They’re selling like hotcakes!


What was said? A friend texted me asking “What’s the origin of ‘selling like hotcakes’?” which charged my curiosity as well!

Did someone really say that? Yes, Chloe did, thinking about the Black Friday rush for Bespoke Post.

What does it mean? It basically suggests that items are flying off the shelves, being disposed of quickly… basically that consumer demand is HOT!

Origin: A hotcake / hot cake is, in fact, what we know today as a pancake! The phrase originated in the 17th century (with the word pancake first appearing in the 1400s) and referred to a cornmeal based pancake which were HOT items (hence the “hot” in the name), especially when made and handed out after church on Sundays. The belief is that they were considered “hot” because they would sell out faster than they were made.

The phrase is still common in today’s world, despite “hotcakes” or pancakes no longer being a trendy food item.  A great article in Independent UK suggests:  “Hot cakes ain’t so hot whatever way you slice it…with Google Trends indicating that mentions of them online are also down, ‘selling like ramen’ or ‘selling like quinoa’ being a more accurate idiom.”

May your next product or service sell like ramen!

Independent UK
Mental Floss

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Filed under Business Sayings, Idiom, Idioms, Phrases, Sayings

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