What You Should Know Before Eating Peeps

What You Should Know Before Eating Peeps

Whether you love ’em or hate ’em, by all indications,
Peeps marshmallow candies are here to stay. But after more than half a century, this divisive
Easter candy has got to have its fair share of fun facts and interesting history. Let’s dive into the untold truth of Peeps. Today, Peeps chicks are produced at a breakneck
speed of six minutes each. If six minutes for one marshmallow doesn’t
sound all that impressive, it’s because you don’t know how long the process used to take. In 1953, Just Born, the candy company who
made Peeps a household name, was looking to acquire the Rodda Candy Company, mostly because
of its jelly bean technology. But on a tour of the factory, the Born family
noticed something that piqued their interest and had nothing to do with jelly beans. Just Born vice president Matt Pye told USA
Today, “… while the family was touring the Rodda
Candy Company, in the back part of the factory were these women with pastry tubes squirting
these marshmallow chicks by hand.” But this was no quick process, and it took
27 hours from start to finish to make these marshmallow chicks. Why so long? It was all thanks to the very lengthy cooling
time required before the candy could be packaged. Once Just Born acquired the company, they
immediately set about automating the Peeps-making process, which included a faster dry time,
and have managed to shave more than 21 hours off the operation. Now that you have all the facts, six minutes
seems party darn fast, doesn’t it? The Peeps website lists the candy’s ingredients
as: sugar, corn syrup, gelatin, and small amounts of other things like different types
of food dyes. What’s all that mean? You’re basically looking mostly at gelatin,
sugar, sugar, and more sugar, with a few incidentals, but are any of these incidentals cause for
concern? You be the judge. Potassium sorbate is an FDA-approved preservative,
and it keeps those squishy marshmallows squishy longer. Honestly, Peeps without this preservative
probably wouldn’t be great. Food dyes, though also approved for use by
the FDA, have long been controversial, and studies have suggested the possibility of
some links between them and hyperactivity in children. Overall though, food dye has not been proven
to be dangerous to most people. How about these mysterious “natural flavors”? An expert at the Environmental Working Group
told Women’s Health that this doesn’t necessarily refer to “real” flavors, saying, “Whether they are natural or artificial flavors
doesn’t matter; we consider them the same. It’s often a secret mixture of chemicals that
manipulate the taste of food. There are problems with lack of disclosure
from companies about what’s really in them…” Did you really think Peeps wouldn’t contain
some chemicals? Sure, but what about those rumors? You know the ones. You may have heard a rumor that carnauba wax,
one of those ingredients of Peeps, is the very same ingredient used in car wax. And this is one rumor that’s more than urban
legend, because it’s true. However, it’s probably not as bad as it sounds. Not only is carnauba wax approved by the FDA
for human consumption, but according to Snopes, the amount used in candy is fairly minuscule. Despite what it might sound like, it’s got
nothing in common with taking down a spoonful of Turtle Wax. “Wax on, right hand. Wax off, left hand. Wax on, wax off.” And because of its high melting point, it’s
actually not even absorbed by our bodies, but that leads us to one slightly creepy issue. Carnauba wax is typically used to give candy
a sheen or a hard shiny surface, and in Peeps it’s what makes those brown eyes so shiny. When a pair of Emory scientists put the candy
through a barrage of tests to determine its indestructibility, they stumbled onto something
disconcerting about those eyes. After taking an hour-long bath in phenol,
a protein-dissolving solvent, the marshmallow was all but gone. The only thing that remained? A pair of wax eyes, bobbing in the phenol,
intact. The same eyes that will travel through your
digestive system, also still intact. So while that wax may not be as harmful as
you might have thought, it’s a whole lot more nightmarish. Curious about how Peeps are made? Since the factory isn’t open for public tours,
we’ll need a little help with this one. Today got a look behind the scenes at the
Peeps factory in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, and followed the marshmallow chicks on their
journey from start to finish. In just those few minutes, the ingredients
get mixed together in huge drums, and it’s then pumped with air to ensure a fluffy result. The mixture is then extruded onto conveyor
belts in their familiar shapes before passing through a shower of colored sugar. After the sugar shower, a special laser passes
above the candy, adding eyes in just the right spot, and then it’s into the packages they
go. The entire six-minute process is automated,
and because it’s so fast, Just Born is able to produce an average of 5.5 million Peeps
a day. As you might have guessed, with numbers like
that, the marshmallow treat has held the title of number one non-chocolate Easter candy for
more than 20 years. Believe it or not, fresh-from-the-package
Peeps aren’t for everyone, and there are more fans of stale Peeps out there than you might
think. According to Just Born VP Matthew Pye, between
25 and 30 percent of consumers actually prefer to have their Peeps when they’re a little
stale. With those kinds of numbers, should we expect
aged marshmallows to hit shelves soon? Nope, says Pye. They can’t afford to disappoint that 70 to
75 percent of customers who prefer them fresh. “If we were to produce a stale Peep, we couldn’t
satisfy what the people want. We let the consumer do it themselves.” “Are they from God?” “Yes, they’re from God, yes.” “Thank you.” Peeps contain gelatin, and that shouldn’t
