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MAN v. FOOD fans ... Toughest challenge for you?

For the fans of Man v. Food, what would be the toughest challenge for you to conquer?

While I haven't seen all the episodes, I think the toughest challenge for me personally would be the 180 oysters in an hour (New Orleans). Can't do that many oysters. Just too slimy for me to hold down.


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  1. All those mass quantity challenges would be tough. My bellyaches just looking at those pounds of foods, especially the giant burgers plus sides.

    The spicy food challenges seem more do-able. I can handle spicy foods and the food quantities are more reasonable.

    2 Replies
    1. re: dave_c

      Yeah, spicy would be the easiest for me.

      Large quantities of beef (or meat) would probably be the second easiest.

      Harder for me would be those gargantuan burgers, sandwiches, fries, etc.

      But I just can't imagine choking down 180 raw oysters in one sitting. Don't get me wrong, I love me some good oysters, but my limit is at about a dozen, max.

      1. re: ipsedixit

        180 oysters is a unimaginable to me. Also, it would take me a long time, I'm the type that chew raw oysters while others slurp and gulp.

    2. The 6-pound burrito in Las Vegas would be pretty hard. Still, I'd have to say the spicy wings. Getting full is one thing, but having your mouth on fire for hours post-consumption would be painful.

      1. From all the episodes I've seen it would come down to the ice cream sink challenge at SF creamery or that milkshake challenge. WAY too much sugar/carbs with too little protein/solid food for me to succeed.

        3 Replies
        1. re: gmk1322

          I'm with you gmk, I'm done after one scoop of ice cream.
          Maybe just a half a scoop.

          1. re: gmk1322

            I definitely agree. If I remember correctly he didn't make it through those challenges. The oysters is more a matter of slurping and speed, so your body doesn't tell your mind how awful it feels. I haven't seen the show in a while, but some of them are just plain silly. I remember the burrito one where Joey Chestnut ate it in 3 minutes. I'm not sure if that was the 6-lb burrito, but it was huge.

            1. re: jhopp217

              It was the burrito-zilla in San Jose, CA near the CSUSJ campus. I don't remember the exact dimensions (I'm pretty sure it was at least 5 lbs.) but he wolfed that thing down.

              I wonder if you have a massive hangover (like an alcohol hangover) after those sugar-laden ice cream challenges. It seems like it would be the same effect since the alcohol is metabolically converted to sugars for breakdown. I am not planning to ever eat that much ice cream so I'll never know.

          2. Most of the mass quantity ones would be difficult for me. The only one that would be absolutely impossible was in Texas or Nebraska - somewhere in that area - where he ate a ton of meat, like a tray full. There was one where he ate something like a 5 pound grilled cheese and then a bunch of fries...I'm pretty sure I could do that one.

            1. I'm not a dainty eater by any means, but watching that show just makes me want to ralph! 15 shakes? Geez Louise, why? What kind of accomplishment is that? He seems totally likeable, but I've never "gotten' competitive eating.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Parrotgal

                Haha...if I'm thinking of the same episode he DID ralph :)

              2. Those ersters are actually making my mouth water. MMMM, 180 oysters....

                For me, the carb-heavy things would be the toughest, like those mega-burritos stuffed with rice, or huge omelets with piles of potatoes.

                The massive steaks would be easier for me -- for some reason I can devour a ton of red meat (maybe because I eat so little of it, thanks to my cholesterol numbers).

                The spicy foods I would have to finish so as not to risk destroying my reputation for being able to eat the hottest foods.

                1. The breakfast burrito/omelet would be really tough- I'm thinking of the episode where he needed to eat 7/8 plates to win. I think he also ate a 12 egg omelet with hash browns- that would be impossible- too many eggs.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: lhb78

                    Didn't he stop the 12-egg challenge with something like two bites left? I remember watching that and thinking. Can I have seconds?

                    1. re: jhopp217

                      Yeah, he couldn't finish the 12 egg omelet (Seattle); although if I recall correctly his companion did.

                      1. re: ipsedixit

                        The funniest thing about that challenge is that the place, Beth's Cafe only serves omelettes in two sizes - 6eggs and 12eggs and it comes with all you can eat hash browns. I wanna go to Seattle this weekend!

