Best State Food Recipes

Eat your way from coast to coast with these iconic state dishes & voted upon by our readers!

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Taste the U.S.A.

Join us on a culinary journey as we make our way across the United States, sampling each state's most iconic dish. Turn the page to get started.

Alabama: Fried Green Tomatoes

This dish gained notoriety from the book Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Café and the 1991 film that followed; both are based on Alabama's Irondale Café.

Get the Recipe: Fried Green Tomatoes with Green Chile Mayonnaise

Alaska: Salmon Candy

When cured overnight, basted with a smoky-sweet sauce and then baked in the oven, strips of salmon (preferably Alaskan king) transform into a unique jerky.

Get the Recipe: Alaska Salmon Candy

Arizona: Pork Chimichanga

Though it's debated, historians generally concede that this deep-fried burrito was born in Tucson, Ariz., between the 1920s and 1950s.

Get the Recipe: Pork Chimichanga

Arkansas: Southern Fried Catfish

The key to mastering this Arkansas favorite? Cooking the fish quickly at a very high temperature, which produces a crispy, crunchy crust.

Get the Recipe: Southern Fried Catfish

California: Fish Tacos

Easy and affordable, fresh fish tacos originated in Mexico’s Baja California. It wasn't long before the dish migrated northward, becoming a Southern California staple.

Get the Recipe: Fish Tacos

Colorado: Chili Verde

Chile verde gains its rich green color from small, firm and tart tomatillos. The broth is thinner than standard chili, and has subtle heat thanks to mild Anaheim chiles.

Get the Recipe: Chili Verde (Colorado Green Chili)

Connecticut: New Haven-Style White Clam Pizza

This pizza emerged from Neapolitan immigrants who brought the tradition of thin, lightly seasoned crispy crust pies. Over time, local clams were added to the mix.

Get the Recipe: New Haven-Style White Clam Pizza

Delaware: Vinegar French Fries

Not your ordinary fry, these tangy spuds are soaked in vinegar, fried to a golden-brown finish and then doused with vinegar and salt to enhance the sharp flavor.

Get the Recipe: Vinegar French Fries

Florida: Key Lime Pie

This signature sweet-tart treat requires no baking: The filling naturally thickens when condensed milk reacts to the acidic lime juice.

Get the Recipe: Terry's Famous Homemade Key Lime Pie

Georgia: Lattice-Top Georgia Peach Pie

Summer in Georgia means one thing: sweet, juicy, perfectly plump Georgia peaches. Tuck them into a lattice-crust pie to allow the sunny fruit to peek through.

Get the Recipe: Lattice-Top Georgia Peach Pie

Hawaii: Ahi Poke

Tap into the spirit of Aloha by serving this modern Hawaiian appetizer. Use sashimi-grade tuna and dress it with a flavorful blend of spices and sesame sauce.

Get the Recipe: Ahi Poke (Hawaiian Tuna Tartar)

Idaho: Finger Steaks

Akin to chicken fingers, these beefy bites are double-dredged in a thick spiced batter that creates an irresistible crunchy coating once fried.

Get the Recipe: Idaho-Style Finger Steaks

Illinois: Chicago-Style Deep Dish Pizza

To re-create the Windy City’s signature crust, use a cast-iron skillet and super-hot oven. Another must: Layer the sausage rounds on first and then pile on cheese and sauce.

Get the Recipe: Chicago-Style Deep Dish Pizza

Indiana: Breaded Pork Tenderloin Sandwich

This buttermilk-soaked sandwich is so prevalent in Indiana, it inspired a documentary solely devoted to finding the perfect one within the state.

Get the Recipe: Breaded Pork Tenderloin Sandwich

Iowa: Grilled Sweet Corn

Iowan corn is so naturally sweet and flavorful, it doesn’t require much attention. Simply grill it and brush with salted garlic butter.

Get the Recipe: Iowa Grilled Sweet Corn on the Cob

Kansas: Kansas City-Style Ribs

Kansas City combines the best of both barbecue worlds, using a spicy rub and sweet sauce. You’ll know the meat is done when it’s tender but not quite falling off the bone.

Get the Recipe: Kansas City-Style Ribs

Kentucky: Hot Browns

Although golden brown in color, the Kentucky Hot Brown turkey sandwich is actually named for where it was created, at the Brown Hotel in Louisville, Ky.

