How One Maryland Candymaker Is Using Cicadas For Its Latest Creations

Stretches of America have experienced almost a full week of a mass cicada birthing event known as the emergence of Brood X (via CBS). Billions of cicadas have emerged from underground to swarm and residents of the Midwest, Northeast, and Southeast have had to deal with the insects piling up outside. While harmless, the cicadas can annoy anyone looking to escape their signature buzz but offer up the perfect treat for backyard chickens and wild animals. Some adventurous chefs have joined in and started collecting the insects to turn into savory and sweet snacks.

According to CNN, the Maryland candy company Chouquette Chocolates has started to sell chocolate-dipped cicadas on its website. The insects come in milk chocolate or dark chocolate coatings, and the candy company even posted the recipe on their Facebook page to inspire home cooks. To make these treats, the fresh cicadas get frozen, dipped in boiling water, rolled in a selection of spices and oils, air-fried, and finally get dipped in chocolate.

The chocolatiers used a mix of cinnamon and Old Bay to season their insects, but any of your favorite spices will do. The end result allegedly tastes like chocolate-covered potato chips, according to CNN. If that flavor and texture combo doesn't strike your fancy, the chocolatiers also make insect-free cicada-themed chocolate for anyone wanting to enjoy some of the cicada novelties without eating the bugs.

What are the benefits of eating cicada chocolate?

If you want to take the plunge and indulge in some cicadas during the swarm, you couldn't have asked for a better time to explore this potential ingredient. According to Forbes, cicadas contain few calories while making up the difference with high protein and iron levels. Humans can also sustainably harvest the insects with a minimal environmental threat, making them a great alternative to mainstream meat sources.

If that can't get you eating cicadas dipped in chocolate, you might have to try a more savory twist. As Wired reports, chefs across the country have started collecting the insects to use as an ingredient in paella, on pizza, in sushi, and much more. Some compare the taste to shrimp, and these cicadas might end up on a menu near you soon.

If you have ever wanted to take your taste buds on a journey they can't forget, consider trying out some chocolate-covered cicadas while you can. With Brood X swarming for the foreseeable future, you couldn't ask for a better time to experiment with an ingredient that expands the boundaries of your diet.