We had the idea to put together a “slider slideshow” blog with some healthy slider recipes a few days ago and so I started doing some research on the history of the “slider”. One thing you can always count on with the internet is that you can easily find someone with a strong opinion, and did I ever find opinions! In fact, some have very different ideas of what can be called a “slider” and what can not. There are slider purists out there (see THIS ARTICLE) that are quite angry at every trendy bar making various concoctions on tiny buns and calling them sliders. Then there are those that make fun of slider purists and say they have the origin wrong in the first place and need to lighten up. It was certainly entertaining reading.
Here’s what I’ll say to the slider purists out there: You aren’t going to like this blog and I’m ok with that. This is a blog of healthy slider recipes that use mini rolls just like sliders do. So, we’re going with it.
The History Of Sliders
Based on a simple Google search, there are definitely differing opinions on how the slider came to be called the slider.
It’s possible that it originated from the Navy and wasn’t even related to the small burgers most think of as sliders. It may actually have just been a term for regular old burgers because they would slide back and forth on the griddle in heavy seas.
Other definitions online, such as the Urban Dictionary, simply say that the term slider is just slang for White Castle burgers (the fast food chain). They say the term refers to the way the burgers slide right through your colon! Ha! White Castle actually trademarked the term “slyder” and used it for 20+ years starting in 1985. From my research, it seems like White Castle did invent the slider in the 1920s, but they say the term comes from how easy they are to eat rather than how they slide through your colon. Here’s what the White Castle website says:
“In 1921, it all started out so innocently. A five-cent small hamburger. A Castle-shaped restaurant. And nothing like it before, or since. A humble 100% beef patty with onions, and a pickle. So easy to eat, it was dubbed the Slider.”
It seems that the most widely accepted purist definition of what a slider actually is goes something like this: A thin slab of beef cooked on a griddle with onions and then topped with the bun before being removed from the griddle such that the steam from the onions cooks the bun as well.
Now we use the term to refer to just about anything on a small bun, even if it doesn’t meet the true “slider” criteria.
Healthy Slider Recipes
Here are some fun healthy slider recipes including a homemade whole grain roll recipe so you can make your own concoctions and call them sliders even if they aren’t really (just like we do).