Top Viral Stories from 2012 Slideshow

'Hot Cheetos and Takis'

If you missed the phenomenon that was the entire editorial staff of several food publications around the country all wiggin’ out about these adorable kids rapping about Hot Cheetos and Takis, please do yourself a favor and listen to this at least five times to make up for it. The crew, called Y.N.RichKids, pull out some serious swagger for this rap about snacks (the chorus is literally "Snack/Snack/Snack/Crunch"). There’s a kid just hanging out on a basketball hoop, a sassy girl singing about snacks on snacks on snacks, and plenty of kids with their fingers stained red.

Related: A pop punk band raps about grocery stores, mixologists get made fun of in rap form, plus "Milk in My Sippy Cup."

Marilyn Hagerty

Everyone’s favorite grandmother made it into the news with her genuine review of Olive Garden for the Grand Forks Herald (not snarky at all! Unlike Pete Wells’ review of Guy Fieri’s American Bar & Kitchen), which spawned plenty of Internet love, a social media-filled trip to New York City, a surprise trip to Italy from Anderson Cooper, a book deal with Anthony Bourdain, an Al Neuharth Excellence in Media award, and a Top Chef guest judge spot (which only premiered this month). Not bad, considering she didn't know what "going viral" was.


Last year Hostess filed for bankruptcy, and the world freaked out. Then they got some more funding, and then filed for bankruptcy again. And now they’re definitely closing down and selling, leading to one Chicago restaurant handing out 10,000 Twinkies for scared people stocking up for the end of the world, as well as lines outside of Jewel Osco grocery stores when the last shipment of Twinkies arrived. Let’s just learn to make our own, and we’ll be fine.

Sushi Movies

Anthony Bourdain’s Get Jiro! might have started a trend. While Jiro Dreams of Sushi made big splashes in terms of sushi porn and learning that people spend 10 years working before they can try making tamago (egg), sushi also starred as crazy killers in this so-bad-it’s-good horror movie, while sea creatures were villains in this movie pitch, where sushi chefs become the next superheroes.

Plenty of Bacon... and Cheese

With the slew of Burger King deals abroad, the folks over at RocketNews24 decided to put this poor guy to the test and made him try to eat a burger with 1,050 strips of bacon, and another with 1,000 slices of cheese. Please stop. Your cholesterol is begging you.

Related: A 40-layer meat sandwich, plus two guys who try to eat the entire Taco Bell menu.

Actors Read Yelp


Getting even with terrible Yelp reviewers might be just about the best thing the Internet can do, if it’s done right. Actors doing dramatic readings of Shakespearean tragedies in the food world? Perfect.


Back in March, Starbucks got a ton of flak for using a specific red dye in their strawberry drinks (along with red velvet whoopie pies, etc.). The dye? "Cochineal extract," which is basically the ground up bodies of female insects. While it soon became obvious that this dye is actually used in plenty of food products, the vegan community was more than disappointed to realize their strawberry smoothies with soy were no longer vegan. Everyone else was just slightly grossed out to discover what was in their food.

Luckily for vegans, and those who just don't like eating bugs, Starbucks soon responded and phased out cochineal extract, replacing it with lycopene, a tomato-based coloring.


We should really give McDonald’s Canada the award for best marketing ever, as the Canadian branch of America’s largest fast-food chain gave the world a behind-the-scenes look at how their food is made. First, there was a video showing the food styling tricks behind burgers in advertisements; then there was a video showing you how to make a Big Mac at home; then there were videos showing where McDonalds' beef comes from, and how their tasty but terrible-for-you fries are made. And while these are obviously all from a marketing perspective, it’s still pretty fascinating to watch.


Mexican Food Gets Tech-y

Why yes, a robot drone that delivers burritos and tacos directly to your exact coordinates would be pretty fantastic. Unfortunately, thanks to FAA regulations, commercial drone licensing has yet to be hashed out; instead, a bunch of innovators have been getting our hopes up with potential high-tech gadgets to get you Mexican food at any time, anywhere (perfect if you’re stuck camping and don’t want to get into your bear bag).

First, it was a burritobot that prints burritos for you; then there was a Tacocopter; and finally, the burrito bomber. We’re a fan of all three.

Related: The Hexa-Flexa-Mexagon. The best way to eat a burrito.

Pizza Tossing

While our video producer Ali Rosen learned a few tricks or two about pizza twirling from a pro, we must admit that even she cannot live up to this 7-year-old who tosses pizza dough like a boss. What were you doing at age 7? Not this.

Related: Also, this guy does some serious magic with pizza