Papa Bob's BBQ Ultimate Destroyer Challenge
John Z./Yelp

25 Belly-Busting Food Challenges That Offer Winners a Free Meal

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Papa Bob's BBQ Ultimate Destroyer Challenge
John Z./Yelp

The Clean Plate Club

Free food sounds like a deal, but when the only way to get it is to complete an extreme challenge, most people gladly pay for their meals. But there are a few brave souls willing to endure such feats of consumption either for free meals, bragging rights, or simply as a test of will and stamina. Whether they have to put away pounds of food in a specified period or eat extremely spicy food without the benefit of a drink, those who conquer these tasks certainly earn their freebies. 


Related: The Most Indulgent Appetizers at Popular Chain Restaurants

Lumberjacks Pizza and Wieners at Gators Pub
Shelby D./Yelp

Gators Pub/Lumberjacks Pizza V. Wiener Works Challenge

Slatersville, Rhode Island
Gators Pub and Lumberjacks Pizza offer a challenge that gives eaters 45 minutes to hoover down 15 wieners with the works, a 32-ounce beer (or milkshake), and a pound of fries. Losers are stuck paying $26. If you're not into hotdogs, you can opt instead for a 4-pound Italian grinder with all the fixings — which costs $30 if you lose.


Related: Where to Order the Most Extreme Hot Dogs Across the Country

Overtime Grill Monster Nacho Challenge
Overtime Sports Grill & Bar/Yelp

Overtime Grill Monster Nacho Challenge

Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Devour a $22 order of Monster Nachos at the OverTime Grill in Sioux Falls in 45 minutes, and the meal is free. Be wary, though — it's about 5 pounds of food, including a pound of chips plus waffle fries, cheese, beef, and more.

M.A.C. Daddy Pancake Challenge
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M.A.C. Daddy Pancake Challenge

Waikiki Beach, Hawaii
At M.A.C. 24/7 in Waikiki Beach, Oahu, customers looking to carbo-load can order the Pancake Challenge. Chow down three 14-inch pancakes topped with fruit in 90 minutes and the $24 meal is free. But be forewarned — even Adam Richman, former host of the Travel Channel series "Man v. Food," failed.

Famous Franks Challenge
Famous Franks

Famous Franks Frankenstein Challenge

North Grosvenordale, Connecticut
Famous Franks, located in North Grosvenordale, offers a "hot dog" composed of two dozen franks with 3 pounds of toppings on an 18-inch grinder roll. Scarf it down in 30 minutes and the $25 meal is free. Winners also get a sweet T-shirt.

Westport Flea Market Bar and Grill
Sue H./Yelp

Westport Flea Market Super Flea

Kansas City, Missouri
The Westport Flea Market in Kansas City is the home of the monstrous Super Flea. For $39, contenders get five 10-ounce patties topped with bacon and cheese plus 2 pounds of fries. Finish it all in 30 minutes, and it's free — along with a T-shirt and a photo on the Wall of Fame.


Related: The Most Outrageous Burgers You Can Order

Kooky Canuck Kookamonga Challenge
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Kooky Canuck Kookamonga Challenge

Cordova, Tennessee

The Kookamonga Challenge at Kooky Canuck isn’t for the faint of heart. Contenders must put away about 7½ pounds of food in total (including a 4-pound beef patty) in 60 minutes to get the $37 meal for free.

Wing Dome 7 Alarm Challenge
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The Wing Dome 7-Alarm Challenge

Kent, Washington
In seven minutes, contenders must consume seven extremely spicy wings at the Wing Dome in Kent. Wings must be taken down to the bone, and any saucy fingers must be licked off. If conquered, the $7.77 meal is free, along with a free T-shirt and a photo on its Wall of Fame.

Family Pizzeria Steakosaurus Challenge, Virginia
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Family Pizzeria Steakosaurus Challenge

Stafford, Virginia
Family Pizzeria offers a 6½-pound sub free of charge — if it can be eaten within 45 minutes. Losers must pay $35, while winners also receive a $20 prize and a free T-shirt. Also, if any contestant throws up anyplace other than the dumpster behind the building, there's a $50 cleanup fee.

