It Wouldn't Be Easter Without Peeps

Source

I can't think about Easter without thinking of Easter baskets, and I can't picture Easter baskets without Peeps, those soft, super- sweet, mega- gooey little yellow chicks that, along with jelly beans and colored eggs, were always to be found nestled in the plastic grass of every self respecting Easter basket.

Nothing says Easter like Peeps. I never ate them any other time of year and, even as a child, I didn't really like them, but Easter was just not complete without them. They make their appearance on supermarket shelves along with hot cross buns soon after Ash Wednesday, and behold, on Easter Sunday, they are being chomped on by children everywhere--er, everywhere in America that is. Peeps are definitely an American Easter icon and perhaps not even known, and certainly not relished in the rest of the world.

Peeps are made from sugar, corn syrup, and gelatin. They also contain small amounts of preservatives which are said to render them virtually indestructible. Generations of children have experimented with substances from water and coke to vinegar and rubbing alcohol to try to dissolve Peeps. I remember putting them in the freezer and microwave and I am sure there have been many other scientific trials over the years. Peeps, llke diamonds, just may be forever.

An individual peep has 32 calories and delivers a super sugar spike to the blood sugar, ensuring that children will be hyper active and super cranky by the time the Easter egg roll is over.

Source

Where Did Peeps Come From?

Peeps are produced by the Just Born Candy Company which began making them in 1953 when it acquired the Rodda candy company and figured out a way to mass produce Rodda's Easter chick candies. The result was Peeps which turned the Newborn Candy Company into the business that Peeps built.

The Company itself is a real American success story,founded in Brooklyn in 1910 by Russian immigrant, Sam Born, who opened his own store and candymaking operation there. Born was a candymaker by trade and when he opened his Brooklyn candy store he wanted to emphasize the freshness of the product so he called it " Just Born"

The business soon outgrew the Brooklyn candy store and moved to a larger factory capable of assembly line production in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania-- a fitting birthplace for an Easter icon. It is still located there. Four million of the marshmallowy little peeps are created every day.The factory turns out an amazing billion peeps per year and what gets done with those peeps is also truly amazing.

Equally amazing are some of the ways Peeps are incorporated into Easter cuisine and general fun and games. If you don't want to try the recipes you might want to show up at one of a number of Peeps-fests held around the nation or check out some Peep-art.

Peep-Pix of Unusual Ways to Use Peeps

How about some Easter "Peeps' Kebobs?
How about some Easter "Peeps' Kebobs? | Source
Smeeps=Smores+Peeps.
Smeeps=Smores+Peeps. | Source

Recipe for Smeeps

Here's a link to the original on Serious Eats

Ingredients

4 Peeps (1 package)
4 graham crackers, separated into 8 halves
Four 1-ounce squares semisweet or dark chocolate (depending on preference)

1. Preheat the oven or toaster oven to 350°F.

2. Place a 1-ounce square of chocolate on 4 of the graham cracker halves. Top each chocolate with a Peep. Say your goodbyes.

3. Put your Peep sacrifice laden graham crackers on an aluminum foil covered tray and pop them in the oven for 2 to 3 minutes. Watch them carefully as toasting Peeps can turn into burn victims beyond repair in the blink of an eye. Vigilance!

4. Once the Peeps are toasted to your liking, take them out of the oven and squish them with a graham cracker half. Yum.

Anyone for a peeps and strawberry chocolate fondue? Simple to make and loads of fun to eat
Anyone for a peeps and strawberry chocolate fondue? Simple to make and loads of fun to eat | Source
A Peeps wedding cake. What more could a girl want?
A Peeps wedding cake. What more could a girl want? | Source

Easter may be the holiest day in the Christian calendar, but it is also a holiday that celebrates Spring, fertility, and new life symbolized by eggs, bunnies, flowers, and last but not least in America-- Peeps.

An Episode of Peep Wars

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Comments 36 comments

Uninvited Writer profile image

Uninvited Writer 5 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

Excellent hub. I have to say I am not a big fan of Peeps...sorry for the blasphemy...

