Oh, the Margaritas You'll Deep Fry

Twenty-five fascinating fried foods from the Texas State Fair

For years, county fairs have been at the forefront of deep-frying science, splicing and creating mutant "foods" that are all at once monstrous and wondrous. The Texas State Fair -- the largest state fair in the country -- holds a yearly competition for the most innovative deep-fried foods. Here are 25 fried Frankenfoods from fairs past:


6254389077_61ea83672c.jpegCollin Harvey/Flickr

It's actually bubblegum-flavored marshmallows, battered and deep fried and sprinkled with Chiclets. Do you chew this? Eat it? Who knows, but you can buy it.



Frozen balls of butter, battered and fried and served with four sauces. Because why not.


5051312985_3c57ae135f.jpegStacy Huggins/Flickr

Nope, this isn't beer battered. This is beer: battered and fried. The beer is poured into little ravioli pockets which burst with scalding suds upon first bite.

Peanut Butter Banana Cheeseburgers

elvisburger.jpgCheryl Reas via NBC

Elvis would probably make a special trip to Texas just to see this.


6086725294_663bdf140b_z.jpegL. Richarz/Flickr

An enterprising chef found a way to deep fry soda without the 3rd degree burns.

Chicken Fried Bacon


This is self-explanatory. And probably delicious.

Jelly Belly Jelly Beans


It's really just batter with some Jelly Belly jelly beans mixed in, like a fritter on a sugar high.

Cadbury Creme Eggs


Easter doesn't have nearly enough fried foods... until now.


6325011348_c54b92d71a.jpegSiggi Churchill/Flickr

It's not just pizza ingredients inside a ball of dough. No. It's an actual slice of pizza, breaded and fried.



With an extra sprinkle of Kool-Aid powder over the top instead of powdered sugar.

French Fry-Coated Hot Dog


See? It exists.

Pecan Pie


There's probably not a more delicious way to gain five pounds.


1463375475_cc836573b1.jpegTraveling Fools of America/Flickr

This one is a bit of a misnomer, it seems; the fried part is a sweet dough, which is topped with coffee-flavored ice cream, whipped cream and shaved chocolate.



With a banana thrown in for good measure.



Deep-fried condiments can't be a good thing, but according to some people, this is the best-tasting item at the fair. It's salsa mixed with masa, then rolled in crushed tortilla chips before frying.

Pop Tarts


It's hard to see, but there's a pop tart in there.


5024325702_d02f471b3b_z.jpegDavid Berkowitz/Flickr

Funnel cake batter made with margarita mixer, fried and soaked in more margarita, all served in a salt-rimmed glass.

Club Salad

salad.jpegNew York Daily News

The thing about salad is that it's good for you, usually. Not this time. This is a spinach wrap filled with ham, bacon, cheese, chicken, tomatoes, shredded lettuce and carrots, fried and served on a bed of lettuce.


5024318104_b04aebde73_z.jpegDavid Berkowitz/Flickr

It was only a matter of time.

Pumpkin Pie


It's a pocket filled with pumpkin pie, rolled in cinnamon and ginger snaps, fried and served with whipped cream.

Pineapple Upside Down Cake


Each item is battered and fried individually, skewered and served with whipped cream and a cherry. The "upside-down" part is up to you.

Deep-Fried Cheesecake

5055061047_ce0f22414d.jpegStacey Higgins/Flickr

Cheesecake filling wrapped in a tortilla, fried.


2926101464_7767c01ecb.jpegJenn Larsen/Flickr

These are amazing, actually.

And this year's winners, announced this week:

Fried Jambalaya: Best Taste

NM_3FAIR2_27123189.jpegThe Dallas Morning News

Fried Bacon Cinnamon Roll: Most Creative


This post also appears on Mental Floss, an Atlantic partner site.

Presented by

Cole Gamble is a writer for Mental Floss.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register with Disqus.

Please note that The Atlantic's account system is separate from our commenting system. To log in or register with The Atlantic, use the Sign In button at the top of every page.

blog comments powered by Disqus


Cryotherapy's Dubious Appeal

James Hamblin tries a questionable medical treatment.


Confessions of Moms Around the World

In Europe, mothers get maternity leave, discounted daycare, and flexible working hours.


How Do Trees Know When It's Spring?

The science behind beautiful seasonal blooming

More in Health

Just In