The Interesting Reason Why Ice Cream With Syrup Desserts Are Called ‘Sundaes’

I need to admit something: i just looove sundaes. Chocolate, caramel, strawberry, you name it. But what’s up with their name? What in the world is a ‘sundae’? It kind of looks like Sunday, but why the -e on the end?

Well, wonder no more you useless info junkie because we’ve got you covered. And the answer is quite interesting.

Here’s the story. (the article continues after the ad)


Back in the 17th century, certain laws started to appear that forbade some activities on Sunday (Sabbath) – the day of worship. These laws were called blue laws because, according to Britannica, at the time, “the word blue meant “rigidly moral” in a disparaging sense”. These activities included working on Sunday, buying, selling, public entertainment, sports or traveling.


In 1890, legislators from Evanston, Illinois passed a local law prohibiting the sale and/or consumption of ice cream sodas on Sunday. Why they did it we’ll never know. The most popular theory is that “sucking soda” was considered inappropriate behavior on Sundays. But because clever parlors will always find a loophole in the law and since ice cream was not forbidden, business owners started selling ice creams topped with syrups or fruits which they called “soda-less ice cream sodas” concoctions. The goal of course, was to attract the Sunday crowd.

People loved them and soon enough, consumers started calling them “Sundays”. To change the image of the dish as a Sunday-only dessert and make it an everyday treat, parlors changed the name to “sundae” and this is why we call ice cream topped with syrups, “sundae”. 

Interesting indeed!

If you like what you read then you will definitely love this one: This Is The Difference Between ‘Gelato’ And ‘Ice Cream’

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Sources: Blue law | Sundae Best: A History of Soda Fountains | Since Eve Ate Apples Much Depends on Dinner: The Extraordinary History and Mythology, Allure and Obsessions, Perils and Taboos of an Ordinary Mea | Ever Wonder Why? And Other Controversial Essays by Thomas Sowell (2006-11-13)

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