The absolute worst food challenges on Fear Factor

Fear is never taken lightly. We all have something that rattles our internal cages and sends shivers marching through our vertebrae, banging on each nerve like a drum and letting us know the situation at hand will take guts to power through.

Watching people overcome fear-inducing obstacles gives us an odd thrill. That's why the show Fear Factor was so popular. Ordinary folks faced difficult — and often seemingly impossible — challenges. Everyone enjoyed putting themselves in the place of the contestants to determine if they themselves could handle the challenges. But, when it came to the "eating weird things" segments, plenty of people knew they'd raise the white flag and call it quits. 

Sure, many people could handle walking a narrow beam hundreds of feet in the air, or tough out an intense ride in a car careening down a highway. But, as soon as they were faced with ingesting some horrifying smattering of animal innards, doubt would creep in fast. Every episode had at least one nausea-inducing "food" segment, and lucky for you, we've compiled a list of the nastiest dishes. Buckle up, and make sure your Pepto-Bismol's within reach. 

Fear Factor served blended "goodies"

The great thing about blenders is the ease in which they make fruit smoothies, healthy vegetable drinks, or a variety of different sauces that require an intense, well, blending. The horrible part about them is a show like Fear Factor uses the convenience of those spinning blades for truly horrific purposes.

In the segment appropriately titled "Blender of Fear," each contestant rolled three large die with one stomach-churning ingredient written on each side. The three ingredients that landed face-up after a nerve-racking roll were dumped into a blender. Then, those blades got to work, churning things like animal fat, bile, rooster testicles, and cod liver oil into a smoothie even Lucifer would take a hard pass on. 

As you can imagine, gag reflexes kick in along with adrenaline rushes, and each contestant handles their blended nightmare differently. One guy actually conquers it with such ease it looks like he enjoys it. But, he shouldn't expect to see it on a Jamba Juice menu anytime soon.

Fear Factor contestants ate horse rectum

It's pretty safe to assume no one ever glanced at a horse and thought, "Boy, I sure wish I knew what that stallion's rectum tasted like." Until, of course, you look to the people who think up the outlandish Fear Factor stunts contestants force themselves to endure.

"Horse Rectum." The show didn't sugarcoat anything by naming the segment just that, and it's exactly what it sounds like. Standing in front of a stable with several live horses milling about in the background, contestants shovel as many inches of cooked horse rectum into their mouths as possible before time runs out. Host Joe Rogan does his best to urge people to put their unease aside and power through the task, but trying to help people forget they're stuffing a horse's rectum into their face is no easy feat.

The live horses occasionally glance at the contestants choking down torn bits of rectum, and you can't help but wonder if they're thinking, "Boy, I sure wish I knew what that human's rectum tasted like."

Fear Factor made goat milk pretty gross

Now, goat milk doesn't sound gross enough to warrant a segment on a show like Fear Factor. After all, you can actually buy cartons of the stuff at some grocery stores or online, whereas you'll be hard-pressed to find packaged horse rectums in any Amazon warehouse. But, this is Fear Factor, and the creatives behind these challenges ensure everything is consumed in the least-appealing way possible. Well, they certainly hit the nail on the head with this one.

Enter two contestants and two live goats perched on waist-high pillars. In the middle of each goat-contestant pairing stands a table with two empty glasses. The mission? Fill the glass with goat's milk and then chug until the last drop. At first, it doesn't seem so bad. Even if someone's never milked an animal before, they could probably figure it out. Then, Joe Rogan drops the bomb: Everyone uses their mouths to milk the goats

Suck out the milk, spit it into the glass, and repeat. Once the liquid hits the designated fill-line, participants chug the warm already-been-in-their-mouth milk and flash a smile for the cameras. They just made it to second base with a farm animal. Check that off their bucket list.

This Fear Factor challenge was all about leeches

The word "leech" alone is enough to make blood run cold. Those little vampire-like creatures are a thing of nightmares. So, naturally, the gracious folks at Fear Factor knew they just had to incorporate them into a challenge somehow, and incorporate them they did.

The "lucky" contestants who dealt with the leeches submerged themselves up to their neck in a bathtub full of the squirmy black creatures for several seconds. Once Rogan gave the okay, they frantically jumped out of the tub with dozens still clinging to their skin. Their partner then removed each one by slurping it off with their mouth and spitting it into a beaker. But, they weren't done yet.

After the last leech found its way into the beaker, both partners had to eat 10 of them. Yea, if sucking them off skin wasn't bad enough, chewing up those tiny Dracula-slugs certainly was. But, for those with an eye on that monetary prize, those squiggly leeches didn't stand a chance.

