Peter Paul’s “No Jelly” – An oddly-named offering from the 70’s.

Back in 1972 the Peter Paul company, best known for their Mounds and Almond Joy offerings, released a bar to the market named for what it didn’t include rather than what it did.  The No Jelly bar.

There’s something about the name of this one that makes me think of the classic confectionery-related Monty Python skit “Crunchy Frog” – but I’ll get to that at the end of today’s post.

To say that the name was received as unusual is accurate, and the earliest trade ad for the new bar highlighted as much:

Peter Paul – No Jelly bar – candy trade ad – August 1972

Here’s the earliest No Jelly wrapper I have in my collection:

Peter Paul – [peanut butter with] No Jelly – candy bar wrapper – 1972-1973

I have some evidence that “No Jelly” was not the only name that the bar was tested with.   I recently uncovered a wrapper for a Peter Paul Sidekicks, with virtually the same logo and wrapper design, while also featuring the exact same ingredients and bar description as No Jelly.  It’s interesting that the placement of the “NEW” call-out on the Sidekicks wrapper matches the one on the No Jelly wrapper in that 1972 trade ad (my earliest No Jelly wrapper doesn’t match the trade ad exactly).  Because of that, it’s my theory that this was an alternative name tried out during the early test market phase of the bar:

Peter Paul – Peanut Butter Sidekicks – candy bar wrapper – early 1972?

Here’s a screen cap from an old commercial reel, courtesy of fellow collector Jon Anderson:

Peter Paul – No Jelly – screen cap from TV commercial – early 1970’s – Image source: Jon Anderson

Though it’s not in my collection, I do have an image of a slightly-later No Jelly wrapper, with a 15-cent printed-on price here:

Peter Paul – No Jelly 15-cent wrapper – 1973

My pal Gregg Koenig also has a couple of early No Jelly items in his collection, so I wanted to include them here:

Peter Paul – No Jelly – Bite Size 3/4 pound bag package – early 70’s – Image source: Gregg Koenig

“Yes Nixon no Jelly” promo pin – 1970’s – Image source: Gregg Koenig

By 1975, No Jelly was still on shelves, but it must have been getting some negative response to the name.  That year, the Peanut Butter part of the logo was made more prominent and the No Jelly, less-so.  I have an example of a cut-down wrapper from that year:

Peter Paul – Peanut Butter with No Jelly – candy bar wrapper – 1975

Here’s a trade ad from September 1975, showing the same redesigned wrapper:

Peter Paul – No Jelly – candy trade ad – Sept 1975

So if the 1975 wrapper re-design revealed that No Jelly’s wonderfully-odd name was losing favor, what followed in 1976-1977 sealed the deal.  By 1977, Peter Paul would still be making this bar, but would retire the No Jelly name – now branding it as the Peter Paul Peanut Butter Bar.

Peter Paul – Peanut Butter Bar – 20-cent candy bar wrapper – 1977

The bar would continue on, at least up until 1979.  I have a pair of later wrappers, but the design wouldn’t change much from this point forward.   The 1978 wrapper would see the “No Artificial Ingredients” info added prominently on the front:

Peter Paul – Peanut Butter Bar – candy wrapper – 1978

Peter Paul – Peanut Butter Bar – 25-cent vending candy bar wrapper – 1979

And that’s all of the vintage wrappers I have to share today.

There was a surprising amount of video related to No Jelly out in the internet, so I thought I’d gather them here for you.

First up, a commercial spot for what was likely the test-marketed version of No Jelly – Peter Paul’s Sidekicks:

This next clip features Vincent Price and the No Jelly bar.  The quality isn’t great, and the No Jelly commercial spot starts at 1:02 minutes in.  But it’s worth watching:

This next two are not embedded, as they come from the Duke University media archives.  They feature two actors who are called “Peanut Butter” and “Jelly” after they’ve just auditioned for a Peter Paul candy bar.  The quality on these is really nice, and they are yet two more of the earliest No Jelly spots.  You can see them at this link here and the other at this link.

Last but not least… for your viewing entertainment… Monty Python’s “Crunchy Frog”:

I love that sketch.

And that’s everything for today’s coverage on Peter Paul’s wonderfully-oddly-named No Jelly bar.  See you next time!

