Special Report

The Most Iconic Foods Every State Has Given the Rest of the US

Source: millermountainman / Getty Images

South Dakota
> Iconic food: Kuchen

South Dakota’s official state dessert, kuchen is a pastry dough filled with a fruit or custard (or both) filling. It was originally brought to the area by German immigrants and now every South Dakotan family has its own variation on the dessert.

See all stories featuring: South Dakota

Source: Winter_Studios / Getty Images

> Iconic food: Cotton candy

Originally called fairy floss, cotton candy was created by two Nashville candymakers in 1897 when they invented a machine that heated sugar in a spinning bowl.

See all stories featuring: Tennessee

Source: Fudio / Getty Images

> Iconic food: Chili

Chili con carne, or chili with meat, is a dish native to Texas. Though its origins are much disputed, its flavors may have been influenced by immigrants from the Canary Islands, a Spanish possession west of Morocco.

See all stories featuring: Texas

Source: Dimple S / Yelp

> Iconic food: Fry sauce

This pink secret sauce originally meant as a burger dressing is made from ketchup, mayonnaise, dill pickle juice, garlic, and a secret blend of spices. Invented by Don Carlos Edwards, owner of the restaurant Arctic Circle, it is now Utah’s culinary claim to fame.

See all stories featuring: Utah

> Iconic food: Ben & Jerry’s

Designer pints of pretzel, cookie dough, and caramel ice cream may be a dime a dozen nowadays, but we can thank childhood buddies Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield for getting this delicious trend started in the 1980s.

See all stories featuring: Vermont