The Craziest Foods at You Can Find at State Fairs Across America
Unicorn Nitro Popcorn
For the daring dessert lover, may we suggest this cup of rainbow popcorn frozen with liquid nitrogen, encased in cotton candy and topped with fruity cereal?
Phoenix, Arizona; October 5-28
Pueblo chiles are a subtly spicy local delicacy grown mere miles from the fair grounds. The Chile en Feugo booth serves them deep fried in a liquid batter with cheddar cheese and ranch dipping sauces on the side.
Pueblo, Colorado; August 24-September 3
Double-Decker Donut Burger
Three glazed doughnuts, two beef patties topped with American cheese, bacon strips, and creamy mac-and-cheese make for a beautiful monstrosity that could only exist in America.
Indianapolis, Indiana; August 3-19
Cookie Dough "Spaghetti"
This a delightfully deceptive dessert is made up of noodle-shaped strands of cookie dough drizzled with strawberry sauce and a Ferrero Rocher chocolate-hazelnut "meatball."
Des Moines, Iowa; August 9-August 20
Cheesy Bacon Pork Rinds on a Stick
Introduced in 2017, this blend of mozzarella and cheddar cheese gets coated in bacon bits and crushed pork rinds then deep fried, creating the meaty mozzarella stick of your dreams. Find it at Dusek Concessions.
Hutchinson, Kansas; September 7-September 16
Funnel Cake Fries Burger
For those who like more than a little sweet with your savory: two beef patties with melted American cheese topped with fried funnel cake strips and dusted with powdered sugar. Wow wow wow.
Louisville, Kentucky; August 16-26
Frogs and 'Lily Pads'
Frog legs and green tomatoes get a crisp breading of corn flour and masa for a playful duo of deep-fried goodness. Find it at Ms. Piggy's booth (and ask for Brenda!).
Shreveport, Louisiana; October 25-November 11
For those days when one type of deep-fried crab simply isn't enough. Here, a burger patty-sized crab cake gets topped with an entire fried soft-shell crab for a truly innovative sandwich experience.
Lutherville-Timonium, Maryland; August 23-September 3
It's practically the day-after-Thanksgiving at the Big E State Fair, which attracts visitors from all the New England states. The comforting combo of turkey, duck, chicken, stuffing, melty cheese and cranberry aioli will have you beaming with holiday cheer. Get it at the New England Craft Beer Pub on the Avenue of States.
West Springfield, Massachusetts; September 14-30
Corntater Boat Load
The late summer corn harvest takes center stage in this dish, which also happens to be very fun to say. Roasted kernels get slathered in butter and piled high in a baked potato along with with cooked bacon, chopped onion, cheddar cheese and a dollop of sour cream. Find it at the Shuck and Ladder Corn Roasters stand.
Novi, Michigan; August 30-September 3
Rainbow Cloud Roll
The unicorn food trend has all been leading up to this. Choose your ice cream combo—strawberry, chocolate, vanilla and something called "Superman" are all options—which then gets coated in fruity cereal and rolled in cotton candy, burrito-style. Find it at the Grandstand booth.
St. Paul, Minnesota; August 23-September 3
Mac & Cheese Grilled Cheese
When it comes to the amount of carbs one is allowed to consume at a state fair, the limit does not exist. Creamy mac and cheese gets sandwiched between two buttery, griddled slices of toast and topped with your choice of bacon, buffalo chicken or barbecue pork. Find it at Food Pod #2.
Grand Island, Nebraska; August 24-September 3
The 'Heart Attack'
The newest addition to N.Y.'s fair offerings is very appropriately named, and goes down as follows: Two Hoffman hot dogs stuffed with chili and cheese, wrapped in bacon, deep fried, topped with cheddar cheese sauce, chocolate sauce, jalapeños and Hershey's chocolate. Find it at the Fried Specialties booth if you are strong and brave enough.
Syracuse, New York; August 22-September 3
Cheerwine Funnel Cake
Cherry-flavored soda is the signature beverage of the Tar Heel state, and here it gets mixed directly into the batter for a regional twist on a fair favorite.
Raleigh, North Carolina; October 11-21
A glorious invention of the Native American Navajo tribe, this deep-fried dough is simultaneously crispy and fluffy, and is only improved with a pile of your favorite taco fillings.
Minot, North Dakota; July 20-28
These peanut butter-stuffed chocolate candies are Ohio's most iconic treat, made to look like the nuts that come from the state's official tree (also called the Buckeye tree). At the fair's Bulk Candy Store, they are battered and fried then drizzled with extra chocolate and dusted with powdered sugar.
Columbus, Ohio; July 25-August 5
This is just one of the many fried foods you can find at the Sinfull Delights booth—they also serve fried candy bars, coffee, bananas, and candy apples.
Salem, Oregon; August 24-September 4
Red Beans & Rice Sundae
Start with a bowl of seasoned beans and rice then pile high with your favorite toppings like cajun shrimp, pulled pork, garlic butter mushrooms and grilled onions and peppers. Also available as a shrimp-and-grits sundae at Deanna's Food Concessions.
Columbia, South Carolina; October 10-21
Most definitely the only keto diet-friendly option on this list, these deep-fried cubes of lamb, mutton or beef—which locals simply call "nosh"—are the official state snack of South Dakota (seriously, they just passed a law about it). Find them at Kepp’s Chislic stand.
Huron, South Dakota; August 30-September 3
Deep-Fried GooGoo Clusters
The Volunteer state's signature candy bar is made with marshmallow nougat, caramel, roasted peanuts, all coated in milk chocolate. At the state fair it's served deep-fried and dusted with powdered sugar, naturally.
Nashville, Tennessee; September 7-16
Funnel Cake Bacon Queso Burger
Texans take their state fair food so seriously, they even have an awards ceremony called the Big Tex Choice Awards. This monstrous burger, which has a beef patty, thick-cut bacon strips, queso, and two whole funnel cakes as buns, won the 2017 award for Best Taste. (You can also wash it down with a mustard-rimmed corn dog ale, new to the fair in 2018.)
Dallas, Texas; September 28-October 1
These loaded taters from the Hog Wild BBQ booth come topped with barbecue pork butt (hence the name), sour cream, cheese sauce, barbecue sauce and green onions. Swap the pork for beef to make them Bull Fries.
Doswell, Virginia; September 28-October 7
These simple, fluffy biscuits served with raspberry jam and honey butter are by far the most popular food item at the Washington State Fair, with 1.3 million sold in 2017.
Puyallup, Washington; August 31-September 23
Pig Out Biscuit
Get your pork fix four ways with this buttery biscuit piled with country ham, sausage, bacon, and doused with creamy sausage gravy.
Lewisburg, West Virginia; August 9-18
Deep-Fried Turducken on a Stick
Thanksgiving's favorite three-meat hybrid makes another appearance on the list, this time mixed with stuffing then battered, fried, and drizzled with beer gravy and Wisconsin cranberry sauce.
West Allis, Wisconsin; August 2-12
Tractor-Churned Ice Cream
At Wende's Hit and Miss Ole Fashioned Ice Cream stand, they use a tractor engine dating back to the 1920 to churn small-batch ice cream that gets turned into cones, sundaes, shakes, floats, banana splits and more.
Douglas, Wyoming; August 15-18