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Americans Eat About 1.5-Billion Brownies A Year

Each year on December 8, brownie lovers across the nation enjoy one of their favorite baked goods on National Brownie Day.

  • In the United States, the chocolate brownie is a favorite, with the blonde brownie running a close second.  A blonde brownie is made with brown sugar and no chocolate and is often called a blondie.
  • A 1-ounce serving of the average brownie is equal to 132 calories
  • Brownies first appeared in printed cookbooks in 1904. Although they were invented over a decade earlier and were a big hit at 1893’s World Columbian Exposition in Chicago, it took some time for them to make it to kitchens across the country.
  • Fannie Farmer, the First Lady of American Cookery, published the first written recipe for brownies in 1896.
  • Three myths have gained popularity over the years regarding the creation of the brownie:
      • In an accidental mixing of ingredients, a chef added melted chocolate to biscuit dough.
      • A forgetful cook left out the flour when mixing the batter.
      • When a housewife did not have baking powder, she improvised to create this new treat. The wife decided to serve her guest flattened cakes.
  • Bertha Palmer, a prominent Chicago socialite whose husband owned the Palmer House Hotel. In 1893 Palmer asked a pastry chef for a dessert suitable for ladies attending the Chicago World’s Columbian Exposition. She requested a cake-like confection smaller than a piece of cake that could be included in boxed lunches. The result was the Palmer House Brownie with walnuts and an apricot glaze. The desserts were a hit, but they weren’t called brownies.
  • The word ‘brownie’ became so popular that soon after the Expedition even Kodak named one of it’s first handheld cameras after them, the little ‘brownie.’
  • The first brownie made was not actually a brownie at all. It was a tasty treat sweetened with molasses that we now know as a blondie.
  • Brownies were one of the very first prepackaged food ‘mixes’ ever sold. First appearing in the Sears, Roebuck catalog in 1897.
  • Although cannabis is the most controversial brownie mix-in, walnut remains the most popular and legal.
  • Brownie points in modern usage are a hypothetical social currency, which can be accrued by doing good deeds or earning favor in the eyes of another- often one’s superior. The origin of the term is unclear.
  • Did you know there’s also a mythical creature called a “brownie”? Brownies are tiny, fanciful, good-natured elves who secretly help out and do good deeds at night.
  • No one knows for sure where the name “brownie” came from.
  • It wasn’t until the 1920s that brownies became a darling in the department of baked chocolate treats, and it never ceased.
  • The National Brownie Committee of America reports that Americans consume approximately 1,457,966,002 brownies a year.
  • The world’s largest brownie was made at the Hudson Valley Chocolate Festival and Holiday Crafts Show in Suffern, New York.  It happened in 2001 and since then no larger brownie has been ever created.  It included 750 pounds of chocolate chips, 500 pounds of butter, 850 pounds of sugar, 3,500 eggs, and 500 pounds of flour. It weighed a whopping 1,360 kilograms!


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