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5 things you didn't know about Peeps

"Peeps" Easter candy turns 60 years old this year, and the story of the sugary treat has been one of sweet success. NBC's Katie Tur reports.

By Erica Ayisi, Writer, NBC News

This year the tiny pastel treats known as Peeps turn 60 and they're still as popular as ever. From Peeps diorama contests to their prevalence on supermarket shelves during Easter season, they've become a cultural phenomenon.

Almost everyone has an opinion on the sweet chicks and bunnies. But regardless of whether you eat them, decorate them or avoid them entirely, the spongy, sugar-filled, marshmallow candy has almost taken on a life of its own.


Here are five facts about Peeps you may not know:

Courtesy of Peeps

  • As sweet as they are, Peeps are 100 percent fat free. Each one is 32 calories. A serving size -- five peeps -- contains 34 grams of sugar.        
  • Some adventurous home chefs have discovered different ways to use Peeps as ingredients. A Peep-uccino involves dunking a Peep in coffee instead of adding a packet of sugar, or you can add Peeps to sweet desserts like ambrosia salad.
  • According to Just Born, Inc., the company that owns and manufactures Peeps, 2 billion Peeps are made for Easter, Christmas, Halloween and Valentine’s Day combined. In 2012, 1 billion Peeps were made for Easter alone.
  • Peeps had wings when they were originally created. Their wings were clipped years later to allow for a more pristine look and allow for easier packaging, according to Just Born publicist Ellie Deardorff.
  • Sam Born, the founder of Just Born, Inc., was a Russian immigrant who made and sold candy. He purchased a company in the early 1950s that made marshmallow pastries by hand. The women making them called the treats Peeps during Easter. He studied their method and created a machine that would make the pastries rather than use a pastry tube.