Tater tots are grated potatoes formed into small cylinders and deep-fried, often served as a side dish.The name “tater tot” is a registered trademark of the American frozen food company Ore-Ida, but is often used as a generic term. “Tater” is short for potato.
Tater tots were invented in 1953 when American frozen food company Ore-Ida founders F. Nephi Grigg and Golden Grigg were trying to figure out what to do with leftover slivers of cut-up potatoes. They chopped up the slivers, added flour and seasoning, then pushed the mash through holes and sliced off pieces of the extruded mixture. Thus, Tater Tots came to be. The product was first offered commercially in stores in 1956.