Although Ranch dressing and salsa have slowly given it a battle as America's Favorite Condiment, ketchup still ranks in the number one spot.  Or - does catsup?

What is the difference between ketchup and catsup?

In all actuality, catsup and ketchup are two different names for the same product.  Although some of the ancillary ingredients may be different, all brands of ketchup or catsup are made with tomatoes, sugar, salt, vinegar, and cinnamon.

The sauce has its origins from a similar condiment from China called ke-tsiap, which is a fish-based sauce.  As the red-colored, tomato-based sauce we're familiar with started to become popular, its name was "catsup". In fact, when Heinz first-introduced their product to the marketplace, it was called "Heinz Tomato Catsup".  However, at some point - to break away from similar competitors - the company changed the spelling to "ketchup".

It should be noted that Heinz's two primary competitors - Hunts and Del Monte - both spelled their product "catsup" for many years.  Hunts changed their spelling to "ketchup" somewhere along the line and it wasn't until 1988 that Del Monte followed suit.

 

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