Hot Cheetos have been the go-to snack for teenagers and young adults since they were released in 1992. These spicy corn based snacks are worth every hot and painful mouthful. How many times have you eaten too many of these delicious snacks that you questioned your very existence? You can thank an entrepreneurial janitor at the Frito-Lay plant in Rancho Cucamonga, California. That’s right. In case you didn’t know the history of Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, here’s a crash course.
Richard Montañez was a janitor at the snack factory and realized there was an opportunity to elevate the brand and the flavor profile of some of the most iconic snacks. That’s when he started playing with recipes of spicy chile powders until he landed on the flavor we love today. He was inspired by the iconic and classic snack elote because if it is good on the corn, it is good on corn chips, right? Exactly. After setting up a meeting with execs and getting the snack approved, Montañez is living large. Flamin’ Hot Cheetos are Frito-Lay’s highest grossing snack and it is not hard to see why.
As with all things, the fans and consumers of Hot Cheetos have given the snack new and unexpected life. Sure. Many people eat them as they are and really enjoy them on a basic level. However, so many other people have taken the snack and turned them into a culinary treasure. Here are some of the recipes and dishes people have done with Hot Cheetos given their immense popularity.