Must-Try American Foods Worth Traveling For

If you're a food enthusiast, you probably know that the best way to experience a new place is through its cuisine. While you might equate the idea of American food with something boring, like a hot dog, there are so many different cultures to sample from-- each state has a regional food that's worth traveling just to savor. Let's explore six mouthwatering American foods from key regions of our great country that will have your taste buds dancing with joy!


1. Pierogies in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Our journey through American cuisine begins in the heart of Pennsylvania, where the Polish influence is unmistakable. Pittsburgh, known as the Pierogi Capital of the United States, is where you'll find these delightful dumplings. Each pierogi is stuffed with a variety of fillings like potato, cheese, or sauerkraut. Even picky eaters who are nervous to try new things are likely to love pierogies! 


When in Pittsburgh, visit one of the local joints like "Pierogies Plus" for an authentic taste of this Eastern European delight. And, while you're nearby, you can grab yourself a Philly-style pretzel and an authentic Philly cheesesteak. Each of these famous foods are Pennsylvania favorites you'll be glad you tried!

2. Hot Chicken in Nashville, Tennessee

Next stop, line dance your way over to Nashville, where the music isn't the only thing that's hot. Hot chicken, a fiery and flavorful fried chicken dish, is a must-try. Known for its spicy kick, this dish is a blend of crispy goodness and heat. 


Prince's Hot Chicken Shack is one of many great places to enjoy this food, with heat levels ranging from mild to scorching. If you've only tried inauthentic versions from fast food chains, it's important that you head to Music City to experience the real deal.

3. Deep-Dish Pizza in Chicago, Illinois

Another important location is the Windy City, where deep dish pizza reigns supreme. This hearty pizza is characterized by its thick, buttery crust, layers of cheese, and chunky tomato sauce. Lou Malnati's Pizzeria is a beloved spot, but you can find this cheesy delight all over Chicago. Enjoy a slice (or two) and experience pizza in a whole new way.

4. Gumbo in New Orleans, Louisiana

No culinary journey through America is complete without a stop in the vibrant city of New Orleans! The gumbo, a rich and hearty stew, reflects the city's Creole and Cajun influences. Made with a medley of ingredients like shrimp, sausage, and okra, gumbo is a flavor explosion in every spoonful. 


For an authentic experience, head to Dooky Chase's Restaurant, where you'll find soulful gumbo that's as good as it gets.

5. Lobster Roll in Maine

Our next destination takes us to the picturesque state of Maine, known for its stunning coastline and, of course, lobster rolls. This seafood delicacy consists of succulent lobster meat, lightly dressed with mayo or melted butter, and served in a buttery, toasted roll. Enjoy this classic dish at the Lobster Shack at Two Lights, overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, for a truly unforgettable experience.

6. Grits in Charleston, South Carolina

Our culinary tour concludes in charming Charleston, South Carolina, where Southern hospitality and comfort food collide. Grits, a creamy and comforting dish made from ground corn, are a staple here. Served as a side or a base for shrimp and grits, these hominy wonders are a Southern tradition. Head to Hominy Grill for the most authentic experience that'll leave you craving more.


Once you've tasted these regional dishes, there's many different foods to explore! You'll have to grab yourself some cheese curds in Wisconsin, potato salad in the deep south, key lime pie in the Florida Keys, Kansas City BBQ, pepperoni rolls in West Virginia, hotdish with tater tots in Minnesota, and a New York City slice of pizza. You might just find your new favorite restaurants along the way! What new foods do you want to try the most?

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