The Best Christmas Dish in Every State
Christmas is a time for friends, family, and—you guessed it—food! Whether you like to prepare annual family favorites or get a little bit more adventurous and shake things up, Christmas can be a time to go all-out in the kitchen, even if you're just cooking for your immediate family this year.
In honor of the upcoming winter holiday, we took a look at some of the most beloved Christmas recipes across the United States using Google Trends research by state and looking at popular state foods. From Michigan's popularly Googled homemade Christmas Chex Mix to a tasty side dish made from Louisiana's official state vegetable (the sweet potato), this list will certainly jump-start any holiday menu prep.
And for more, check out these 15 Classic American Desserts That Deserve a Comeback.
Alabama: Chai Spiced Maple Sugar Cookies
Put a little spin on traditional sugar cookies, a popular search term in Birmingham according to Google Trends, by adding chai spice and browned butter frosting. These are perfect to make for any cold-weather holiday.
Alaska: Snickerdoodle Cookies
Made with tangy cream of tartar and sweet cinnamon sugar, these tasty cookies are a wonderful addition to any Christmas dessert spread. Snickerdoodles are a popular search term in Anchorage, so you'll be in good company serving these.
Arizona: 4-Ingredient Peanut Butter Fudge
Can you believe this no-bake recipe requires just four ingredients? Peanut butter, vanilla extract, confectioner's sugar, and butter are all you need to create this creamy and unexpected dessert. Searches for "peanut butter fudge recipe" are popular in Phoenix, so this treat is sure to be a hit.
Arkansas: Grape Salad
Put together a refreshing Christmas side salad featuring Arkansas' official state fruit, grapes.
California: Roasted Artichokes
There seem to be countless ways to prepare artichokes, one of California's biggest crops. One of our favorites is to roast them in an earthy mixture of fresh herbs, garlic, lemon, and oil.
Colorado: Chicken and Sausage Gumbo
Prepare this warming dish, featuring chicken, sausage, okra, peppers, and tomatoes, as the main course for your holiday dinner. Searches for chicken and sausage gumbo specifically are popular in Denver, so you'll be eating like a true local with this recipe.
Connecticut: Honey Roasted Carrots
Looking for a healthy side dish to serve this holiday season? Look no further than this delicious recipe, which is made with roasted carrots sweetened naturally with a touch of honey.
Delaware: Peach Pie Muffins with Brown Butter Glaze
Shake up Delaware's official dessert, peach pie, by baking it in a muffin form and topping it with a warming brown butter glaze.
Florida: Dark Chocolate Covered Candied Orange Slices
Oranges, the fruit Florida is most known for, can be a great holiday dessert, too. Just soak thin slices of these tasty fruits in simple syrup, dry them out by using a convection oven, and then partially dip each one into rich dark chocolate. These are sure to become an annual Christmas must-have.
Georgia: Balsamic Roasted Peach, Chicken, and Prosciutto Tarts
This season, prepare Georgia's official state fruit, peaches, with bold balsamic, chicken, and prosciutto for an appetizer that will definitely make a statement.
Hawaii: Baked Pineapple Casserole
Baked pineapple casserole is the Christmas side you didn't know you needed. Sweet pineapple, sharp cheddar, and salty butter all come together to create a dish that is anything but boring.
Idaho: Scalloped Potatoes
Serve one of Idaho's most famous foods, potatoes, in this comforting recipe that is rich with powerful flavors such as garlic, sharp cheddar, and fresh thyme.
Illinois: Nutella Swirl Pumpkin Pie
Put an exciting twist on Illinois' official state pie, pumpkin pie, with this Nutella Swirl Pumpkin Pie recipe. Your family will be back for seconds!
Indiana: Mom's Secret Christmas Eve Homemade Chex Mix
Seasoned pretzels, mixed nuts, Chex, and bagel chips all come together in this easy-to-make Christmas snack. It's so delicious, you may even want to leave it out for Santa. Homemade Chex Mix is a popular search term in Indianapolis, so why not add this recipe to your holiday repertoire?
Iowa: Beef Stew
Is there anything more comforting than enjoying a warm bowl of beef stew by the fireplace as the snow falls? This winter classic is chock-full of carrots, potatoes, and onions.
