What’s the Deal with Fairy Bread?

updated May 24, 2019
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(Image credit: Gossip)

Fairy bread has received quite a bit of attention the last week or so, but not for the right reasons. United States publisher Epicurious recently ran a post about Australian fairy bread, where they described it as “the original rainbow food” and said that “the toast is usually eaten as breakfast, as a snack in between meals, or after dinner to finish off the meal.” Many Australian citizens took issue with this description (and rightly so), and essentially tore the post to shreds. While it was mostly a humorous takedown, there’s still something to be learned.

So, what exactly is fairy bread? And is it something you should be eating?

Fairy bread is simply white bread (not toasted), smeared with butter, and topped with as many rainbow sprinkles as possible. It is mainly consumed at children’s birthday parties in Australia, but a quick scroll through Instagram will tell you that nostalgic adults also indulge in this fabulous treat.

The origin of fairy bread is a bit of a mystery. Some believe that the snack was inspired by the Robert Louis Steven’s poem “Fairy Bread,” while others claim that it’s simply the evolution of hagelslag, which is a snack in the Netherlands consisting of white bread, butter, and chocolate sprinkles.

Epicurious did get at least one thing right in their coverage on fairy bread: It’s not fancy. The appeal of fairy bread is that it is entirely un-fussy. You only need three ingredients and none of them require any effort. Phoebe Hurst talks about the delight of this snack perfectly in an article for Munchies: “Regardless of how much soft-focus lighting or Pinterest-friendly table dressing you throw at it, you can’t escape the fact that it’s a piece of soggy bread loaded with strands of refined sugar.”

Have you ever had fairy bread? Do you get nostalgic feelings just looking at this tasty snack? Let us know in the comments.