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The Most Popular Football Tailgate Food in Each State

It’s that time of year again for fans of watching football and consuming food. I’m talking, of course, about Tailgate Season in America! Joining forces again with fellow Geography/Culinary expert Nick Turani (The Most Popular Celebrity of 2018 from Each State), we were able to use advanced analytics and data to determine the most objectively popular football tailgate food in each state.

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Map/logo by @nickturani

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Alabama

Gazpacho

Whether they’re chanting “Roll Tide,” “War Eagle,” or “I just think everyone should be allowed to say it,” any football fan from Alabama will agree that tailgating feels a whole lot better with a belly full of a cold, Spanish-style vegetable-based soup.

Alaska

Foraged Berries

Since the nearest grocery store is in Лаврентия, Nanook fans are forced to whip out their tattered field guide of “Edible Berries Commonly Found in Tundra Regions” and make due by searching the desolate plains until finding any kind of sustenance growing on the local flora.

Arizona

Ecstasy (Sauteed MDMA)

Notorious party schools, Arizona State and the University of Arizona both play host to some of the wildest parking lot raves in the entire country. Gabby Childress, an incoming super senior at ASU, admitted that it took her four years to finally realize that rolling on E with her friends behind Sun Devil Stadium on Saturdays in the fall was actually a ritual known as “tailgating” that preceded “football games,” and not a local music festival.

Arkansas

Great Value Bologna

Everyone knows Razorback fans are passionate about staying true to Arkansas’ rich traditions: Walmart and pig scraps. And nothing complements a top 8 finish in the SEC West like a mouthful of scrumptious Great Value bologna. Toss in some Copenhagen residue and you’re cooking with fire in the Land of Opportunity.

California

Boneless Wings

In the hypothetical scenario that people from California even remotely cared about football or watching sports, it’s a no brainer that their go-to tailgating food would be the classic boneless wing!

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Colorado

Buffalo Chicken Dip

LADIES, picture this: it’s 10 years from now. You just made buffalo chicken dip. Your husband’s friends are over and they’re all ragging at the refs. The Broncos just won game 7 again, Nikola Jokić is 34 years old and is still winning during his 14th season. Colorado is a football state again. Life is good.

Connecticut

Quiche

Quiche, also known as “that super spicy dish my nanny Valentina used to make after lacrosse practice because mom was at her massage therapists and dad was having an overnight meeting at the firm with his secretary” is a staple among UConn students.

Delaware

Broth

Although only rumored to exist, football fans, and people in general, from the state of Delaware are a folklore as exhilarating as the savory bone water that they’re so commonly known to consume before whatever “games” are going on in Delaware.

Florida

Ass

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Whether you find yourself doing the Tomahawk Chomp or Gator Chop, robbing a Wendy’s or a McDonald’s, there is one staple that unites all Floridians: Licking anus. Nevermind that the average temperature is 93 degrees with 99% humidity, enjoying this treat before the big game will have you smiling from cheek to cheek.

Georgia

Ritz Crackers & Easy Cheese

Combining two great sources of Southern pride into one flaky yet creamy appetizer isn’t rocket science, but it does explode taste buds unlike any other Southern comfort food. From Augusta to Savannah, nothing screams “Georgia football” like a good, old-fashioned Ritz cracker topped off with a gigantic load of gooey artificial cheese.

Hawaii

Baked Potatoes

Hawaiians might be several hours behind the rest of the country, but when it comes to the culinary world they’re lightyears ahead of the continental U.S. Especially with what they’ve been able to accomplish with potatoes.

Idaho

Garlic Mashed Cauliflower

It’s no secret that Idaho is famous for certain vegetables, so when it comes to tailgating for the big game, Boise State fans go bonkers for the creamy, flavorful dish known as garlic mashed cauliflower.

Illinois

Margherita Flatbread Pizza

Nothing pairs as well with tantalizing 7–3 Northwestern wins and nail-biter, last-second Bears losses like a low-calorie, thin-crusted, meatless pizza.

Indiana

Communion Wafers

Referred to as the “Purdue of religious snacks” but more commonly associated with Notre Dame’s traditions, the timeless communion wafer has just the right amount of flavor and substance to appease the suppressed appetite of the average football fan from the meth-riddled state of Indiana.