Kansas: Slow Cooker Glazed Ham
What do we love just as much as delicious Christmas dishes? Ones that are convenient, too! This ham can be tossed in your slow cooker to cook while you prepare other holiday plates. Just add the sweet and spicy brown sugar glaze to the ham during its last 30 minutes of cooking, and voila! You've got a delicious holiday dish, ready to go.
Plenty of people in Wichita are searching for a ham glaze recipe, according to Google Trends. If you're one of them, you can't go wrong with this option.
Kentucky: Pear Blackberry Salad
Toss Kentucky's official berry, the blackberry, into a large bowl with chopped pears, candied pecans, goat cheese, and poppyseed dressing to create a light and healthy holiday salad to serve alongside heavier dishes.
Louisiana: Baked Southern Candied Sweet Potatoes
Louisiana's official state vegetable is one of the holiday's most popular: the sweet potato. Prepare these nutrient-packed root vegetables with cinnamon, nutmeg, pecans, and brown sugar for a delicious side.
Maine: Lobster Bisque
Serve this homemade lobster bisque as a starter topped with foamed cream. Your family will only think it took you hours to make!
Maryland: Crab Cakes
These crab cakes, which are topped with mango-avocado salsa, will tick off every box on your list of appetizer needs.
Massachusetts: Slow Cooker Cranberry Chicken
Slow cookers make holiday cooking an absolute breeze, especially in this recipe. The chicken comes together with Massachusetts' official berry, the cranberry, to create a truly memorable Christmas main course.
Michigan: Christmas Chex Mix
Love putting together homemade Chex Mix, but want to bring it up a notch for the holidays? Then give this Christmas Chex Mix recipe a go! Cheerios, rice Chex, pretzels, white chocolate, and green and red M&Ms will definitely get you in the Christmas spirit.
Minnesota: Creamy Wild Rice Soup
This mouthwatering holiday soup is made with chewy wild rice (a staple in Minnesota cuisine), diced onions, sliced Cremini mushrooms, and dried herbs.
Mississippi: Christmas Wreath Cookies
These adorable cookies, which are made using mini marshmallows, chocolate chips, and peppermint, are shaped like mini wreaths and look great placed out on a platter as well. Interestingly, "corn flake candy" is a popular search term in Jackson, so you'll be in good company with these unique treats.
Missouri: Winter Salad with Maple Candied Walnuts
The nuts of a popular Missouri tree, the walnut tree, take center stage in this salad. It's made using candied walnuts, pomegranate, goat cheese, and a balsamic fig dressing.
Montana: Pineapple Glazed Pork Roast
This delicious holiday pork recipe features pork stuffed with bacon wild rice and glazed with sweet and juicy pineapple. Searches for pork roast are popular across Montana, so feel free to share this recipe with friends.
Nebraska: Catfish With Corn Salsa
One of Nebraska's most popular crops, corn, is the topper to this catfish dish. This would be a great meat alternative for your pescatarian relatives.
Rich and creamy, this flan is made using heavy cream, milk, vanilla extract, and sugar. Top it with some berries for an extra festive touch. Flan is a popular search term in Las Vegas and Reno, so you can't go wrong by adding it to your holiday spread.
New Hampshire: Pumpkin Cheesecake
New Hampshire's official state fruit, the pumpkin, gets an update in this recipe from a pie to a cheesecake. It's the same sweet filling you love, just in creamy cheesecake form.
New Jersey: Chocolate Swiss Roll
This Chocolate Swiss Roll is stuffed with a sweet cream cheese filling, but it can easily be customized to include your own personal touch. Swiss roll is a delicacy in the northeast, so your family will surely appreciate the non-conventional holiday treat.
New Mexico: Pumpkin Pecan Polvorones
These mildly sweet shortbread cookies, which are also commonly known as Mexican Wedding Cookies, help take any holiday dessert menu to the next level.
New York: Cranberry Almond Apple Pie
New York is also known as the Big Apple, so why not whip up a holiday dessert in its honor? This apple pie recipe makes a traditional Christmas classic a bit more exciting by adding cranberries and almonds to it.
North Carolina: Blueberry Balsamic Pork Chops
A delicious sauce made from balsamic vinegar and one of North Carolina's official state fruits, blueberries, help take these Christmas pork chops to new heights.
North Dakota: Homemade Chicken Noodle Soup
Need a quick holiday meal starter? Try out this homemade chicken noodle recipe. It is also a perfect make-ahead dish if you are especially low on time around the holiday season.
