Popular 1950s Foods
The demand for convenience was strong in the 1950s, which drove the creation of many food innovations. The 1950s was a time of great innovation in food products. It was a decade driven by the demand for convenience, and many of the modern products we use today are food innovations of the 1950s. Women wanted to feed their families good, hearty meals but didn’t want to spend hours a day in the kitchen. Appliances were revolutionized to reflect this demand, as was food technology. Frozen foods, including fruits, vegetables and TV dinners, quickly became household staples. Canned foods such as soups were also very popular and often used in making casseroles, the iconic dish of the decade. Here’s a look at other important food innovations from the 1950s.
Minute Rice is a brand of instant rice. The product was introduced in 1949 by General Foods.
Kellogg’s Sugar Pops (corn pops)
Corn Pops is a puffed grain breakfast cereal made by Kellogg’s, described by the company as “crunchy sweetened popped-up corn cereal.” The cereal was introduced in 1950 as Corn Pops. In 1951, the name was changed to Sugar Corn Pops, and later it was called Sugar Pops. It was the sponsor for “The Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok” radio and television show. The name was changed to Sugar Corn Pops in 1978, and finally to Corn Pops in 1984.
In 1952, Duncan Hines introduced Duncan Hines bread through the Durkee’s Bakery Company of Homer, New York. The cake mix license was sold to Nebraska Consolidated Mills in Omaha, Nebraska, which developed and sold the first Duncan Hines cake mixes.
The Tropicana story begins with Anthony T. Rossi, who arrived in the U.S. with just $25 in his pocket. He founded Tropicana in 1947 with the mission of making the goodness of the finest fruit accessible to everyone.
Kraft Cheese Wiz
It was developed by a team led by food scientist Edwin Traisman. While many sources give its national debut as 1953, it was advertised by Kraft and retailers in several states in late 1952
Eggo Frozen Waffles
Eggo waffles were invented in San Jose, California, by Frank Dorsa, who developed a process by which waffles could be cooked, frozen, and packaged for consumers. In 1953, Dorsa, along with younger brothers Anthony and Sam, introduced Eggo frozen waffles as “Froffles” to supermarkets throughout the United States. Because of the egg flavour, customers called them “Eggos”. Eventually, the name became synonymous with the product and, in 1955, the Dorsa brothers officially changed the name to “Eggo.”
Swanson TV Dinners
A Swanson “Hungry-Man Country Fried Chicken” TV dinner
The Swanson & Sons’ TV dinner branded frozen meal sold 5,000 units when it was first introduced in 1953; just one year later, the company had sold over 10,000,000 TV dinners.
General Mills Trix
General Mills introduced Trix in 1954 as a sugar-coated version of its popular Kix cereal.
Kellogg’s Special K cereal
Special K is a brand of breakfast cereal and meal bars manufactured by Kellogg’s. The cereal was introduced to the United States in 1955.
In 1956 Lever Brothers (Unilever) developed Imperial margarine with a lower melting point and contained butter.
Pam nonstick cooking spray
1959 A new product slides onto the market .1957 marks the first patent for a no-stick cooking spray. PAM Products, Inc. was founded in 1959 by Arthur Meyerhoff, Sr. and Leon Rubin. PAM stands for a Product of Arthur Meyerhoff.
Tang is an American drink mix brand that was formulated by General Foods Corporation food scientist William A. Mitchell in 1957 and first marketed in powdered form in 1959.
General Mills Cocoa Puffs
Cocoa Puffs is an American brand of chocolate-flavoured puffed grain breakfast cereal manufactured by General Mills. Introduced in 1956, the cereal consists of small orbs of corn and rice flavoured with cocoa. Essentially, Cocoa Puffs are Kix cereal with chocolate flavouring; similarly, Trix has been, for most of its existence, fruit-flavoured Kix.
Jif Peanut Butter
In 1955, Procter & Gamble bought Big Top peanut butter from William T. Young of Kentucky and, in the ensuing years, reformulated and rebranded it to compete with Skippy and Peter Pan. P. & G. named its product Jif, used oils other than peanut oil in its hydrogenation process, and sweetened the recipe, adding sugar and molasses. The original Creamy and Crunchy style Jif peanut butter both debuted in 1958.