The 17 Wackiest, Most Surprising Food Moments Of 2015

The internet (especially its food-related corners), is land of the quirky and sometimes downright weird. In 2015, there were many news stories that, whether good or bad, we just couldn't believe. From the very first edible coffee cup, to the very last anti-Starbucks tweet, there was plenty to go around.

Some made us roll our eyes, like the scrutiny of Hillary Clinton's Chipotle order. Some made us cringe (like not one, but two vermin-related incidents). And some just made us want to hide under our beds (we're talking about a certain oddly colored hamburger bun and its, ahem, side effects).

But from the ridiculous to the ridiculously overblown, they all kept us laughing throughout the year. Ahead, find our favorites, and here's to even more of the unexpected in 2016.
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Photographed by Davide Luciano.
Peas in guacamole?!
We normally love Melissa Clark's recipes in The New York Times. But her guacamole recipe, which involved peas, left a lot of people (including the President) totally confused. We're sticking with Obama's recipe for 2016: "onions, garlic, hot peppers. Classic."
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Photo: Courtesy of IHOP.
IHOP's Social Media Faux Pas
IHOP spent a lot of 2015 trying to prove it was hip, by sprinkling its Twitter text with things like "bae" and "Deez Nuts." But when a tweet went out in October mocking girls with flat chests and comparing them to pancakes, the internet was in an uproar, making the chain one of the most recent in a long line of companies to learn that tweets can be deleted, but screenshots are forever.
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Photo: Courtesy of McDonald’s.
McDonald's Announces All-Day Breakfast
After years of begging, fans of the McMuffin learned that it would finally be available all day. Proving there CAN be too much of a good thing, franchises struggled to accommodate our insatiable appetites for hash browns and sausage biscuits.

How much do we love our McBreakfast? The chain already goes through some 2 billion eggs annually, something we learned when it also announced that it would be going cage-free...in 10 years (because enough cage-free farms don't even exist yet!).
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Photo: REX Shutterstock.
Hillary's Guac-ghazi
Blame a slow news day. Long before Chipotle was making headlines for run-ins with the norovirus, it was splashed all over the news when Secretary of State Clinton stopped by an Ohio location while on the campaign trail. What did she order? What did it mean? Was it part of her "Hispanic outreach?" How much longer till November 2016?!
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Photo: Courtesy of Starbucks.
Starbuck's Red Cup Controversy
Starbucks' red cups have become as reliable a sign of the holiday season as Santa in the Macy's parade. This year's simple, ombre take was certainly a new twist on the classic, but it probably wouldn't have made headlines if people hadn't alleged that the minimal design was part of the so-called "war on Christmas."

There was even a brief brouhaha over the chain's Christmas cookies, which Twitter users allegedly looked like polar bears with slit throats. The polar bears in question (which were clearly wearing scarves), weren't even available this year — the controversial cookies haven't been available since 2010.
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Photo: via @marielle.m.n.o.p.
Whole Foods' "Asparagus Water"
Whole Foods reached new levels of self-parody in August, when a picture of its latest trendy drink, "asparagus water," went viral. The water in question was just regular water with three stalks of asparagus in it— for $5.99. The backlash (and mockery) lead to the store pulling the product and issuing an apology.
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Photo: Courtesy of McDonald’s.
Cursing Happy Meals
Sure, the minions can be a bit annoying— but are they really evil? In a story tailor-made for local television news, parents in several states alleged that the toys, given out as part of a happy meal, were saying "What the f*ck." McDonald's had to release a statement explaining that the minions speak their own language, Minionese, and nothing they say can be translated into any known language.
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Photo: Courtesy of Youtube.
Pizza Rat
In September, a new social media star was born: Pizza Rat. New Yorkers saw a kindred spirit in the subway denizen, who clearly wants to get on the A train and also finish his dollar slice of pizza. While imitators like Doughnut Rat soon appeared, there was no beating the original.

(That doesn't mean we wanted — or needed — this terrifying costume version of the rat, though.)
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Photo: Courtesy of Burger King.
Burger King's Poop Problem
A black burger bun is enough to send our ridiculous-o-meter off the charts. But when consumers of this questionable meal reported having green poop, we were officially over it. There are much better ways to celebrate Halloween, guys.
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Photo: Courtesy of Frito-Lay.
Doritos' Rainbow Chips
2015 was a huge year for LGBT rights, but we weren't totally sure what rainbow-colored corn chips have to do with the fight for equality. If anything, seeing Doritos in purple, blue, and green confirmed our earlier suspicions that the orange color of the Nacho Cheesier Doritos was less natural than we might have hoped.
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Photo: Courtesy of Pizza Hut.
Pizza Hut's Triple Treat Box
We thought stuffed crust pizza was the height of decadence, but Pizza Hut took its delivery game up a notch this year with the Triple Threat Box — a pizza stacked on top of a pizza on top of bread sticks and a giant cookie, all for $19.99. Whether the packaging is necessary is up for debate, but that does sound like a pretty good deal to us (but why is Michael Bolton in the commercial?).
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Photo: Courtesy of Pressed Juicery.
Drinkable Charcoal
Charcoal is certainly having a moment in beauty, but we were a little shocked by the idea that people have been drinking it in addition to putting it on their faces. Then again, if it could help clean out the Christmas cookies we've been indulging in all December, who are we to scoff?
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Photo: Courtesy of Devorise Dixon's Facebook.
KFC's Rat Scare
Not all vermin are as beloved as Pizza Rat: When a Twitter user uploaded a picture of a fried "rat" served to him at KFC, our initial reaction was horror. Of course, if you take a closer look, you can tell that it really just looks like a weird piece of chicken — which was eventually confirmed, but not before news outlets all over the world reported on the incident.
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Photo: Frank Bean/ Getty Images.
The Chocolate Weight-Loss Con
Modern science gives us lots of reasons to be hopeful — and we're not just talking about curing diseases. There is an entire sub-genre of scientific studies that prove things we've long wanted to be true: that our favorite vices, like coffee, wine, or chocolate are actually good for us.

Of course, sometimes these discoveries are too good to be true. Back in May, journalist and scientist John Bohannon released a study on the weight-loss benefits of chocolate, using bunk science in an attempt to prove the media is too quick to jump on good news based on shoddy methodology. He explained his reasons in an article on i09, but not before he fooled millions (and broke our hearts).
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Photo: Courtesy of Pepsi.
The Return Of Crystal Pepsi
Blame the #TBT culture. In December, Pepsi announced that its '90s era drink, Crystal Pepsi, is returning. Never mind that the original version tanked over 20 years ago or that it might be lost on today's consumers. (More than one Refinery29 staffer replied with "What's Crystal Pepsi?" when they heard the news.)
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Photo: Courtesy of Ben and Jerry’s.
Ben & Jerry's 4/20 Confession
When asked if they would ever make weed-infused edibles in response to the loosening of marijuana laws, founders Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield said it would make sense. Surprising no one who is familiar with the line, Greenfield said, "Ben and I have had previous experiences with substances," and if it were up to them alone they'd probably do it.

But it's more than just Ben and Jerry calling the shots at the ice cream brand these days, so for now, we'll have to make do with delicious treats that just have thinly veiled drug references on the packaging.
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Photo: Courtesy of KFC.
KFC Makes Edible Coffee Cups
Is eating our fast food containers the future? (And do we really need to eat more after chowing down on a burger and fries?!) These were the questions that KFC forced us to ask after we saw its edible coffee cups in February. While we're all for more environmentally friendly consumption, we're not sure chowing down on our mug after enjoying a hot brew is the way to do it.
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