Pickles are one of the more divisive, love-em-or-hate-em foods in the culinary world. People have strong opinions about kosher dill vs. sweet or bread and butter, and while some people won't touch either briney cucumber snack with a 10-foot pole, others are so gaga for gherkins they're trying to work them into literally every snack available on Earth. But I think all but the most evangelical pickle lover can agree these pickle snacks might be taking things a bit too far.
1. Chocolate-covered pickles
Malley's is a Cleveland-based chocolatier that is well-known for their milk-chocolate covered dill pickle spears, which they sell four to a box for $9.95 — while supplies last. And this implies that supplies do not last long at all. How, I ask you? Numerous blogs have tried this unusual flavor combination and a few assure that it actually makes sense because salt and chocolate go so well together. Sure, but pickles aren't primarily salt flavored. They're dill and vinegar flavored. Also, just imagining the texture of this is enough to kill my appetite for the foreseeable future.
2. Peanut-butter and pickle hamburgers
Pickles on a hamburger are obviously kosher (sorry sorry, I'll only do it once), but it's the addition of peanut butter that turns this summer cookout treat from a crowd pleaser to a head-scratcher. I concede that peanut butter has some really great savory applications — chicken satay anyone? — but nothing was wrong with the hamburger condiment options before, so I'm sorry, peanut butter, but you're just going to have to keep kicking it with jelly or bananas when you're in my house.
Also, I would like to point out that this person is extolling the virtues of peanut butter and pickles on their burger and telling someone their weird food thing is gross — in the same breath. I'm just saying, people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones.
3. Pickle Pops
OK, still a little weird, but I can actually kind of get behind these. A nice cold pickle can be refreshing, and what's colder than ice? If you want a frozen treat but don't have a sweet tooth, I can see these being satisfying, so I'm not a complete hater.
4. Pickle soda
The world has seen its fair share of questionable soda varieties — I'm looking at you, Jones Soda, with your Thanksgiving themed flavors. But this one is a close second to fizzy Turkey and Gravy. I'm told this is a great spin on the pickleback — wherein one chases a shot of whiskey with a pickle or a shot of pickle juice. But neither of those chasers has bubbles, son.
5. Pickle cotton candy
No. Why. No. Stop it. Nobody asked you! This dill-pickle flavored cotton candy comes in a giant tub, which is pretty presumptuous of them. "We know this is the grossest thing you've heard of, so here's a giant portion of it!" It makes sense this candy company is named for the worst person in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, Grandpa Joe — a man who spent decades in bed not contributing to his household until he became "miraculously" cured the second his grandson won a tour of Wonka's factory.
6. Pickle gummies
This is 100 percent a texture issue. If you bite into a pickle and it bounces back, it's safe to say that pickle's day has passed. Pickles should crunch. They should not, um, jiggle.
7. Pickle split
This concoction comes from Pine Mountain Country Coffeehouse, an establishment that clearly plays fast and loose with words like "good" and awesome" in their description of this dessert. I know some people hate bananas, and I support that, but this isn't the answer, people. Substitute pineapple or some other fruit or just have the ice cream! What was wrong with ice cream?
Also, I can so easily see this tricking someone. It's one thing to bite into a pickle split and expect that garlicky dill flavor. It's another entirely to think you're going to taste banana and get a salty briney surprise.
8. Dill pickle mints
When someone comments that you have pickle breath, I don't think it's meant to be a compliment. Before I visited Archie McPhee's website, I was unclear on whether these are dill pickle flavored breath "fresheners" or if these are literally dill pickle and mint flavored. I'm relieved to report they are just pickle-flavored, but it's not quite as big a consolation as I had hoped it would be.
9. Pickle marshmallows
These pickle-flavored marshmallows from XOMarshmallow were part of a limited edition Sytherin-themed line of flavors — as if the oft-villified Hogwarts House didn't have enough bad press. Sadly, if you were hoping to serve pickle-flavored S'mores at your next cookout, you're just going to have to improvise, as they're no longer available online. Can't imagine why!
10. Pickle candy canes
Congratulations, guys. You ruined Christmas. Unless these are an alternative to coal for families who wish to punish naughty children without increasing their carbon footprint, I cannot approve of this item.
11. Pickle sandwiches
12. Pickle Doritos
Pickle-flavored potato chips have been around for a while — they're especially popular with Canadians — and they're pretty excellent on or with a sandwich, but I'm skeptical about bringing corn chips into the fold. However, a pickle fan from the UK found these in a Canadian Walmart and vows they're delicious. "At first kinda just like salted nachos but then it leaves your mouth feeling really pickly and fresh and a bit sour." Aaaand you lost me. Nachos and pickles aren't flavors I want to put together.
13. Pickle vodka
This distillery in Dallas, TX, makes a dill pickle vodka made with natural flavors. I can see how this could go well in a Bloody Mary, but can you imagine it as the base in virtually any other vodka-based cocktail? The words "pickle Cosmopolitan" just entered my brain and now my whole day is ruined.
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