The Ubiquitous MoonPie

“We’d like something about this big,” the man said, lifting his arms to the sky, and framing the moon within the circle of his hands. Thus was laid design for the ubiquitous MoonPie.

Is there anyone reading here today who has been denied the sheer pleasure of freshly tearing away the cellophane wrapper around a fat chocolate sphere, then biting into the gooey marshmallow stuffing between the two cookies? Have you reached over for the bottle, upended the cold glass cylinder and chugged down a draft of RC Cola to wash down the sweet morsels?

In his book, “The Great American MoonPie Handbook”, Mr. Dickson had written of the MoonPie’s® lost history. Not long after his book was published, he received a telephone call from Earl Mitchell, Jr., identifying his deceased father, Earl Mitchell, Sr., as the person responsible for the invention of the MoonPie®.

Mr. Mitchell’s story goes like this … Early in the 1900s, while servicing his territory of Kentucky, Tennessee and West Virginia, Mr. Mitchell was visiting a company store that catered to the coal miners. He asked them what they might enjoy as a snack. The miners said they wanted something for their lunch pails. It had to be solid and filling. “About how big?,!” Mr. Mitchell asked. Well about that time the moon was rising, so a miner held out his big hands, framing the moon and said, “About that big!” So, with that in mind, Mr. Mitchell headed back to the bakery with an idea. Upon his return he noticed some of the workers dipping graham cookies into marshmallow and laying them on the window sill to harden. So they added another cookie and a generous coating of chocolate and sent them back for the workers to try. In fact, they sent MoonPie® samples around with their other salespeople, too. The response they got back was so enormous that the MoonPie® became a regular item for the bakery.

The phrase “RC Cola and a MoonPie®” became well known around the South, as many people enjoyed this delicious, bargain-priced combination.

I ate MoonPies as a child, and although I was familiar with RC Colas (it was my mom’s favorite soft drink), I don’t recall particularly drinking RC as I ate my fat cookie, although I understand many people did. I believe I lost contact with MoonPies for many years, for I don’t remember buying them as Jerry and I were rearing our children. Probably, this was because our homes have been in California, and the MoonPie was born and proliferated in the South and drifted to the Midwest. I’ve noticed in recent years, however, that the MoonPie has made its way westward, and a time or two, I feel to confess, I have taken a box from a WalMart shelf and handily transferred the treasure to my shopping cart. At home–not with an RC Cola–but with an icy glass of milk I have indulged.

Have you?

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My devotional blog is here.


16 thoughts on “The Ubiquitous MoonPie

  1. crazytxmommy

    Some of my fondest childhood memories are of sitting at the kitchen table with my Uncle Paul Dean and splitting a banana Moon Pie and a RC Cola. It makes me smile just thinking about it.

    Welcome to my blog–hope you visit here often.

    Isn’t it a truth that some of the most simple things we do with children make lasting and beautiful impressions on them. Uncle Paul Dean may never have known how important was the splitting of a MoonPie and an RC Cola with a little girl. Precious thought.

    Blessings–

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  2. Reading the details, it sound a lot like a treat I loved as a child – different in shape. You could find it only in a certain area of Switzerland – so special 🙂 The bottom was a thin round waffle-like (about 2″) topped with a mound of marshmallow cream covered by chocolate (like a dipped cone) about 2½” high. They were sold individually, wrapped in colorful foil. Mmmm, good!!!

    Catherine, sounds as though even in Europe there was a delectable treat similar to a MoonPie. 🙂

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  3. Okay, I’ve done a little research on Scooter Pies. Here it is, originating from a person searching for them.

    I have a lot of memories about favorite snack foods from when I was growing up, none of which are on the market today. My strongest memory was Scooter Pies, a lot like Moon Pies, but much tastier. Are they still manufactured, and if so who sells them? I’ve done an extensive search through the Internet and couldn’t find much.

    –Larry Sprissler, Las Vegas

    An Internet search mainly reveals how many people name their dogs Scooter Pie and how many of those dogs have their own web sites. But the lamented, 50-year-old Scooter Pie cookie is pretty much a lost puppy. Yes, they’re still made, and they once were widely distributed, but gradually they lost ground in the supermarket cookie shelf-space wars. They weren’t nationally advertised, so large chains wouldn’t (and still won’t) stock them. The Scooter Pies manufacturer has been owned by eight different companies in the last dozen years. Their latest parent is based in Italy. If you call their U.S. offices and say “Scooter Pies,” you get the telephonic equivalent of a blank stare. But we persisted, tracking the elusive chocolate-and-marshmallow treat from St. Louis to Des Plaines (IL) to Oakland to Ashland (OH) to Anaheim, and finally discovered where your pies are hiding. In military commissaries. That’s their only distribution in the SoCal-Nevada area. Assuming you don’t want to enlist just to get your fix, you can order Scooter Pies via the Internet at netgrocer.com, original or banana, $1.49 for a box of eight, plus FedEx shipping. (They also sell the legendary and equally elusive Mallomar.) Internet groceries have a shaky history, so you’d better order fast, before they go away too. Happy snacking.

    Return to Straight From The Hip main page.

