A state fair in the USA is an iconic representation of a state. It is a cultural and recreational gathering of people, which draw as many locals as tourists. These are celebrated with great pomp and show, and include fun rides, competitions, exhibitions, and unlimited entertainment. The state fairs have something to offer for everybody. Apart from open mics, live concerts, and livestock shows, state fairs are famous among foodies as well. By Shubhanjana Das

If you are planning a trip to experience the gastronomical topography of the USA, state fairs give you unlimited access to the taste and the culture of the states of USA. From apple pies to gigantic burgers, deep-fried chicken wings to lip-smacking desserts — the state fairs have it all. Here are the top 5 state fairs that you should definitely include in your next trip to the United States.

1. The Minnesota State Fair

The Minnesota State Fair is the most popular state fair in the USA for foodies. Best known for its out-of-the-world, delectable fried food dishes, the state fair is also the haven for experimental food lovers and for foodies with a sweet tooth. With dishes ranging from grilled cinnamon bun sandwiches stuffed with Nutella, marshmallow, bacon and peanut butter, deep-fried licorice, deep-fried avocado, and even waffle bowls complemented with bacon, cheese, hash browns and eggs, the Minnesota State Fair is definitely a place for the daring foodies. It is said that the state fair serves up creative and quirky dishes made from anything and everything that a human can consume. You can enjoy these creative delights from August 23 to September 3 each year. Make sure you pack an extra belt before you go gaga over the dishes served.

2. State Fair of Texas

Held from September 28 to October 31 each year, the State Fair of Texas is famed to add new dishes to the culinary world at each passing year. It is the only state fair that comes close enough to give a tough competition to the Minnesota State Fair. The State Fair of Texas brings something new to the table each year, one being the humongous burger served with two big funnel cakes as buns, beef patty, thickly cut bacon strips and queso which won the Big Tex Choice Awards in 2017. Yes, you heard that right. The stakes are so high at the State Fair of Texas that the Texans have a separate award ceremony for food. Besides these, the State Fair of Texas is flocked by people to try out different variants of barbeque dishes and deep fried foods, which even include deep-fried chicken noodle soup and deep-fried Froot Loops. So, get your cowboy hat on and visit the State Fair of Texas – the temple of fried foods in the USA.

3. Iowa State Fair

The Iowa State Fair is the best state fair in the USA in terms of the diversity of foods on offer. The state fair is widely known for its three staple things – livestock and husbandry competitions, the now hugely famous avatar of a cow sculpted out of butter and their innovative approach to fit each and every one of the state delicacies on a stick. The foods on offer can be as diverse as an apple pie to a sausage, a pancake to a deep-fried brownie, all of which are offered on a stick. That is not all, the fair has enough options to serve the picky eaters as well. The health-conscious can even have their own fill of the various salad dishes and hard-boiled eggs, which too are served on a stick. Sounds crazy, right? Well, the Iowa State Fair has truly carved out a niche for itself among the foodies from all over the world and with the presence of a whopping 200 food booths from August 9 to August 19 each year, you can be sure of exploring the taste and the gastronomical culture of Iowa, all on a stick!

4. Wisconsin State Fair

The Wisconsinites are known for their love for food. They have an undying affinity for cheese, meats, and deep-fried foods and serve an array of exotic dishes each year from August 2 to August 12. Apart from the iconic Wisconsin dish deep-fried cheese curds, they also serve spaghetti and meatballs and that too with an Iowan twist, that is, on a stick. If you are a brave heart and are game enough to try out new palettes, the Wisconsin State Fair can be a pleasant surprise to you. You can have a bite of alligator legs, fried bugs, and the Rocky Mountain oysters, which are cow testicles. So, pack your bags and head to Wisconsin to tickle your taste buds with the most unusual exotic dishes.

5. The Great New York State Fair

In addition to the state fairs held in America‘s rural counties, the Great New York State Fair is a pleasant change that receives a footfall of over a million each year for its fun rides, New York Food Truck Competition, 800-pound butter figures, and drone film festivals. The NY State Fair is a 13-day festival that sheds special light on the local cuisines of New York and a zing of grandeur to market the local cuisines of New York to people from all over the globe. The newest feather in the crown of the New York’s cuisine is rightfully called the ‘Heart Attack’ as it is made from two Hoffman hot dogs filled with chili and cheese, and wrapped in deep-fried bacon, which is topped with cheddar cheeses sauce, chocolate sauce, jalapenos, and Hershey’s chocolate syrup. So, get a $3 coupon and taste the specialties of each food truck to end the summer on a high note. The Great New York State Fair is held from August 22 to September 3 each year. So pre-book your tickets to give yourself enough time to grab a bite of each of the delicacies on offer at the fair.

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