Earlier this week, Burger King announced (via Twitter exchange with sentient mascot Chester Cheetah himself) that it would bring back its most recent culinary novelty, Mac n’ Cheetos, but with a twist. For the unfamiliar, Mac n’ Cheetos were little Cheeto-shaped wads of macaroni and cheese, covered in a shell made of Cheeto dust, then deep fried. For their return, Burger King upped the ante by using Flaming Hot Cheetos for the shell.
As someone who used to regularly grind up Cheez Its and mix them with flour as breading while cooking, I find this to be a pretty solid idea… at least in theory. It’s also an inevitable move on Burger King’s part, especially after Taco Bell followed up the Dorito Loco Taco with a Cool Ranch shell, once the Nacho Cheese flavor went over like gangbusters. Turns out, people like combining their snack foods.
Wanting to try out the spicy sequel to Mac n’ Cheetos for myself, I took a stroll to my neighborhood Burger King, a seemingly forgotten location found where feeder roads for an interstate and a highway intersect, now scarcely traveled since the construction of an overpass. It was the same restaurant where I used to order the regular Mac n’ Cheetos (more than once, I’m not ashamed to admit), so I more or less knew what to expect for the quality of this particular location.
Just like in the first iteration, the mac and cheese part of the bite leaves a lot to be desired. The actual macaroni seemed nonexistent, and the cheese had a powdery taste, almost like someone made a box of Kraft but forgot to add the milk. And most of the butter. And the noodles.
On the upside, there was a satisfying crunch to the bites, with just a hint of “flaming hot” flavor. While I have a considerable tolerance for spicy food, I knew these weren’t exactly going to be a barn-burner. Instead, they hit about the exact spice level you’d expect from a fast food conglomerate — not going to blow your mind, but spicy enough for your 8-year-old nephew to snapchat about.
They were also a little dry, which makes me inclined to think that there should be some kind of dedicated dipping sauce for these. Yes, I know you can request any number of available condiments when ordering, and I’m no fast food scientist, but it seems like such a well-hyped, limited time offering would necessitate such a thing.
First, there are those who had nothing but love to declare for the new menu item.
Some even made videos of their adoration:
And, because you can’t please everyone, there were a number of customers who registered their distaste.
There were also those who took to the internet so as to address the over-the-top spice, which created some mixed reactions in their own right.
And, of course, there was at least one ‘lukewarm’ take to be had. (I’m so sorry).
Burger King’s Flaming Hot Mac n’ Cheetos are only available for a limited time, so if you want to partake in culinary moment, best to do it sooner than later.