Yes, there is a Chef Boyardee, although his name is not spelled that way. Hector Boiardi, an Italian immigrant, came to the United States in 1914 when he was only 17.
Upon his arrival, he immediately got a job as a chef at New York's Plaza Hotel, where his brother worked as a waiter. After moving to Cleveland, he perfected his spaghetti and meatball recipe in 1929. His customers kept asking for bottles of his pasta sauce so they could have it at home, and he obliged. He then added cheeses and pasta to the sauce.
The results were so popular that he started to sell the products in area stores, and later in stores outside the area. Boiardi remained an advisor in the canned pasta business until his death at age 87 in 1985. And yes, that is Hector's picture on the label.
From the book The Name's Familiar by Laura Lee
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