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This Is What Every State Would Bring to a Summer BBQ

The U.S. is holding a summer BBQ. What dish is each state bringing to share?

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Friends Friendship Outdoor Dining Hanging out ConceptRawpixel.com/Shutterstock

If America held a cookout, what would each state bring? Our great country is known for its diverse melting pot of cultures, so it’s no surprise that different regions boast different recipes. From sea to shining sea, we found each state’s most popular summer dish. Make these flavorful recipes at your own summer BBQ to send your taste buds on a cross-country road trip—no toll money required.

Next up: Check out the most iconic food from your state.

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Alabama: Southern Potato Salad

This potato salad with a southern twist is perfect for a church supper or potluck. The pickles add extra sweetness. —Gene Pitts, Wilsonville, Alabama
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Alaska: Salmon Party Spread

We’re proud to serve our delicious Alaskan salmon to guests. Set out some crackers, and this slightly smoky spread will be gone in no time! —Kathy Crow, Cordova, Alaska
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Arizona: Chimichangas

Though still debated, Tucson is generally credited as the original home of the chimichanga (fried “burro”, as we call them, stuffed with meat, onions and chiles). I’ve combined several recipes into this one, and it’s fairly authentic. —Laura Towns, Glendale, Arizona
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Arkansas: Chocolaty S’mores Bars

One night my husband had some friends over to play poker and he requested these s’mores bars. They polished off the pan and asked for more! I shared the recipe, and now their families make them, too. —Rebecca Shipp, Beebe, Arkansas
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California: Lemon Pound Cake

Citrus trees grow abundantly in California, and I’m always looking for new recipes which use the fruit from the orange and lemon trees in my yard. This is one of my favorites! My mother passed this recipe down to me. —Richard Killeaney, Spring Valley, California
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Colorado: Green Chili Ribs

I like my food with a spicy kick; my wife does not. These ribs with green chiles suit her taste. For more firepower, add cayenne or jalapenos. —Guy Newton, Nederland, Colorado
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Connecticut: Bacon Avocado Salad

Everyone in my family loves this bacon and avocado salad—even the younger kids! I serve it at pretty much every get-together I've hosted, and at this point, the recipe's been shared too many times to count. —Noreen McCormick Danek, Cromwell, Connecticut
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Delaware: Pear Waldorf Pitas

Here’s a guaranteed table brightener for a shower, luncheon or party. Just stand back and watch these sandwiches vanish. For an eye-catching presentation, I tuck each one into a colorful folded napkin. —Roxann Parker, Dover, Delaware
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Florida: Key Lime Cream Pie

I am very proud of this luscious no-bake beauty. It’s so cool and refreshing—perfect for any summer potluck or get-together. Wherever I take this pie, it quickly disappears, with everyone asking for the recipe. —Shirley Rickis, Lady Lake, Florida

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Georgia: Peachy Baby Back Ribs

It’s easy to get a smoky outdoor barbecue flavor from your slow cooker. Trust me, I’ve fooled many people on more than one occasion with these ribs. —Mary Louise Lever, Rome, Georgia
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Hawaii: Aloha Burgers

I love hamburgers and tropical fruit, so it just seemed natural for me to combine them. My family frequently requests this unique Hawaiian pineapple burger recipe. It’s a nice change of pace! —Joi McKim-Jones, Waikoloa, Hawaii
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Idaho: Grilled Potato Packets

Potatoes require a little extra time on the grill, so remember to give these pouches first dibs on the flames. —Anna Bjornn, Rexburg, Idaho
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Illinois: Chicago-Style Hot Giardiniera

I’ve been living in Chicago for the last 12 years and have grown to love the spicy giardiniera served at restaurants. So I developed my own to use at home. We love it on everything from eggs to sandwiches and even pizza! —Andrea Quiroz, Chicago, Illinois
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Indiana: Indiana-Style Corn Dogs

One of the best parts of the many fairs and festivals in Indiana is the corn dogs! My family loves corn dogs, so I fix them fairly often at home. —Sally Denney, Warsaw, Indiana
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Iowa: Stuffed Iowa Chops

Here's a hearty dish for big appetites. The corn and apples make a tasty stuffing for the chops. —Judith Smith, Des Moines, Iowa
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Kansas: BBQ Country Ribs

