TikTok has inspired us to try some some pretty quirky foods over the the last couple of years, but the latest viral recipe might be one of the oddest yet. A Flamin’ Hot Cheeto salad created by user @rxthism has swept through the popular platform.
So, what exactly is a Hot Cheeto salad? @rxthism makes hers by putting what looks like about two cups of whole Flamin’ Hot Cheetos in a bowl, then topping it with fresh cilantro leaves, a couple cups of chopped cucumber, several dashes of Tapatío hot sauce, and a generous squeeze of plastic-lemon-bottle lemon juice. She then tosses them together with a spoon and digs in. The results, she declares, are “bussin bussin” (which is a compliment).
Day 10 trying to get @spicekingcam to try my salad 🥗🔥
Reviews from people who have tried it for themselves have mostly been positive, though several suggest switching the bottled lemon juice for fresh. Some also say they add avocado for a cooling, creamy texture. At least one commenter, however, does ask the same question we have which is, is it really a salad? What does salad even mean?
TikTok Ruth is not the first to combine the flavorful, crunchy snacks into a salad. The website Pop Sugar created a very different version of Hot Cheeto salad all the way back in 2014. For their spin, they pulverize the Flamin’ Hot Cheetos in a food processor before using them to top a kale-apple salad. The visual impact of the flaming red-orange crumbles atop the dark green kale is certainly striking – though it feels a little restrained in comparison to eating whole Cheetos with a spoon.
Flamin’ Hot Cheetos may seem pretty far removed from actual cheese, but the product does in fact contain both cheese and milk. Several brands produce vegan alternatives, including Vegan Rob’s Dragon Puffs and PeaTos Fiery Hot Crunchy Curls.