Dog Central Challenge
Paul M./Yelp

Dog Central Challenge

Mount Pleasant, Michigan
Customers at Dog Central can try to finish three footlong hot dogs with chili and two additional toppings, a bed of fries, a stack of onion rings, and a 20-ounce fountain drink. If successful, not only do they get the meal free, but Dog Central gives the winners $10 and a free shirt. Losers must pony up $25. Apparently, there are so many takers for the challenge that the restaurant requires participants to schedule online.

VN Pho
Tsz-Cheong C. /Yelp

VN Pho Challenge

Morrow, Georgia
At VN Pho, customers can take the 4½-pound pho challenge. If the 2 pounds of beef, 2 pounds of noodles, and assorted veggies are finished within 30 minutes (contestants need not drink the broth), the $20 bill is waived.

KJ's Cafe Fat-N-Skinny Challenge
John L./Yelp

Kj Cafe Fat-n-Skinny Breakfast Challenge

Germantown, Ohio
At KJ's Cafe customers can get 4 pounds of breakfast food including sausage patties, home fries, gravy, eggs, and Belgian waffles free — if it's all eaten in 25 minutes or less. Losers pay $15.

Spread Bagelry Classic Whale Challenge
Steph S./Yelp

Spread Bagelry Classic Whale Challenge

Philadelphia
Bagel aficionados will appreciate the Classic Whale Challenge at Spread Bagelry. The gigantic meal consists of a 4-pound Montreal-style everything bagel piled with 3 pounds of salmon, 2 pounds of whitefish salad, 2 pounds of cream cheese, and veggies. Solo contenders have 60 minutes to finish, teams of two have 45 minutes, and teams of three have 30 minutes. Beat the time limit, and it's free. Otherwise, it's $125.

Bub and Pop's
Kevin Jiseup K./Yelp

Bub and Pop's Lil' Petey Sandwich Challenge

Washington

Bub and Pop's sandwich shop in the nation’s capital offers serious eaters a sandwich stuffed with prosciutto, capicola, Genoa salami, pepperoni, brisket, aged provolone, and fried mozzarella sticks. Finish everything in just 15 minutes to get it free (along with a picture on the Wall of Fame) or pay $50.


Related: Famous Deli Sandwiches: A 50-State Bucket List

Humpy Kodiak Arrest Challenge
John S./Yelp

Humpy's Kodiak Arrest Challenge

Anchorage, Alaska
Humpy's challenges diners to wolf down seven crab nuggets, 14 inches of reindeer sausage, 4 pounds of Alaskan king crab, assorted side dishes, and a wild berry crisp with ice cream in 60 minutes for a T-shirt and a photo on the Wall of Fame. Fall short and pay a whopping $250 tab.

Fat Sal's Big Fat Fatty
Frankie M./Yelp

Fat Sal's Deli Big Fat Fatty Challenge

Los Angeles
If you can wolf down a 27-inch garlic roll loaded with five burger patties, 1½ pounds cheesesteak, 1½ pounds pastrami, chicken fingers, a whole package of bacon, mozzarella sticks, five fried eggs, jalapeno poppers, onion rings, and french fries topped with chili, marinara, and fat sauce — and do it in 40 minutes — you won't have to pay for the $50 monstrosity and you'll get to name a sandwich of your own design which will be added to Fat Sal's menu

Big Texan Steak Challenge
Alden R./Yelp

The Big Texan 72-Oz. Steak Challenge

Amarillo, Texas
This challenge has been around since 1962, when Bob (R.J.) Lee invited some cowboys to pay $5 to eat as many steaks as they could within an hour. Whoever ate the most would get his entry fee refunded. The very hungry winner consumed 72 ounces of steak (along with shrimp cocktail, rolls, salad, and a baked potato) — just shy of the 96 ounces that John Candy's character Chet Ripley powered through in "The Great Outdoors" — setting the bar for the challenge for more than 50 years. Competitors need only finish the entire 4½-pound steak — not the sides — to win. Contestants who fail pay $72.

Saucy Q Bar B Que
Suely C./Yelp

Saucy Q Bar B Que Big Pig Challenge

Mobile, Alabama

Participants in this challenge have to conquer what's known as the biggest pork sandwich in all of Alabama. If you can consume the 2½-pound pulled pork sandwich with a pound of coleslaw and another pound of sauce in just 45 minutes, the $25 meal is on the house.

