Chef Boyardee

Chef Boyardee is an American brand of canned pasta products sold internationally by Conagra Brands. The company was founded by Italian immigrant Hector Boiardi in Milton, Pennsylvania, U.S., in 1928.[1][2]

Chef Boyardee
New Chef Boyardee Logo.png
Product typeCanned pasta products
OwnerConagra Brands
CountryUnited States
Introduced1928; 94 years ago (1928)


The Chef Boyardee factory in Milton, Pennsylvania, as seen from across the West Branch Susquehanna River at Central Oak Heights.

After leaving his position as head chef at the Plaza Hotel in New York City, Ettore Boiardi opened a restaurant called Il Giardino d'Italia in 1924[3] at East 9th Street and Woodland Avenue in Cleveland, Ohio.[4] The idea for Chef Boiardi came about when restaurant customers began asking Boiardi for his spaghetti sauce, which he began to distribute in milk bottles.[3] Four years later, in 1928, Boiardi opened a factory and moved production to Milton, Pennsylvania, where he could grow his own tomatoes and mushrooms.[2] He decided to rename his product "Boy-Ar-Dee" to help Americans pronounce his name correctly.[3] The first product to be sold was a "ready-to-heat spaghetti kit" in 1928. The kit included uncooked pasta, tomato sauce, and a container of pre-grated cheese.[5]

Two Chef Boyardee Mini Bites canned pasta products

The U.S. military commissioned the company during World War II for the production of army rations, requiring the factory to run 24 hours a day.[2] At its peak, the company employed approximately 5,000 workers and produced 250,000 cans per day. After the war ended, Boiardi had to choose between selling the company or laying off everyone he had hired. He sold the company to American Home Foods in 1946 for nearly $6 million, and remained as a spokesman and consultant for the brand until 1978.[6] American Home Foods turned its food division into International Home Foods in 1996. Four years later, International Home Foods was purchased by ConAgra Foods, which continues to produce Chef Boyardee canned pastas bearing Boiardi's likeness.[7]


Chef Boyardee products are available in cans or single-use microwavable cups.

Throwback recipes [8]

Spaghetti [9]

  • Spaghetti & Meatballs (can, microwavable cup)
  • Jumbo Spaghetti & Meatballs (can)
  • Mini Spaghetti & Meatballs (can)
  • Mini Spaghetti Rings & Meatballs (can, microwavable cup)

Beefaroni [10]

  • Beefaroni (can, microwavable cup)
  • Big Beefaroni (can)

Ravioli [11]

  • Beef Ravioli (can, microwavable cup)
  • Mini Ravioli (can)
  • Chicken Ravioli (can)
  • Cheese Ravioli In Tomato Sauce (can)
  • Cheese Ravioli In Meat Sauce (microwavable cup)
  • Overstuffed Beef Ravioli (can)
  • Overstuffed Italian Sausage Ravioli (can)
  • Mini Beef Ravioli & Meatballs (can, microwaveable Cup)
  • Mini Micro Beef Ravioli (microwaveable cup)

Lasagna [12]

  • Lasagna (can, microwavable cup)

Fun Flavors [13]

  • Pasta With Chicken And Vegetables (microwave cup)
  • Cheesy Rice (microwave cup)
  • Spaghetti In Tomato Sauce (microwave cup)
  • Pasta In Butter Sauce (can, microwaveable cup)
  • SpongeBob (can, microwavable cup)
  • Paw Patrol (can, microwavable cup)
  • Mac & Cheese (can, microwavable cup)
  • Rice With Chicken & Vegetables (microwavable cup)
  • Chili Mac (can)
  • Cheesy Burger Macaroni (can)
  • Mini ABC's & 123'S With Meatballs (can, microwavable cup)
  • Mini ABC's & 123'S Without Meatballs (can)
  • Chicken Alfredo (can)
  • Mini Pasta Shells & Meatballs (can, microwavable cup)

Pizza & Sauces [14]

  • Cheese Pizza Maker
  • Pepperoni Pizza Maker
  • Pizza Sauce With Cheese
  • Spaghetti sauce With Meat

Discontinued productsEdit

As of 2021, the following products are no longer in production[15]

  • 99% Fat Free Beef Ravioli
  • 99% Fat Free Cheese Ravioli
  • Adventures Of The Sea Pasta Shapes
  • Bacon Cheddar Chicken
  • Beefogetti
  • Cannelloni
  • Cheese Tortellini
  • Cheeseburger Maxx
  • Cheesy Burger Ravioli
  • Cheesy Nacho Twistaroni
  • Chef Jr. Ninja Turtle Pasta Shapes
  • Chicken Buffalo Cheddar
  • Chicken Jalapeño Alfredo
  • Chicken Marinara
  • Chicken Parmesan
  • Chicken Penne
  • Chicken Ravioli
  • Chili Cheese Dog Twistaroni
  • Deep Dish Meals - 3 Cheese Ravioli
  • Dinosaurs with Pterodactyls
  • Dinosaurs
  • Dinosaurs with Meatballs
  • Four Cheese Ravioli
  • Justice League Pasta Shapes with Meatballs
  • Kickin' Sloppy Joe
  • Meat Tortellini
  • Micro Ravioli
  • Mini Beef Ravioli with Meatballs
  • Mini Dinosaurs
  • Mini Dinosaurs with Meatballs
  • Mini Os
  • Mini Sea Life Shapes Pasta
  • Mini Spaghetti Rings with Meatballs
  • Mini Sports Shapes Pasta
  • Mini-Bites
  • Overstuffed Italian Sausage Ravioli
  • Pac-Man Pasta
  • Pasta FaZoo
  • Pepperoni Pizza Ravioli
  • Pepperoni Pizzazaroli
  • Pizza Twist
  • Roller Coaster Pasta Shapes with Mini Meatballs
  • Rotini
  • Sausage Ravioli
  • Sealife Forkables Pasta Shapes
  • Sharks Pasta Shapes
  • Sharks Pasta Shapes with Meatballs
  • Sir Chomps-a-lot Bite-Sized Cheese Ravioli
  • The Smurfs Mini Pasta Shapes with Meatballs
  • Spicy Beef Ravioli
  • Spider-Man Pasta Shapes
  • SpongeBob Pasta Shapes with Meatballs
  • Sports Forkables Pasta Shapes
  • Street Sharks Pasta Shapes
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Pasta Shapes with Mini Meatballs
  • Tic Tac Toe Pasta Shapes
  • Tomato and Beef Twistaroni
  • Whole-Grain Beefaroni
  • Whole-Grain Lasagna
  • Whole-Grain Mini ABCs & 123s
  • Zooroni Pasta Shapes
  • Zooroni with Meatballs


