The cookie world, as you might imagine, is just a tad competitive, and when it comes to two chocolate wafers embracing a layer of sweet vanilla crème, there has always been a heavyweight and an underdog. We know you are aware of the former, but for the uninitiated, we would like to talk about the latter, and thy name is Hydrox. While their demise can be directly linked to their Nabisco counterpart, they are the cookie of choice of millions of people who, in 2008, demanded their cookie back. Let’s see what all the fuss was about.
Hydrox cookies were introduced way back in 1908, a product of Sunshine Biscuits in Elmhurst Illinois (which is now owned by the elf-infested Keebler Company.) They consist of two ornate chocolate cookie discs and a layer of sweet frosting-like creme. They were immediately popular, which led the competition, Nabisco, to introduce their own version called Oreo four years later. And as history attests, Oreo eventually won the marketing battle to become one of the best-recognized cookies in history. And yet, there is a vocal subsection of the population that always kept their loyalty to Hydrox. They insist that their superior cookies don’t become soggy in milk as quickly, and that their preferred snack has a slightly tangier taste and is noticeably less sweet.
Here is a glimpse of Hydrox as part of this 80s commercial for Sunshine cookies.
Unfortunately, Hydrox threw in the the towel in 1999, discontinuing the century-old sandwich cookie. Fans were aghast, flooding the phone lines at Kelloggs (who currently own the rights to the name) when the 100-year Hydrox anniversary arrived, and demanding a return of their beloved snacks. Realizing the amount of love that still existed, Kelloggs eventually acquiesced, and in 2008, Hydrox cookies returned to their rightful place on store shelves. How big was the news? Big enough for the Wall Street Journal to cover it, that’s how big.
The celebration was tragically short-lived, however, as within a year, the product was again discontinued. For now it seems, the Hydrox aficionados will have to return to mourning their befallen friends, and hope that one day this travesty is again corrected.
On which side do you reside in this decades-old debate? Were you loyal to Hydrox or did you sell your soul to Oreo? What was it about Hydrox that made them your preferred cookie choice. Share your memories of these extinct treats with us in our comments section as we tip our hats to a true original, Hydrox.