America’s #1 snack food is recognized each year on March 14th. On National Potato Chip Day, this snack will be enjoyed by millions of people across the country.
- On August 24, 1853, an unhappy restaurant customer, complaining that his potatoes were too thick and soggy, kept sending them back. Chef George Crum decided to slice the potatoes as thin as possible, frying them until crisp and added extra salt. To the chef’s surprise, the customer loved them, and they soon became a regular item on the restaurant’s menu under the name of “Saratoga Chips.”
- Alternative explanations of the beginning of potato chips date them to recipes in Shilling Cookery for the People by Alexis Soyer (1845) or Mary Randolph’s The Virginia House-Wife (1824). There are many references between these dates to sliced potatoes being fried in grease but whether they were fried to a crisp is not clear.
- What is clear is that by the late 1870s, the term “Saratoga Chips” was being widely used as a standard menu item on train cars, hotel restaurants, and street carts. The name carried on into grocers when the chips were made in larger batches by bakeries. They shipped them by wagon to the restaurants and grocers by the barrel, and the grocers would then sell to private families by the pound. Folks were instructed to bake the chips in a hot oven for a few minutes, and they would be as crisp as if fried that same day.
- The Dayton, Ohio-based Mike-sell’s Potato Chip Company, founded in 1910, calls itself the “oldest potato chip company in the United States.”
- New England-based Tri-Sum Potato Chips, originally established in 1908 as the Leominster Potato Chip Company, in Leominster, Massachusetts, claims to be America’s first potato chip manufacturer.
- In the 20th century, potato chips spread beyond chef-cooked restaurant fare and began to be mass-produced for home consumption.
- Flavored chips were introduced in the 1950s.
- Barbeque chips were the first type of flavored potato chip.
- Flavored Potato Chips were invented in Ireland.
- Potato Chip revenues are over $15 billion a year worldwide!
- The average potato chip is .04 to.08 of an inch thick.
- During WWII production of potato chips halted because they were deemed an “unessential food”
- in Great Britain and many other parts of the world Potato Chips are referred to as “crisps”. Chips, to them are French Fried potatoes.
- Laura Scudder created the first modern bag of potato chips in 1953. Previously, they were sold out of wooden barrels or scooped from behind glass counters.
- The sound of crunching adds to the pleasure of eating chips. Snackers who eat chips with headphones on report becoming bored with chips more quickly.
- Americans eat about 1.85 billion pounds of potato chips, or about 6.6 pounds per person annually
- In the last 50 years, there have been over 100 different varieties of Doritos.
- The earliest known potato chip recipe is found in William Kitchiner’s cookbook The Cook’s Oracle, which was published in 1817.
- Cheetos are designed to be addictive. In what is is known as “vanishing calorie density,” Cheetos melt in the mouth quickly so that the brain thinks there are no calories in them. However, just 21 pieces contain 150 calories and 10 grams of fat.
- Roughly 28,000,000 pounds (13,000,000 kg) of chips are eaten during the Super Bowl
- A type of potato chip called “The Whole Shabang” is also called “jail chips” because they are only sold in prison. The chips, however, are unusually delicious, and former prisoners have set up message boards and facebook pages in an attempt to get their snack fix on the outside.
- Pennsylvania is known as the “Potato Chip Capital” of the world and leads the United States in potato chip production.
- Pringles are not potato chips. A high court ruled that because Pringles are made from dough, they are more like a biscuit or cake
- We only taste 20% of the salt on potato chips. In response, Lay’s developed a new shape of salt that delivered the same taste but allowed them to use 25% less salt.
- You would get a larger dose of radiation from eating a bag of potato chips every day than you would if you lived next to a nuclear power plant.