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The Best Cannibal Movies—with Meal-Pairing Suggestions!

Whatcha gonna eat when you watch people eat people this Halloween? We’ve got you covered (in sauce!) with meal pairings for 11 top cannibal movies.

What’s a cannibal movie? Oh, don’t be coy. You clicked this link, so you’ve probably acquired a taste for cannibal movies—or you’re canni-curious. But we’ll play along.

Generally speaking, cannibal movies are horror films with graphic scenes of people eating people (among other shocking things). The most notorious cannibal movies, like Ruggero Deodato’s Cannibal Holocaust, came out of Italy ’70s and ’80s, and tend to be set in exotic, remote jungles. Cannibal movies can be set anywhere, though: cities, deserts, coastal caves, and even cozy Alabama cafés.

We’ve rounded up 11 of the best cannibal movies for your cannibal movie night, plus meal pairing suggestions—‘cause cannibal movie night is for foodies.

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1. Cannibal Holocaust (1980)—Corn dogs, fries, and cherry lemonade

A man with a bloody nose looks up at someone unseen while chewing on something he appears not to like.

Uh, yeah . . . It’s, uh . . . It’s good? (Video screenshot from Shudder)

The most notorious cannibal film ever, Ruggero Deodato’s Cannibal Holocaust, shows us so many inhuman acts, but two, in particular, earn a corn dog joke. We call one “The Human Corndog” scene because, frankly, it’s an apt description. So, before you hit “play,” order up a bouquet of these breaded, deep-fried, nitrate-laden death dogs, some salty shoestring fries, and a quart of cherry lemonade. Bonus food for thought: isn’t it fascinating how food on a stick transcends culture?

Where to watch Cannibal Holocaust

Pro tip: Consuming raw or undercooked meats, poultry, seafood, shellfish, or eggs may increase your risk of foodborne illness.

2. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)—Impossible Whopper combo

A screaming woman struggles to escape a chair made of human bones as a plate of mystery meat sits before her.

I specifically requested a VEGETARIAN MEAL! Zero stars! (Video screenshot from Screambox)

Based on real events, this shocking descent into madness is one of the scariest films ever. But did you know that the terrifying tale of Leatherface and his nefarious cannibalistic family includes strong animal rights themes and director Tobe Hooper went vegetarian after making the film? If it sounds like a whopper of a lie, it’s not—just listen for the subtext in the dialogue. Now imagine how poetic (and darkly funny) it’d be to watch The Texas Chain Saw Massacre while stuffing your face with a meatless Impossible Whopper from Burger King. To enhance the experience, draw a face on the burger and drape it over the lampshade so you’ll have a cheap replica of the Sawyer clan’s special face-leather lampshade.

Where to watch The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)

3. The Silence of the Lambs (1991)—Gyro, a nice Chianti, and steamed lamb pudding

An incarcerated man hisses from behind his cell's safety glass.

F-f-f-f-f-f-find yourself a partner who looks at you like this. (Video screenshot from Max)

In Jonathan Demme’s viscerally scary horror-thriller, Dr. Hannibal “The Cannibal” Lecter famously says, ”I ate [a census taker’s] liver with some fava beans and a nice Chianti.” (There’s more to it, but how do you spell “f-f-f-f-f-f?”) Our suggested menu nods to this iconic quote.

The gyro has two kinds of meat: beef and lamb. Any carnivore—even those whose culinary tastes run to the, shall we say, exotic—should appreciate that. Plus, both gyro proteins pair well with a dry, red Chianti, which doesn’t even go with liver. Fun fact: Thomas Harris’s original novel paired the census taker’s organ with a more suitable Amarone.

As for the dessert course, you know Hannibal the Cannibal’s favorite treats include meat.

Where to watch The Silence of the Lambs

4. Fresh (2022)—Liver paté, frog eye salad, sleepytime tea

A man dances in his kitchen while a clean, bloodless severed leg sits on a cutting board.

