Today when I woke up, I thought, “Why not rip the Monday morning Band-Aid off and try a popular coffee chain’s spiciest donut yet?”
Dunkin’ Donuts recently released a seasonal Ghost Pepper donut that combines the pepper and cayenne with a strawberry frosting—a timeless pairing that no one in particular was asking for. Perfectly timed for Halloween, the new donut launched the internet into many questions on exactly how spicy it could get.
After stopping at two different storefronts, I eventually found it in stock and carried it home before taking my first look (and bite). If you didn’t know any better, the light pink frosting and dark red sprinkles make the donut look like a pleasant Valentine’s Day surprise—but I quickly learned it is anything but.
I’m letting it be known that I could partially handle this, despite not being someone who handles spice particularly well. The first bite starts off sweet and unassuming due to the strawberry flavor hitting your taste buds early on. Once the dust settles, though, the heat comes to pack a punch.
The two closest things I’d compare this to if I could are a box of Red Hots or an inverted and quite chaotic Sour Patch Kid (sweet, hot, gone). It’s also not the hottest thing I’ve tried this week, as I tried an intense hot sauce on a dare, so this Dunkin’ product isn’t as bad in comparison. My mouth still burned partially after eating the Ghost Pepper concoction.
It’s not the type of donut you rush into, as I typically prefer chocolate and straight sweet options from the chain. I would never have looked at a donut and though “I wonder what this would be like with ghost pepper on it,” so it’s also an interesting look into what must be going on at Dunkin’s HQ.
Also, if I had run right into it, I probably would’ve suffered a lot more. It took me about an hour to get through half of the donut, slowly enduring the heat and coworker concerns if I was still alive.
Overall, it’s not my favorite Dunkin product that I’ve tried—not by a long shot. It’s also not something I believe they were trying to make a fan favorite. The item is unique and a fun choice for adventurous fast food aficionados. In a time where human interaction has been lacking, the Ghost Pepper donut, albeit spicy, was an intriguing highlight of my week that allowed me to feel like I was living on the edge.
As for now, I am still alive, but for those who do find it, proceed with caution and very tiny bites.