Beef had a bad rep for a time—leading to the iconic name of the chain
The name White Castle has nothing to do with storybooks or medieval times. Co-founders Anderson and Edgar Ingram wanted to emphasize the cleanliness of the restaurant. According to Time, white-colored White Castle facilities let customers watch the meat grinding process, too. Thanks to Upton Sinclair’s novel, The Jungle, Americans were concerned with the cleanliness and healthiness of beef. So Anderson and Ingram made it a point to clean up the beef world reputation, literally and figuratively.
It also led to funding “research” on the benefits of burgers
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Part of the cleanup involved funding research on the benefits of burgers. In 1930, the company commissioned a study from the University of Minnesota tracking the health of a college student eating only White Castle burgers. At the end of the test, the subject was in good health after eating nothing but sliders and water for 13 weeks. White Castle did make a few slight changes to their recipe afterward to offer a more balanced burger, per the research from the study. Here are 12 things you never knew about the McDonald’s apple pie.
White Castle delivered sliders
A White Castle program in the 1980s delivered frozen burgers anywhere in the United States within 24 hours. The “Hamburgers to Fly” program was uber successful and capitalized on a trend in the 1940s when customers shipped their own burgers on dry ice across the country, according to Consumerist. Now, White Castle sells their burgers in the frozen food aisle instead.