be news to anyone who has ever eaten a marshmallow. Thanks to the kind of gelatin Just Born uses
though, vegans and vegetarians will want to steer clear of the Easter treat. According to the company’s website, “Gelatin is a protein rich gelling agent obtained
by partial hydrolysis of collagen. It is derived from the skin, connective tissue,
and bones of animals… We use pork derived gelatin in our Peeps marshmallow
to achieve a light, soft texture.” But with the advent of vegan- and vegetarian-friendly
gelatins now available, why hasn’t Just Born at least put out an alternative Peeps product
for their plant-based fans? That’s one of the frequently asked questions
the company receives, but they explain that they just haven’t found an alternative that
keeps Peeps unchanged. Maybe next year? Maybe this isn’t something you’ve ever wondered;
maybe it is. The good news is, unless you really want to,
you don’t have to find out for yourself how many Peeps a human can fit inside their mouth
at once, because someone did it for you. World record website RecordSetter, which tracks
some, shall we say… unique, achievements, has been tracking attempts at Most Peeps Fit
In Open Mouth since 2012. The original record holder managed to cram
10 Peeps into his mouth, but that record has since been broken in 2017, when the number
was upped to 14. And speaking of Peeps-eating records, 2017
was the same year professional competitive eater Matt Stonie broke the world record at
the World Peeps Eating Championship by taking down 255 of the marshmallow candies in just
five minutes. Considering it might take some people five
minutes to choke down one, that’s an impressive feat. Nobody has lukewarm feelings about Peeps. You either salivate at the very thought of
the sugar-coated marshmallows, or you’re filled with instant rage. And those who fall into the latter camp let
the world know it. It’s like clockwork, and the moment the seasons
change, you’ll see a certain meme start making the rounds: “How to eat Peeps? Throw them in the trash can.” And there are plenty of Peeps-hating hashtags
to choose from for your caption, #peepsmassacre, #deathtopeeps, #ihatepeeps, all dedicated
to showcasing the many ways you can decapitate, mutilate, or otherwise maim those oh-so-adorable
chicks and bunnies. From a simple death to elaborate scenes of
Peep carnage, Peeps-haters seem to get into it with more zeal than others do with your
usual maligned snacks. When was the last time you saw someone get
so worked up over circus peanuts or candy corn? What do you get when you throw some Peeps
onto an unsuspecting pizza? Peepza, otherwise known as the pizza absolutely
nobody asked for ever. It seems like every Easter someone on the
internet “discovers” Peepza, but to properly lay the blame and/or credit, we have to go
back to 2010, when Serious Eats columnist Adam Kuban debuted his springtime mashup. The Peepza is exactly what it looks like:
A plain cheese pizza, cooked almost completely, then topped with Peeps and cooked for another
minute to get the marshmallows nice and melty. If we’re to believe Kuban, it isn’t nearly
as terrible as those Peep-haters might believe. What’s good for the goose isn’t always good
for the gander, though. In 2017, SBNation’s Charlotte Wilder decided
to hop on the Peepza bandwagon, and her review was decidedly less enthusiastic than Kuban’s. She said: “It tasted exactly like you think it would:
A Peep on top of pizza, which is disgusting.” When limited edition Peeps Oreos, complete
with neon pink marshmallow-flavored creme, hit the shelves the 2017, fans of the Easter
candy were quick to gobble them up. But it didn’t take long before an unsettling
trend was noticed. Turns out the bright pink creme had a surprising
side effect: Bright pink poop. Those experiencing this phenomenon took to
Twitter to air their dirty laundry, along with others who didn’t have that particular
issue, but experienced other side effects, like a stained pink tongue and Pepto-Bismol-hued
spit. Can hot pink Oreos really have this effect
on our bodies? According to LiveScience they can, thanks
to the red #3 food dye used in the creme, which gastroenterologist Dr. Ian Lustbader
says doesn’t get broken down in the body during digestion. While the colored poop indicates nothing serious
health-wise, for someone to actually see this startling side effect, they’d have to eat
a lot of cookies. He says that’s more than one or two, but let’s
be honest: has anyone ever in the history of the world only eaten one or two Oreos in
a sitting? What’s better than chewy room temperature
marshmallows? Warm, gooey marshmallows, of course. Just because you’re chowing down on Peeps
doesn’t mean you can’t fulfill your melty marshmallow dreams. If you’ve never microwaved Peeps, now is the
time. Even if you don’t want a melty marshmallow,
you should consider microwaving a few Peeps, simply to witness their transformation. Consider it an important science experiment. In 30 seconds, you’ll see those Peeps expand
about four sizes right in front of your eyes. And then just like that, they’re reduced to
a puddle. So what gives? According to Decoding Delicious, when you
microwave a marshmallow, the water molecules in the syrup turn to steam, and that steam
fills the air bubbles causing a spectacular expansion. But here’s where you need to be careful. If you’re planning on digging into those super-heated
Peeps, the center is likely to be molten. That’s because the dehydrated sugar syrup
that remains once the steam is gone gets very hot and may even caramelize. Proceed with caution if you’re eating your
science experiment, but don’t wait too long if you want ooey-gooey Peeps. The longer it sits, the more taffy-like it
becomes. And that’s the one way to ruin a perfectly
good Peep. Check out one of our newest videos right here! Plus, even more Mashed videos about your favorite
stuff are coming soon. Subscribe to our YouTube channel and hit the
bell so you don’t miss a single one.


