The Evolution of the Easy-Bake OvenLauren Jimeson
One of my fondest memories growing up was sitting in the playroom of my childhood home with my sister, baking up anything we could have possibly imagined with our Easy-Bake Oven. It was this pop culture phenomenon that let kids step away from their mother’s kitchen and into their own.
My sister and I loved making different sweet treats and couldn’t wait to run to the store with our mom for more mix when we ran out. We used to pretend that we had our own bakery and all of our desserts were for sale! We would set up our table at the end of our driveway, and rather than the typical lemonade stand, we would sell our homemade treats that were just baked in our very own oven.
It’s a toy that meant so much to me when I was a little girl, that I couldn’t wait to have my own children just so I could recreate many of those same treats with them. Now that my girls are getting older, I think this might be the year that we get a new Easy-Bake Oven and start creating our own memories together.
The popular product was introduced in 1963 and celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. The Easy-Bake Oven has evolved so much over the years, both in its physical appearance and its technology. Take a walk down memory lane and check out the Easy-Bake Oven from the very beginning to the newest version being introduced this year.
A Look Back at the Easy-Bake Oven 1 of 11
Take a look through 50 years of the Easy-Bake Oven.
1963 Easy-Bake Oven 2 of 11
The very first working toy oven was introduced to America as the Easy-Bake Oven. It was invented by designers at Kenner Products (now owned by Hasbro), and the oven sold for $15.95. The toy oven resembled its bigger counterpart with a pretend stovetop and everything! Can you imagine the excitement of little kids everywhere who were finally able to bake on their own?! I love the miniature mixing utensils!
1971 Easy-Bake Oven 3 of 11
If this doesn't scream 1970s, I don't know what does. The avocado green was popular among kitchens everywhere, and wouldn't it be more fitting to have your children with the same as well? In 1971, three Easy-Bake models were introduced: the Premier Easy-Bake Oven, the floral detailed Contemporary Easy-Bake Oven, and the Super Easy-Bake Oven, which baked cakes twice as big as before in double-size, slide-through pans. The stove top was definitely upgraded this year and these new models look more and more like mom's kitchen!
1973 Easy-Bake Oven 4 of 11
To celebrate the tenth year of the Easy-Bake Oven, it got a makeover with a bright red color and a new design! This version was definitely sleeker than years prior, but it's straying away from the "miniature kitchen look" that I really did love.
1979 Easy-Bake Oven 5 of 11
Introducing the microwave to kitchens across America, the Easy-Bake Oven went with the trend and took on an entirely new look. Rather than resembling an oven and stovetop, the Easy-Bake Oven looks like a real kid-sized microwave. Along with the makeover, the oven also received a few technical upgrades and could cook cakes and cookies faster than ever before. I love a good microwave to heat up my meals, but there is nothing like a sweet treat from the oven. I do appreciate that Easy-Bake stayed on trend throughout the years, though.
1981 Easy-Bake Oven 6 of 11
This is the Easy-Bake that I remember as a child. I couldn't wait to pull my homemade cake out of the oven with the grabber. It still resembled a microwave, but at that point I didn't care what it looked like, as long as I was able to make my own sweet treats!! I felt like such a baker and loved the feeling of eating something that I had just baked myself. This was the first oven that used one 100-watt bulb and came with two slide-thru baking pans, a pan pusher, and tasty mixes.
1993 Easy-Bake Oven 7 of 11
To celebrate 30 years, Easy-Bake debuted a new model with upgrades! It had a new sleek, more contemporary design that came with a warming tray that could melt the toppings for your tasty treats! I would have loved to melt some caramel in the warming tray to go on some brownies. Yum!
2003 Easy-Bake Oven 8 of 11
When Easy-Bake turned 40, it took the leap from only desserts to making full on meals. The oven allowed children to make recipes from appetizers to desserts. It was also the first oven that you could just plug in, and it heated up without the use of a light bulb. Imagine the possibilities that kids could create in their very own kitchens!
2009 Easy-Bake Oven 9 of 11
In 2009, the Easy-Bake Oven returned to it's roots with splashes of the original color and side-loading oven. This model reminds me more of a toaster than an actual oven, but I'm sure those desserts tasted just as good as they did when I was a kid.
2011 Easy-Bake Oven 10 of 11
This was the year that Easy-Bake finally said goodbye to the light bulb and made advances with their newer model that resembled those of a conventional oven. The bright purple design was bigger than years past, letting kids make and cook even more treats at once!
2013 Easy-Bake Oven 11 of 11
This year, Hasbro, Inc. celebrates 50 years of the Easy-Bake Oven. This year, the oven has a brand new color, which I am loving because it is much more gender-neutral than years past. Although my girls are only four and one-and-a-half, I think this might be the year that I let them get the Easy-Bake Oven. My oldest daughter loves to help me cook in the kitchen, and this would be so much fun for her. Also, I might, want to buy one for myself to remember the good ol' days! ;)
Photo credits: Kenner Products/Hasbro
More from Lauren on Babble:
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Read more from Lauren at her personal blog, A Mommy in the City, where she chronicles her life living in New York City with a suburban mentality. For more updates, follow Lauren on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram!
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