Culinary use

Hedgehogs are a food source in many cultures. Hedgehogs were eaten in Ancient Egypt, and some recipes of the Late Middle Ages call for hedgehog meat. Hedgehog meat is still acceptable in some societies, and there are folk-remedies that include it as an ingredient.

A method of preparation that has been used since ancient times is to cover a hedgehog with clay and bake it. The hedgehog is then removed and the clay cracked open, taking the spikes of the hedgehog with it, a practice that a common urban myth claims is widespread among gypsies.

During the 1980s, “hedgehog-flavoured” crisps were introduced in Britain, although the product did not in fact contain any hedgehog.