The FDA Warns People to Stop Cooking Their Chicken in Cold Medicine

TikTok's viral "Sleepy Chicken Challenge" is prompting some users to marinate chicken in a sea of NyQuil.

The Image Party/Shutterstock
The Image Party/Shutterstock
The Image Party/Shutterstock

If you’ve ever downed a shot of NyQuil and thought it would make a great chicken marinade, you’re not alone. Although you should be. The disturbing concoction has been turned into a TikTok trend that not only sounds gross but could also be deadly, the US Food and Drug Administration warned this week.

The “NyQuil Chicken Challenge” initially began trending in January and has since made a comeback. The original video with the “recipe” for the poultry dish was posted in 2020 by what appeared to be a satire account run by artist Rob Flo. Both the account and the original video have since been deleted.

Flo’s recipe for “Sleepy Chicken” involves pouring “four-thirds” of a bottle of NyQuil into a pan with two chicken breasts. After that, you’re instructed to boil the mixture for five-to-30 minutes. Imagine that, your whole house should be filled with the delightful scent of stale medicinal mixed berry.”The challenge sounds silly and unappetizing-and it is. But it could also be very unsafe. Boiling a medication can make it much more concentrated and change its properties in other ways,” the FDA said in the agency’s warning.

Even if you don’t eat the chicken, the statement continues, merely inhaling the medication’s vapors while cooking could cause high levels of the drugs to enter your body. It could also hurt your lungs.

TikTok has since replaced the search results for “Nyquil Chicken Challenge” with a warning message that reads, “Some online challenges can be dangerous, disturbing or even fabricated.”

Despite the company’s noble efforts, any misspelled version of the phrase “sleepy chicken” still redirects users to the challenge.Want more Thrillist? Follow us on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, TikTok, and Snapchat.

Jeremy Porr is a News Writer at Thrillist. Follow Jeremy on Instagram.


Mad Mex’s New Menu Item Is Inspired by a Popular Mexican Street Food

mad mex chicken al pastor

Mexican restaurant chain Mad Mex has dropped a new protein, and it’s one of the most popular street foods in Mexico.

Enter, Chicken Al Pastor. It’s traditionally made with pork and grilled on a spinning rotisserie with a pineapple sitting a top, but Mad Mex has put its own spin on it, serving chicken bathed in an Al Pastor marinade with a touch of juicy pineapple.

You can order the protein-packed filling in your favourite burrito, bowl, quesadilla, nachos, or in a taco.

As always, these things are here for a good time, not a long time. Pop into your local Mad Mex restaurant, order delivery or through the Mad Mex app today.

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