works perfectly, making for a unique pairing of flavors and textures. But tuna and waffles are a completely different ballgame. Combining fish and sweet pastry is a difficult thing to pull off, and this recipe fails at making the two things cohesive.

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This recipe was published in 1954, and it remained buried in the past for a good reason. Not only does tuna and waffles look like vomit, but it’s easy to imagine that it tastes like it, too. No amount of olives could improve this recipe.

Deep-Fried Chicken-Stuffed Pizza Quesadilla

Sure, the United States has been the home of some of the most bizarre fast-food creations, but this at-home dish might trump them all. It’s made with several layers of deep-fried quesadillas and a top layer of melted mozzarella and toasted pepperoni slices.

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Each layer of quesadilla is packed with cheese and chicken chunks, by the way. This recipe may not make you gag if your favorite food group is grease, but it’s certain to trigger preemptive heartburn.

Green Bean Casserole From Hell

When done right, green bean casserole can be delicious. Creamy, crunchy and savory, it’s a common dish for family get-togethers and holiday parties. But there’s also about a million variations of the famous dish, resulting in some truly nightmarish casserole creations.

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You see, a green bean casserole’s strengths lie in the sauce and crunchy, cheesy topping. A proper green bean casserole should come out of the oven looking golden brown. Sadly, the result of this casserole recipe ended up looking more like slimy snot and bodily fluids than a mouth-watering recipe.

Reuben Chowder

Reuben sandwiches are filling, juicy and downright delicious. There’s not much room for improvement! But someone decided that the best way to enjoy corned beef was to puree it and eat it as a soup. Unless someone has significant jaw, throat or dental issues, there’s no reason why they would ever need to eat what is basically a beef smoothie.

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The cream of mushroom soup and nacho cheese don’t help to elevate the dish much, and the whole recipe seems messy and lazy. Also, why use canned corned beef when you can go get some fresh stuff?

Baked Seafood Rice Casserole

Casseroles are pretty hit or miss. Some are amazing, while others seem to be the product of evil minds. This recipe for a baked seafood rice casserole sounds somewhat tempting, especially if you’re a fan of seafood, but the addition of cheddar cheese, parmesan, and mozzarella make this dish pretty heavy.

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Clams, squid, and all sorts of sea critters are often listed as appropriate ingredients for this casserole dish. However, dumping all these types of seafood together and baking them with cheese and rice seems wrong. Not to mention, more than a little fishy.

Jellied Chicken Salad

Except for some types of fruit — and Dwight Schrute’s stapler — nothing should ever end up suspended in a gelatin prison. This includes, and is certainly not limited to, chicken. Also, since when did jellied chicken suddenly count as a salad? Is it the added tomato slices, cucumber and lettuce? Because those don’t belong either.

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This recipe is essentially chicken salad but from the darkest recesses of the human imagination. How it’s supposed to be eaten — or perhaps more importantly, why — is never addressed within the body of the recipe. Why did the chicken cross the road? To avoid becoming this dish.

Prune Whip

Cakes, cookies, and pies are standard dessert options. Prune whip, on the other hand, is about as popular as a trip to the dentist. And for good reason. Prunes — the less tasty cousin of the well-loved raisin — can make you feel more, er, regular, which is why those with bowel issues tend to favor them. Using them to make a horrific doppelganger of Cool Whip is unfathomable.

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Anyone looking for a sweet treat might want to reconsider making “Prune Whip,” which looks like a mound of indescribable offal. It’s hard to say exactly how bad this dish must taste, as very few people are probably brave enough to give it a try.

Asparagus Pasta

Pasta is a versatile ingredient. There are many types of noodles and just as many ways to cook and serve them. But unless you’re a massive fan of undercooked asparagus, don’t try asparagus pasta. Not only does this recipe call for somewhat raw asparagus chunks and slightly overcooked pasta, but it also recommends covering it all with parmesan cheese.

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This seems like something a mother does to get her child to eat their vegetables. Unfortunately, it’s not a great move for adults that are already aware of which veggies they like and which they don’t.

