Food & Nutrition

13 Foods That Were Invented by Accident


beer close-up, backlit by golden Sun Gmarosso/ShutterstockThe earliest reference of beer in history is from the 6th century BC in Sumeria, according to Smithsonian. No one is 100 percent sure, but most people believe beer was invented by accident during bread making. Horst Dornbusch, a beer consultant and author, told Smithsonian that someone was probably making bread outdoors before stopping for rainfall. Then, after forgetting about the wet dough, they came back to a fermented liquid. Don’t miss these interesting facts about basically everything.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate-chip cookies up closeDylan P/ShutterstockThe creation of the chocolate chip cookie is extremely relatable. Ruth Graves Wakefield was making her signature cookies, but she ran out of baker’s chocolate. She improvised and broke up a Nestle chocolate bar instead, hoping it would melt. Instead, she accidentally invented chocolate chip cookies.

Content continues below ad


swirled yogurtInes Behrens-Kunkel/ShutterstockIf you’ve ever let a milk container sit out for too long, you’re kind of on your way to making yogurt. That’s the theory many people believe about yogurt’s accidental creation, at least. At some point, raw milk was exposed to bacteria in warm climates causing the milk’s fermentation into a creamy yogurt.

Ice Cream Cones

waffle ice cream cone isolated on white backgroundStas Malyarevsky/ShutterstockTechnically, Italo Marchiony first produced the ice cream cone and had a patent in December 1903. However, Ernest A. Hamwi also deserves some credit for the invention. In the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair, Hamwi sold a crispy waffle-like pastry right next to an ice cream vendor. The ice cream vendor ran out of dishes, so Hamwi rolled up his waffle in the shape of a cone, and the rest is history.


Food, cold sweet desert, summertime pleasure concept. Colorful ice cream slushy smoothie machineVoyagerix/ShutterstockDairy Queen owner Omar Knedilk had a broken soda machine. So one day in the late 1950s, he put a few bottles of soda in the freezer resulting in a frozen slushy-like drink. People loved it and started specifically asking for that frozen drink. He eventually built his own machine to combine and freeze a flavor mix, water, and carbon dioxide before his product was sold to convenience stores and eventually, 7-Eleven. Check out the most famous invention from every state.

Pink Lemonade

Close up of picnic party in the park drink table with large pitcher and tops of glass bottles filled with ice cold pink lemonade and fresh lemons with yellow swirled strawsTeri Virbickis/ShutterstockPlain lemonade dates back to the arrival of European immigrants in the 17th century. But pink lemonade has a more eclectic background. According to Smithsonian, the earliest mentions of pink lemonade also mention traveling circuses. One theory is that Henry E. Allot invented pink lemonade by accidentally dropping red-colored cinnamon candies into his mix sold at a circus. The other, gross theory is that Pete Conklin ran out of water for his lemonade stand—and used the dirty water that cleaned pink-colored tights as a stand-in.

Content continues below ad

Nashville Hot Chicken

Hot chicken wings served in the restaurant of MaltaVeronika Kovalenko/ShutterstockThis famous dish stems from revenge. Thornton Prince III came home late one night after galavanting, but his girlfriend had enough of him and wanted to teach him a lesson. She prepared his favorite chicken dish with lots of extra cayenne and spices. Ironically, Prince loved the heat, made a few tweaks to the recipe, and sold it at his BBQ Chicken Shack.


Champagne glass with strawberries inside close up with many other glassesRobert W. Becker/ShutterstockAlthough not verifiable, most people credit Dom Perignon with the creation of champagne. The Benedictine monk was responsible for overseeing wine production at the abbey. He was asked to get rid of bubbles forming in a few of the wines. He couldn’t, and instead tasted the bubbly drink. Perignon reportedly said, “Come quickly, I am drinking the stars!” Don’t miss these words that were invented by accident.

Dippin’ Dots

Ice cream Venice_vanich/ShutterstockThere are about 2,000 Dippin’ Dots in a cup. That sounds like a lot, but the mini frozen ice cream bits are tiny. Curt Jones spent his days working in a lab developing flash freezing, but at night he applied his knowledge to his homemade ice cream making. According to Thrillist, he simply aimed his liquid nitrogen at his homemade ice cream creating the dots.


Close up of frozen fresh fruit watermelon and kiwi popsicles sitting on white plateTeri Virbickis/ShutterstockFrank Epperson was 11 years old when he invented the Popsicle. After playing with a mixture of water and powdered soda mix, Epperson left his concoction outside. It froze overnight with his wooden stir stick lodged inside. He tasted it and knew he had something amazing on his hands. Epperson sold his “Epsicles” around the neighborhood and eventually at amusement parks. As an adult, he patented his product. But his kids couldn’t get used to the name, calling them “Pop’sicles.” Unfortunately, Epperson couldn’t afford to keep the business, sold it, and later said he never reaped the financial reward of his creation.

Content continues below ad

Worcestershire Sauce

THREE GLASS BOWLS FILLED WITH WORCESTER SAUCECKP1001/ShutterstockLord Sandys of Worcester, England was craving his favorite Indian sauce after returning home from governing Bengal, India. He asked drug store owners John Lea and William Perrins to come up with something similar. The pair made too much of the mixture and decided not to sell it in their store because of the fishy smell. They kept it in their cellar for two years before rediscovering, bottling, and selling it to customers. Next, check out the biggest lies that made history.

View as Slideshow

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Food – Reader's Digest