Once upon a time, there was no such thing as candy corn. There was candy. There was corn. But the two remained independent.
Then in the 1880s, George Renninger of the Philadelphia, PA-based Wunderle Candy Company got tired of keeping veggies and dessert separate and created candy corn (which of course has everything to do with candy and much less to do with corn).
George may have been the first, but Gustav Goelitz is the true father of candy corn. He’s the first candy maker to begin commercial production (1898) in – wait for it – Cincinnati, OH. Yep, candy corn’s real life began here in the Queen City.
Back in the Day, candy corn was made by cooking sugar, water, and corn syrup, adding fondant (for texture) and marshmallow (for softness) and then pouring the hot deliciousness into big buckets 45 pounds at a time. The 45 pounds was then applied directly to my hips. No, wait. It just seems that way.
The candy was poured (one color layer at a time) into molds (shaped like corn kernels—sort of), cooled, and sold. Turns out veggie candy was popular and the Goelitz Candy Company made other veggie shapes for a while. Fortunately, they got over that and vegetables went back to being made out of marzipan which is how it is supposed to be.
During WWI, Herman son of Gustav moved to California and formed the creatively named Herman Goelitz Candy Company. Continuing the creative process, Herman made candy corn. Lots and lots of candy corn.
These days over 25 million pounds of candy corn are sold annually. Most bypass retail locations and head directly for my hips. No, wait. It just seems that way.
“Indian corn” is candy corn with a chocolate bottom. This is an approved (by me) version of candy corn.
There are all kinds of imposter-type candy corn (candy corns? candies corn? yark! What’s the protocol here?) including a blackberry cobbler candy corn (in Canada), Christmas “reindeer corn,” Easter “bunny corn,” Valentine’s “cupid corn,” and patriotic “freedom corn.” These are all ridiculous, but probably require much research on my part. Especially the blackberry cobbler corn.
Candy corn has 3.57 calories per kernel. I estimate it takes about 4 calories to chew and digest a single candy corn. Which means this may be the greatest diet ever invented! I just love estimation.