These Are the Craziest Fried Foods at the Texas State Fair

10/09/2014 at 04:06 PM ET

Deep fried butter
Rick Madonik/Toronto Star/Getty

If there’s one thing we can depend on as a society, it’s fried greatness from the State Fair of Texas.

The 24-day “fried food capital of Texas,” running until Oct. 19 in Dallas, includes live music, livestock competitions, an auto show and, most importantly, a grand exhibit of all the different foods that can be thrown into a deep fryer.

This year, the fair featured another slew of new fried absurdities, including Deep-Fried Sweet Tea, Deep-Fried Brisket and Deep-Fried Pumpkin Spice Oreos. And a lot of things “sprinkled” with powdered sugar.

Take a look at some the craziest, most ridiculous and hate-to-admit-it-but-kind-of-delicious-looking offerings:

Warning: Viewing the below photos might cause a heart attack.

French fry hot dog #NOM

A post shared by Morgan Gibson Kanner 🥂 (@morgankanner) on

The Fry Dog is exactly what it sounds like: a hot dog wrapped in french fries and then deep-fried until it’s one big piece of crispy, junk food on a stick.

The South’s signature drink is combined with their signature cooking technique by blending brewed sweet tea into a custard filling. It’s then coated in a graham cracker crust, deep fried and topped with sweet tea syrup.

This barbecue-gone-wild is smoked for 12 hours before hitting the fryer. It’s served with fried onion rings, barbecue sauce and pickle slices.

A good way to start your morning in Texas.

The popular Thai hot sauce sauce is mixed with shredded chicken, corn, green chilies and tomatoes, rolled into balls, breaded with crushed tortilla strips and fried.

Deep fried Oreo
Courtesy State Fair of Texas

The season’s most popular flavor is now a battered, fried, doughy sphere of pumpkin cheer.

Amazeballs at Texas State Fair. #bigtex #amazeballs

A post shared by Grav Weldon (@lordgrav) on

Yes, that’s really what they’re called. How it’s made: Chocolate cake, chocolate frosting, maple syrup and bacon pieces are rolled into balls and then, of course, deep fried. The balls are dusted with powdered sugar, drizzled with chocolate and maple syrups and — just for good measure — topped with more bacon crumbles.

How do you make the classic Southern dish even more over-the-top? Throw the chicken into a cone and smother it with sausage gravy.

Crispy, creamy and oh-so rich — are some things just meant to be fried?

Whole milk, half & half and heavy cream are mixed with sugar and cookies, and then slow cooked into a creamy custard. After six hours of chilling, it’s sliced into thin sections, dipped in egg wash and Japanese bread crumbs and — surprise! — deep fried. It’s dusted with powdered sugar, and served with either chocolate or strawberry sauce.

A nice “healthy” option.

Strips of buttermilk biscuit dough are fried, sprinkled with powdered sugar and served with milk chocolate “gravy “for dipping.

We agree with our client, Best Gordita ever #statefairoftexas #tgif

A post shared by Illuvint (@illuvint_llc) on

A gordita (kind of like a fatter, fluffier taco) is stuffed with beef and beans, fried and topped with cheese, lime cabbage slaw and — if you so desire — a drizzle of avocado crema sauce.

It’s not necessarily fried itself, but it’s inspired by a classic fried dish. This mild beer is served with a powdered sugar rim.

Lots of jelly, plus a healthy sprinkle of powdered sugar.

—Morgan Gibson

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FILED UNDER: Dessert , Food , Snack , Travel

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Showing 38 comments

Amal on

Gross. No wonder 82% of people in Texas are morbidly obese.

pavitrasarala on

Quit exaggerating and stop being a hater, Amal. The obesity rate in TX is 29%, which, granted, is still high, but it’s been dropping and it’s lower than the national average. Colorado’s rate is 20% and they’re the lowest in the nation, so TX isn’t that far behind.

The deep fried foods aren’t my thing, but so what? I don’t judge anyone who likes them or wants to try them. Some people will try anything once and that’s not always a bad thing. Splurging on that stuff for a day isn’t going to make you keel over or gain 500 pounds.

Don’t knock TX until you try it… and I say that as someone who used to list it as one of the last places I’d ever consider making my home. If you’d told me ten years ago that I’d not only move here but like it, I’d have said no way. But you know what? Never say never.

I ended up relocating here and to date, I have no regrets. Most people I’ve met are genuinely nice folks, the metro area where I am is a true melting pot of diversity and culture, and there are so many amazing places to visit. The education system where I am has been excellent for my child, and I’ve had to deal with rotten school systems in two other states, so I know of what I speak in that regard.

Oh, and many people here are very much into health and fitness. My city alone has its own 5K and tons of trails you can walk or bike at any time.

My family and I have enjoyed our adventures in TX so far, and we hope for many more. It’s a beautiful place to live.

Celeste on

Utterly disgusting.

Taylor on

This is a ‘once a year’ event people – guess all the haters aren’t from the South . . . stop being so judgmental! Bet a million bucks you’d love any of these once you tasted it!

Me on

No one ever thinks to highlight the MN State Fair and yet it’s biggest in daily attendance and has way wackier foods, most of which are “on-a-stick”! (TX’s only beats us in total attendance because their’s is twice as long!) The Great Minnesota Get Together is a blast! Something to look forward to every year!

Jen on

In other related news, Texas cardiologists report a 75% increase in appointments in the months immediately following the state fair.

JenniferK on

Amal – Two things to note: (1) Most people do not eat these treats alone. I’ve shared a few of these with other people. (2) The Texas State Fair is so big that most people will walk off high calorie foods. I do a Fitbit tracker and my husband and I walked 16k steps in a 5 hour span. And that was with stopping and sitting to eat, drink and watch shows.
Where you get the statistic 82% morbidly obese is beyond me.

