Hot Pockets

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The Hot Pockets brand logo used from 2001 to 2008.
An uncooked Hot Pocket
A cooked Hot Pocket, cut to show filling

Hot Pockets are microwaveable turnovers generally containing one or more types of cheese, meat, or vegetables. Hot Pockets was founded by the Chef America Inc. company. Since 2002, they have been produced by Nestlé.


There are more than 20 varieties of the traditional Hot Pocket, including breakfast, lunch, and dinner varieties. Nestlé also offers Lean Pockets, Pretzel Bread Hot and Lean Pockets, Hot Pockets Croissant Crust (formerly called Croissant Pockets), Hot Pockets Breakfast items, and Hot Pockets Sideshots. Nestlé formerly produced Hot Pie Express, Hot Pocket Pizza Minis (originally called Hot Pockets Pizza Snacks), Hot Pockets Subs, Hot Pockets Calzones, Hot Pockets Panini, and Hot Pockets Breakfast fruit pastries.


Hot Pockets were invented by Paul Merage and David Merage in the 1970s. They founded the company Chef America Inc. and began producing Hot Pockets in 1983, which is when it landed in grocery stores. In 2002 Chef America was sold to Nestlé, and (as of 2012) Hot Pocket products are "now a $4.5 billion category of frozen sandwiches and snacks".[1] Breakfast style Hot Pockets were introduced in 2001. [2]

Citing reduced sales, in 2012 Nestlé announced that it would cut employee numbers at its California factory.[3] Euromonitor International data shows U.S. sales falling from $614 in 2010 to $30 million in 2013. [4]

Paul Grimwood took over Nestlé SA's struggling U.S. operations in 2012. In an attempt to bolster the failing brand by improving supply chain, Grimwood made the decision to drop the calzone version of Hot Pockets and the quesadillas Lean Pockets, reducing the number of doughs needed.[5]

In popular culture[edit]

Comedian Jim Gaffigan is well known for his material poking fun at Hot Pockets. This material is so popular among fans that he is regularly offered Hot Pockets while on tour.[6] The Huns in the comic strip Wizard of Id served a trojan Hot Pocket to win the ever ongoing war against the King of Id, by letting them kill themselves slowly.[7]

In 2012 Hot Pockets partnered with Snoop Dogg to create the music video, "Pocket Like its Hot", which became an overnight sensation. [8]

Charlie mentions Hot Pockets to Nolan in Season 2 Episode 83 of Anger Management (TV series) saying he trusts him to chose what goes best with SunnyD.

In Breaking Bad, Jessie states that he has been in a motel room "Eating funyuns and hotpockets" to Hank. To which, Hank is outraged and the phrase is repeated many times.


In 2014 Nestle USA recalled over 238,000 cases of its Hot Pockets because they may contain meat that were included in a massive recall of nearly 9 million pounds of "diseased and unsound" beef products. [9] The U.S. department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service officials said the meat was recalled because the firm used diseased and unsound animals. [10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Nestlé (February 6, 2012). "Nestlé to Move HOT POCKETS and LEAN POCKETS Business to Ohio" (Press release). PR Newswire. Retrieved January 11, 2013. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ Hsu, Tiffany (January 5, 2012). "Hot Pockets' Chatsworth factory cuts hours, will lay off 103 workers". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved December 22, 2012. 
  4. ^ Wong, Vanessa. "Hot Pockets with foodie makeover tries to mature with millennials." Bloomberg Business, 17 July 2015. Web 25 Mar. 2015.
  5. ^ Annie Gasparro; John Revill. "Nestlé U.S. Chief Looks for Brands to Fix or Toss". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 26 March 2015. 
  6. ^ Rene Lynch (10 April 2009). "Jim Gaffigan's L.A. favorites". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 13 November 2013. 
  7. ^ "Wizard of Id by Parker and Hart, January 28, 2014 Via @GoComics". GoComics. 28 January 2014. Retrieved 20 August 2014. 
  8. ^ Official website
  9. ^ Aleccia, Jonel. "Hot Pockets Included in Massive Meat Recall." NBC News, 18 Feb. 2014. Web. 25 Mar. 2015.
  10. ^ Aleccia, Jonel. "Hot Pockets Included in Massive Meat Recall." NBC News, 18 Feb. 2014. Web. 25 Mar. 2015.

External links[edit]