Iowa

Boiled Hot Dogs

Iowa is best known for being one of the fifty states in the United States. Rather than cooking their tubed meats on a grill, open fire, or even a microwave, their palettes crave something a bit more advanced. Iowans are the least wasteful of people, and the water used to boil their dogs will go on to be used for their bathing, as a source of hydration, and finally, to wash their relish stained C.J. Beathard jerseys.

Kansas

Mayonnaise

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Commonly referred to as “The Kansas of Condiments,” mayonnaise is, as you’d expect, the most popular football tailgate food in the state of Kansas by a significant margin. Oftentimes, fans looking to get a little more excitement than going to a Jawhawk or Wildcat football game will make the trek to Cawker City to tailgate in front of the large ball of twine.

Kentucky

Cornish Game Hen with Rosemary and Garlic

When you think of Kentucky cuisine what comes to mind? That’s right—a classic, blue collar meal of KFC. Kentucky Fire-roasted Cornish hen.

Louisiana

Jabmalayan

If we can be certain about one thing, it’s that our friends down in Louisiana know how to get down ‘n dirty with their jabmalayan.

Maine

Peas

Maine fans love their peas!

Maryland

Crab Cakes

The famous saying, “Crab cakes and football, that’s what Maryland does” perfectly embodies the notion that Maryland does, by definition, “do” both of those things. Not necessarily in a good manner, but that’s the beauty and simplicity of being a sports fan from Maryland.

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Runner up: The Maryland Flag

Massachusetts

The All New Dunkin’ made-to-order Wake-Up Wrap®

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You don’t chow down on a coupla Dunkin’® Wake-Up Wrap® sandwiches before Pats games? What are you, one of those fitness freaks, huh? Go fuck yourself.

Michigan

Buckeyes

In the Urban sprawl of Michigan, these tasty treats just won’t quit! No matter the occasion, eating them will have you feeling like a million bucks.

Minnesota

Tostitos Scoops (plain)

Nothing goes as well with a Vikings or Gophers tailgate on an unusually balmy 15 degree day like an oversized bowl of crunchy, flavorless Tostitos scoops without a speck of salsa or dip in sight.

Mississippi

Sticks of Butter

Speaking of the land o’ lakes, people from Mississippi take full advantage of the fact they’ve yet to discover how “recipes” work by simply enjoying the most delicious part of them — butter — without all the troublesome vitamins and nutrients that go into things like “meals.”

Missouri

Veggie Burgers

From Kansas City to St. Louis and whatever the fuck is in between, nothing gets Missourians riled up like a nutritious, animal-cruelty-free hamburger substitute. Tiger fans would be lion if they told you they could bear an entire Mizzou football game without at least one veggie patty in their stomach!

Montana

Beef Wellington

Death. Taxes. Beef Wellington before a 1:00 Grizzly home game against Weber State in mid November.

Nebraska

Fugu (Raw Pufferfish)

As most of us already know, there’s only a few places on earth where you can safely enjoy the lethally toxic pufferfish, also known as fugu. Takefuku in the famous Ginza district in Tokyo, Zuboraya in Osaka, and Dirty Kieth’s Puffer Wagon in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Nevada

Pulled Pork

Pulled pork is THE football tailgate food in America, and no one does football and tailgating like Nevada. Home to Bishop Gorman High School and the 2020 Raiders, there’s nothing like game day in the Gridiron State.

New Hampshire

Egg Salad Sliders

Whether it’s bought pre-made from Cumberland Farms or made from scratch at home, everyone knows that football fans from New Hampshire go absolutely berserk for egg salad.

New Jersey

Newports

With the clouds of JOOP! cologne masking the cigarette smell of a delicious Newport, these fans know all about balance. Hit it with a little SPK (salt/pepper/ketchup) and there’s no better way to kick off a Saturday in Piscataway.

New Mexico

Texas Chili

Everything is bigger in New Mexico. Especially football fandom and their appetites. That’s why the UNM and NMSU faithful can’t get enough of a heaping, manly portion of mothereff*** Texas chili.

New York

Pork Roll

There’s perhaps nothing more authentically New York than an old-fashioned pork roll, or Taylor Ham, depending on if you’re from Upstate or Downstate.

North Carolina

Baked Lays

Getting “Baked” by the sun while one “Lays” on the beach is just one interest of North Carolinians. But all football fans from NC will be willing to duke it out if you say one negative thing about their favorite chip, so stay on your heels if you feel as if there’s a better snack.

