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FriSep 10

National TV Dinner Day – September 10, 2021

National TV Dinner Day is celebrated on September 10. It is the holiday that captures the essence of TV Dinner. This is a day to let yourself enjoy a complete meal without having to cook. It is also a good time to enjoy a nice show on TV. Did you know that the first TV Dinner was a Thanksgiving meal of turkey, peas, cornbread dressing, and sweet potatoes? It was the company C.A. Swanson & Sons that developed TV Dinners in 1953.

History of National TV Dinner Day

As television became more of a pastime, families began to gather around it to have a good time. The concept of TV dinner was created in order to make the experience even better. Originally known as TV Brand Frozen Dinner, TV dinners became popular in the 1950s.

50 years before the boom of TV dinners, meat was already a common frozen commodity. But it didn’t have a wide appeal because the freezing methods made the food lose flavor and taste.

The evolution of frozen foods was aided largely by Clarence Birdseye, who discovered a quick and effective way of freezing fish as early as 1925. With this knowledge, he expanded the process into vegetables. This method of frozen foods was used in procuring food for the military during World War II.

In 1949, Albert and Meyer Bernstein ushered the idea of TV dinners to the larger market. They founded Frozen Dinners Inc. and began selling their products in the Pittsburgh area.

However, TV dinners became popular after C.A. Swanson and Sons rebranded the idea of frozen dinners. This time, there was a general acceptance of the idea, and TV dinners became an instant hit.

The original idea is credited to Gerry Thomas, a Swanson salesman. After low Thanksgiving sales, there was an abundance of turkey left. In an attempt to salvage the leftovers, Gerry Thomas claims to have come up with the idea of TV dinners.

Today, TV dinners cover a limitless range of food, including fruits and vegetables. And National TV Dinner Day is the holiday that is set aside to appreciate and enjoy the simplicity of eating while enjoying a good time in front of your television set.

National TV Dinner Day timeline

1925
Improved Methods for Freezing Food

Clarence Birdseye develops an effective method of freezing fish.

1944
Useful During the War

Using Clarence Birdseye's method, Maxson Food Systems Inc. is able to make frozen dinners for the military and civil air carriers.

1953
First TV Dinner

C.A. Swanson and Sons come up with the idea of a TV dinner after they were left with tons of leftover turkey.

1986
Trays for Microwaves

Trays that adapt to microwaves are invented for the purpose of TV dinners.

National TV Dinner Day FAQs

Is there a TV dinner for vegetarians?

Yes, there’s a variety of vegan options available as frozen food. 

How long does it take to warm TV dinners?

Depending on the type of food, your meal would be warm between 10 to 25 minutes. 

How can you warm your TV dinner?

It is fairly easy to warm your TV dinner, even if you’re not a seasoned cook. Just take off the plastic wraps and place your tray into the microwave. 

How To Observe National TV Dinner Day

  1. Order a TV dinner

    Spare yourself the stress of cooking on National TV Dinner Day. Get your TV dinner, warm it up and watch a classic movie, if you like.

  2. Invite your friends

    Have your friends come over for the day. You all can binge-watch your favorite shows as you eat.

  3. Buy dinner for someone

    You can buy a TV dinner for someone who needs it. Many people have no time between jobs and sleep.

5 Interesting Facts About TV Dinner

  1. It was an instant success

    In their third year of marketing the TV dinner, C.A. Swanson and Sons sold 25 million units.

  2. Wide range of options

    You have a wide range of options when choosing your TV dinner.

  3. Made popular by the TV

    Watching the TV was an important aspect of TV dinner, as families would gather before the television set.

  4. Not expensive

    TV dinners are generally not very expensive, and they save you some time and energy.

  5. There are hungry-man dinners

    Hungry-man dinners are popular sizes of TV dinners, with more food on bigger trays.

Why We Love National TV Dinner Day

  1. TV dinners save time

    As a worker, it is sometimes impossible to create time for cooking. We love the fact that you can easily pick up a TV dinner.

  2. Good time to have fun

    On National TV Dinner Day, we can watch and have a good time with family and friends. And everyone can have a TV dinner.

  3. Everyone can have one

    There's a wide range of food options. So, everyone can enjoy the National TV Dinner Day.

National TV Dinner Day dates

YearDateDay
2021September 10Friday
2022September 10Saturday
2023September 10Sunday
2024September 10Tuesday
2025September 10Wednesday

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