                  2. I'm a big fan of the show, but most challenges make my insides hurt just from watching. I would attempt the oysters, cause I love them, but doubt that I would get beyond 3 dozen, maybe 4. Definitely not 15 '-D

                    The spicy challenges are also more appealing than the quantity ones. Frankly, I think my personal limit is a little over a pound of food per sitting.

                    And that butterflied roast aka the steak challenge (wherever it was) still is the most ridiculous thing in the intro. I love steak, and red meat, but.... that's just gross.

                    5 Replies
                    1. re: linguafood

                      I think I could do some of the ice cream challenges if I was in a very hot room.

                      After rereading this post, I'm tempted to try the 12 egg omelet at home just to see ...

                      1. re: ipsedixit

                        I love, love, love pizza. But I don't think I could do that challange. Plain cheese, maybe, but not with all those toppings.
                        Let us know how you make out with the omelet! Remember the homefries and toast.

                        1. re: ipsedixit

                          The ice cream challenge is tough because it's too much milk. The body doesn't accept it after a while (like the gallon of milk challenge). I was shocked he didn't complete the egg challenge. I think that was the easiest by far. I know I could finish that one easily.

                        2. re: linguafood

                          I could probably max out around 3lbs if I was really doing something for the challenge of it, which doesn't even get close to the volume of the challenges he does. He tends to max out around 5-6lbs.

                          The spicy stuff is more up my alley, but lately he's been hitting up things that I am pretty sure I couldn't handle, e.g. the Four Horseman burger. I tend to base everything in relation to his reaction vs. his reaction to the hell pasta at east coast grill in cambridge.

                          1. re: linguafood

                            I can't eat the amounts I once did, but I am so tempted to go to that place in NYC and try the Lamb Phall challenge. I went to a place near me and the owner came up and said I was the first non-Indian customer to eat the entire dish.

                          2. Funny, I'm new to Cable Land. I am amused there is so little travel on the Travel Channel. We watch 1/2 shows. We enjoy the travel for food, but hit the remote when the gorging begins.
                            On the other hand, however, I do think I can do the 180 oysters. Have done 4 doz. on many an occasion.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: Passadumkeg

                              On the other hand, however, I do think I can do the 180 oysters. Have done 4 doz. on many an occasion.

                              But ... but ... 4 dozen is only 48 oysters. You'd have to nearly quadruple that output.

                              And the marginal pleasure curve for any foodstuff - oysters included -- starts to take a precipitous decline after, well, I don't have a precise number, but I'd imagine the drop would start somewhere along the lines of 100 oysters ...

                              Nonetheless, 48 oysters ... I bow down before you.

                              1. re: ipsedixit

                                Seriously, eating 180 of anything is pretty nasty. Me and two other people polished off 170 clams one day and we thought that was a feat. No way one of us could have done it. And oyster? That is crazy!

                            2. There is no challenge that I could do. None, or even come close. I must be the biggest food wimp. Added to that, I can't imagine any of it tasting good. Has anyone ever eaten any of the giant food from the show? How does it taste? And, while I like spicy food, I don't like it to burn my mouth/skin so I can't taste.

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: chowser

                                I think giant burritos and egg dishes (scrambles or omelets), as well as giant ice creams, can still taste good in ginormous form.

                                Burgers? Not so much. Hard to make a juicy tender hamburger patty that weighs 10 lbs and has it's own planetary orbit.

                                My biggest concern with food challenges is that even if I did "succeed" (and I use that word loosely), I might experience a long-term backlash to that particular food from the short-term overdose of "winning" the challenge.

                                1. re: ipsedixit

                                  Ginormous ice cream could be okay, brain freeze potential aside but when they mix far too many flavors together and then it all melts into one big soupy mess, it just can't taste good.

                                  I did think that if I ever wanted to develop an aversion to a food, I could do one of those challenges to it. But, then again, when I was in high school, I was told I'd get sick of McD's french fries if I worked there and I never did over two years of working there.

                                  1. re: chowser

                                    I got sick of donuts when I worked at a donut shop in high school.

                                    Fortunately (or maybe not), I'm over it now.

                                    It was something about the smell of donuts (or fresh fried dough) that grew to be a big turnoff for me.

                              2. It would have to be the spicy challenges for me - mass-quantity challenges of any sort would be way beyond my stomach's capacity these days.

                                If nothing else MvF keeps me on the straight and narrow diet-wise - my jaw visibly drops at many of those mondo-sized concoctions :)