Dear Crabby, When Did the Easter Bunny Become Chocolate?

Dear Crabby,

My wife and I have been busy buying stuff for the grandkids Easter baskets and she insists that they each get a chocolate bunny. Have these little guys always been around or are they relatively new? According to the Mrs. you can’t have Easter without one.

Thanks, Fred Sweets

Dear Mr. Sweets,

Now that I think about it, it does seem like chocolate Easter bunnies have been around for a long time. I know I remember my siblings and I getting one in our baskets. Aside from the eggs we dyed, the bunny was about the only other item in our basket. Definitely a far cry from today’s over-the-top themed or personalized Easter baskets! But I’m wandering off topic… we Americans like to think we invented everything that matters. And while that’s true in some areas, we can’t take credit for the chocolate Easter bunny. That bit of sugary genius goes to the Germans who started making them sometime during the 19th century. Whitman’s Chocolates (the same people that make those ginormous samplers for Valentine’s Day and Christmas) tried making the bunnies a tradition in the U.S. during the mid-1800s, but I guess they were just ahead of their time. For whatever reason by the beginning of the 20th century, people hopped on board the chocolate bunny trail and I don’t think production has slowed DearCrabbydown since! Well, I take that back because during World War II, there was a ration on cocoa, which is actually how hollow chocolate bunnies came to be. And while I’m sure my dentist would strongly disagree, if I’m gonna indulge in all that chocolate, I want my chocolate bunny to be solid, not hollow, because I want the most chocolate I can get. Come to think of it, as a kid my folks always bought hollow bunnies and I bet that was so that they didn’t end up with a bunch of kids bouncing off the wall trying to burn off a sugar high. Sneaky. Now another interesting tidbit about those chocolate bunnies is how people eat them. Apparently some 76 percent of Americans prefer to eat the ears first and I guess the remaining 24 percent go straight for the cottontail. No matter what your preference, close to 100 million chocolate bunnies are made every year. That’s a lot of chocolate.

So, get those grandkids chocolate bunnies and I’ll leave it up to you to decide whether you buy hollow or solid, depending on how much you want to annoy their parents.

Have a great Easter!

Dear Crabby

About Dear Crabby

Stuck in a rut? Need some biased advice from a crabby old baby-boomer? Read regularly by thousands and loved by some, Dear Crabby answers questions weekly to life's challenges. Send him a note at DearCrabby@rochestermedia.com.

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