Get the Recipe: Kentucky Hot Browns

Louisiana: Shrimp Gumbo

Originating in Louisiana in the 18th century, this hearty stew gets its characteristic thickness from file, an herb made from the ground leaves of the sassafras tree.

Get the Recipe: Shrimp Gumbo

Maine: Lobster Roll

The lobster roll has long been associated with New England, and Maine in particular, where the ruby crustacean is most prevalent.

Get the Recipe: Ben Sargent's Lobster Roll

Maryland: Old Bay Steamed Blue Crabs

Old Bay Seasoning and blue crabs are synonymous with Maryland's Chesapeake Bay region. Locals will tell you: Use Jimmies (male crabs) and the more spice, the better.

Get the Recipe: Old Bay Steamed Blue Crabs

Massachusetts: Clam Chowder

This creamy, milk-based New England “chowdah” is filled with potato and fresh clams. Don’t even think about including tomatoes — this isn’t Manhattan.

Get the Recipe: Clarissa's Clam Chowder

Michigan: Pasty (Meat Hand Pie)

When Cornish miners migrated to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula in the 1800s, they brought the pasty with them. It even has its own annual festival in July.

Get the Recipe: Michigan Pasty (Meat Hand Pie)

Minnesota: Hotdish (Tater Tot Casserole)

Hotdish (pronounced hoddish) is a favorite during large gatherings like family reunions, potlucks or church suppers. The more taters, the better!

Get the Recipe: Hotdish (Tater Tot Casserole)

Mississippi: Mississippi Mud Pie

This indulgent pie, named after the dark, murky banks of the Mississippi River, is not for the weak, with a dense chocolate filling and crumbly cookie crust.

Get the Recipe: Mississippi Mud Pie

Missouri: Fried Ravioli

Does this deep-fried St. Louis favorite sound strange? Keep an open mind: With crisp pasta and a soft cheese filling, what’s not to like?

Get the Recipe: Fried Ravioli

Montana: Huckleberry Pie

Huckleberries (similar to blueberries) are abundant during the summer in Montana. Instant tapioca thickens the filling, while orange lends bright flavor.

Get the Recipe: Huckleberry Pie

Nebraska: Hand-Held Meat Pies

These palm-sized dough pockets encase browned beef and lots of chopped veggies. Make them ahead and then heat them up for lunch or your next potluck.

Get the Recipe: Nebraska Handheld Meat Pies

Nevada: All-You-Can-Eat Buffet

Like casinos and flashy shows, big buffets are a staple of the Las Vegas Strip. Re-create the vibe by filling your own plate with this full-flavored menu. Get the recipes here.

New Hampshire: New England Boiled Dinner

Feed a hungry crowd with this feast of moist corned beef and vegetables. Be sure to include the spicy-creamy horseradish sauce — it’s the perfect finishing touch.

Get the Recipe: New England Boiled Dinner

New Jersey: Pork Roll Sandwich With Egg and Cheese

Despite its name, a pork roll is not an actual roll, but a salty, SPAM-like breakfast meat that was created by John Taylor of Trenton, N.J., in 1856.

Get the Recipe: Pork Roll Sandwich with Egg & Cheese

New Mexico: Green Chile Cheeseburger

New Mexico’s state vegetable is the chile pepper, so what better way to pay homage than layering three types of it on a burger?

Get the Recipe: Throwdown's Green Chile Cheeseburgers

New York: Buffalo Wings

You don't have to be a New Yorker to love classic spicy wings and homemade blue cheese dipping sauce. Just don't forget the celery on the side.

Get the Recipe: Buffalo Wings with Blue Cheese Dipping Sauce

North Carolina: Pulled Pork BBQ Sandwich

Pulled pork is serious barbecue business, and North Carolinians will tell you it’s best prepared with a vinegar-based sauce — the tangier, the better.

Get the Recipe: North Carolina Pulled Pork BBQ Sandwich

North Dakota: Lefse (Potato Crepes)

These thin Norwegian potato crepes — browned in a skillet and spread with butter and sugar — are particularly popular during the winter holiday season.

