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Unlikely Pairs: Foods That Shouldn’t Be Good Together…But ARE?!

Some things just go together, ya know?

Daniel Fernandez

Ebony and Ivory. Simon and Garfunkel. Hairspray and the ‘80s. Liberal arts degrees and disappointed parents...some things just go together, ya know?

That’s especially true when it comes to certain food pairs: peanut butter and jelly, eggs and bacon, and hamburgers and french fries. That said, today we’ll be taking a trip over to the WILD SIDE as we check out some unlikely food pairs that don’t seem like they should taste good, BUT DO!

1. Peanut Butter & Mayo Sandwich

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

This abomina– unlikely pairing is said to have been concocted during the Great Depression era. You might assume eating it would leave you Greatly Depressed BUT don’t knock it till you try it!

2. Apple Pie & Cheddar Cheese

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

A request for a slice of cheddar cheese to go with your apple pie may attract some stares from the rest of the table, but this is your chance to invoke science and let them know about the phenomenon called flavor layering, which creates a positive response to the salty and sweet combo in your brain.

3. Mango Chunks & Milk

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

You’ve maybe heard that you’re not supposed to mix milk and fruit. But if anyone says that to you, just ask them, “what ingredients are in that smoothie you’re holding right now, Josh, huh?!” Jokes aside, chunks of fresh mango mixed with milk (any milk substitute will work too) makes for a refreshing treat. Think of it as a deconstructed sherbert!

4. Avocado & Chocolate

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

When people think of avocados they usually think of toast or guacamole, but you might want to make a little room on that list for chocolate! Adding avocado to some melted chocolate makes for a creamy and delicious mousse that’s a bit more enriched than your average dessert!

5. Olive Oil & Ice Cream

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

“Yeah, I’d like some sprinkles, caramel, and a cherry on my ice cream...oh and some OLIVE OIL, please.” Fans of this combination say that olive oil can add a delicious dash of earthy flavor and smoothness when added to ice cream. So do I. I say that too.

6. Rice & Ketchup

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

You’d be pleasantly surprised at how much the salty and acidic kick of ketchup adds to a plain bowl of rice! Plus, it’s a ton of fun to just squirt the bottle without a care in the world.

7. Pizza & Bananas

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

Bananas? LOVE ‘EM. Pizza? LOVE IT. Bananas on Pizza? GO ON... This sweet and salty pairing actually hails from Sweden so if you’re trying to fit in with the folks at Ikea, this is just the ticket.

8. Chocolate Chips & Grilled Cheese Sandwich

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

Chocolate chips inside of a grilled cheese sandwich?! Are you serious?! Is that even legal?! (Not gonna lie, I’m eating this one right now and it is A+++)

9. Oreos & Orange Juice

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

Because milk is cliché, and you like to live life on the edge — seeking thrills and adventure with every waking moment. Try starting off your day with a tall glass of orange juice and some Oreos. Nope, that’s not a typo.

10. Broccoli & Cheetos

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

Ah, yes, broccoli. The vegetable equivalent of Darth Vader. It’s the vegetable that children tend to avoid just as much (if not more) than doing their homework. But when you add Cheetos into the mix, watch as eyebrows raise and guards fall at the dinner table. Godspeed, parents.

11. Watermelon & Feta Cheese

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

Watermelon and feta make for a treat that’s as healthy as it is tasty. Sweet watermelon dissolves in your mouth while salty, easy-to-chew chunks of feta crumble as they break down. You’ll be at the bottom of your empty bowl before you realize what just ate.

12. M&Ms & Popcorn

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

This is more of a life hack than an unlikely pair. Next time it’s family movie night, pour a bag of M&M’s (any kind will work!) into your bowl of popcorn and proceed to enjoy your movie while you live your best life. 

13. Peanut Butter & Pickles Sandwich

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

Before you alert the United Nations about this crime against humanity, you should know that this pairing has been a cult classic since its inception during the Great Depression. Salty and sweet? Yes, please.

14. Hot Dogs & Applesauce

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

As you pick your jaw up off the floor, keep an open mind! This combo most likely started as a take on “pork chops and applesauce,” which was made popular on the Brady Bunch in 1971. It was broadcasted all over America! So really, how could it be bad?!

15. French Fries & Ice Cream

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

For me, ketchup will forever be the greatest condiment to pair with french fries, but ice cream is a close second! It’s the perfect combination of salty and sweet, hot and cold, and starch and dairy.

16. BONUS! (FOR ADULTS ONLY): Coca Cola & Red Wine

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Heeral Chhibber / CAMP

This unlikely pair is very popular in Spain and goes by the name of Calimocho. The tang of the red wine and the caramel flavor of the soda! Keep this in mind next time you’re at a one-year-old’s birthday party and you have to write an article for about unlikely food pa– umm, never mind!