African cave-dwelling spiders were a Fear Factor dish

It doesn't matter how vital we know spiders are to the ecosystem. Whenever we see those eight legs skitter across our floor we grab the nearest blunt object and tap into our inner bounty hunter, intent on finding that scampering little menace and flattening it out so we can sleep that night. There's a reason Arachnophobia was a movie; an intense fear of spiders is all-too real. So, naturally, Fear Factor capitalized on that terror.

Giving the chance for contestants to win a new car, the show took to Las Vegas where it hit the roulette table for a chance to win the four-wheeled prize. Here are eight words you never want to hear: "Put that African cave-dwelling spider in your mouth right now." But, that's exactly what contestants were told at the table.

The arachnids weren't dead, chocolate-covered, or candy-coated. They were alive, skittering around the roulette table until victims (um, contestants) grabbed one, closed their eyes, and said one heck of a mental prayer before munching down. Those eight legs still kicked about as they worked it around their molars, and each contestant left with a whole new meaning of the word "arachnophobia."

Bug wedding cake is something that could only exist on Fear Factor

A wedding just isn't complete without a massive decorative cake to round out the celebratory meal once vows are exchanged and all that mushy love's passed around. Those three-tiered towers of decadence are designed to satisfy everyone's sweet tooth, but when you're a contestant on Fear Factor, that "cake" you're staring at is far from an enjoyable post-wedding dessert. It's an icing-coated terror waiting to reign absolute hell on your nerves.

Instead of a delicious inner ring of rich cake beneath the outer icing, each pair of contestants was faced with worms, beetles, and alligator eyeballs. Using only their mouths, they dove face-first into the edible nightmare and started munching. After chewing up each atrocious bite, they spit the mouthful of mush into an empty champagne flute with a fill-line one centimeter below the brim. Once that savory sludge hit the line, it was chugging time! 

Imagine how it feels to have not only worms and beetles squirming around in your mouth, but each pop of those eyeballs sends a warm tablespoon of rancid fluid flowing down your throat. Now keep that image burned into your brain when you're at the altar saying, "I do."

Fear Factor served up buffalo testicles

Anyone who's fallen for the ol' "try these Rocky Mountain oysters" trick probably reacted with absolute horror once their giggling friends admitted that what they put into their mouths weren't actually fried oysters. Finding out buffalo testicles disguised as delicious mollusks just entered your mouth is enough to send anyone's brain careening down a path of disgust. But hey, at least they're cooked, unlike the gonads Fear Factor had its contestants force down their gullets.

The setting for the challenge was the counter top of a kempt diner, but the action that ensued was anything but clean. A massive plate of huge testicles stared every contestant in the face, and you could read the horror emanating from each soul. Nearly the size of ostrich eggs, some stuffed the "cowboy caviar" into their faces like champions, while others waved their white flags immediately.

When it comes to eating challenges, it's all mind over matter. And if a participant can find it in themselves to picture those glistening gonads as a delicious cheese steak instead of dangling buffalo bits, they'll be just fine. Some restaurants sling Rocky Mountain oysters, but Fear Factor slings "Raw"-cky Mountain oysters.

Roadkill was the main course on this Fear Factor episode

Yea. Roadkill. You read that correctly. Anything with the word "kill" in it should stay light years away from our appetite. We've all seen the unfortunate flattened remains of some small woodland creature who tempted fate (and failed miserably) crossing a busy road, but no one wants to scrape it off the asphalt with a shovel, season it with salt and pepper, and toss the carcass on a grill. But, alas, we're not the people at Fear Factor.

Welcome to the Road Kill Cafe, folks. The place you go to eat when every other establishment in Dante's Seventh Circle of Hell has a full reservation list. There's only one thing on the menu, and the line cooks serving it up don't give a damn what you think about it. How exactly is a plate of roadkill presented to hungry patrons? As horrific as possible, of course!

With a snow shovel in hand, each contestant launches the carcass of a furry animal onto a painted target. If the furry shovel-full lands in the red bullseye, they get a pass on the feast, but luckily for viewers, the bullseye remains elusive. Cut to one woman shoveling a pile of "animal organ meat" into her mouth like her life depends on it. Does she finish? That's up to a strong-stomached viewer to find out.

