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Florida State Fair Food Lineup: Oddities, Staples, And A Peanut Butter Ramen Burger

Food offerings at the Florida State Fair
Florida State Fair
Among the new options are, clockwise from left: Steak 'n' Eggs Sundae, Cheesy Sriracha Funnel Bites, Piña Colada Candy Apple and S’mores Doughnut. CREDIT: Florida State Fair";s

If you’re looking for an excuse to throw that new diet to the wind or to enjoy the chalky taste of an antacid, this year’s Florida State Fair has got you covered.

The fair, which opens Feb. 6, will debut a variety of new foods for guests to indulge in – from variations of fair-food staples like the funnel cake and corn dogs to ramen-infused burgers.

There’s something for everyone, unless you enjoy low cholesterol levels – where’s the fun in that, though? – and what better way to plan your trip to the fair than around the food being served.

Here’s an itinerary like that made just for you:

Start your day off with a Steak ‘n’ Eggs Sundae from DeAnna’s Steak Sundaes. This creation substitutes ice cream for layers of fries, warm cheese, sour cream and bacon. Instead of sprinkles or hot fudge, you’ll get a healthy dose of cheesy grits, a fried egg and sirloin steak.

What better way to chase that meal than with The S’mores Doughnut from Peachey’s Baking Co.? It’s filled with marshmallow cream and topped with Dutch chocolate drizzle and a torched marshmallow.

Now that your late breakfast is out of the way, on to lunch.

Cleanse your palate from that s’mores doughnut with the most normal-sounding item on the list: The Trio from Ole Canoe Slider Company. With plenty of options from grilled fish to beef and cheese or Ribeye steak, these sliders will give you a sense of normalcy before the dizzying array of foods to come.

Out of this World Funnel Cakes delivers a new spin on the ever-popular carnival food with the Cheesy Sriracha Funnel Bites. In lieu of the usual powdered sugar, the group tops the fried batter with four kinds of cheese and chives and serves it with a sriracha aioli dip.

Cheeseburger On-A-Stick
Cheeseburger On-A-Stick. CREDIT: Florida State Fair

Now it’s time to dual wield some fried foods. Hit up DeAnna’s Diner for its Cheeseburger On-A-Stick – a deep-fried Angus beef patty drizzled with warm cheddar cheese sauce – before heading over to Best Around for the Cheesy Tater Corn Dog, a cheese-filled hot dog dipped ever so gracefully in a potato and corn dog batter and, finally, expertly deep-fried until golden and crunchy.

Hope you’re still hungry because there are plenty more foods to go.

For your mid-afternoon snack, grab a bag of Candy Corn – no, not that waxy nonsense from Halloween – from Pence’s Carmel Corn. The multicolored coatings help deliver a slew of different flavors, such as banana, bubble gum, raspberry and apple.

Follow that up, or substitute it, with a Piña Colada Candy Apple from The Apple Cart. The crisp apple is coated with the flavor of a thousand beachside vacations and is available with or without coconut.

You haven’t had fries in a while, so let’s go ahead and fix that. Head back over to DeAnna’s Steak Sundaes for a batch of Cajun Chili Cheese Fries. These bad boys come topped with hot sauce, cheese, grilled onions, jalapeño slices, parmesan cheese and beef chili con carne.

Sweet Heat Jalapeño Ice Cream
Sweet Heat Jalapeño Ice Cream. CREDIT: Florida State Fair

It’s February in Florida, which means best-case scenario you needed a sweater this morning, but are now possibly breaking a sweat from running to all these vendors. Take a breather, cool down, but also sweat some more with Coolicious Treats’ Sweet Heat – a cup full of jalapeño- and chocolate-flavored ice cream.

We would label this next part the home stretch, but you still have dessert to go. Nonetheless, let’s unveil the dinner options.

Peanut Butter Ramen Burger
Peanut Butter Ramen Burger. CREDIT: Florida State Fair

Still in your bulking season phase? Good. Head over to Carousel Foods for its Peanut Butter Ramen Burger. A quarter-pound burger topped with chow mein cabbage slaw, tossed in a peanut butter Asian viniagrette and smushed between two buns made of ramen.

If you’re itching for more, head to Angela’s Pizza for its Hawaiian Jerk Chicken Pizza, featuring a white garlic sauce and topped with jerk chicken, diced pineapple, ham and mozzarella cheese, available whole or by the slice. (As a media organization, we offer no comment on whether pineapples belong on pizza.)

You’ve eaten dozens of capsaicin-filled foods, probably a couple of pounds of meat, and all of it was most likely fried.

S'mores On A Stick
S'mores On A Stick. CREDIT: Florida State Fair

You’ve earned a victory lap of dessert, starting with a self-described “larger than life” marshmallow dipped in sweet, melted chocolate and rolled in crunchy graham cracker pieces with a stick stuck through it. The aptly named S’mores On A Stick can be found at Pence’s Carmel Corn. The Deep Fried Strawberry Lemonade Shortcake Sundae is another creation from DeAnna’s Steak Sundaes. The warm cinnamon sugar donut pieces are topped with a drizzle of lemonade frosting, fresh strawberry slices and homemade whipped cream.

In the words of Billy Mays, “but wait there’s more.” Two to be exact.

Both of these finishers are variations of the funnel cake. Best Around features the more abstracted version, dubbed The Orie, with a sweet cream filling stuffed between two chocolate funnel cake batter cookies. The more traditional iteration comes from Paulette’s Food Service and is simply called the S'mores Funnel Cake – a classic funnel cake, topped with mini marshmallows, chocolate sauce and crushed graham crackers.

How many calories have been consumed by the end of this? We don’t want to know. All we do know is you might want to save a couple of cheat days for this one.

Jonah Hinebaugh is the WUSF social media intern for spring 2020.
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