Who doesn’t love s’mores? The treat is a campfire classic– a gooey marshmallow with some chocolate mashed between two graham crackers.
The history of the treat goes back a long time. Marshmallows are the oldest ingredient, and are named after a plant called the marsh mallow. For thousands of years, people boiled the plant’s root sap, strained it, and sweetened it to cure sore throats or to eat it as a treat. Marshmallows weren’t produced mechanically until the mid-19th century, but today, our marshmallows contain no marsh mallow sap at all– they’re mostly corn syrup, cornstarch, and gelatin.
Also, the Industrial Revolution is what made chocolate cheap enough and palatable enough for the average person, but chocolate is another ancient food– Mesoamericans have been eating or drinking it for 3,000 years.
Finally, the graham cracker was invented by Presbyterian minister Sylvester Graham, who was highly influential in the development of the health food movement of the 19th century. As far as the origins of the s’more itself– that’s unclear– but the first mention of the treat is in the 1927 edition of the Girl Scout manual. (Time)