Fear Factor contestants ate sheep eyes

Many of us went to petting farms as children, carrying those handfuls of sheep food over to chain link fences while we watched the four-legged cotton balls gobble them up in an intense fury. Now, imagine popping out the eyeballs out of those animals, putting them into your mouth, and chomping down while eyeball goo coats the inside of your mouth like a fatty Wagyu steak. Sounds pretty baaaaa-d.

Fortunately (or unfortunately), Fear Factor contestants did just that. Sitting anxiously in a row like prisoners awaiting a death sentence, each player was presented with a plate of sheeps' eyes that popped in their mouths like the world's slimiest caviar. One woman even exclaims, "It smells like sewage!" But, that same woman actually devours them like a boss. 

The next time you find yourself at a petting zoo, take a good look at those sheep. They're staring right back at you, and those eyes are ripe for the plucking!

Fear Factor served a variety of "pies"

Pecan. Cherry. Apple. Coconut Cream. All these pies sound delicious, right? Who wouldn't want to shove their faces into one of these golden crusted treats and keep gulping until diabetes kicked in? Well, pretty much nobody, unless they were presented with the variety of pies Fear Factor gave their struggling contestants. "Pie" took on a whole different meaning, and it ruined holidays forever.

Instead of containing a mouthwatering amount of sweet delights, the pies offered to contestants contained either maggots, duck tongues, pig stomachs, or rotten fish. Show up to Christmas dinner with any of those and you'll get a swift kick in the butt out the front door, but not here. And, just like in typical ol' Fear Factor fashion, the only way to eat them was diving in face-first with mouths open.

The goal was finding four coins buried somewhere in the spread, and after the fourth was finally pulled out, the pair of contestants had to suck down a thick beige duck tongue-maggot-rancid fish milkshake using straws the circumference of half-dollars. It just never gets any easier.

A Fear Factor chef made the grossest sushi imaginable

When you pull up a chair at a sushi counter, you prepare for a decadent meal of bite-sized oceanic morsels prepared by master chefs. On Fear Factor, however, posting up at a sushi counter means something completely different. Decadence and creativity take a back seat to the overwhelmingly nasty.

Contestants are served a two-course meal by a chef who probably never thought he'd work with ingredients like maggots and rotten squid. But, like the master chef he is, he prepares two pieces of maggot nigiri and one rotten squid gut hand roll. Then, he watches in silence as each contestant does their best to power through the cuisine.

Think Jiro Dreams of Sushi meets Creepshow. That's about exactly how the segment plays out. There's a lot of hesitancy, even more sweating, and an extra helping of gagging. So, the next time you order a Spider Roll, bask in the relief it's not coming from a Fear Factor sushi chef.

Tomato hornworms from Fear Factor are the stuff of nightmares

Tomatoes are pretty much universally thought of as a fantastic addition to salads and sandwiches. The exact opposite can be said for worms. Yea, keep those squiggly little earthen creatures as far away from food as humanly possible. But, when Fear Factor contestants heard the words "tomato hornworm" on one episode, they could pretty much assume the focus was way more on the worm as opposed to the tomato.

Now, regardless of what a raw squirmy tomato hornworm tastes like, the inevitable pop that ensues after each bite truly makes them intolerable. Their bloated bodies act like spring-loaded super soakers, with each bite sending an intense spritz of guts erupting out of each contestant's mouth. But, in a world where fear is the obstacle to overcome, molars worked overtime to grind those little critters into juicy bits.

There's no insect too creepy and no liquid too disgusting when it comes to Fear Factor challenges. You can be sure those contestants won't ever get that sickening tomato hornworm "pop" sensation out of their memories. 

Donkey "Juice" was the worst Fear Factor challenge ever

If you ever open up the refrigerator door at a friend's house and saw a jug of milky liquid labeled "Donkey Juice," you'd have some serious questions to ask them. Well, Fear Factor's segment named "Donkey Juice" was perhaps one of the gnarliest challenges ever aired. That's because "juice" was synonymous with "semen and urine." WTF.

The challenge started with a horseshoe toss onto a bullseye with numbered rings. Whichever numbered ring the throw landed in, challengers drank that number in ounces of either donkey urine or semen. And it was exactly as vomit-inducing as it sounds (honestly, though, how could it not be?). A horrified Joe Rogan watched as contestants gulped mouthfuls of fluids down their throats, which they were allowed to puke back up into pails upon completion.

The segment was so disgusting it was actually the catalyst for the show's cancellation the second time around. The first time was for low ratings after years on the air, and after if finally made a comeback to network television, viewers hopped off the bandwagon after enduring the fluid-chugging extravaganza. Wouldn't you?