Man who ate tub of cheese balls in NYC admits he nearly threw up

‘Cheeseball Man is the hero we don’t deserve but the one we need right now,’ says fan

Brittany Miller
New York
Monday 29 April 2024 19:55 BST
Hundreds gather in New York to witness man eat entire jar of cheese balls

New York City residents gathered around Union Square Park on Saturday to watch one man in an orange mask eat an entire tub of cheese balls.

The man, who hasn’t revealed his name, is known as “cheeseballman427” on both Instagram and TikTok. He began posting photos of himself back in March 2024 in his neon orange ski mask, before revealing his plan. Flyers recently began to make their way around Manhattan, as he advertised: “Watch me eat this entire jar of cheeseballs. Union Square Park April 27th 3pm.”

By not revealing his identity, his goal was to highlight that anyone can do what he does. “I think masks are really funny,” he explained in an interview with The Independent. “I also think that it adds so much to the story of it all. You know, I think people really do care about anonymity, if anybody could be cheeseball man, and I think that's a beautiful thing to think about.”

When the infamous day finally arrived, the 22-year-old New York University graduate said just how shocked he was at the amount of people who showed up to watch him eat the jar of cheese balls.

“I really didn’t expect this many people to show up,” he said. “I think everybody wants to be behind the mask.”

He noted: “No complaints. I suppose I didn't get arrested.”

To hype up the hundreds in attendance, the man held up a flag with his face on it while the crowed shouted, “Cheeseball Man” or “Eat those cheese balls.”

As he made some progress on eating the entire tub, he recalled hitting a wall where he didn’t think he’d be able to continue. “There was a moment that I was definitely going to throw up,” he recalled. “And then people said, ‘Keep it down,’ really loudly. So, I just kept it in.”

According to Cheeseball Man, he has a gluten intolerance and accidentally forgot to buy gluten-free cheese balls. “I've always had a bit of a gluten allergy. I get kind of bloated upon eating gluten,” he told The Independent. “I thought that the cheese balls that I had gotten were actually gluten-free. but they weren't. But I gotta power through it for sake of the crowd, you know?”

Many people ended up taking to TikTok and X, formerly Twitter, to show off clips from the event.

“CHEESEBALL MAN DID IT #cheeseballman @ union square park,” one post read on X, showing off the man’s last few bites of the cheeseball jar.

“I just saw a guy eat a whole bucket of cheese balls in Union Square, New York City,” another tweet read.

“Cheeseball Man is the hero we don’t deserve but the one we need right now,” a third person joked on X.

Other commenters thought that the cheese ball man was copycatting a man in Philadelphia, who had posted a similar flyer back in November where he advertised eating an entire rotisserie chicken. “Cheeseball eating guy is not as good as Philly chicken man because there’s no sense of humility. Also it’s a rip off,” one post on X read.

He explained that he knew about these people, but felt they hadn’t done it to “their fullest potential.”

The anonymous man ended up completing the task he set out to do in 30 minutes. He then spent some time signing autographs and taking pictures with people in the crowd. As for what the cheese ball-eating man does aside from snacking, he told The Independent that he does his best to clean up any unwanted trash around New York City.

“I clean up the city. I pick up trash. You know, when I see people they need to, you know,” he said.

However, he still vows to make sure he cleans up while still wearing the mask. “Oh, I have to do it in the mask,” he added.

The event as a whole appeared to be a success, and he revealed that he will be doing the same thing again next year with an even larger tub of cheese balls to eat.

As for his more recent plans, Cheeseball Man isn’t really sure what he wants to do next - whether he stays off social media until his next cheese ball-eating event or to embrace his online persona.

“I had a couple states reach out and asked me if I wanted to come to here,” he said. “I don't know. I've been getting so much press interviews and people reaching out. I'm not really sure where to take the whole thing. I'm thinking about maybe just keeping it to New York or maybe just not uploading anything until next year's event. I just want to make sure I'm doing what's right for my people.”

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in