Big Jud's Challenge
Emma S./Yelp

Big Jud's Challenge | Idaho

Boise

You can either go toe-to-toe — or rather, mouth-to-patty — with a 1- or 2-pound burger at Big Jud's. Participants get 30 minutes to eat their choice burger and a side of fries (or tater tots) and also consume a soft drink. Winners get a T-shirt and a spot in the Hall of Fame, but only the 2-pound burger challenge is free should you succeed.

Lucky's Sandwich Co.
Christopher H./Yelp

Lucky's Sandwich Co. The Lucky's Challenge

Chicago

The Lucky's Challenge might sound simple, but it's no easy feat. Come to Lucky's Sandwich Co. with a big appetite and you'll get one hour to devour three sandwiches that cost $12-$14 each if you can't finish them. To make the deal more enticing (or palatable), Lucky's allows contestant to choose a different meat — from eight choices —  for each sandwich. 

Chick and Ruth's Delly
Mo A./Yelp

Chick and Ruth's Delly The Colossal Challenges

 Annapolis

The food challenges at Chick and Ruth's Delly aren't for the faint of heart (or stomach). Participate in the Man vs. Food Challenge and you'll have to down a 6-pound shake along with your choice of a 1½-pound sandwich, 1½-pound Rueben, or a 1½-pound cheeseburger. Conquer the challenge and your meal is free. The restaurant also has larger-than-life sandwich and burger challenges that cost $35-$60. Winners of those contests, however, receive only a free T-shirt and a mention on social media — not a free meal.

Mamma's on the HIll
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Mama's on the Hill Mama's Pasta Challenge

St. Louis

If "carbs are life" is your motto, this one's for you. Mama's on the Hill serves up a $25, gigantic bowl of spaghetti topped with a gargantuan meatball and marinara sauce. Eat it all and you'll score a free shirt along with your free meal.

Stella's Bar & Grill Stellanator
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Stella's Bar & Grill Stellanator

Bellevue, Nebraska

You're going to need a mountain of stamina and a bottomless gut to find yourself on the winning side of this insane food challenge. The Stellanator is made up of six burger patties, six fried eggs, six slices of cheese, 12 strips of bacon, lettuce, tomato, fried onions, pickles, jalapenos, and peanut butter all sandwiched between two buns. Do you want fries with that? Hopefully, you answered "yes" because to get the meal free and be inducted into the hall of fame, you've got to eat fries with the burger. Losers not only have to pay for the $35 meal, but they will also get their picture displayed on Stella's hall of shame wall. Reservations required.

Clinton Station Diner
Linda M./Yelp

Clinton Station Diner Burgers of the Gods Challenges

Clinton, New Jersey

The food challenges at Clinton Station Diner are so intense that winners don't just get a free meal, they get cash prizes. The 8th Wonder challenge features a 105-pound burger and if you bring nine of your hungriest friends and finish the whole thing in one hour, you'll win $2,000. Or you can bring four friends and eat a 50-pound burger to win $1,000. The Zeus challenge is meant for two people who get 90 minutes to eat a 15-pound burger for $500. If you're looking for an "easier" feat, participate in the Atlas challenge and eat a 3-pound burger in 45 minutes to get your meal free.

 

Swingbelly's BBQ
Tanisha W./Yelp

Swingbelly's BBQ The Challenge

Long Beach, New York

Scarf down a full rack of St. Louis ribs, a quarter-pound of pulled pork on Texas toast, a quarter-pound of brisket on Texas toast, four smoked chicken wings, three ribs, two sides, and two pieces of cornbread at Swingbelly's BBQ in one hour all by yourself and you won't have to pick up the $55 tab. 

Quaker Steak & Lube
Jamie B./Yelp

Quaker Steak & Lube Eat Heat Challenge

Seattle

Take a walk on the spicy side with the Eat Heat Challenge. If you're feeling brave, you can eat six wings tossed in Quaker Steak & Lube's hottest sauce ever, made with scorpion pepper venom, juicy wild berries, and concentrated capsaicin. This challenge is so hot you must sign a waiver before you participate — you know, in case your tongue morphs into a flamethrower. 


Discover more delicious and decadent dining destinations right here.