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The reason so many people are putting pickles in Dr Pepper right now — and how it tastes

"… it’s sick and wrong… but part of me wants to try it…" wrote one Reddit user.
Dr. Pepper and Pickles
A TikToker made this @mississippimemaw via TikTok
/ Source: TODAY

There’s a sour, green drink hack taking over Sonic, and fans of the mixed beverage have helped it go viral online calling it the perfect sip.

On May 1, TikTok user Mississippi Memaw (@mississippimemaw) shared a video of her ordering a pickle-filled Dr Pepper at the drive-through of her local Sonic. The video generated 3.8 million views and brought attention to a regional beverage remix that’s been bubbling under the radar.

“Do y’all like pickles? Do y’all like Dr Pepper? Well come on with Memaw, cause Memaw’s fitting to show you something,” the TikToker states in her video. 

After patiently waiting in the drive-through, a restaurant worker takes Memaw’s order of a large Dr Pepper with pickles. Missing from the exchange is what some might expect to be confusion, although the worker does say she has to charge the customization by marking it down as cherries.

The TikToker breezily gets her drink order, paying $3.62 for the concoction. 

“Alright I done put my straw in my cup, but let’s see what it looks like,” Memaw says, showing off the floating dill pickle slices in her soda pop.

“Don’t knock it till you try it. If you like pickles and you like Dr Pepper, and you’re probably like ‘Ew gross, I would never ever drink that,’ but there’s a lot of people that do drink this,” Memaw says, stirring the pickles further into her drink. “Did you hear her, the way she took my order? I’m not the only person that’s ever ordered this, babe.”

Finishing the video by enjoying a long sip of the drink, Memaw encourages her viewers to try it for themselves. “It’s really good. Y’all should try it.”

Memaw’s short and sweet video seems to have struck a nerve, with nearly 6,500 comments talking about the flavor combination.

“me and 2 year old tried it today!! new favorite,” wrote one commenter. “I got to try this at home bc the way my sonic would call the police on me 😬😮‍💨,” wrote another.

“I’ve been drinking dr pepper with pickles since the late 80s,” someone already aware of the beverage chimed in. “But it has to be Best Maid dill!!”

Referring to the Sonic employee, someone wrote, “I love how she isn’t even phased 🤣👏,” to which Memaw replied, “Nope 🤣.”

Some people who say they are current and former Sonic employees shared their experiences as well.

“This was the strangest order I ever remember getting when I worked at Sonic in high school. 🤣,” wrote one user. “I have worked for Sonic for over 20+ years and I have never gotten a customer that has ordered a pickle Dr Pepper,” wrote another, with someone else adding, “it’s probably a regional thing that’s common to order.”

Since Memaw’s video went viral, it seems a lot of people are ordering this menu hack. Some are sharing their favorable and negative reviews on the platform, garnering thousands of views themselves.

There are so many people interested in the briny beverage that a Sonic worker — who spoke to TODAY.com and asked to be referred to as Macy — took to TikTok to express confusion at the sudden uptick.

“I’ve had three people order pickles in their Dr Pepper today what is happening,” reads an on-screen caption on the video, which had 1.1 million views at the time of reporting.

Sonic confirmed to TODAY.com it has noticed more orders of what it’s calling a “Dr. Pepper Pucker.”

“With thousands of unique ways to customize your drink at SONIC, we are no stranger to seeing our fans create fun and unexpected flavor combinations,” a Sonic representative tells TODAY.com. 

“The addition of pickle slices was a new one though, and we’ve seen an increase in guests adding them to their drinks over the past week,” the rep continues. “While the ‘Dr. Pepper Pucker’ is not an official drink on SONIC’s menu, we appreciate and encourage the creativity. And who knows… if your drink innovation is popular enough, it might just end up on our menu!”

A representative for Keurig Dr Pepper tells TODAY.com that while the team isn’t aware of any pickle-flavored drinks in the brand’s history, it’s something they’re keeping the door open for.

“With regards to future flavors, we always explore new flavors and trends and love that Dr Pepper fans always find a way to make it their own,” the rep says.

What does a Dr Pepper with pickles taste like?

Dr. Pepper and Pickles
A Sonic Dr Pepper with pickles.@mississippimemaw via TikTok

I am a giant Dr Pepper fan — in fact, it’s my preferred soda. I’m also fond of pickles. but the Dr Pepper Pucker seemed very strange to me.

Still, as someone who has dared to try Hidden Valley Ranch-flavored ice cream with open arms, I had to give this flavor combination a taste. Admittedly, I tried this with ingredients I had at home as my closest Sonic is nearly an hour away.

My first thought when I learned about the drink was, “People are just doing anything these days, huh.” But then, I tried it. And, reader, I didn’t hate it! I really thought I would, but then I remembered some of my favorite cocktails are greatly improved with the addition of a vinegar-based shrub

In this drink, the briny nature of the pickles adds a little something extra to the sweet and fruity flavors of a Dr Pepper. I drank the whole thing and imagined I would love to add a shot of whiskey while enjoying a rack of barbecue ribs this summer.

The original TikToker, who asked to be referred to as Memaw to protect her identity, says while she has indeed inspired tons of folks to put pickles in their Dr Pepper, she wants to stress she didn’t originate the drink.

“It has been around for a long time,” Memaw tells TODAY.com. “I’m not gatekeeping it and I didn’t invent it.” Memaw adds she first learned about the drink roughly nine years ago when her daughter asked her to pick one up from Sonic.

She tried it and the rest is history. “My daughter at the time was 16. She’s 25 now, and she’s the one that got me to try it for the very first time,” Memaw says.

The creator points to folks mentioning theNorth Carolina What-A-Burger drink called a Witch Doctor — a mix of soda fountain flavors, pickle juice, pickle slices and a lemon wedge — as another variation of this not-so-new idea, and a Reddit user wrote about the Sonic hack back in 2021.

“… it’s sick and wrong… but part of me wants to try it…” one commenter on Reddit wrote.

Macy, who also went viral, says their restaurant in Tennessee has seen a constant influx of orders for the drink since Memaw’s video. 

“I haven’t tried it yet, but my coworkers said it’s actually kind of good,” Macy tells TODAY.com. “I still wouldn’t say it’s common, but a lot of people have tried it or at least asked about it now.”

Memaw says while she’s glad people are responding well to the video, she’s just going about her life with her four children and five grandchildren, noting that no one in her town is batting an eye at her viral fame.

“I didn’t expect it to go viral,” she says. “If I did, I would have at least washed my hair, you know,” she adds with a laugh. “I had it up on a clip and I was like, ah well.”