The Manhattan Project

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For other uses, see Manhattan Project (disambiguation).
The Manhattan Project resulted in the creation of this wonderful smelling entree.


The Manhattan Project, or more formally, the Manhattan Eatery And Lunch (or M.E.A.L) Project, was an effort during World War II to develop the first entree with meat, potatoes and gravy, while still having room for sides. Its research was directed by American physicist Orville Redenbacher, and overall by Colonel Sanders after it became clear that a dish containing these items was possible and that Nazi Germany was also investigating a similar project on it's own: German Potato Salad.

Though it involved over thirty different restaurants, the Manhattan Project was largely carried out in three secret kitchens: Chef Boyardee, Los Alamos New Mexican, and Cracker Barrel.

The Project culminated in the design, preparation, and devouring of three Beef Manhattans in 1945.


After the development of the Beef Manhattan, two variations of the meal were prepared. The first was Fat Man, which used two whole mashed potatoes, a half pound of beef, and 12 ounces of gravy. The second, Little Boy, was much lighter, containing only half the fat and cholesterol of the Fat Man.

Little Boy was dropped on Hiroshima, Japan on August 6th, 1945. The Japanese had never seen a dish so filling, and the entire city was gripped in post-meal sleepiness. Seeing the devastating power that Little Boy had, the United States proceeded to drop Fat Man on Nagasaki, Japan on August 9th, 1945. The city was devastated by the lethargy caused by such a yummy and filling meal. Japan surrendered soon after, unable to lift their guns or even leave the couch.

Even today, Japanese men work 16 hour days in an attempt to burn off the calories generated by the two entrees.


In the years following, many other nations developed Manhattans of their own. The Turkey Manhattan Project was probably the most famous of these subsequent works. None, however, would compare to the filling power of the Beef Manhattan.

Another project to follow was the Philadelphia Experiment: an attempt to combine bread, beef, cheese, and mushrooms into a hot sandwich.

See also[edit]