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margarita19. Margaritas

Between the heat, the traffic, and the mosquitos the size of your hand, life in Texas is not without it’s hard days. This is why we have developed a liquid diet that helps calm the nerves. It is heavily based on Margaritas. Without them, we’d be a stressed out bunch.

 

 

 

 

bluebell18. Blue Bell Ice Cream
Nothing cools you down as a kid on a hot summer day than Blue Bell Ice Cream. Made in Brenham, TX it’s the best ice cream in the country. Heck, the world for that matter. It’s an integral part of all Texan summers and an integral part of our diet.

 

 

 

 

chipsandsalsa17. Chips and Salsa
Folks in New York eat Pizza, folks from Florida eat whatever they can get at a Disney World concession line, and folks in California eat In N Out or whatever. Well here in Texas we eat a lot of things, but most importantly, we eat a lot of chips and salsa.

The first rule you need to know about chips and salsa though, is that it’s literally impossible to stop eating once you start. It’s just a fact of life in Texas.

The second and most important rule with chips and salsa, is avoid restaurants that charge for it. It is illegal in Texas to charge for chips and salsa (or at least it should be).

…which brings me to my next item.



julios16. Julio’s Chips and Salsa
Yes, I know that Julio’s chips and salsa is “chips and salsa” too. But it’s also not. Julio’s is so good it’s in a category of food all its own. There’s chips and salsa, much like what you’d get at any good God-fearin’ Mexican restaurant, and then there’s Julio’s. Julio’s is like regular chips and salsa, except they require a 12-step program to get un-addicted to them.

If somehow you’ve lived here in Texas and still haven’t had them, do yourself a favor and drive to HEB right now. You can thank me later.
chipsandqueso15. Chips and Queso

You’d think I’d be done talking about chips by now, but you’d be wrong. Chips in this state have another companion that must be discussed. That companion is queso. Queso is the heavier, lighter, more filling sibling of salsa. It’s not just melted cheese. It’s melted cheese blended with spices, pico de gallo, and maybe a little guacamole. Heck, if you want a meal, throw in some meat too. Just bring plenty of heavy duty chips. Queso is great for breaking your chips in half.

In any normal setting, grabbing a bowl and scraping out the contents with your hands is normally frowned upon. When it comes to queso though, all Texans do their part to make sure that none gets wasted. We’ll use every last chip crumb to get every last ounce of that golden delicious goodness.

bbq14. Texas BBQ
Other states may have their “specialty” BBQ, but Texas is king of them all. If you want smoked turkey, we’ve got it. Want sausage? You’re covered. Brisket? You don’t even have to ask. Heck, the National Magazine of Texas even built an entire website devoted to our sacred food. We’ll literally take any part of the cow you’ve got and smoke it to perfection.

BBQ in other states just does not compare. We have perfected the art to a point that it’s almost unfair to compare our food to the sorry excuse for smoked meats that other states try to produce. Sorry America. Just because you own a smoker that you bought at Home Depot and a bag of mesquite chips does not make you a BBQ pro. Leave it to the professionals, better known as Texans.



drpepper13. Dr Pepper
Few beverages are as revered as our beloved Dr Pepper. Invented in the 1880′s in Waco, TX it is one of the most refreshing a delicious things you will ever taste. It’s so beloved in Texas that there’s nothing more disappointing for a Texan than asking for a Dr Pepper and being told that a restaurant only has Mr. Pibb. Face it America. Mr. Pibb is no substitution for the real Texan drink.

 

ranch12. Ranch Dressing
There is only one dipping sauce that is universally accepted for 99.9% of all food items in the state of Texas: Ranch dressing. The folks out in California may have invented the stuff, and God Bless em for it, but this condiment is king on the Texas lunch and dinner table. I’ll dip pizza, chicken nuggets, fries, Texas toast, and dang near any other edible item in it.

 

 

 

tortillas11. Tortillas
In Texas, the table isn’t correctly set until this fella shows up. The flat circular corn/flour discs of deliciousness inside are one part eating utensil, one part container of awesomeness. The tortilla will sop up food and it’ll wrap up random ingredients in to an easily ingested form. Heck, it can even act as a napkin.