Ham and Bananas Hollandaise

People have done many terrible things with bananas, but ham and bananas hollandaise might be the worst thing anyone has ever done to the potassium-filled fruit. The meal doesn’t suffer from overcomplexity. Actually, it’s quite straightforward.

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Peel the bananas, apply sliced ham on top and smother it all in hollandaise sauce. It’s a terrible waste of all three ingredients, and it’s difficult to imagine what demon created this monstrosity. Honestly, this recipe seems too ridiculous to be real, and yet, here we are.

Ketchup and Mustard Cake

This recipe is rather recent, which is a shame. While it can be easy to believe that the culinary arts are only improving, ketchup and mustard cake proves that humanity is still capable of taking some huge steps backward.

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The ingredients for this cake are pretty straightforward. Sugar, flour, ketchup, mustard. A few eggs. Yep, it really is a combination of ketchup cake and mustard icing. Why anyone thought either of those things was a good idea, however, is unclear.

Mayonnaise and Banana Sandwich

People need to leave bananas and peanut butter alone. Unless, of course, they’re combining them, because that’s a delicious snack. But anyone interested in trying this mayonnaise and banana sandwich should be aware that it’s a wet and spongy mess.

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Made popular by Dale Earnhardt Jr. — one of the most beloved NASCAR drivers — this recipe may fuel the needs of someone who races cars for a living, but it may just turn a normal person’s stomach into a land of grumbling, rumbling discomfort. Falling somewhere between a bologna sandwich and Elvis’s favorite snack, this dish is gag-worthy.

Macaroni and Cheese Shots

Some of the most viral recipes are also the worst. Take, for instance, macaroni and cheese shots. Sure, almost everyone loves some hot and cheesy macaroni, but putting some regular old mac n’ cheese into a shot glass, adding a ridiculous amount of liquid cheese and then topping the concoction with canned, sprayable cheese product is taking it too far.

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Sure, the tiny shots look cute, but are people seriously expected to down this mess just like a swig of whiskey? Unchewed macaroni sliding down the gullet on a river of fake cheese doesn’t sound very appetizing.

Bacon Straws

Plastic straws may be falling out of vogue, and new, environmentally friendly alternatives are on the rise, but bacon straws are not one of them. Sure, they have the word ‘straw’ in the title, and they’re long and thin like drinking straws, but it’s pretty much impossible to sip a beverage with one of these things.

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Flat, crispy bacon is a sign of excellent quality pork or turkey, and masterful preparation and cooking techniques. “Bacon Straws” involved rolling up your sliced bacon to make super-crunchy sticks. It just seems like a waste of tasty bacon.

Kitty Litter Cake

Novelty cakes can be a fun surprise. Unless, of course, you end up with a cake that closely resembles a cat’s toilet. That’s right. There is such a thing as a kitty litter cake. The ‘sand’ is made of crushed vanilla cookies or graham crackers, while twisted Tootsie Rolls play the part of — well, you can guess.

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Not only does this cake cause the stomach to lurch, but it often includes a pudding layer beneath the crumbs and above the cake, resulting in gooey — and quite disgusting — mess of a dessert. Still, if you can get over the visuals, it actually sounds somewhat tasty.

Twix Apple Salad

Once again, the world has been introduced to a salad that isn’t entirely healthy and certainly not typical. Welcome to the Twix apple salad, which is almost literally what it sounds like — sans lettuce. Vanilla pudding, cool whip, chopped green apples, and chopped Twix combine to make this odd recipe.

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While not nearly as disgusting as some other recipes — here’s looking at you, “Pringles Jam” – this dessert is just cream, fat, candy bars and a tiny bit of apple. It might be tasty, but it also might generate an entirely new cavity and a few pounds of body fat.


Though this meaty dish only rose to national prominence within the last decade, it’s actually been around since at least the 1980s. A Russian doll of meat, the turducken is a turkey that has been stuffed with a duck which has in turn been stuffed with a chicken.

