There’s something addicting about the tingling, fire-breathing sensation of spicy foods.
As the heat creeps up on you, your throat begins to sting and tears stream from your eyes. Every sensible bone in your body is telling you to quit, but your mind is saying #noregrets as you savor every last drop of that red-hot chili oil.
If you’re looking for a new place to show-off your spice tolerance, embrace the heat this summer with these fiery and flavorful dishes, from Jitlada’s Spicy Dynamite Challenge to Badmaash’s Ghost Chili Lamb Vindaloo. Be aware, these dishes aren’t for the faint of heart—so don’t say we didn’t warn you.
1. Jitlada – Spicy Dynamite Challenge
Featured in countless YouTube videos, Chef Tui Sungkamee’s infamous stir fry, made with both fresh and dried Thai chilis, induces both tears and hiccups. Many brave souls have attempted (and failed) to finish the 18+ dish. The only defenses against this attack on your well-being are a plate of carrots and cucumbers served on ice, and a generous glass of creamy Thai iced tea.
2. Apey Kade – Kottu Roti
If you’ve ever had the chance to try Sri Lankan cuisine, you know it’s famously aromatic, but also very spicy. Kottu roti is a popular street food made with chopped godamba roti, eggs, green chilies and meat or seafood, blended with a symphony of spices and sautéed in a kadai (wok) on high heat.
3. Badmaash – Ghost Chili Lamb Vindaloo
When the first word under this dish’s description is “SPICY!!” in all caps, you know this vindaloo ain’t messing around. Officially ringing in at over 1 million Scovilles, the notorious ghost chili pepper, or ‘bhut jolokia,’ combines forces with serrano peppers and red chilis in this dish to create arguably the world’s hottest lamb and potato vindaloo. Beyond this dish’s firepower, it also features a tangy flavor profile highlighted by hints of ginger, turmeric, coriander and cinnamon.
4. Huolala Restaurant – Spicy Lamb With Crispy Rice
The name of this San Gabriel Valley Sichuan restaurant tells you exactly what to expect: huŏ (fire) and là (spicy). Awaken your slumbering senses with tender cubes of lamb paired with plenty of garlic, Sichuan peppercorns and dried chili peppers. Crispy rice pieces, though texturally satisfying, balance out the otherwise overpowering heat.
5. Yup Dduk LA – Spicy Rice Cakes’ #KtownSpicyChallenge
Did somebody mention a spicy tteokbokki challenge? If you think you think you can handle it, gather a few of your thrill-seeking pals and conquer a big bowl of the hottest rice cakes in K-town. Feel free to pimp your bowl out with toppings like cheese, ramen, dumplings and a boiled egg.