Give Ohio's favorite snack, the buckeye, a holiday makeover by making this Buckeye recipe. These delicious bite-sized desserts, made from cannellini bean puree, peanut butter, pumpkin, apple sauce, and dark chocolate, are sure to be a hit among both friends and family.
Oklahoma: Cornbread Stuffing
Transform Oklahoma's official side dish, cornbread, into a vegan stuffing that will be a great companion to any main course dish.
Oregon: Hazelnut Green Beans with Lemon Zest
Add a handful of Oregon's official state nut, hazelnut, to this healthy side dish recipe that features green beans, lemon zest, and shallots. Even better? This recipe is also vegan- and gluten-free.
Pennsylvania: White Chocolate Chip Cranberry Cookies
Make sure to bake a few batches of these scrumptious holiday cookies this year. The combination of tangy dried cranberries, sweet white chocolate chips, and smooth vanilla will ensure that these treats will disappear in no time. Google searches for "white chocolate cranberry cookies" are popular in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, so you can even consider this a local treat.
Rhode Island: Bacon-Spinach Dip
This recipe reimagines a common holiday starter, spinach artichoke dip, into a savory version topped with bacon. Google searches for "spinach" are popular in Providence, and this recipe might be the most delicious way to incorporate the veggie into your meal.
South Carolina: Raw Collard Greens Salad
If you need a lighter side to offset all the creamy dishes you may be eating this holiday season, make this simple Raw Collard Greens Salad. South Carolina's official state vegetable, collard greens, is combined with sundried tomatoes, raw garlic, and sharp apple cider vinegar to help create a salad so delicious, you might even forget it is also packed with nutrients.
South Dakota: Drop-Style Christmas Sugar Cookies
Add these cookies to your list of treats to make for Santa this year. Be sure to add some festive sprinkles into the batter for a sweet surprise. Searches for sugar cookies are especially popular in Sioux Falls and Rapid City, so you can't go wrong with this recipe.
Tennessee: Sundried Tomato Pesto Bites
This Sundried Tomato Pesto Bites recipe uses Tennessee's official fruit, the tomato, in the best way possible. Use store-bought mini fillo dough shells to ensure a simple prep.
Texas: No-Bake Pecan Pie Truffles
Make these no-bake truffles using the nuts of Texas' official state tree, the pecan tree. All you have to do is combine chopped pecans, maple syrup, and vanilla to a mixture of graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar, and butter. Once this combination is refrigerated, you can mold the batter into small balls and dip them into dark chocolate for a decadent touch.
Utah: Moroccan Roasted Beets
This delicious recipe combines toasted pistachios, sweet pomegranate seeds, and Utah's historic state vegetable, beets. Don't forget to add the tangy balsamic glaze to really help add to the dish's natural flavors.
Vermont: Turnip Puffs
This appetizer features Vermont's official vegetable, the turnip, along with sweet brown sugar and a savory breadcrumb topping for a totally fresh new way to enjoy this veggie.
Virginia: Peanut Butter Caramel Pie
One of Virginia's most famous crops, peanuts, are responsible for giving us one of the most delicious holiday desserts: Peanut Butter Caramel Pie. This pie has a caramel filling, a crumbly Oreo cookie crust, and a top layer of smooth chocolate topped with, you guessed it, peanuts.
Washington: French Onion Soup
If you love those diner French Onion soups that are brought to the table oozing with cheese, bread, and other mouthwatering flavors then you will love this recipe. Made with the official vegetable of Washington, the sweet onion, this soup is perfect to serve as either a starter or a side during the holidays.
West Virginia: Roast Chicken
This roast chicken recipe has a scrumptious seasoning on it that's made with thyme, lemon, garlic, and mustard, making it quite possibly the best roasted chicken meals you'll ever make.
Wisconsin: Christmas Tree Cheese
If you are searching for a more inventive way to serve a cheese dish during the Christmas holiday, try out this recipe. Using cream cheese, cheddar cheese, ground mustard, red pepper sauce, and chopped parsley, this tree-shaped cheese ball is even topped with a cheesy gold star.
Wyoming: Garlic Mashed Potatoes
You can't beat a classic. Everyone loves the creamy, dreamy blend of mashed potatoes, and we love this garlic-infused version.
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