Videos have begun circulating on TikTok in which users are cooking chicken with NyQuil and other cold and flu sleeping aids — a “challenge” that’s now been dubbed “sleepy chicken” on TikTok. Even worse? Sleepy chicken’s most recent rise to viral status isn’t even its first; the “trend” appeared on YouTube a few years ago, too. It seems TikTok removed several of the videos related to sleepy chicken (a search for the term now shows many wholesome videos of live chickens), although a few questionable videos remain. Granted, the remaining videos that show users cooking chicken in NyQuil appear to be parodies of the challenge, but that hasn’t quelled medical professionals’ understandable fears of sleepy chicken becoming the new Tide Pod Challenge.
Cooking chicken in any sort of medicine like NyQuil is a Very, Very Bad Idea. When you heat these medications to the temperatures needed to cook a chicken, however, you’re essentially boiling off the diluents, leaving behind a higher concentration of the chemicals that can make you sick if you consume too much.