You may have noticed an image rocketing the Internet yesterday that seemingly depicted a package of cheeseburger-flavored Oreo cookies. “No, surely not!,” you may have gasped. “Is it possible? Are Cheeseburger Oreos real?” Well, the good news is that I have answers for you — but the bad news is that they may not be the answers you were hoping for. Or maybe they are; I suppose it all depends on your point of view.
So here's the deal: No, Cheeseburger Oreos are not real. Personally, I'm breathing a sigh of relief at that little factoid; as I commented way back when the equally fake Fried Chicken Oreos were making the rounds, cheeseburger-flavored Oreos are one of the most disgusting-sounding taste combinations of which I can conceive. I'm sure there are plenty of you out there who just had all their hopes and dreams dashed by the fact that the whole thing is a hoax, though — in which case you have my sympathy. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but hey, at least it's better than living in willful ignorance. Or…something.
The cleverly photoshopped image of the Cheeseburger Oreos package hails from a video uploaded to YouTube on November 23, 2014 by the channel Wreckless Eating. Part of a series called “Will It Cookie?,” the episode in question saw hosts Chris Wreckless and Matt Zion sticking some Oreos inside a few cheeseburgers and taste-testing the results. At about the 2:05 mark, the video displays the Cheeseburger Oreos package — which, according to the video's credits, was created by freelance illustrator Beck McCoy. Clearly we should be hiring her for all our photoshopping needs, because that cookie package is a work of art.
Wreckless Eating later confirmed that its video is the source of the image on its Facebook page after a number of tipsters forwarded the picture to them:
This is far from the only fake Oreo package that has resulted from the “Will It Cookie?” series, by the way; others include Buffalo Wing Oreos, Ramen Oreos, and — what's this? Fried Chicken Oreos! Well, look at that! Given the timeline of when the Fried Chicken Oreo hoax started making its way across the Web, it looks like this video is where that particular image came from, too: The video was uploaded on July 10, and we covered it here at Bustle on July 17. The more you know, right?
As for who's responsible for igniting the hoax this week? That's a little less clear. This tweet, dated May 11, seems to be the first appearance of the Cheeseburger Oreo picture on Twitter:
But when another Twitter user asked @THEJEWISHKING if the cookies were real, he responded only:
So it's possible that he just found the image floating around the Internet on its own. What we don't know is who screen-capped it and launched it into cyberspace in the first place.
Will Cheeseburger Oreos ever actually become a thing? Although Snopes noted that it's not impossible if there's enough popular demand — “[Nabisco] did, after all, decide to issue Red Velvet Oreos after the public expressed significant interest in the flavor,” wrote the debunking site — I actually don't think it's likely to happen even if enough people ask for it. Why? Because the idea of the flavor is just too weird. I highly doubt that anyone who would purchase Cheeseburger Oreos would do it for anything other than to find out exactly how weird they are, rather than out of any strong desire to actually eat them. And that just isn't a great business move. I'm speculating here, but I suspect the subset of “It's so weird — I MUST TRY IT!” people is likely too small to warrant rolling out this monstrosity even as a limited-edition option.
That's just me, though.
Interestingly, a few odd-sounding Oreo flavors did enter the test phase a few years ago in an attempt to appeal to customers in Asian countries. These flavors included chewing gum, chicken feet with pickled chili…and cheeseburger:
I'll pass, thanks.