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The Most Popular Foods You'll Find in Every Southern Pantry

If the mayo isn't Duke's, we don't want it.

Sure, you know about classic Southern foods like barbecue, shrimp and grits, and potato salad. But beyond the classic comfort foods, Southerners also have strong preferences when it comes to brand-name grocery items. You're not likely to find, say, a jar of Sir Kensington's mayo in a Southern pantry when Duke's is around.

Here are some of the most popular foods you'll find in Southern pantries across the United States. Get your shopping list ready!

And for more, don't miss these 15 Classic American Desserts That Deserve a Comeback.

1

Duke's Mayonnaise

dukes real mayonnaise in packaging

What was started as a mayo used on sandwiches to feed South Carolina soldiers has become a full-fledged Southern tradition. Hellmann's could never compare to Duke's; the Southern brand just tastes more homemade.

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2

Grits

Grits dish
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Ask someone in, say, New York City where to buy grits, and they might not be able to help you. But Southerners know that grits make an excellent side dish to any breakfast dish, whether or not you add shrimp.

3

Cornmeal

cornbread in basket wrapped in cloth
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Aside from making cornbread, you can also make corn pancakes with cornmeal. They're an underrated Southern delicacy.

4

Lemons

lemons
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From homemade buttermilk to lemon ricotta pancakes to the garnish on a glass of sweet tea, lemons make any Southern recipe better.

5

Sugar

white sugar in wooden spoon resting on brown sugar
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From sweet tea to sweet potato pie, plenty of Southern recipes need sugar to make them pop.

RELATED: Easy, healthy, 350-calorie recipe ideas you can make at home.

6

Texas Pete

Texas pete hot sauce

Hot sauce is a must for fried chicken and fried eggs. I'm partial to Texas Pete, which is made in North Carolina.

7

Coca-Cola

coca cola
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From Coke floats to Coca-Cola cake, Southerners have plenty of uses for this soda. Want to switch things up? Try Cheerwine, which is headquartered in Salisbury, North Carolina.

8

Wickles

jars of wickles spicy relish
Sheila Fitzgerald/Shutterstock

These Alabama-based spicy pickles will add a kick to any sandwich.

9

Nuts

roasted pecans in bowl
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Whether you're making boiled peanuts or pecan pie, nuts are a staple in countless Southern recipes.

10

Lard

lard
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Yes, butter is important to recipes for Southern treats like biscuits or dumplings. But as my grandfather will tell you, the best pie crust is made with lard.

Meghan De Maria
Meghan De Maria is a senior editor at Eat This, Not That!, specializing in food, product, and restaurant coverage. Read more
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