There are some food you eat, you know you shouldn’t touch, it’s not that healthy. Do you know what I mean? Well, for me, it’s Nutella. I know I should stop buying this sweetened hazelnut cocoa spread, but I can’t! So, as I continue to write about food (see the invention of chocolate), I thought it was time to write about that particular favorite of mine. So…
Who Invented Nutella?
I won’t insult anybody by explaining what is Nutella. I mean, I suppose that everybody has eaten some once at least. If not, do yourself a gift and try it. But did you know the hazelnut and cocoa cream was the result of an evolving recipe?
First, there was the Giandujot
Everything began after WWII in the Italian Piedmont region, specifically in the city of Turin. There was a cocoa scarcity during this time period due to a variety of issues, including trade limitations and economic constraints.
Local baker and chocolatier Pietro Ferrero began combining the region’s plentiful hazelnuts with cocoa to combat this scarcity. The result of this mixing was the creation of the creamy paste known as Giandujot (this is pronounced “john-doo-YOH”).
The first recipe’s sweet paste was formed into a loaf that could be cut into slices and spread on bread. Due to its delicious flavor and reasonable price, this paste gained enormous popularity and was given the name Gianduja after a Carnival figure from Italian folklore.
Then came SuperCrema
A few years later, in 1951, Pietro Ferrero transformed the ‘Giandujot’ paste into a more spreadable and versatile product known as SuperCrema. This creamy chocolate-hazelnut spread was designed to be easily spread on bread or used as a topping, offering both convenience and a delightful taste.
SuperCrema was not Nutella, but it was the link between the original recipe of the Giandujot and the world-famous spread.
And finally, the creation of Nutella
In 1963, Ferrero’s son Michele Ferrero decided to revamp the Supercrema gianduja. His goal was to market it throughout Europe. To do so, the composition of the paste had to be modified, and it was renamed “Nutella” – a portmanteau of the English word “nut” and the Latin suffix “-ella” (indicating sweetness).
The first jar of Nutella left the factory in Alba on April 20, 1964. This unique blend of roasted hazelnuts, cocoa solids, milk, and sugar resulted in a creamy, chocolaty spread that was an instant success.
And yes, Michele Ferrero succeeded at making his star product a massive success in the international markets.
The appeal of Nutella has risen steadily throughout time. The Ferrero family-run company has developed a number of Nutella variants, including those with white chocolate, caramel, and even limited-edition flavors.
Due to the brand’s popularity, there have been a lot of knockoffs, but Nutella is still the original and most well-known hazelnut-chocolate spread.