This Might Have Been The Origin Of Kit Kat's Name

When you're eating candy, you probably don't care what it's called so long as it tastes good — but don't a lot of candies have some pretty weird names? You have the obvious ones like Hershey's, which is named after founder Milton S. Hershey, but then you get to the pretty strange ones: Zagnuts, Squirrel Nut Zippers, Goobers, Nerds, the list can go on. While deciphering all these wacky and colorful candy names would be a whole rabbit hole itself, the one candy we're here to talk about today is the Kit Kat.

The origin of this crispy chocolate-covered wafer begins over in England, according to Hershey. Rowntree's of York released the first version of the candy bar in 1935 under the name of "Rowntree's Chocolate Crisp" — although the name changed to the more catchy Kit Kat two years later. Nowadays, Kit Kat has evolved past being a simple English candy bar, coming in a wide variety of flavors both ordinary and bizarre — especially in Japan.

The New York Times describes the popularity of the wafer bar in Japan and the exotic, unconventional flavors they sell — chocolate, grape, strawberry, green tea, and mochi, to name a few. It's estimated that 192 million Kit Kats are sold in the US per year (via TODAY), making these snappable and breakable ingot-shaped bars quite the popular treat!

But what does Kit Kat even mean anyway? Does it have something to do with a cat or is it something else entirely?

Kit Kat's name is connected to pies

According to Reader's Digest, there are actually a few theories floating around about where the name "Kit Kat" comes from. Some have speculated it was the name of a private club in England known as the Kit-Cat. CulinaryLore speculates that the name may have just been a popular term, citing evidence in the form of a Philadelphia magazine from the 1800s known as Kit-Kat. Mental Floss suggests the rumor that Kit Kat was an acronym for Joseph Rowntree's wife's old college sorority. With all these rumors and hearsay, is there any real story behind the Kit Kat's name?

The Daily Mail seems to have discovered the truth. The Kit Kat term actually comes from a combination of two things: the Kit-Cat Club and a pastry chef. As the story goes, the club got the name from a local pastry chef named Christopher Catling, who supplied the club with meat pies that he called "Kit-Cats". People from Rowntree's, who were part of the club, apparently liked the name so much that they trademarked it in 1911. While the first Kit-Cat chocolates made were unpopular, forcing the name to be withdrawn, 1937 was when the term "Kit Kat" was applied to Rowntree's chocolate crisps — thus, the Kit Kat.

But be it Kit-Cat or Kit Kat, there's just one more question: break us off a piece of that Kit Kat bar, will ya, please?