Image source:

About Jason Liebig

A New York City based writer, editor and sometimes actor. After spending much of the 1990′s in the comic book business helping tell the stories of Marvel Comics’ X-Men as series editor, he has since split his time between developing his own entertainment properties while still consulting and working on others. Having been described as “the Indiana Jones of lost and forgotten candy”, Jason is one of the country’s premier candy collectors and historians with his discoveries appearing in countless blogs, magazines, newspaper articles, and books. Always happy to share his knowledge and unique perspectives on this colorful part of our popular culture, Jason has consulted with New York’s Museum of Food and Drink and has also been a featured guest on Food Network’s Heavyweights, France’s M6 Capital, and New York’s TheActionRoom.com. My Google Profile+
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43 Responses to Peter Paul’s “No Jelly” – An oddly-named offering from the 70’s.

  1. Matt says:

    I remember Peanut Butter with No Jelly. It was my favorite back in the day. If I remember correctly, during the time it was my favorite, they changed the name to the Peanut Butter Bar and dropped the No Jelly. I don’t recall it much after that. I’m thinking it lost its popularity with the name change and disappeared.

    And congrats on the article on narrative.ly. It was a very entertaining read. Hope to see you around Christmas.

  2. This was my favorite candy bar as a kid! What a fantastic memory!

  3. Val 1970 says:

    I’m glad that others still remember this fantastic candy bar. Usually when I tell someone that it is my all-time favorite, no one has ever heard of it. Too bad it’s not made anymore – people don’t know what they’re missing! There is nothing current that compares to it.

    • Kerri says:

      I finally found proof of NO JELLY… Noone I know have ever heard of this candy . I remember falling in love with it.The funny thing is I was only 4 years old.LOL

  4. DBenson says:

    I remember a couple of TV spots featuring a vaudeville duo called Peanut Butter (the boy) and Jelly (the girl). He had a shiny brown suit and she wore grape jelly purple. They’d just tried out for a new candy bar, but Jelly’s in tears because she was rejected. She insists Peanut Butter go on to become a star without her. Before leaving, he turns and says “I’ll make them name the candy bar after you.” Then we see the No Jelly bar.

    There were two versions of the spot, one in a backstage dressing room and one at a train station, but the gist was the same for both of them.

  5. DDX says:

    I think that there must have been two different versions of this bar. I clearly remember the “No Jelly” bar as having a peanut-buttery coating–not milk chocolate. If you look at the wrappers in the posting, you’ll notice that some say “milk chocolate” and some don’t. Does anyone else remember a version of this bar that wasn’t coated in milk chocolate?

    • Brett Ramey says:

      The bar I remember was from the 80’s. It said Peanut Butter With No Jelly on the wrapper. BUT, I would describe it as a soft Butterfinger with a white chocolate coating, and I don’t remember any crispies in it. I worked in a store at the time and it became my favorite. I also ordered it for the shelves every week until it became harder to get and finally just disappeared.

  6. Dan Brown says:

    There was a commercial with Peanut Butter getting on a train and talking to his girlfriend Jelly. As he was leaving, he told her he would name a candy bar after her. Is this the same No Jelly?

  7. Oh Yes says:

    Oh, this was my absolute favorite candy bar in the world. So many fond memories of childhood!

    In the 80s, Hershey came out with “Whatchamacallit,” which had some similarities (crispy rice, peanut butter) but it wasn’t nearly the same, flavor profile-wise (they also added caramel, *booooo*).

  8. Kerri says:

    To bad its gone. They should bring it back for a ” limited time only” thing.
    It might do really well…

  9. Luposian says:

    I remember PB, no J. I also seem to remember a candy bar that had a white and blue wrapper the same time, in my memory. It was bumpy, with peanuts, as I recall. Maybe caramel? Not Baby Ruth. It was a kinda odd name as I recall. I also remember these thin, chewy sticks that they said astronauts used for energy or something. Made by Pillsbury? Exact names are escaping me. I was born in 1968, if that helps.

    • Jason Liebig says:

      Luposian,

      The Pillsbury product you recall were called Space Food Sticks. They had a couple of different packaging styles, but you can see at least one of them on my Flickr pages here:

      https://www.flickr.com/photos/jasonliebigstuff/5313247024/

      A company brought Space Food Sticks back a few years ago, and they seemed pretty accurate to the originals if I recall – though I don’t know if they’re still available.

      The other bar you recall might be a Coconut Frost bar…I’ll have to do some digging.