Get the Recipe: Lefse (North Dakota Potato Crepe)

Ohio: Peanut Butter Buckeyes

Ohio is known as the Buckeye State, after its official tree. It’s also the inspiration for these no-bake treats, which mimic the tree’s nut-like seeds.

Get the Recipe: Buckeyes

Oklahoma: Crispy Cornmeal Okra

Even if you dislike the slippery texture of okra, these little fried disks will win you over. Serve them with chipotle sour cream sauce for a welcome kick.

Get the Recipe: Crispy Cornmeal Okra

Oregon: Marionberry Pie

These inky berries are a hybrid fruit developed by the USDA and Oregon State University. Sweeter than blackberries, they’re at their peak in early summer.

Get the Recipe: Marionberry Pie

Pennsylvania: Philly Cheese Steak

Cheesesteak is undoubtedly Philly’s food. But the debate remains: Should it be topped with Cheez Whiz, provolone or American cheese? You decide.

Get the Recipe: Philly Cheese Steak

Rhode Island: Frozen Lemonade

This icy treat is common at cart stands in summer. Eat it like a local by ditching the spoon, letting it melt and then squeezing the sweet-tart mix into your mouth.

Get the Recipe: Rhode Island Frozen Lemonade

South Carolina: Shrimp and Grits

You’d be hard-pressed to find a breakfast joint in South Carolina without this on the menu. The thick corn mixture adds texture, while bacon gives it salty depth.

Get the Recipe: Shrimp and Grits

South Dakota: Chislic

Made of salted, deep-fried red meat (venison, lamb, deer or game), this unique dish varies slightly from region to region. It's best eaten with garlic salt and saltines.

Get the Recipe: Chislic (South Dakota Cubed Meat)

Tennessee: Memphis Dry-Rub Ribs

In Tennessee, ribs aren't slathered in sauce. Instead, they're rubbed with spices, marinated overnight and then cooked until a rich, dark crust develops.

Get the Recipe: Memphis Dry Rub Ribs

Texas: Texas Brisket

Texas 'cue varies greatly, but when asked to choose, Texans voted brisket tops. Rub it with spice, coat it in yellow mustard and then let it smoke for hours until succulent.

Get the Recipe: Texas Brisket

Utah: Funeral Potatoes

This casserole bears a sad name (it's often served at after-funeral dinners), but the taste is lighthearted, with a cheesy base and crunchy cornflake topping.

Get the Recipe: Funeral Potatoes (Utah Potato Casserole)

Vermont: Cheddar Cheese Apple Pie

Sweet-tart apples meet sharp Vermont cheddar to create this classic fall pie. Enhance the flavor even more by adding extra cheese on top.

Get the Recipe: Cheddar Cheese Apple Pie

Virginia: Virginia Ham Biscuits

Country ham, cured to super-salty perfection, forms the centerpiece of these hearty biscuit sandwiches, which are liberally covered with a honey-Dijon mustard mixture.

Get the Recipe: Virginia Ham Biscuits

Washington: Planked Salmon With Honey-Balsamic Glaze

This dish is common in Washington state, where salmon are plentiful. The cedar planks are soaked and then browned, adding fantastic woodsy flavor to the fillets.

Get the Recipe: Planked Salmon with Honey-Balsamic Glaze

West Virginia: Pepperoni Roll

Clear bags containing this snack dot convenience stores throughout the state. Re-create it with stick pepperoni, but be careful when eating: The meat is piping hot!

Get the Recipe: West Virginia Pepperoni Roll

Wisconsin: Bratwurst Stewed With Sauerkraut

Wisconsin may be the cheese state, but bratwurst is its culinary claim to fame. Due largely to residents’ German ancestry, it's a staple at restaurants and baseball stadiums.

Get the Recipe: Bratwurst Stewed with Sauerkraut

Wyoming: Chicken Fried Steak

In Wyoming, simply grilling steak isn't sufficient. Here, it's tenderized, coated in egg and flour, pan-fried to a crisp and then served with indulgent cream gravy.

Get the Recipe: Chicken Fried Steak with Cream Gravy

Washington, D.C.: Half Smoke Chili Dog

Prepare for one messy meal! Smoky hot dogs are sliced in half, grilled and then smothered with a heaping portion of fiery chunky chopped onion chili.

Get the Recipe: Chili Half-Smoke (D.C.-Style Chili Dog)

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