March 5 – National Cheese Doodle Day

Posted on March 5, 2016

Today we celebrate a “food” that is bright and colorful and yummy – a “food” that comes in fun puffy or crunchy shapes.

I put the word food in quotation marks to show that cheese doodles, while of course are edible, should not be considered an essential part of a nutritious diet!

Any food that stains your fingers THAT orange should probably be viewed with a bit of skepticism, don't you think?

Perhaps invented by Morrie Yohai in the 1940s (other accounts have the snack being invented elsewhere, earlier), cheese doodles are made of cornmeal. They are puffed up with air, then baked; then they are coated with cheddar cheese.

Yohai's invention was named Cheez Doodles, which are referred to as “cheese snacks.” Other cheese doodle products are referred to as cheese balls, cheese puffs, cheese curls, cheesy puffs, corn curls, and corn cheese.

My personal favorite form of cheese doodles are Cheetos (original flavor). They were invented in 1948 by the same fellow who invented Fritos corn chips.

As unlikely as it sounds, I read that there are
Pepsi-flavored Cheetos.

But Cheetos are not just available in that original flavor. The main flavor I see other people eating here in Southern California is the red, spicy Flamin' Hot Cheetos. But elsewhere in the world people eat Cheetos with other flavors. Japanese people get to eat Strawberry Cheetos (the original version dipped in flavored icing – what???). People in Australia eat Cheetos Cheese and Bacon Balls. People in India have healthier versions made with whole grains and vegetables.

Before starting to manufacture and sell Cheetos in China, Frito-Lay tested all sorts of Cheetos flavoring, from ranch dressing to North Sea crab, from caramel to smoked octopus. The top two flavor that went into production are Savory American Cream Cheetos and Zesty Japanese Steak Cheetos.

Some Cheetos are produced in different colors, too. Because what could be better than having green-stained fingers from eating a cheesy snack?

Cheetos aren't just my favorite – they are top selling brand of cheese doodles in the U.S., with 21 different types in North America alone. They are sold in more than 36 countries, to the tune of $4 BILLION dollars worldwide!

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