Mariah Carey — BLASTS ‘AMERICAN IDOL’ … It Was Like Working In Hell!!!

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Mariah Carey says she HATED being a judge on “American Idol” — claiming everyday it was like “working in hell with Satan.”

Carey never mentioned Nicki Minaj by name during the explosive interview with Hot 97 in NYC yesterday … but it”s clear who she was talking about since their feud was no secret.

Carey — who made $18 mil for her 1 season on the show — says she was duped by producers who told her she was going to sit on a 3-person panel … and when they added Minaj as a 4th judge, things quickly spiraled out of control.

“It was like hell … going to work every day in hell with Satan,” Carey said.

We broke the story … Minaj and Carey fought right from the start — and in their most famous spat, the rapper told producers, “I”m not f*ckin” putting up with her f**kin” highness over there.”

So, guess no Christmas duet