Steve/Brendan (Sebastian Stan) dances to jams while preparing rack of gam. (Video screenshot from Hulu)

Dating sucks. Then Noa (Daisy Edgar-Jones) meets a charming doctor in a supermarket produce aisle. Life is good—until she awakens in chains and learns Dr. Steve is really Brendan, a cannibal planning to butcher her alive and sell her meat. But Brendan really likes Noa, so to buy time she pretends to like him (and human flesh). To get fully immersed in Fresh, we suggest you prepare or purchase liver paté—just like Brendan makes in the movie. A nice frog-eye salad will make a complementary (as far as we know) side dish. Then wash it all down with sleepytime tea. For added realism, invite a Tinder date. Or just stay single and order tacos from DoorDash.

Where to watch Fresh (2022)

5. The Green Inferno (2013)—Pollo a la braza with ají verde sauce, pisco sour, and alfajores

Editor’s choice (cut)

A fearful woman, her body painted powdery white except for a red band across her eyes, tied to a tree.

It was at this moment she knew she shouldn’t have introduced the tribe to powdered jelly donuts. (Video screenshot from YouTube)

The title of Eli Roth’s über-brütal Amazonian cannibal movie update sounds like hot sauce aftermath. Let’s pair the film with Peruvian rotisserie chicken and ají verde sauce—the hotter jalapeño version. I mean, eating meat on the bone while watching this movie might make you sick, and the spicy heat probably won’t help. Use the alcoholic pisco (“pees-coh”) sour to wet your whistle and forget what you see. Finally the sweet, sugary alfajores with dulce de leche filling are our nod to the film’s star, Lorena Izzo (see photo).

Where to watch The Green Inferno

Best streaming services for cannibal movies

Horror streaming services like Shudder, Screambox, Arrow Player, and Full Moon Features, carry the cannibal cinema classics cited here.

6. Cannibal: The Musical (1993)—Rump roast, boiled creek water, and fudge

A close-up shot of a wild-eyed man with a prospector's hat, a thick black beard, and bloody mouth.

If his stomach is as big as his eyes, someone’s doomed. (Video screenshot from Troma NOW!)

Fun fact: This hilarious singalong cannibal comedy is how South Park co-creator Trey Parker dealt with his (now-ex) girlfriend Liane’s betrayal. In the film, a doomed, Alferd Packer (Juan Schwarz, aka Parker), with his very special horse Liane, leads a group of prospectors to their doom in the snowy Colorado mountains. Desperate, they dig into a dead companion’s southernmost cheeks. So why not pick up a grass-fed rump roast from Whole Foods? Sure, the roast will take hours to cook, but that’ll help you get into the story. Wash it down with boiled creek water, then finish with some fudge (if you’ve seen the film, you get it).

Where to watch Cannibal: The Musical

Pro tip: Cannibal: The Musical is how Trey Parker dealt with his (now-ex) girlfriend Liane’s betrayal—and so is the South Park episode “Cartman’s Mom Is Still A Dirty Slut.” You can stream the ep on Max.

7. Anthropophagous (1980)—Veal, boba tea, and gummi bears

A deranged man with a heavily scarred face chews on something bloody.

If we’ve learned anything from cooking competition shows, every bite should tell a story. (Video screenshot from Shudder)

Joe D’Amato’s gnarly 1980 video nasty Anthropophagous (aka The Grim Reaper) is popular with gorehounds. There’s a scene where the scar-faced lunatic Klaus Wortmann (George Eastman) brutally kills and eats a group of travelers. In one infamously hard-to-watch scene, Wortmann strangles a pregnant woman, delivers a baby via postmortem C-section—and eats the infant while the dying father watches. So this meal pairing suggestion is all about nuance and texture. When you watch Anthropophagous (which means ‘maneater’), enjoy some tender veal with boba tea (yeah, the stuff with the chewy, al dente tapioca balls), and then gnaw on some gummi bears for dessert.

Where to watch Anthropophagous

8. Eaten Alive! (1980)—Exotic live delicacies, starlight peppermint

A man sneers while bound to a tree.