In 2018, Barbara Lippert of Advertising Age compared the 1966 Young & Rubicam ad for Beefaroni to The 400 Blows and running of the bulls. The ad features a large group of children running through Venice singing, "Hooray...for Beefaroni!" Lippert believed the ad influenced other famous commercials such as Prince Spaghetti (known for "Anthony! Anthony!") and "Hilltop" for Coca-Cola.[16]

Chef Boyardee is one of the only brands to request to be removed from an episode of Seinfeld. In the episode The Rye, Kramer is allowed to operate a Hansom cab for a week, and feeds the horse excess cans of Beefaroni, which causes frequent and foul smelling flatulence. As a result of the request, the name was changed to "Beef-a-reeno".[17]

Legal issuesEdit

In 2015, a class-action lawsuit was brought against the Chef Boyardee company. The lawsuit alleged false advertisement on the part of Chef Boyardee. Their product labels stated that they contained no preservatives, yet they contained citric acid. The plaintiff who filed the class-action lawsuit was demanding more than $5 million in damages.[18] The lawsuit was dismissed in 2016.[19]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "About Us". Chef Boyardee. ConAgra Foods. Retrieved 28 April 2013.
  2. ^ a b c Boiardi, Anna; Norris, Michele; Siegel, Robert (17 May 2011). "The Man, The Can: Recipes Of The Real Chef Boyardee". All Things Considered. NPR. Transcript. Retrieved 28 April 2013.
  3. ^ a b c Abraham, Lisa (29 November 2011). "Your favorite food icons: Fact or fiction?". The Tribune-Review. Pittsburgh. Archived from the original on 31 January 2013. Retrieved 29 December 2011.
  4. ^ Pengo (22 May 2011). "Chef Boyardee". Cleveland Centennial. Retrieved 28 April 2013.[circular reference]
  5. ^ Butler, Stephanie (8 June 2010). "Natural History of the Kitchen: Chef Boyardee". Eat Me Daily. Archived from the original on 3 February 2020. Retrieved 7 February 2020.
  6. ^ Kelly, Debra (15 August 2017). "The untold truth of Chef Boyardee". Mashed. Retrieved 7 February 2020.
  7. ^ "Meet the Real Man Behind the Brand". Chef Boyardee. ConAgra Foods. Archived from the original on 2 June 2013. Retrieved 28 April 2013.
  8. ^ "Classic Recipe Products". Chef Boyardee. ConAgra Foods. Archived from the original on 2 February 2020. Retrieved 7 February 2020.
  9. ^ "Canned & Microwave Spaghetti". Chef Boyardee. ConAgra Foods. Archived from the original on 2 February 2020. Retrieved 7 February 2020.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
  10. ^ "Beefaroni: Macaroni & Beef Products". Chef Boyardee. ConAgra Foods. Archived from the original on 2 February 2020. Retrieved 7 February 2020.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
  11. ^ "Canned Beef & Cheese Ravioli". Chef Boyardee. ConAgra Foods. Archived from the original on 30 May 2020. Retrieved 7 February 2020.
  12. ^ "Canned & Microwavable Lasagna". Chef Boyardee. ConAgra Foods. Archived from the original on 2 February 2020. Retrieved 7 February 2020.
  13. ^ "Mac and Cheese & Fun Flavor Products". Chef Boyardee. ConAgra Foods. Archived from the original on 16 September 2020. Retrieved 7 February 2020.
  14. ^ "Pizza Kits & Canned Spaghetti Sauce". Chef Boyardee. ConAgra Foods. Archived from the original on 30 May 2020. Retrieved 7 February 2020.
  15. ^ "Canned & Microwave Spaghetti | Chef Boyardee".
  16. ^ Lippert, Barbara (9 July 2018). "The Chef Whose Beef Got Him Canned". Advertising Age. 89 (15): 32. Retrieved 16 January 2020.
  17. ^ Baldwin, Kristen (30 May 1997). "Seinfeld and brand-name products". Entertainment Weekly. Meredith Corporation. Retrieved 1 July 2020.
  18. ^ LaFreniere, Melissa (22 September 2015). "Chef Boyardee Maker Hit With False Advertising Class Action". Top Class Actions. Retrieved 7 February 2020.
  19. ^ "Chef Boyardee Food Products". Truth in Advertising. Retrieved October 25, 2021.

External linksEdit