  1. me seeing the video in my reccomended list: wow! what are peeps.. ? they look tasty….
    me a minute in: :O i want em all!
    me almost halfway through: awww vegans cant eat them? what a shame! (i avoid eating jellaton in sweets)
    me at the end: oki! take the jellaton out and ill buy it! oh…. right… there are no peeps in german stores…

    (im sorry if i misspelled something).

  2. When I first tried peeps at my friends house it made me burp ;-; we were all laughing and her parents heard that 😅 it also made my friend fart 😣

  3. can I eat peeps or not now?
    idk at least when I walk into a room filled with them I can scream

  4. Jewish people can’t eat them either. I am a messianic Jew, and I know that I can’t eat most foods with gelatin, because of anything from I can’t eat anything from pigs.

  5. Once I ate a whole package of the bunny peeps and I got sick, when I threw up the peeps it was just pink dye and the eyes.. ;-;

  6. Peeps: I will forever see what other food cant see. I guide others to diabetes which I cannot reach. All things balanced as they should be, one spoon of gelatin, 1 ton of sugar. I am your stomach's inevitable ruler. Though my body is squishy my eyes are eternal constantly seeing the suffering of my family until I would finally only see the light at the end of the colon.

  7. 1:11 People should go back to raising their children like dogs. Don't give your child a treat when it does something bad.

  8. Next videos:
    -Why sugar is bad for you.
    -What really is in that oreo, you're eating?
    -Things you should know before eating a hamburger
    -Why are brussel sprouts bad for you
    -Why breathing is bad for you (II PANDA IIV)
    -Why you shouldn't walk (Colin Woods)
    -Why eating nail polish is good for you (the goodest boye)
    -What are in vanes?
    -What can you eat?
    -nothing is safe.

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