      • Luposian says:

        No, that wasn’t the name of the candy bar I’m thinking of. I’m sure I’ll remember as soon as the right name is mentioned. Did those Space Food Sticks go by any other name? The word “Space” doesn’t seem familiar, but Food Sticks does. 😀

  10. Jason Liebig says:

    They did eventually drop “space” from the name and marketed Space Food Sticks as “Food Sticks”.

  11. John Corbett says:

    I f the “bumpy” candy bar you remember was a Peter Paul product, it could have only been the Almond Cluster or the Caravelle bar.

    The Almond Cluster was hands down the greatest candy bar ever! I lived less than 1 mile from the old Peter Paul factory and work there from 1983 – 1988 in the R&D center.

  12. John Corbett says:

    There was a bar that was part of the Nestle stable called Oh Henry! It was a knock off of the Babe Ruth.

    • Jason Liebig says:

      While Oh Henry might currently be owned by Nestle, historically it was a product of the Williamson Candy Company. Oh Henry dates back to the early 1900’s, and it might actually pre-date the introduction of the Baby Ruth bar (a Curtiss creation), though off the top of my head, I’m not sure which came first. I would never characterize it as a knock-off, at any rate.

  13. Jason Liebig says:

    There were a LOT of other nut cluster type of bars back then. If it wasn’t Peter Paul, than it wasn’t a PowerHouse (or Almond Cluster, etc).

    There was Tom’s Park Avenue in the 1970’s (with a silver and blue wrapper):
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/jasonliebigstuff/3638082665/

    You mentioned stars or dots, white and blue colors – could have been a 1970’s PayDay:
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/jasonliebigstuff/4619326618/

    Was it chocolate covered or a straight nut roll?

  14. Luposian says:

    Nope. None of those. It was chocolate covered. Might have had caramel. Maybe nouget? ARRRGH! I can just barely remember the wrapper and some vague aspects, but that’s it. :-(. Sorry if I’m frustrating you guys!

    • Jason Liebig says:

      It’s okay, this is sort of one of the things I’m known for, being able to figure out the stuff no one else can. Let me round up the various descriptors you’ve provided, into one place:

      =============
      So, we have an early-to-mid-1970’s bar, found in California, chocolate covered, may have contained nougat or caramel, maybe peanuts. It was “bumpy”. Wrapper was white and blue that might have included “blue and white (red?) dots or stars on the packaging”. Had kind of an “odd name”.

      You lived in Van nuys/Sherman oaks, California area most of my childhood in the 70s.
      =============

      A blue/white wrapper with stars, the first that comes to mind for me is an imported UK Milky Way.. which fits SOME of the descriptors here (not the name part). As unlikely as it is, here’s one of those:

      https://www.flickr.com/photos/jasonliebigstuff/3627421909/in/album-72157617553330512/

      • Luposian says:

        Nope. Not Milky Way. The candy bar in question no longer exists. So any names of candy bars that existed back then but ALSO still exist, today, are NOT it. 😀

        I seem to recall it being a one word name. So “Milky Way” would be out, but a word like “Caravelle” would be in.

    • Jason Liebig says:

      Going through my files, do any of these names ring a bell? These two are light blue and white wrappers:

      Peanut Butter Frost
      Heath Almond Nougat

      Were the stars/spots little stars or bigger ones like those found on Hollywood Bars at the time?

      https://www.flickr.com/photos/jasonliebigstuff/3623268594/

  15. John Corbett says:

    There used to be a Peter Paul factory in Salinas, CA. It was shutdown in the 80’s.

  16. Jason Liebig says:

    That may be, but until we zero in on some solid details, I’m going to throw things out. We still don’t know if it’s spots or stars or what the ingredients were or even the colors of the wrapper. It could literally be anything.

    In addition to my other questions: Was the wrapper foil or paper?

  17. Jason Liebig says:

    Do me a favor, try to keep the replies on a single “ID” thread. So don’t hit “post new comment” – rather, use the reply function. That is to say, the reply button, rather than the new reply entry at the bottom which is a reply to the post.

    Right now, there are a dozen comment threads trying to ID this. What about my previous questions on the look of it? They are literally scattered throughout the various threads.

  18. Jason Liebig says:

    I’m going to have to go back and clean up these replies, as people who are looking for comments on the Peter Paul’s No Jelly post will get confused.

    For the sake of clarity, go up and pick a thread to reply to using the first reply button and we’ll keep all of these there. I’ll delete the rest.

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