North Dakota

Baklava

Thinking about watching some NDSU pigskin on an empty stomach? Fuhhhhgedddaboudittt! Bison country can’t get enough of this Middle Eastern dessert.

Ohio

Ants on a Log

In the cultural mecca that is Ohio, cuisine and football are some of the only things that matter. An experimental combination of raisins, peanut butter, and celery combine into one treat that encapsulates the exotic land that is the Buckeye State.

Oklahoma

Fish and Chips

Link the blokes, shuffle down to Owen Field or Boone Pickens, pick up a couple packets, pull a couple richards, bun a couple zoots, and don’t you dare forget to fix yourself a plate of fish ‘n’ chips before the Sooners or Cowboys hit the pitch for the big match.

Oregon

Trail Mix

There is an easy, albeit unfunny, joke here and I refuse to stoop so low. Oregonians are some of the most health-conscious people in the country, and they need a snack that can keep up with their active lifestyles and keep them from being vulnerable to diseases like dysentery.

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Pennsylvania

Funyuns

Funyuns, or “fun-yinz” as they’re referred to in the Pittsburgh area, are the delectable gas station treat that can conveniently be obtained from one of PA’s two culinary staples, Sheetz and Wawa, which are located in massive clusters all over the entire Keystone State. Unfortunately, this delicious chip leaves quite the odor on the consumers breath, which is doubly bad for Pennsylvanians, who exclusively breathe through their mouths.

Rhode Island

Spaghetti (al dente)

The impatient people of Rhode Island can’t wait for their spaghetti to be finished cooking.

South Carolina

Spaghetti (fully cooked)

The patient people of South Carolina can wait for their spaghetti to be finished cooking.

South Dakota

Clam Chowder

Nothing screams “The Black Hills,” “The Northern Plains,” and “South Dakota State University Jackrabbit Varsity Football” like a steaming hot styrofoam bowl full of imported clams, salt pork, potatoes, light cream, and homemade fish stock.

Tennessee

Kansas City Style Barbecue

You can’t get authentic Kansas City barbecue anywhere like you can in Tennessee.

Texas

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

Longhorn tailgating means two things: Mixing enough drinks that would make a smashed chick pee, and having enough oils to mix with smashed chickpeas. They’ll chant “Beat the Bears” so loud PETA will be concerned, while their only concern will be a bare pita.

Utah

Everclear Soaked Gummy Bears

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Ah, the old college tradition of waking up at 5am, after staying up till the wee hours of the evening, driving 163 miles to West Wendover, Nevada to pick up enough grain alcohol so Ardeth might get wasted enough to flash her ankle to you and your brother Dallin, and your brother Gideon and your brother Elijah, and your brother Wallace, and your brother Amos at the tailgate.

Vermont

Boysenberry Jam

Saturdays are for the Boysenberry Jam English Muffins. And on gameday, the Catamounts aren’t the only Vermontonians that’ll attempt to cover the spread!

Virginia

Pepperoni Rolls

The salt of the earth people of Virgina know what it’s like to work up an appetite, whether it be a long day in the mines, or before watching UVA attempt a return to another Belk Bowl. It’s almost heaven eating a warm pepperoni roll in the parking lot before another adequate game from the Cavaliers.

Washington

Cantaloupe and Honeydew

Taking one of the most scrumptious and popular staples of modern tailgates and removing all the overly sweet and flavorful parts, Washingtonians have masterfully innovated the way people consume fruit salads.

West Virginia

Skoal Cherry

Known for enjoying tobacco and having a sweetgum, football fans from West Virginia love this tasty, fruit-infused Appalachian delicacy so much that some of them even claim to be “addicted” to it. Starting at $2.15 a can, West Virginians look past the steep price before rooting on their beloved Thundering Herd.

Wisconsin

Sangria Ice Pops

There’s a reason they call Packer fanatics “Sangria Ice Pop Heads.” In a state best known for its wine and tropical fruits, Green Bay fans unsurprisingly fiend for this frozen treat before heading into Lambeau for the big game.

Wyoming

Canned Goods from Hungry Jack’s General Store in Wilson, WY

Swing on by the General Store and say hello to Ol’ Jack Ambrose, one of Wyoming’s 26 residents, as you buy four dusty cans of expired food to eat while wearing your shirt of a cowboy DEFINITELY NOT playing with his dick on horseback.

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