“An apple pie without the cheese is like a kiss without the squeeze” is cited in print from at least 1882. Both Yorkshire (where apple pie with cheese is a traditional dessert) and Sussex claim the origin of the saying, but the 1882 citation (that mentions Yorkshire) attributes the saying to “an American lady.”
An 1889 newspaper account provides a definite name: “The real author of the remark was Park Benjamin.” Park Benjamin, Sr. (1809-1864) was a New York City author and publisher of The Evening Tattler and The New World. It is possible that the saying first appeared in one of these publications.
Wikipedia: Park Benjamin, Sr.
Park Benjamin, Sr. (1809–1864), was well known in his time, as an American poet, journalist, editor and founder of several newspapers.
He was born in British Guiana, August 14, 1809, but was early sent to New England, and graduated from Trinity College, Hartford, Conn. He practiced law in Boston, but abandoned it for editorial work there and later in New York.
On July 8, 1839, he joined with Rufus Wilmot Griswold to produce The Evening Tattler, a journal which promised “the sublimest songs of the great poets–the eloquence of the most renowned orators–the heart-entrancing legends of love and chivalry–the laughter-loving jests of all lands”. In addition to fiction and poetry, it also published foreign news, local gossip, jokes, and New York police reports. In 1840 Benjamin helped to found The New World and after other brief editorial ventures became a lecturer, public reader, and periodical writer. He was sued for libel by James Fenimore Cooper, and was on personal terms with Oliver Wendell Holmes, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Nathaniel Hawthorne and Edgar Allan Poe.
Proverbs: An apple-pie without some cheese is like a kiss without a squeeze
. Let me advise you to take a bit of cheese with it. They have a good proverb, these folks: ‘Apple pie without the cheese, is like the kiss without a squeeze.’
[1929 C. Brooks Seven Hells v. 63]
. There was an old English rhyme popular about 1750 that went: An apple-pie without some cheese Is like a kiss without a squeeze.
[1989 Courier-Journal (Louisville, KY) 2 July 4M]
. ‘Apple cake without cheese,’ they used to say in Yorkshire, ‘is like a kiss without a squeeze.’
[2002 Spectator 21 Sept. 61]
The Physiology of Taste;
or, Meditations on transcendental gastronomy
By Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin
1825 (English translation by M. F. K. Fisher in 1949)
XIV. A dessert without cheese is like a beautiful woman who has lost an eye.
Or, Nine Months in the United States
By Walter Gore Marshall
London: Sampson Low, Marston, Searle & Rivington
Our Transatlantic cousins are very fond of apple-pie. It is consumed to a large extent all over the country. Not raised apple-pie; but flat, and with a paste that is invariably very coarse and indigestible. You have a triangular-shaped slice put on your plate, and (in some parts of America) if you do not want to be singular you will eat it with a bit of cheese, Yorkshire fashion. As an American lady once graphically put it:
“Apple-pie without cheese
Is like a kiss without a squeeze.”
19 December 1888, Springfield (MA) Republican, pg. 9:
A Christmas dinner without jam and preserves is like a kiss without a squeeze.
18 September 1889, Fort Worth (TX) Daily Gazette, pg. 4, col. 3:
A recent current note in the Boston Journal said that “apple pie without sugar had been likened to a kiss without a squeeze.” The note was a condensation of the remark said to have been made by a man with an impediment of speech, who was finding much fault with his dinner. The real author of the remark was Park Benjamin, and his words were:
“An apple pie without the cheese
Is like a kiss without the squeeze.”
7 December 1890, New York (NY) Sun, pg. 24, col. 3:
All went well until the thought occurred to me that a Thanksgiving dinner without a turkey would be almost as bad as that old saying of “An apple pie without cheese is like a kiss without a squeeze.”
What to Eat
How to Serve It
By Christine Terhune Herrick
New York, NY: Harper & Brothers
Cheese at this stage is strongly recommended by the epicure; but it is not essential, except to those who hold, in the words of the old doggerel, that
“A dinner (or supper) without cheese
Is like a kiss without a squeeze.”
24 February 1893, New Haven (CT) Register, pg. 2 ad:
“A pumpkin pie
Without some cheese,
Is like a kiss,
Without a squeeze.”
1 October 1897, Houston (TX) Daily Post, pg. 4, col. 4:
She—They say that pie without cheese is like a kiss without a squeeze.
He—I don’t know. I always take both.
—Detroit Free Press.
Collections by Vincent Stuckey Lean
of proverbs (English & foreign), folk lore, and superstitions, also compilations towars dictionaries of proverbial phrases and words, old and disused
Bristol: J. W. Arrowsmith
Apple pie without cheese
is like a kiss without a squeeze.
. An American woman’s proverb.—Proverbial Treasury, Leipsig: Hartmann, 1880.
5 March 1907, Oakland (CA) Tribune, pg. 6, col. 3:
He—They say apple pie without cheese is like a kiss without a squeeze. Do you believe it?
She—I’m not prepared to judge. I’ve never had a kiss without a squeeze.
—Detroit Free Press.
8 August 1928, Los Angeles (CA) Times, “Health and Diet Advice: Cheese Without Pie” by Frank McCoy, pg. A6:
You may have heard the saying that “A pie without cheese is like a kiss without a squeeze.”
The Economics of Consumption
By Charles Samuel Wyand
New York, NY: The Macmillan Company
...“apple pie without the cheese is like a kiss without the squeeze.”
The Origins of Rhymes, Songs and Sayings
By Jean Harrowven
London: Kaye & Ward
A couplet from Yorkshire is self-explanatory:
Apple pie without the cheese,
Is like a kiss without the squeeze.
Apple Pie Without Some Cheese is Like a Kiss Without a Squeeze
By Doña Ana County Extension Clubs
Published by Cookbook Publishers
The Origins of English Words:
A Discursive Dictionary of Indo-European Roots
By Joseph T. Shipley
Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press
An apple pie without some cheese
Is like a kiss without a squeeze.
Sussex as She Wus Spoke:
A Guide to the Sussex Dialect
By Tony Wales
Published by S.B. Publications
An apple pie without the cheese is like a kiss without the squeeze.
Yes, I know this is often claimed by other counties, but we said it first.