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Properly cooking one takes a decent amount of skill with a knife and an oven. After all, the ideal “turducken is cooked well but still juicy. If you’re not a meat lover, it’s probably not for you. The branding also doesn’t help — just read the first four letters of its name.

Liver Sausage Pineapple

Do not adjust your monitor settings or your reading glasses, because you are reading this right. Liver sausage pineapple exists, and it may haunt your dreams for years to come. As the name suggests, this recipe contains one of the most universally detested ingredients: liver.

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That liver has the consistency of pate and is formed into the rough shape of a pineapple before getting covered in mayonnaise, gelatin, and turmeric ‘frosting.’ After that, a simple, leafy pineapple top seals the deal. It’s a travesty and an insult to sweet, delicious pineapples everywhere.

Cantaloupe With Crackers and Ice Cream

Melon makes a great addition to fruit salads, and cantaloupe in particular tastes great with watermelon, strawberries, blueberries and pretty much every other sweet and tasty fruit. It seems strange to take such a naturally delicious fruit and add crackers, raisins, and ice cream.

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Ice cream, maybe, because a hollowed-out cantaloupe makes a pretty sweet bowl. But crackers? Raisins? This recipe seems more like the product of a distracted and hungry kindergartner than a full-grown adult. The worst part is definitely the crackers. Or maybe the raisins. No matter — it’s a horrible combo.

Steak and Bananas With Ketchup

There are people in this world who put ketchup on everything. These folks don’t add a few squirts of their favorite condiment to meals — they go for a sea of red. That’s fine. It’s a free country, after all.

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But whoever decided that well-done steak, sliced bananas and ketchup belongs together should probably be locked up. For a very long time. Not only is this recipe an outright crime toward both steak and bananas, it seems more like the product of a disturbed mind than a curious chef — but we’ll never really know.

Jellied Bouillon With Frankfurters

Luckily, jellied foods aren’t nearly as popular nowadays as they were about 50 years ago. Nonetheless, that doesn’t stop misguidedly nostalgic cooks from revisiting some of the past’s most disgusting recipes.

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Beef and chicken broth can be a lovely addition to soup, stew, and roasted meats. What it doesn’t go well with, however, is gelatin. This poor hunk of broth has been frozen in time, forced to spend all of eternity in suspended animation with some hot dogs chunks. Eternity, yes — because no one in their right mind would ever eat this disaster.

Fish Loaf

There are only a few things that can get away with being served as a loaf. Bread, beef, and cake are some excellent examples. On the opposite end of the spectrum, there’s fish Loaf. Comprised of canned fish, eggs, sweet pickles, onions and celery, this dish would have been better off at the bottom of the sea than on a plate.

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Fortunately, this recipe is from the distant past. Unfortunately, there are plenty of updated versions of fish loaf that exist today. It’s easy to imagine that one bite of this could have you swimming with the fishes.

Bologna Cake

It’s hard to ruin a cake, but using common condiments such as mustard, ketchup or mayonnaise are a great start. Unlike the ketchup and mustard cake mentioned previously, however, this bologna cake doesn’t need to be baked, allowing you to gross out guests even more quickly. Yay?

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Creating this questionable non-dessert is easy as pie. Take a few dozen circular slices of school-lunch bologna, taking care to ‘frost’ each slice with mayo. Stack. Cut. Eat. This may be the ideal meal for someone who has loved mayonnaise and bologna all their life, but it’d probably make the common diner gag in disgust.

Beef Fudge

This recipe had to be a prank. After all, this dessert looks identical to chocolate fudge, but it’s not! At least, it’s not entirely chocolate. Beef fudge is a combination of roast beef fat and trimmings, chocolate, milk, sugar, butter and a few other handy ingredients.

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While sweet and savory often pair well together, this mixture doesn’t seem wise. The fudge isn’t creamy, but rather dense and chewy. You may even find that the stringy beef tissue hangs from the chocolate squares, like dark spider webs. There are not enough words in the English language to describe how gross that is.