The Hostess Sno Ball Is A Brilliant Reinvention Of Another Hostess Product


Most Americans are mourning the loss of the Twinkie following news that its maker, Hostess Brands, will shut down. But the baking giant’s announcement spells the end for many other packaged treats. 

That list includes a smattering of fluffy baked goods like Ho Hos, Ring Dings, Donettes, Hostess CupCakes, and bright pink Sno Balls.  

What’s interesting about the Sno Ball is that it’s actually just a jazzed-up version of another (and more famous) Hostess snack cake. Beneath a dusting of coconut flakes and a layer of marshmallow is simply an upside-down Hostess CupCake

And that’s just the beginning of the Sno Ball’s interesting history.

More details about the Sno Ball’s past and how the pillow-y treat is made are uncovered in an episode of the Food Network’s “Unwrapped.” We’ve pulled out the key points. 

The Sno Ball was introduced in 1947, shortly after rationing on goods like flour and sugar from World War II had ended.

For this reason, the sugary mounds were instantly popular with Americans who were just re-discovering their taste for processed baked goods.

Sno Balls were originally just chocolate cakes covered in marshmallow and coconut. The gooey orbs didn't receive creme filling or their signature pink tint until 1950.

If you peel back the layer of marshmallow, you'll notice that a Sno Ball is just a chocolate cupcake.

That cake is actually just a Hostess CupCake (a chocolate cake with creme filling) turned upside-down.

The Hostess CupCake, Twinkie, and Sno Ball all use the same iconic vanilla creme-filling.

Now let's see how America's favourite pink puffball is made.

To begin, flour, sugar and other basic ingredients are combined in a large mixer to make the cake batter.

The chocolate batter is dropped into cupcake pans.

The little cakes are baked for about 14 minutes in a super long oven.

After cooling for about 30 minutes, a machine injects each cupcake with creme.

Next, the pans are flipped over and the cake is dumped out on a conveyer belt.

The cupcakes are coated with a thick marshmallow blanket (twice).

Finally, shredded coconut is sprinkled onto the dome-shaped treats.

Sno Balls are packaged two at a time and then shipped out to supermarkets.

For a time, packages came with one pink Sno Ball and one white Sno Ball. Hostess eventually decided it would be more efficient if both cakes were the same colour.

The squishy cakes are not only limited to pink or white. They turn special colours for the holidays, including green for St. Patrick's Day, orange for Halloween, and lavender for Easter.

See how another snack cake is made.

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