Skip to main content
Select Source:

Betty Crocker

BETTY CROCKER

BETTY CROCKER. Betty Crocker, an American cultural icon, was created in 1921 by the advertising department of the Washburn Crosby milling company just before it merged with General Mills. The consummate homemaker who could answer any cooking question with ease, Betty Crocker was based upon several real women, the two most notable being home economists Janette Kelley and Marjorie Child Husted.

Neither her name nor her face, which has been updated numerous times, was real. Both, however, became synonymous with good cooking and competent homemaking through newspaper columns, radio programs, television spots, and the publication of over 150 cookbooks. Betty Crocker's most significant contribution came in 1951 with the publication of Betty Crocker's Picture Cookbook, which remains a top-selling cookbook today. Unlike the extremely thorough The Joy of Cooking by Irma Rombauer, Betty Crocker's Picture Cookbook helped women cook by including both large illustrations and recipes on one page.

Betty Crocker's image and what it represents has created an automatic acceptance by consumers of numerous General Mills products from breads to cake mixes. Perhaps more important, her icon status has given her an active role in American life. Betty Crocker has helped generations of American women over the years deal with challenges including food scarcity during the Depression and World War II, a renewed emphasis on homemaking in the postwar years, and the increasing sophistication of American taste. From cutting food costs to increasing women's satisfaction through cooking to adding new ingredients to update old recipes, Betty Crocker continues to keep her finger on the pulse of American life and to respond accordingly.

See also Advertising of Food; Baking; Cake and Pancake; Cookbooks; Cooking; Marketing of Food .

BIBLIOGRAPHY

DuSablon, Mary Anna. America's Collectible Cookbooks: The History, the Politics, the Recipes. Athens: Ohio University Press, 1984.

Levenstein, Harvey. Paradox of Plenty: A Social History of Eating in Modern America. New York: Oxford University Press, 1993.

Erika A. Endrijonas

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Betty Crocker." Encyclopedia of Food and Culture. . Encyclopedia.com. 24 May. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Betty Crocker." Encyclopedia of Food and Culture. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 24, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/food/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/betty-crocker

"Betty Crocker." Encyclopedia of Food and Culture. . Retrieved May 24, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/food/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/betty-crocker

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

Betty Crocker

Betty Crocker a fictitious character, exhibiting conservative values and a consistently cheerful demeanour, purporting to be the presenter or writer of a series of radio programmes, newspaper articles, and books on cooking, distributed in the United States from 1924 onwards. The name was first used in 1921 as the signatory to letters sent to prizewinners in a promotional competition.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Betty Crocker." The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. . Encyclopedia.com. 24 May. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Betty Crocker." The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 24, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/betty-crocker

"Betty Crocker." The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. . Retrieved May 24, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/betty-crocker

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.

Betty Crocker

Betty Crocker Fictitious name developed by Washburn, Crosby Co. of Minneapolis in 1921 as a signature for letters in response to a picture puzzle competition, and adopted as a signature for responses to enquiries by General Mills in 1936, and later as a brand name for their home baking products.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Betty Crocker." A Dictionary of Food and Nutrition. . Encyclopedia.com. 24 May. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Betty Crocker." A Dictionary of Food and Nutrition. . Encyclopedia.com. (May 24, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/education/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/betty-crocker

"Betty Crocker." A Dictionary of Food and Nutrition. . Retrieved May 24, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/education/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/betty-crocker

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.