Vanilla Ice Cream Defies Evolution


Nearly everyone has enjoyed a yummy bowl of vanilla ice cream.  It is a wonderfully delicious desert.  However, vanilla ice cream wouldn’t even exist if evolution were true.

Let’s start out with a little history.  Until more recent times, Mexico was the only producer of vanilla.  In the 1520s, a man by the name of Hernán Cortés traveled down to Mexico and loved vanilla.  So, he brought some back with him to Europe.  For the next 300 years, the Europeans tried but were never able to produce vanilla.

See, vanilla grows up a tree as a vine.  Eventually the vine produces an orchid.  In order to make the vanilla bean, the orchid must be pollinated.  The problem is, it only blooms one morning per year for pollination.  If it isn’t pollinated within 12 hours, it withers.  To make things more difficult, a hood like membrane covers the part of the vanilla orchid which produces pollen.  This makes the production of the vanilla bean very difficult.

In 1836, Charles François Antoine Morren traveled down to Mexico to figure out why they weren’t able to produce vanilla beans in Europe.  As Morren was studying the vanilla orchids, his attention was drawn to a little bee (the Mexican Melipona Bee).  This bee landed on the orchid, lifted up the little hood like membrane, collected pollen, and then flew off to the next flower.  This bee was pollinating the orchids.  After some time, the orchid produced a vanilla bean.

To this day, the Mexican Melipona Bee is the only insect that knows how to pollinate the vanilla orchid.  This simple fact puts evolution in an extremely difficult position.  Without the Mexican Melipona Bee, we simply would not have vanilla today.  The bee and the vanilla vine had to be made at the exact same time.  Not to mention, this bee had to be given specific information about how to pollinate the vanilla orchid.  Again, no other insect knows how to do this.  This bee had to be made, designed, and purposefully created to pollinate the vanilla orchid, and thus, produce vanilla.

So much of our world points to the Creator.  As silly as it sounds, even vanilla ice cream proclaims the glory of God.  So, the next time you sit down to enjoy a full bowl of vanilla ice cream, remember that you are enjoying a tasty treat which is only possible through the power of God!


  • Hazen, Janet and Susan Gross. Vanilla. Chronicle Books, 1995.
  • Martin, Jobe. “Incredible Creatures That Defy Evolution 2.”  Exploration Films, 2006.

4 thoughts on “Vanilla Ice Cream Defies Evolution

  1. Hi, the orchid is truly a testament to God’s creation but probably not for the reasons you describe. It is unlikely that the vanilla orchid or Bee were created by God exactly as they look today. Consider Noah’s flood. Young Earth creationists believe that only representatives of a kind were preserved. There are hundred of similar orchid bees to the one you describe that work with different orchids. Where there a couple of bees from 1000s species on the Ark? YECs are probably right that there could not be but rather a few bees diversified (eg. speciated) rapidly after the flood to form hundreds of new species. This orchid bee would have been one of them. Thus the very specific “designed” features we see today were not present originally but rather have adapted through natural selection and mutation along with the orchid which also has speciate into thousands of different species of orchids since the flood. In effect YECs believe that there was ultrafast evolution (in this case co-evolution of bee and flower).that resulted in combinations of bees and flowers that we see today. You could, and I would, say that God created the bees and orchids with the ability to adapt to their environment and each other such that they have formed this relationship over time but that process has likely involved secondary causes (natural selection, mutation and genetic drift) rather than supernatural recreation after creation. Regards, Joel

    • Hey Joel, thanks for the thoughts. You make some interesting points, but I have a couple counter points to mention.

      1. Unlikely or not, we have no other evidence to show that the Mexican Melipona Bee or the vanilla orchid were any different than they are now. We can’t assume they have changed when we have no clear proof they ever have. Even on the Arc, it’s quite possible that the Mexican Melipona Bee was exactly like it is now.
      2. If God essentially created evolution, then it means God was lying about the way He said He created the universe (Gen 1). It also means he was lying about every living thing reproducing “after their kind.” If God is lying about these things, then it would be silly to believe anything God said. However, there is no indication that God created evolution in Scripture, and I would also argue that there is a major lack of evidence in transitional fossils as well. If evolution was happening, we should be seeing (1) huge amounts of fossils of animals in transitional stages, and (2) living animals in transitional stages (e.g. monkeys into humans).

      I personally don’t see the evidence for evolution, even God created evolution.


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