10 Foods Invented in America

America ... where our Dorn Dog stands get signage

America … where our Corn Dog stands get signage

It’s only a few weeks after July 4th, and in the belated spirit of America’s independence, I wanted to write about our frontier spirit when it comes to creating new food dishes. These are famous American foods that make me proud. Unfortunately, foods like Tater Tots don’t make me proud … unless it’s Parmesan Truffle Tater Tots. Then we’re talking.

It’s with this thought in mind that I often question whether the land of the free is perhaps a little too free when it comes to food. Especially when it comes to America’s love to deep-fry everything.

And what better time to fry some grub than at a state fair, a true American pastime? It was here, specifically in Texas, that the first corndog was created in 1942. And for those that are fortunate enough to have never crossed paths with a corndog, it’s a hot dog dipped into corn meal before being deep-fried and thrown on a stick. No bun needed. Yum.

Incidentally, the hot dog itself was also created here. Whether you’re at a summer BBQ, tailgating before the game, or participating in Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Contest, the hot dog is most definitely a part of Americana (along with baseball, apple pie, and Chevrolet).

Other foods to make the list of “Made in the U.S.A.” are Buffalo wings, Chicago-style deep-dish pizza, and the Philly cheese-steak, all of which are reppin’ different parts of the country with pride.

Of course our country is the “great melting pot” so there are a number of foods that many of us believe to be authentic international dishes when in reality they’re just more American creations that cater to our large and hungry crowd.

This cultural appropriation of food can be found in both American “Chinese” and “Italian” food, among others. For example, General Tso’s Chicken, a greasy deep-fried staple of your town’s Chinese restaurant, is indeed an American creation. This also goes for Mac n Cheese, in which the Italian dish involving cheese and pasta was appropriated to create an American enterprise. After all, there’s very little that reads Italian when it comes to a box of Kraft Mac and Cheese, which seems to be just what Americans ordered.

And finally, S’mores, Nachos, or Chocolate Chip Cookies, (damn you, Mrs. Fields) are all traditional American snacks.

So next time you dig into these 10 national delicacies, just remember that they were created in America: the land of the free and the home of the fat.

What are some of your favorite U.S.A.-made meals?

,

3 Responses to 10 Foods Invented in America

  1. Kristi Lea July 26, 2013 at 9:37 am #

    I’m from St. Louis, and locally we claim to have invented ice cream cones (at the 1904 World’s Fair), toasted ravioli (a breaded version of the pasta that is, as you pointed out, frequently deep fried), gooey butter cake, St Louis-Style pizza (which involves a cracker-like crust and Provel cheese, which was also invented here). Iced tea and cotton candy were also supposedly introduced at the 1904 worlds’ fair. Oh yeah, and Tums (go figure, huh).

  2. admin August 19, 2013 at 4:22 pm #

    ha! Tums … that’s pretty funny, thanks Kristi Lea :)

  3. Danny April 21, 2014 at 11:50 am #

    Cornbread.

Leave a Reply