Love the video :)


robie2 profile image

robie2 5 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

I have to say I don't like them very much either-- but they are kind of like fruitcake at Christmas-- you may not like them but you have to have them :-)


Reynold Jay profile image

Reynold Jay 5 years ago from Saginaw, Michigan

OK--us older guys don't really eat this. Well just one and then on to the chocolate!I enjoyed this very much. You have this laid out beautifully and it is easy to understand. Keep up the great HUBS. Up one and Useful. Hey! I'm now your fan! RJ


robie2 profile image

robie2 5 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

Hello RJ-- not being exactly in the first flush of youth myself, I know what you mean But never mind. Thanks for the support and how can I not become a fan of someone with such excellent taste in hubs:-)


Denise Handlon profile image

Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

Very cute hub. Who would've thought those peeps could be used for the s'mores...now I know what to bring on camping trips-PEEPS! :)


robie2 profile image

robie2 5 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

thanks Denise-- oh and Peeps go on sale after Easter-- they are sooooo cheap so you can make s'mores with them even before summer in the broiler.


Sally's Trove profile image

Sally's Trove 5 years ago from Southeastern Pennsylvania

What a delightful read, Robie! You know, just saying the word "Peeps" is funny. Sorta like saying rutabaga. And now I've got "Smeeps" to add to my collection of words that make you laugh when you say them. BTW, I don't care for the taste of the things either, but gawd, are they cute!


robie2 profile image

robie2 5 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

HI ST-- nice to see you and I'm thinking Peeps and rutabagas ewwwwwww not a good combo :-) but the words are funny indeed. Thanks for stopping by and commenting.


stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 5 years ago from Bend, Oregon

My kids love Peeps, and its great to fill the Easter basket with them because there is no chance of me sneaking a bit of those candies... LOL! I love the wedding cake and Peeps fondue. Peep smores would be a big hit with my kids too. Smeeps (hahaha!) ;-)


Uninvited Writer profile image

Uninvited Writer 5 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

My Easter treat is a Lindt bunny...preferably white chocolate


robie2 profile image

robie2 5 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

HI Steph-- I don't know why but Peeps just seem to belong in an Easter basket, but when I started looking on the net I was amazed at all the different things they are used for-- did you check the link to Peep-art? cracks me up:-)

and UW-- yeah, I am more of a chocolate bunny kinda girl myself-- but you really can't have an Easter basket without Peeps and jellybeans-- neither of which exactly races my motor


Frieda Babbley profile image

Frieda Babbley 5 years ago from Saint Louis, MO

What a great topic. Peeps are growing in popularity, that's for sure. Kids love them mostly because they're so "cute", I think. Great uses. Never would have thunk. Love the peep video. If a peep was chocolate covered, I might go for it; but I'm a chocolate bunny kinda girl too. :) Awesome hub. Thumbs up.


minjin25 profile image

minjin25 5 years ago from Illinois

I start buying Peeps as soon as they are on the shelves before Easter. I'm an older adult too but I love Peeps. We tear the package open as soon as we buy them and leave them sit uncovered for a few days so they get kind of hard and chewy. Sounds weird but they taste much better this way.


robie2 profile image

robie2 5 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

Hi Frieda--they are cute, aren't they? You could have chocolate covered Peeps if you made the peeps fondue :-)

Minjin25--that doesn't sound odd to me at all. I remember putting them in the freezer and also toasting them in the fireplace like marshmallows so you can do anything at all with Peeps. Thanks for sharing your Peeps story here.


KoffeeKlatch Gals profile image

KoffeeKlatch Gals 5 years ago from Sunny Florida

Great hub. I used to get my girls peeps every year for easter - along with all the other candy. They loved them.


robie2 profile image

robie2 5 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

Hi Koffeeklatch-- my kids loved them too. Peeps and jellybeans just say Easter, don't they?


