What May Be the World's Hottest Burger Requires Signing a Waiver First

This burger's so hot it's actually on fire.

ByABC News
February 25, 2015, 1:09 PM

— -- This burger’s so hot it’s actually on fire.

No joke -- the “Hellfire Burger” from Xtreme Smokehouse in Washington, Iowa, comes out lit on fire to indicate the extreme level of spiciness lurking underneath.

Touted as the world’s hottest burger by restaurant owner Loren Gingerich, the “Hellfire” is not for the faint of heart.

“So far four people have tried. Two finished, but they ate it real quick,” Gingerich told ABC News. “The others failed –- a couple of bites and that was it; they were done.”

The $12 burger is served on a brioche bun with lettuce, pickle, tomato and cheddar cheese. All pretty standard stuff, until you factor in the extras. The patty itself has cayenne pepper, ghost pepper powder and a pure chili extract in it, as well as being topped with a thick layer of relish made of serrano peppers, jalapeno peppers and habanero peppers. Finally, the burger is cooked with an indent so that it can be topped with a ring of secret “Hellfire” sauce and grain alcohol in the center that is lit on fire.

PHOTO: The very spicy "Hellfire Burger" at Xtreme Smokehouse in Washington, Iowa.
The very spicy "Hellfire Burger" at Xtreme Smokehouse in Washington, Iowa.

“I think I’m being pretty reasonable by saying it’s about one million Scoville units, because the chili extract we put into the burger and into the sauce is rated at five million Scoville units,” Gingerich estimated.

Gingerich has even applied to the Guinness World Records to get the burger officially named the world’s hottest, even though the category does not exist. Unfortunately, though, Guinness World Records has no plans to create the category.

“This will be not an established Guinness World Records category due to the fact that it needs to be measurable,” a Guiness World Records spokesperson told ABC News. “Scoville units are measured in chili peppers themselves, not in the food they are put in.”

Nonetheless, Gingerich plans to up the heat content even higher by including Carolina Reapers, one of the hottest peppers available on the market that is said to be more than 100 times hotter than a jalapeno.

“It’s probably going to go up in price a little bit, but since people are complaining that I’m not using the hottest pepper, I’m ordering in some fresh Carolina reaper,” he said. “We’ll infuse a whole pepper into each burger and grill one fresh and put it on top. I’ll have no complaints after that.”

Not content with just having the burger on the menu, Gingerich plans to expand the experience of eating one into a challenge that also includes finishing “Hellfire Chili,” “Hellfire Fries” and a “Hellfire Salad” with “Hellfire Ranch Dressing.”

“We’re hoping to raise some money for a good cause because we got some notoriety for this crazy burger, so we want to help somebody out,” he said.

The challenge won’t be ready for a few weeks, but Gingerich is leaning toward giving proceeds to SIDS research after his 14-month-old daughter passed away from the syndrome in 2001.