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    Comments
    Posted by Bongo on 05/1/07 @ 2:15 am
    You can also get the old Scooter pie for $3.49 at http://www.hometown-treats.com/products/c_scooter_pies.html
    Reply by Narf
    That’s per box, not per pie.
    Posted by Grandma T on 07/12/07 @ 9:53 am
    Hometown-treats is out of stock. I just tried. But I am so happy to hear that I’m not alone in my quest for the elusive Scooter Pie. Moon Pies just don’t quit hit the spot.
    Posted by Grandma T on 07/12/07 @ 9:59 am
    I just checked on NetGrocer.com and they don’t have them even listed!
    Reply by Grandma Alice
    As one grandma to another, my apologies. This is one of the problems of having Matthew’s questions archived. Some of them have a short shelf life — e.g., Scooter Pies. What was true then isn’t true now. Thanks for pointing out an answer that needs updating. And sorry to send you on a wild pie chase when you could be having fun with the grandkids.
    Posted by Judi P. on 07/20/07 @ 6:48 pm
    I am also on the search for Scooter Pies. A bunch of us at my son’s baseball game were talking about favorite past time treats. We are now all in search of them. Can anyone help? Thanks!!
    Posted by PeepingScott on 08/12/07 @ 1:44 pm
    I remember them well too. I have been on web forums and NOBODY remembers them. Do you remember the promo’s they had at one time with Mattel? I remember puzzle pieces that you got in each box, and once you’ve completed the puzzle, you sent it in for either a Barbie or a Hot Wheel. Anyone remember this? My brother and I remember, so that makes two… Anyone??
    Posted by Judy on 09/8/07 @ 11:01 am
    PLEASE BRING THESE WONDERFUL SNACKS BACK !!! I just bought a moon pie, and they’re awful… I was so hoping they would taste like the long lost scooter pies of my youth…
    Posted by Kman on 09/23/07 @ 6:29 pm
    My Ladyfriend asked me what I wanted for my birthday and I said “Scooter Pies”. Know what I got? Little Debbie Chocolate Marshmallow Pies. She couldn’t find Scooter Pies anywhere. But the thought was really nice, but still no way a Scooter Pie.
    Reply by M.A.
    The Scooter Pie was invented back in the late ’50s as a takeoff on the s’more — chocolate, marshmallow, and graham cracker. The marshmallow in a Scooter Pie is flavored with vanilla, and the cookie part, as I recall, is like a cross between a graham cracker and an oatmeal cookie. Thicker than a cracker. They were originally made by Burry’s, a fairly small East Coast cookie company. Quaker Oats bought them out, but sold them off later. We’re still tracking the elusive pie, but I’m not sure they’re around anywhere any more. Maybe those flavor profiles will give you inspiration to make your own.
    Posted by Hedy Collett on 11/10/07 @ 7:18 pm
    I’m so glad I’m not the only person who can tell the difference between Scooter Pies and Moon Pies!! I’m disappointed that all the avenues towards getting them are dry :(.

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  4. heartwhispers

    I lived in the Hemet-SanJacinto area after we moved from the Ceres – Modesto area.
    Ummm, you’re right, they just might have been scooter pies I ate in Calif. I know they must have been very similar to the Moon Pies we have here.

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  5. I haven’t had a moon pie since I was at my mother’s during one of our visits home. As long as I can remember, she always had a stash in the pantry. I would eat one every now and then if the urge hit although I never had a particular craving for one. However, this post really made me want one. Cold milk all the way!!! I think RC cola would seem bitter after that sweet moonpie. Interesting history.

    Like

  6. I randomly found your site while googling pictures of stuff. You should be aware that someone has hacked your site and put some pornography on your page.

    (Remainder of post deleted by blog owner)

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  7. arm5

    I love moon pies they are one of my favorite snacks. I use eat them as a kid.I haven’t had one in awhile.

    Arm, before you go to bed, find a store that carries one of these tasty morsels. Drive back home. Climb into bed, snuggle under the covers, tear open the cellophane wrapper, bite down and enjoy. After all, they’re called MoonPies…and the moon visits at night. Be careful about the crumbs. 🙂

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  8. No Moon Pies or Rc in my younger years – it was french bread with squares of chocolate, we bought the big bars of swiss milk chocolate Suchard.
    I should try a Moon Pies, it sounds good. But the soda is an acquired taste as far as my taste buds tell me 🙂 We drank water with raspberry syrup or lemonade, water, or tea with lemon wedges.

    Yes, Catherine, before your years are up on this lovely earth, you must indulge in at least one MoonPie. I think it’s okay if you pass up the RC.

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  9. Moon Pies, my memories of them involve slipping out after curfew at Texas Bible College to grab a couple along with a Dr. Pepper to enjoy as I did my homework assignment.

    I am positive that a MoonPie or two is a perfect accompaniment to home work at TBC. Dr. Pepper? Those southerners love it. I recall that Lila and Murray Layne drank Dr. Pepper in the morning as the rest of us drink coffee.

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  10. heartwhispers

    I live where MOON PIES are made 🙂 I grew up with MOON PIES in California, but they were not my favorite thing… they now come in flavors, other than just the chocolate version. I indulge occasionally. Haven’t had one in awhile… just may go find one! 😀

    Where did you live in California that you ate MoonPies? The valley? My son Michael was over today and reminded me that he and his siblings ate a similar product called Scooter Pies. Anybody remember those?

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  11. LOL!! When our family moved from Fresno Ca. back in “69 I did not know about a Moon Pie. Then when we got to Jacksonville Fl. I found them in all the stores . So yes I tried a few but not to often because I was allergic to sugar. I will say they are better with milk than with RC Cola. Interesting post on a good snack.

    Kevin, tonight I whipped up a batch of chocolate chip cookies–a very small batch. Nothing tastes as good with cookies–even MoonPies–as does icy cold milk. I love milk. Wish I didn’t.

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  12. I’ve had moon pie a time or two, but that was a long time ago. Growing up, my dad was a big RC cola fan, so we had it quite often, but these days, I usually stick to Diet Coke.

    Carol, I drink Diet Coke, too. That’s why I’m so skinny. 🙂

    Like

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