No Texan’s diet is complete without a healthy helping of tortillas. Corn or flour, tortillas are good at any hour.

Speaking of tortillas…



tacos10. Tacos
Tortillas may act as an eating utensil, but they also form the basis for one of the greatest foods of all time: the Taco. The answer to “what should we eat” should always be “tacos”.

The beauty of the taco is in it’s configurability. A taco can be loaded. A taco can be skimpy. A taco can be fajita. A taco can be barbacoa. Heck a taco can be nothin’ but beans, cheese, and rice if you wanted. A taco can be whatever you need it to be right then and there. They’re portable, they’re easy to figure out, and most importantly they’re plentiful in Texas. Throw a rock in any direction and you’ll hit a taqueria in this state.

breaklfasttaco9. Breakfast Tacos
Breakfast tacos require their own category because of their importance. They say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day which may be why our dish of choice is a variation on the taco. Oh it’s breakfast time? Just swap out the fajitas for bacon, egg, cheese, and salsa. Bam. Your taco just became breakfast. Oh you’re in a rush? No worries. Dang near every taqueria in this state serves them all day so you can grab one on the go.

 

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8. Basically Everything At Whataburger
When they say “just like you like it” they mean it at Whataburger. Oh you want a single chicken strip to put in your taquito? No problem. You want literally every condiment they have on your burger? You got it.

Speaking of condiments, they don’t just have Ketchup. They’ve got Fancy ketchup. It’s so good they’ve bottled it and partnered with HEB to sell the stuff to us hungry Texans. There is literally no fast food restaurant that cares more about you than Whataburger. None. They love you that much Texas.

 

 

shiner7. Shiner Beer
As the old saying goes, there’s nothin’ finer than an ice cold Shiner. That little brewery in Shiner, TX has been pumpin’ out beers for us thirsty Texans for a long time. They even make a variety for us to choose from. There are so many homesick Texans up in New York who’ve been begging for it that they finally started shipping and selling it up in the land of Yankees.

 

 

 

 

texastea6. Sweet Tea
I only have one thing to say about sweet tea and that’s this; folks who don’t like sweet tea need to have their heads checked.

Moving on…



tamales5. Homemade Tamales
There are two forms of currency that are accepted in Texas; US Dollars and homemade tamales. When it gets to be cold outside, the most popular people in this state generally are the ones who make tamales by the dozen. They’ll warm up any Texan’s temperature and mood any time of day.



pecanpie4. Pecan Pie
First of all, it’s pronounced “puh – cahn”. No one says “pee – can”. Secondly, it’s delicious. You offer any Texan a slice of homemade pie and a scoop of Blue Bell vanilla ice cream and you’ll make an instant friend.








kolaches3. Kolaches

What the rest of the country calls “kolache” we call “pig in a blanket”. THESE are kolaches and they’re delicious. Our Czech ancestors have done it up right and have gotten us addicted to the delicious baked goods. Do yourself a favor and stop at Weikels, Czech Stop, or Hruska’s in the near future to grab you one.
 

 





cfs2. Chicken Fried Steak
Chicken Fried Steak is a staple of the hungry Texan. Not only is it completely filling, it’ll help put you to sleep if you’re suffering from insomnia. Like tacos, it’s hard to find a bad CFS in Texas. Nearly every diner and restaurant in this state serves their take on the dish. My personal favorite is at the Gristmill.

 

 

 

 

 

chili1. Chili
You can’t talk about Texas diets without talkin’ about the official dish of the State of Texas: Chili. Folks elsewhere call it Chili Con Carne, but here in Texas it’s just Chili. Folks elsewhere also ruin their chili by adding beans and other “filler”. Round here, we just keep it simple with sauce, ground beef, some fresh onions, sour cream (if you can’t handle the spice), and a pinch of cheese. We’re such experts on the dish that the international championship of chili cook offs is in Texas.

Anyone that knows beans about chili knows there’s no beans in chili.