Urq on

In Scotland, people eat deep-fried Mars bars – a kind of chocolate bar.

FelicityJune on

I lived in Texas and have never, ever seen so many fat and obese people. I cannot understand that they proudly present this kind of “killer-food” Just by looking at it, it makes me sick to my stomach.

genibre2013 on

I agree, gross. Makes me happy to be an expat in London where this crap is not celebrated. (I lived in Texas for two years and that was more than enough).

That being said, I have had a deep-fried Oreo before and my gosh, I thought I died and gone to heaven. Made sure to run a few extra miles the next morning 😉

Ravenhair on

I just moved from Dallas after living there 20 years. This is the Texas State Fair and the fried food contest is all in fun. Vendors try to out-do each other every year. Calm down, this is not the normal food for Texas – just fun at the State Fair.

heartattack special on

ewww….I can feel my arteries clogging just looking at those pics.

donnatex on

Amal…you’re an idiot. Do some research before you open your big “fat” trap.

a texan for life on

FelicityJune…maybe you should move to Mississippi, West Virgina or Alabama…where according to the stats are ranked 1, 2 & 3 in obesity rates. Besides…we really don’t want you in Texas anyway! hasta la vista, biotch.

FelicityJune on

a texan for life: your reply is childish, as you as a Texan can see firsthand how fat people are in your country. I don’t give a rat’s a…. whether you want me there or not, I am speaking from my own experience. Name calling is not necessarily a sign of intelligence, isn’t it??
But keep stuffing your face with these fried “atrocities” and be happy, nobody cares about you Texans anyway!!!

Sherry on

I gained about 10lbs just looking at that stuff and usually pass on that kind of stuff when I got to the State Fair but I’ve gotta admit, I’d probably try the deep fried brisket!

isa on

Now I know why 80% of the people in TX are fat. Those people eat like sh!t.

Emily on

Y’all and your obesity percentages make me laugh. Most people don’t eat stuff like this every single day, it’s a novelty, you’re at the fair and you want to try crazy fair food. What’s the big deal? You need to be more concerned with all the chemicals in your “healthy” foods that you eat everyday because the media tells you it’s good for you, not the once a year fried concoctions in Texas.

Side note: I live on Sweet tea, but the thought of fried ST makes me want to gag. Yuck.

Kat Robinson on

Need some more crazy choices? Check out these 71 items we found on our visit:

Jen on

@genibre2013 The obesity rate in the UK is 23% and predicted to reach 33% by 2020. Can you say Fish & Chips and Bangers & Mash? Not sure where you lived in Texas, but in Houston we have extremely diverse international food scene that rivals London and our weather permits us to be active outdoors much more of the year. I’ve lived in London too, so I know of which I speak.

Scott Smaistrla on

to all you snooty self righteous judgmental jackasses…Some of the cuisine at the State Fair of Texas is a “celebration of the absurd”…a fantasy for people to try and eat things that they would not cook for themselves… Do you actually think that this food is a regular staple in the diets of most? Ok, maybe some folks don’t eat that well on a daily basis, but that’s their choice. Its about fun, and trying new things and temporarily escaping the realities of life that most folks who attend The State Fair of Texas enjoy. I guarantee all of you who are stereotyping Texans or judging folks who attend The State Fair and dine on this absurd food, would have the time of their lives if they ever made it to Dallas for the event. So I challenge you (and you know who you are) to stop bitching about some who enjoy a release from their everyday lives, by sampling the cuisine of the absurd, to get out of your miserable humble abodes, and like these folks have some fun…

Nannyto1 on

I’m a super healthy eater but some of these things I’d LOVE to try – in particular the Amazeballz and the Biscuit Fries with Chocolate Gravy. And hey – it’s not like I’d be eating them every day. You gotta live a little. 🙂

Tina on

Talk about guilty pleasures. This is insane. But, knowing what we know today, do we really need to be making foods like this?


Yalls comments are ignorant. This is a once a year Fair. We don’t eat like this everyday. Its fun and interesting. The creativity that is put into it. So get off your high horse and try it. The food in Texas is amazing if yall would stop judging just cuz yall heard one ignorant Celeb like Charles Barkley make a statement all of a sudden yall feel the need to repeat. HATERS!!!

Annelise on

OK, the amazeballs might be alright but I have to agree about the fried sweet tea, ewwwww!! And, funnel cake beer Akkkk! So much fun to look at what they come up with. I wonder if they interview pregnant women about strange cravings, where else would someone have come up with fried pickles???

Annelise on

Nannyto1, looks like we need to go to the fair together!! Those were my first choices, too!! Possibly the PB&J with banana, too!!

HappyTexasTransplant on

Moved here from Fl 6yrs ago and should have 20yrs ago! People are super nice, no one is in your business 24/7. I am not obese, nor do I eat that stuff more than once a year but… I look forward to the fair every year, I even have family that comes from Fl and Mn for this. We all taste everything, walk , drink and enjoy it to the max. People need to butt out and stop telling others what is good or bad for them. Its no bodys biz. BTW: the fried cheesecake is always my first stop and the pb&jb is the best!

Rally on

Two years in a row now, I have had the deep fried blooming onion at the fair and two years in a row, about 2 weeks after eating that deep fried blooming onion, I get the WORST breakout of acne EVER. I’m talking clogged pores all over my face with the nastiest stuff coming out of my pores. This is why you don’t eat deep fried foods people, its not good for your body! Now I just have to forget how good those deep fried blooming onion is…

Anonymous on


Mandy on

There isn’t a reaction face for vomit. Which is the only reaction I had. Vomit.

Kya K on

Those Siracha Balls look tasty!! Fried Avocado?!?! I have to go there.

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Ken Heller on

ALL the comments say 2014………… great site………… all BS

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