I created this country ribs recipe many years ago when I adapted a sauce I saw in a magazine. The original called for much more oil. I usually triple the sauce and keep some in my freezer to use on chicken, beef or pork. —Barbara Gerriets, Topeka, Kansas
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Kentucky: Mini Hot Browns

Here’s my take on the famous Hot Brown sandwich. Guests quickly saddle up for juicy turkey slices and crispy bacon piled on toasted rye bread and then topped with a rich cheese sauce. —Annette Grahl, Midway, Kentucky
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Louisiana: Contest-Winning Cajun Cabbage

Looking for a different treatment for cabbage? Try this spicy cheese-topped dish that I adapted from a friend’s recipe. I added a little of this and that until it tasted the way I wanted. Not only do my husband and kids like it, I get rave reviews when I make it for company or church functions. —Bobbie Soileau, Opelousas, Louisiana
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Maine: Blueberry Lattice Bars

Since our area has an annual blueberry festival, my daughters and I are always looking for new berry recipes to enter in the cooking contest. These lovely, yummy bars won a blue ribbon one year. —Debbie Ayers, Baileyville, Maine
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Maryland: Corn Pops

Fresh-picked sweet corn is a big thing in Maryland. Here’s my homespun version of Mexican street corn. —Kristie Schley, Severna Park, Maryland
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Massachusetts: Slow-Cooked Boston Beans

These slow-cooked beans have a little more zip than usual Boston baked beans, and the rum helps lighten the flavor. —Anne Sheehy, Lawrence, Massachusetts
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Michigan: Cherry Bars

Whip up a pan of these festive bars in just 20 minutes with staple ingredients and cherry pie filling. Between the easy preparation and the pretty colors, they're destined to become a holiday classic. —Jane Kamp, Grand Rapids, Michigan
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Minnesota: Northwoods Wild Rice Salad

This is my Minnesota version of a vintage German slaw that’s popular at church suppers. The wild rice has a nutty flavor that pairs perfectly with tangy sauerkraut. —Jeanne Holt, St. Paul, Minnesota
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Mississippi: Catfish Parmesan

Mississippi is the nation’s largest producer of farm-raised catfish. My family loves this dish, and asks for it often. One reason I like it is it’s so simple to prepare. —W.D. Baker, Starkville, Mississippi
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Missouri: Slow-Cooked Pork Barbecue

You need only five ingredients to fix this sweet and tender pork for sandwiches. Feel free to adjust the sauce ingredients to suit your family’s tastes. —Connie Johnson, Springfield, Missouri
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Montana: Crispy Fried Chicken

If you've wanted to learn how to make crispy fried chicken, this is the recipe for you. Always a picnic favorite, this deep fried chicken recipe is delicious either hot or cold. Kids call it my Kentucky Fried Chicken! —Jeanne Schnitzler, Lima, Montana
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Nebraska: Can-Can Chicken

Here’s a tasty take on the popular beer-can chicken. Once the bird is on the grill, the work’s basically done. And cleanup is a cinch—a must for a guy like me. —Steve Bath, Lincoln, Nebraska
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Nevada: Orzo Vegetable Salad

Heading to a potluck and need something to share? Tangy lemon dressing over cool orzo and vegetables is everything you want in a light side dish. —Terri Crandall, Gardnerville, Nevada
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New Hampshire: S’more Bars

Once school starts, it can be hard for kids to let go of summer. These great-tasting bars will bring back sweet campfire memories—whether the treats are served for dessert or as an after-school snack. —Lisa DiPrima, Wilton, New Hampshire
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New Jersey: Jersey-Style Hot Dogs

I grew up in northern New Jersey, where hot dogs with grilled potatoes were born. It's a combo you’ll love. —Suzanne Banfield, Basking Ridge, New Jersey
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New Mexico: Frito Pie

Frito pie is legendary in the Southwest for being spicy, salty and cheesy fabulous. Here’s my easy take on this crunchy classic. —Jan Moon, Alamogordo, New Mexico
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New York: Italian Sprinkle Cookies

Of all the Italian cookie recipes I make, this is my favorite. These sprinkle cookies take some time, but, believe me, they are well worth it! My husband and I used to operate an Italian American restaurant, and this recipe goes back generations. —Gloria Cracchiolo, Newburgh, New York
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North Carolina: Shrimp Saute

Seafood is very popular in my state. I altered this recipe several times and now it’s truly a family favorite. —Teresa Hildreth, Stoneville, North Carolina
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North Dakota: Macaroni Coleslaw

