Hungry? Sampling road food is one of the best parts of a road trip – trying each state’s specialty is not only a gastronomic adventure, but it’s also a way of connecting with the locals and getting a flavor for that area’s culture and people.
Trying the foods of the area you’re visiting is an important part of travel – it’s an essential way to understand a place as it reflects that area’s history, its industry, and its people. It’s a great way to connect with the people of the place you’re visiting as regional cuisine is very often what the locals take the most pride in. Also, by engaging all your senses – including taste – you truly immerse yourself in the experience.
This listing of the best eats from sea to shining sea covers every state and at least one food (and sometimes more) that each state can call its own. I’ve also listed at least one place considered “the” place to stop along the way and try that state’s food (s). I haven’t included Hawaii or Alaska as these are not typical (or not possible in the case of Hawaii) road trip destinations.
NOTE: These foods and places to eat have been exhaustively researched – we’re talking hours of work (fact-checking with locals, online and offline polling, consulting respected resource books/sites) went into each recommendation. This is not just an opinion (although I certainly agree with a lot of them). This was a labor of love, of course!
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The Best Road Food in the USA: A – Z
Alabama to Colorado
Connecticut to Idaho
Illinois to Kentucky
Louisiana to Michigan
Minnesota to Montana
Nebraska to New Jersey
New Mexico to North Dakota
Ohio to Pennsylvania
Rhode Island to Tennessee
Texas to Virginia
Washington to Wyoming