Princessa profile image

Princessa 5 years ago from France

I've never tried them before, now you made me curious about them, they look tasty!


robie2 profile image

robie2 5 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

heh heh, well they are certainly an experience, I'll say that :-)))) I think you have to be a kid to really like them. Don't say I didn't warn you:-)


Wooded 5 years ago

I happen to LOVE peeps - it seems kind of sad to microwave them!!!


robie2 profile image

robie2 5 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

ahhh wooded-- a culinary desacration I agree, especially since they explode in the microwave it seems-- but toasting them like marshmallows is more fun and tasty too:-)


Granny's House profile image

Granny's House 5 years ago from Older and Hopefully Wiser Time

Nice hub. Well presented. I do not eat peeps either. My kids never liked them either. To tell you the truth I do not know many that do. LOL


robie2 profile image

robie2 5 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

Thanks for stopping by Granny's House and glad you liked the hub-- yup-- nobody really likes Peeps but they are always in Easter baskets and what would Easter be without them?


SUSANJK profile image

SUSANJK 5 years ago from Florida

I don't very much loke peeps, but I know they are very popular.


robie2 profile image

robie2 5 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

It's funny-- few really like them, but they are everywhere at Easter time


livelonger profile image

livelonger 5 years ago from San Francisco

I am belatedly finding this AWESOME Hub. robie, I LOVE Peeps! The Smeeps recipe is really terrific, and I have to admit tossing them in the microwave and watching them swell up and explode is a favorite childhood pastime. :)


robie2 profile image

robie2 5 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

Hi Livelonger-- and I am even more belatedly moderating my comments on this hub--so that makes us even. Happy Memorial Day LOL and here's to a summer full of 'Smores


notsureifsrs 5 years ago

Awesome hub. The Smeeps remind me of those Peeps videos on Youtube, lol.


Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 5 years ago from England

Hi, I must admit that I have never heard of them! but I do love sweets and chocolate! lol


Paraglider profile image

Paraglider 5 years ago from Kyle, Scotland

Robie - I've learned a new word today. I'd never heard of peeps before. We had to make do with fluffy yellow chickens with wire feet and beaks. Inedible of course. But we did have Cadbury's creme eggs that could find tooth cavities that hadn't even appeared!


robie2 profile image

robie2 5 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

Ah Paraglider-- Peeps are an American Easter tradition that you need not regret having missed LOL they taste kind of like a cross between marshmallows and cotton candy. I didn't even like them much as a kid, but they are to be found in every Easter basket in America I assure you. Thanks for stopping by


Jeanne Rodda Stotler 4 years ago

I want everyone to Know my grandfather NEVER made a "Peep", he sold the company to the American Carmel Co, along with the use of his name. Granddaddy made two kinds of candy, in the summer he made hard candy sold under the name of "Gems", in the winter he made hand dipped or rolled chocalates, My fathe E.A. Rodda worked in the factory and also was a candy maker before going to work for the gov't. When the first "peeps" came on the market I was so excited, see our name, My father fumed, "My father NEver made that quality of candy" Grandfather died in our front bedroom in 1942 and is buried in Lancaster, Penna.


robie2 profile image

robie2 4 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

Thank you so much for this very interesting family information. I am so glad you shared it. It is absolutely nowhere in the information to be found about Peeps on the internet, which is not surprising since the information on the web is probably promotional stuff put out by the Just Born Company which your grandfather sold ( I assume in 1953) I also assume your grandfather was the original Nathan Born and I can totally understand that a trained confectioner and chef like Nathan Born would not think much of a cheap, mass produced product like peeps.


alocsin profile image

alocsin 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

Thanks for all this information on the venerable peep, and the recipe for smeeps. I like the peep wedding cake.


robie2 profile image

robie2 4 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

The peep wedding cake is funny, isn't it? Though I can't imagine anybody getting married on Easter but never mind:-) Thanks for commenting


george smith 3 years ago

where can I buy a large easter egg ,as large as they make them


robie2 profile image

robie2 3 years ago from Central New Jersey Author

WEll George Smith, since it is Christmastime when you ask this question, I would say finding a large Easter egg is going to be impossible, but if you wait till spring, and look around the internet, I'm sure you will find one big enough to suit you:-) thanks for stopping by

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