My friend Peggy brought this coleslaw to one of our picnics, and everyone liked it so much, we all had to have the recipe. —Sandra Matteson, Westhope, North Dakota
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Ohio: Sweet & Salty Peanut Butter Bites

My son Micah and I love peanut butter cups, so we made them into a new treat. We entered these peanut butter no bake cookies in a creative baking contest and won first place! —Autumn Emigh, Gahanna, Ohio
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Oklahoma: Chili Cornbread Salad

A co-worker brought this wonderful dish to a potluck several years ago. She had copies of the recipe next to the pan. Now I make it for get-togethers and also supply copies of the recipe. I never have any leftover salad or recipes. —Kelly Newsom, Jenks, Oklahoma
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Oregon: Best Marionberry Pie

I believe Oregon marionberries make about the best berry pie in the world. And when you add some cream cheese and flavorings, you’ll be making the best even better! —Frances Benthin, Scio, Oregon
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Pennsylvania: All-American Banana Split

In 1904, the first banana split recipe was made here in Latrobe, Pennsylvania by David Strickler, an apprentice pharmacist at a local drug store. We still use his original formula when we make banana splits in our restaurants. —Melissa Blystone, Valley Dairy
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Rhode Island: Rhode Island Hot Wieners

Many Rhode Islanders spell wiener with an “ei” and serve theirs “all the way” with meat sauce, mustard, onion and a sprinkle of celery salt. —Karen Barros, Bristol, Rhode Island
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South Carolina: Southern Shrimp and Grits

A southern specialty, sometimes called breakfast shrimp, this dish tastes great for brunch or dinner, and anytime company’s coming. It’s down-home comfort food at its finest. —Mandy Rivers, Lexington, South Carolina
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South Dakota: Rich Fruit Kuchens

This German classic is such a part of our reunions, we designate a special place to serve it. Five generations flock to the "Kuchen Room" for this coffee cake. —Stephanie Schentzel, Northville, South Dakota
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Tennessee: Banana Skillet Upside-Down Cake

My grandmother gave me my first cast iron skillet, and I've been cooking and baking with it ever since. Sometimes I add drained maraschino cherries to this banana skillet dessert and serve it with a ice cream. —Terri Merritts, Nashville, Tennessee
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Texas: Taco Dip Platter

When I'm entertaining, this colorful dish is my top menu choice. My friends can't resist the hearty appetizer topped with cheese, lettuce, tomatoes and olives. —Kathy Young, Weatherford, Texas
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Utah: Super Easy Country-Style Ribs

I’m a die-hard rib fan. When we were growing up, our mom made these for us all the time, and we still can’t get enough of them. —Stephanie Loaiza, Layton, Utah
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Vermont: Maple Cookies

I created this recipe after tasting maple cookies with a maple glaze at a bakery in Stowe, Vermont, some years ago. I get many requests to bring them for bake sales, parties and ski trips. —Delores Day, Wolcott, Vermont
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Virginia: Peachy Jalapeno Guacamole

Fresh jalapenos and summer-ripe peaches give this creamy guacamole so much flavor. It's got a little kick, but I love that it's not so spicy it burns off my taste buds! —Colleen Delawder, Herndon, Virginia
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Washington: Apple Pie

This pie won Grand Champion in the Apple Pie category at the 1992 Okanogan County Fair. The pie looks traditional, but making your own filling gives it a different flair and great taste. —Dolores Scholz, Tonasket, Washington
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West Virginia: Crab Cake Stuffed Mushrooms

These tender mushrooms with their crispy golden topping are always popular at parties! The crab filling is a delicious special occasion treat. Serve them while they’re warm. —Nancy Aiello, Bloomery, West Virginia
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Wisconsin: Barbecue Brats & Peppers

We live in brat country, and this barbecue-style recipe feeds a crowd. The sauce gives it a welcome change from the same old grilled bratwurst. — Maria Zrucky, Kronenwetter, Wisconsin
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Wyoming: Cowboy Cookies

These cookies are very popular here in Wyoming. Mix up a batch for your crew and see why. —Patsy Steenbock, Shoshoni, Wyoming

Katie Bandurski
Katie is an Associate Editor for Taste of Home, specializing in writing and email newsletters. When she’s out of the office, you’ll find her exploring Wisconsin, trying out new vegetarian recipes and combing through antique shops.

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