What’s a State Favorite?

Each state has something that stands out in the minds of its residents or perhaps something that everyone equates with that particular state.  When it comes to food some of the state designated foods are unique, to say the least.  Especially when you consider that a legislative body took the time to select, vote, and approve that food for the state.  Not every state has designated state foods, according to Wikipedia.org. Below are some of the notable findings that may amuse or surprise you that you can add to your storehouse of trivia facts.

Here goes…

Many states have desserts specific to their state:

  • Alabama – Lane Cake (a sponge cake with candied fruit, pecans, coconut, and bourbon)
  • Delaware- Peach Pie
  • Florida – Key Lime Pie (no surprise there folks)
  • Illinois – Pumpkin Pie
  • Maine – Blueberry Pie with wild Maine blueberries
  • Maryland – Smith Island Cake (8 to 14 thin layers that may be made in a variety of flavors)
  • Massachusetts – Boston Cream Pie (they also designated their state doughnut – Boston Cream doughnut)
  • Missouri – ice cream cone (simple, no special flavor)
  • South Dakota – Kuchen (a mashup of cake and pie topped with a custard)
  • Texas – Pecan Pie

State nuts:

  • Alabama – Pecan
  • California – almond, walnut, pistachio, pecan

Oklahoma topped them all with a state meal.  You’ll be hungry after reading this . . .

  • Chicken Fried Steak
  • Pork Barbeque
  • Fried Okra
  • Squash
  • Cornbread
  • Grits
  • Corn
  • Sausage with biscuits and gravy
  • Black-eyed Peas
  • Strawberries
  • Pecan Pie

Louisiana was very specific in selecting as their state jelly Mayhaw jelly or Louisiana sugar cane jelly; meat pie – Natchitoches meat pie; and as their cuisine – gumbo.  The Natchitoches meat pie looks like a fruit pie and is filled with a mixture of ground beef, pork, green onions, peppers, garlic, and chopped onion.

A few states included a type of mushroom on their lists:

Minnesota – Morel

Oregon – Pacific Golden Chanterelle


As far as snacks, how about popcorn for Illinois, yogurt for New York, boiled peanuts for South Carolina, chips and salsa for Texas, and for Utah – jello.  (Really – jello?)

On to cookies

Now, to a less dictated list.  Nestle Tollhouse conducted a survey of about 5,000 people, asking them to pick the cookie that they associated with their state.  The results were interesting.

  • Cowboy cookies (made with oats, chocolate chips, and pecans) were picked for the western states of Wyoming, Texas, and Montana.
  • Washington folks gravitated to apple cinnamon cookies.
  • The cookie for West Virginia is actually not baked. Haystacks are a mixture of either peanut butter morsels or butterscotch melted over a double boiler with chow mien noodles and peanuts stirred in.  Spread the mixture onto wax paper and cook. Break up with your hands.
  • Chocolate chip cookies without nuts were a state favorite for many – Michigan, Missouri, Minnesota, Nebraska, Indiana, Illinois, Delaware, Connecticut, Kansas, Iowa, New Jersey, North Dakota, New York, Wisconsin, Utah, Tennessee, South Dakota, and North Carolina.
  • Peanut butter cookies with chocolate chips also had an impressive list – Mississippi, Georgia, California, Alabama, Ohio, Virginia, South Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Nevada.

Some were standalone states:

  • Rhode Island – Biscotti
  • New Mexico – Biscochito
  • Massachusetts – cranberry
  • Maine – Molasses
  • Kentucky – Bourbon spice
  • Idaho – Oatmeal chocolate chip
  • Hawaii – White chocolate macadamia nut
  • Florida – Orange
  • Arizona – Mexican wedding cookies
  • Alaska – Russian tea cookie

Others included:

  • Vermont and Louisiana- maple pecan cookies
  • Oregon and New Hampshire – Pumpkin spice
  • Maryland, Oklahoma, and Colorado – chocolate chip with nuts

So, if you’re hungry, go see what cookies you have on hand!  As you may have seen on the news, legislation is underway to make Moravian cookies the state cookie for North Carolina.

Celebrate whatever state you call home!  Dazzle your friends with your trivia knowledge!  Have a cookie!


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