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A collection of signs advertising State Fair style foods.

22 State Fair Foods That Make Our Mouths Water

July 14, 2016

It’s finally state fair season. As millions of people across the country attend fairs and festivals this year, they will no doubt be taking part in the famous cuisine. 

State fair food has come a long way from simply hot dogs and cotton candy. Each year, states strive to come up with new and exciting fare for event-goers. While there are thousands of food vendors out there, here are a few state fair foods you have to try yourself to believe!

Deep-Fried Foods

Deep-Fried Nutella
This recently-created state fair food is a crowd favorite at the Texas State Fair. The Texas State Fair, established in 1886, has the highest total attendance of any state fair in the United States, drawing over 3 million people annually. 

Deep-Fried Grilled Cheese
It’s no surprise that the grilled cheese sandwich is a favorite choice at the Wisconsin State Fair, located in the state known as “America’s Dairyland.” This classic sandwich gets the state fair treatment with a quick dip in the deep fryer before being served. 

Deep-Fried Oreos
This snack has been around for years, and it’s becoming a classic at state fairs across the country. It’s no wonder - the browned coating with the soft, chocolaty center is hard for anyone to resist.

Deep-Fried Green Chilies
New in 2014, this state fair food debuted in Colorado. The chiles are grown in Colorado and are deep fried and served with a dipping sauce. This crispy cuisine is the perfect savory snack if you need a break from all the sweet treats.

Funnel Cake Ice Cream Sandwich
At the Indiana State Fair, you’re sure to run across the funnel cake ice cream sandwich, one of their most sought-after state fair snacks. This treat takes a fun spin on the traditional funnel cake and is a must-try!

Deep-Fried BBQ Egg roll
The next item on our list can be found at the North Carolina State Fair. The egg rolls are filled with pulled-pork BBQ and coleslaw, giving classic Asian cuisine a new twist.

Deep-Fried Cookie Dough
Fried cookie dough is another soon-to-be classic. You’re sure to run into this state fair food at many fairs across the country. 

Deep-Fried Kool-Aid
Sure, maybe this one doesn’t quite make our mouths water, but we would love to try this wacky state fair food that you can find at the North Dakota State Fair!

The Defibrillator
Any state fair food list would be incomplete without a massive burger. This burger lands on the deep-fried list due to its ingredients, which include deep-fried bacon, deep-fried pickles and two grilled cheese sandwiches as a bun. This enormous concoction is served at the New York State Fair.

Food on a Stick

Chocolate Covered Cheesecake on a Stick
Did you know that the Iowa State Fair offers over 50 types of food on a stick? One of those mouth watering options is the chocolate covered cheesecake. You get a gourmet dessert that’s easy to walk around with - what else could you need?

Turkey Tenderloin on a Stick
While there are many innovative fair foods today, sometimes simplicity is still best. If you’re looking for a filling meal at the fair, you can’t miss the classic turkey tenderloin on a stick. 

Chicken Waffle on a Stick
This state fair food was named the official food of the 2014 Utah State Fair, so we know it’s one we have to try. It combines two state fair food trends: deep-frying and food on a stick. Chicken is deep-fried, then dipped in a sweet batter and cooked in a waffle iron.

Apple Pie on a Stick
This tried and true dessert-spinoff was a brand new addition to the food-on-a-stick menu at the Iowa State Fair in 2015. The handheld dessert is sure to become a favorite for fairgoers!

Bacon-Wrapped Corn Dogs
Corn dogs are a staple at state fairs, but this recipe found at the Kansas State Fair takes it up a notch by adding some grilled bacon.

Deep-Fried Snickers on a Stick
Add this snickers on a stick to the list of deep-fried desserts to try! The treat, located at the Montana State Fair, is topped with light powdered sugar to finish it off.

Other Top State Fair Foods

The Gizmo
This sandwich is a fan favorite at both the Iowa and Minnesota State Fair. Ground beef and sausage are smothered in a secret sauce and with melted mozzarella cheese to create the perfect Italian sandwich.

The Klondike Rush
If you’re looking for something energizing, this one is for you. This new item from Papa Tom’s, a vendor at the Nebraska State Fair, combines cappuccino, coffee, chocolate, ice cream and ice for a refreshing drink.

Red Chile Chocolate Limeade
If you’re feeling adventurous and you find yourself at the New Mexico State Fair, try this sweet and spicy beverage to top off your day.

Cream Puff
At the Wisconsin State Fair, the cream puff is king. A mountain of whipped cream tops a fluffy pastry that fairgoers have to try. They even offer a cream puff hotline to order the dessert in the case of a hunger emergency!

Grilled Caesar Salad
State fair food doesn’t have to be all bad for you. The California State Fair offers a refreshing grilled caesar salad with peaches and cottage cheese that will leave you feeling ready to take on the rest of the day. 

Bacon-Wrapped Stuffed Jalapenos
If you’re visiting the Arizona State Fair this year, don’t miss this tasty fair food. A jalapeno pepper wrapped in bacon is stuffed with cream cheese and grilled to perfection, giving it a smoky flavor.

Bacon-Wrapped Corn on the Cob
Corn on the cob is a summer staple, but this fair food found at the Oklahoma State Fair takes it up a notch. Bacon is wrapped around the corn on the cob and then grilled to finish.

2016 State Fair Dates 

Wisconsin State Fair - August 4 - 12
Minnesota State Fair - August 25 - September 5
Iowa State Fair - August 11 - August 21
North Carolina State Fair - October 13 - 23
Texas State Fair - September 30 - October 23
New York State Fair - August 25 - September 5
California State Fair - July 8 - 24
Indiana State Fair - August 5 - 21
Colorado State Fair - August 26 - September 5
Arizona State Fair - October 7 - 30
Kansas State Fair - September 9 - 18
Montana State Fair - August 12 - 20
North Dakota State Fair - July 22 - 30
Nebraska State Fair - August 26 - September 5
New Mexico State Fair - September 10 - 20
Oklahoma State Fair - September 15 - 25
South Dakota State Fair - September 1 - 5
Utah State Fair - September 8 - 18
Wyoming State Fair - August 13 - 20

Make the Most Out of Your Summer

State fairs, and indulging in the food at them, are summer staples. For more ways to stay up-to-date on making the most of your summer, sign up for our newsletter today!