Joke’s on you, maneaters—I’m all gristle. (Video screenshot from Tubi)

Umberto Lenzi’s chunk-blower Eaten Alive! does, in fact, contain plentiful scenes of the titular action—but we don’t want your DoorDash driver’s death on our conscience. Instead of tearing the poor person’s throat out, get yourself some ants, eels, grubs, octopus, oysters, and shrimp that the natives enjoy as a side dish to pasty interloper flesh. Everything on the list can be eaten alive. It might be hard to find a local restaurant that serves this stuff in styrofoam containers with plastic forks and a nice starlight mint for post-prandial breath correction—but it’s possible. If not, your local pet store will have crickets, mealworms, and roaches (the clean kind). Failing that, go ahead and eat your jerk of a neighbor.

Where to watch Eaten Alive! (1980)

Pro tip: Consuming one’s neighbor, no matter how intolerable the person is, is murder. does not endorse taking lives IRL—not even during #Bloodstream.

9. Offspring (2009)—Long-pig burnt ends, green chile mac n’ cheese, and sawney beans

A coroner stoops near a corpse in a very bloody room.

Offspring author Jack Ketchum played coroner Max Joseph in the film. (Video screenshot from Screambox)

Lucky McKee’s Offspring combines two hair-raising Jack Ketchum novels—Off Season (1980) and Offspring (1991)—about a clan of feral cannibals living in a cave in coastal Maine. (The books beat the movie by miles, but Offspring is worth watching—and so are the sequels 2011’s The Woman and 2019’s Darlin’.) For this film, we recommend BBQ long-pig rib burnt ends to match the clan’s own food-prep style. Mac n’ cheese is always a solid side, and sawney beans—which we totally made up—are like pork n’ beans, but named for the patriarch of a 16th Century Scottish cannibal clan that inspired Ketchum’s books. And that weird white chunky bit in the can of beans isn’t pork fat. Ya ken?

Where to watch Offspring

Pro tip: Alfred St. Johnston’s Camping Among Cannibals (Macmillan and Co., 1883) says “long pig,” translated from “puaka balava,” is the Fijian term for a human corpse, which Fijians viewed as ordinary butcher’s meat.

10. Parents (1989)—”Leftovers”

A man in glass smiles while offering a bite of whatever's on his fork.

Would you play “Here comes the airplane” with Randy Quaid? Neither would we. (Video screenshot from Tubi)

Each night when Michael Laemle (Bryan Madorsky) bellies up to the dinner table, he’s increasingly skeptical of what he’s served. And every night, Michael’s brooding scientist father (Randy Quaid) and loving-but-creepy mother (Mary Beth Hurt) say they’re having the classic family dish “leftovers.” When asked, the Laemles decline to specifically define what’s on their plates. Michael wonders if the secret to Lily Laemle’s homemade “leftovers” is in the quotes. So, when you dig into Bob Balaban’s blackly comedic horror flick, we recommend stopping at Mom and Dad’s pad to raid their fridge. But, really, you can eat anything you want with this film—as long as you call it “leftovers.”

Where to watch Parents (1989)

11. Fried Green Tomatoes (1991)—Baby-back ribs with extra sauce, candy bars

Two women, covered in chocolate frosting and flour, laugh heartily. The image has a red cast to make the chocolate look like blood.

Secret’s in the sauce—BAHHHHHH-hahahahaaaa! (Video screenshot from YouTube; edited by

It’s not a horror movie, but John Avnet’s captivating tearjerker Fried Green Tomatoes is a cannibal movie.

Setting: Fannie Flagg, author of the source novel, set the story in 1920’s Alabama, which is close enough to the Amazon jungle.

Conflict: Some uncontacted tribes kill and eat uninvited strangers wanting to share their gods and ways. In FGT, some Alabamans—like those in the KKK—also use violence to maintain the status quo (until, LMAO, the proverbial table turns on them).

Gore: In FGT, Idgie Threadgoode suggests cooking Frank Bennett’s body to conceal his murder, telling Big George, “It’s hog-boilin’ time.” Then we see shots of mystery meat in pots, on grills, and on plates.

Dark humor: A staple of non-Amazonian cannibal movies. In FGT, smiling Whistle Stop Café employees tell customers—and testify in court—that the “Secret’s in the sauce.”

Enjoy them ribs—and eat all the candy bars you want. Towanda!

Where to watch Fried Green Tomatoes

Best takeout meals for cannibal movie night FAQ

Are you a cannibal?

No—are you?

Wanna come over for dinner?

Depends. Who are you serving?

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