10 Food Items Discovered by Mistake

by Unbelievable Facts3 years ago0 comments

6 Potato Chips – George Crum invented potato chips after customers kept complaining his French fries were too thick and soggy. In an effort to teach the customers a lesson, he sliced the potatoes really thin. He fried them to a crisp and heavily salted them. The customers loved them and the potato chip was born.

Potato Chips
Image credits: pixabay

In 1853, the world’s famous snack potato chips were invented by George Crum, an African-American chef at the Moon Lake Lodge resort in Saratoga Springs, New York, USA. The story goes that the restaurant was famous for its French fries. On a particular day, a grumpy restaurant complained that the fries were too thick and soggy. Although the chef made a new batch with thinner fries, the customer remained unsatisfied.

After having enough from the customer, the chef finally made fries that were too thin to eat with a fork, hoping to annoy the extremely fussy customer. However, the customer was pleasantly surprised and loved the chef’s new invention. The chips were initially known as “Saratoga chips” and later came to be known as “potato chips.” The crisps were packaged and sold all over the world without giving him any credit as it was illegal for African Americans to apply for a patent.

In 1895, the manufacturer William Tappendon mass-produced and marketed the chips in Cleveland, Ohio. A salesman, Herman Lay, sold the famous potato chips “Lays” in the southern USA from the trunk of his car in the 1920s. Laura Scudder invented a wax paper bag in 1926 to keep the potato chips fresh and crisp. (source)


7 Beer – In the 5th century BCE, beer was accidentally discovered by ancient Mesopotamians while making bread. They had accidentally left the barley grains in a damp room that co-mingled with some wild yeast and fermented.

Image credits: pixabay

Dating back to 5th millennium BCE in Iran, beer is considered as one of the oldest drinks in the world. It finds prominence in the history of ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia and spread throughout the world.

The ancient Egyptian documented the brewing process on papyrus scrolls around 5,000 BCE when beer used during religious ceremonies. The pharaoh was instrumental in directing the brewing schedule and its distribution to the masses.

The Mesopotamians are considered to be the pioneers of brewing. They left behind malted barley scraps and bowls with a beer-like a residue. The historians have determined the residue to be the remains of a grain porridge. The porridge had been fermented naturally with wild yeast found in the air. The brew imparted an intoxicating effect to the consumer, and the process was repeated giving rise to the brewing process.

Modern beer was born during the early middle ages with malted barley as the primary source. Today, the beer brewing industry is a global business with several multinational companies and smaller breweries churning out regional favorites. More than 133 billion liters of beer are sold each year and brings in revenue of $294.5 billion every year. (source)


8 Chocolate chip cookies – In 1938, Ruth Wakefield invented the chocolate chip cookie by accident, expecting the chunks of chocolate to melt. However, the substituted Nestlé semi-sweet chocolate in place of baker’s chocolate did not melt giving rise to gorgeous cookies.

Chocolate chip cookies
Image credits: pixabay

The sweet treats were invented by baker Ruth Wakefield at her restaurant when she ran out baker’s chocolate. To make up for the missing ingredient, she substituted with Nestlé’s semisweet chocolate bars. The chopped up chocolate bars failed to melt during the baking process. The chips softened and gave rise to the accidental discovery of the Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookie.

As the popularity of the sweet discovery began to spread, the sale of Nestlé’s semi-sweet chocolate bars increased. The baker ultimately sold the recipe to Andrew Nestle from the Nestlé Chocolate Company. She was, in turn, provided a lifetime supply of Nestlé chocolate. The company began printing the Toll House Cookie recipe on its chocolate chip bags.

On July 9, 1997, to honor the cookie’s creation, the state of Massachusetts designated the chocolate chip cookie as the Official State Cookie. The world-famous cookie is often considered as a comfort food accompanied by a glass of fresh milk. The fat particles in milk are known to enhance the taste of sugar in the cookies giving it a smoother texture. (source)


9 Ice cream cones – The ice cream cone was invented at the 1904 World’s Fair by a vendor named Ernest A Hamwi. When an ice cream vendor ran out of ice cream cups, Hamwi toyed with wafer-like waffles and rolled it into a cone. Thus, the ice cream cone was invented.

Ice cream cones
Image credits: pixabay

Before the invention of cones, ice cream was served out of glass bowls and paper cups. In 1904, Ernest A. Hamwi introduced a waffle-like pastry, “Zalabis,” at a booth next to an ice cream vendor at the St. Louis World’s Fair. The story goes that the ice cream vendor ran out of paper dishes, and Hamwi offered to help him out by rolling his wafer-like waffles in the shape of a cone.

The ice cream served on the crispy cone was a hit among the crowd, and many vendors followed suit. Italo Marchiony is credited with creating the first ice cream cone in 1896 and was granted a patent for the same in December 1903. In 1910, Hamwi founded the Missouri Cone Company and started selling cones to various vendors.

In 1924, the cone production reached an all-time high by creating a record sales of $245 million. As technology improved, modern machines are capable of producing about 150,000 cones each day. (source)


10 Nachos – Nachos were discovered during WWII by Ignacio “Nacho” Anaya. When she could not locate the cook, she combined neat canapés of tortilla chips, cheese, and jalapeño peppers to satiate the taste buds of the wives of American military officers.

Image credits: pixabay

The famous Mexican comfort dish is comprised of tortilla chips topped with cheese and jalapeños. The iconic dish was accidentally discovered by Ignacio “Nacho” Anaya in 1943. The original dish originated in the city of Piedras Negras, Coahuila, Mexico.

The story goes that wives of U.S. soldiers stationed at Fort Duncan in nearby Eagle Pass were on a shopping trip in Piedras Negras. After a long day of shopping, the women arrived at the restaurant and demanded a snack.

The head chef, Ignacio Anaya, failed to locate the cook. He invented a new snack for the hungry wives by frying some tortillas cut into the shape of triangles. Then he proceeded to top the fried corn chips with shredded cheese and passed them into a hot air oven. Finally, he topped the melted cheese with sliced, pickled jalapeño peppers and served it to them.

The dish was a hit among the women and became popular all over the country. Many customers flocked to the restaurant to sample the dish. In 1976, a modified version of the dish was marketed by Frank Liberto. He debuted it during Texas Rangers baseball games at Arlington Stadium in Arlington, Texas. To honor the inventor, October 21 was declared as the “International Day of the Nacho.” (source)

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