Dining December 18, 2017
13 Pennsylvania Staples You Should Have Tried By Now
Fair warning: If you’re hungry, you’ll probably be even hungrier after reading this. You might even start craving some of the Pennsylvania staples – food and drink – that most of us have either tried or count among our favorites. So, let’s have a little bit of fun today. How many of these 13 Pennsylvania staples have you already tried? Which is your favorite?
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You probably have one of two reactions at the mere mention of scrapple: you start craving the Pennsylvania staple, or you wish you had never heard of scrapple before in your life. You either love scrapple or you hate it. There doesn't seem to be an in-between. The one thing we can probably all agree on: scrapple is a Pennsylvania staple.
2. Birch beer
Some might mistake birch beer for root beer. Sure, it might have a similar taste. But Pennsylvanians know better. Birch beer is made from herbal extracts like birch bark.
3. Shoofly pie
How many of you have, at least once, had a shoofly pie cooling off on a window ledge in your home? Legend has it that this Pennsylvania favorite earned its name because the sweet scent of the molasses attracted flies. That caused individuals to shoo the flies away.
4. Philly cheesesteak
No one makes a Philly cheesesteak quite like a Pennsylvanian. Who serves your favorite Philly cheesesteak?
5. Primanti Brothers sandwich
Western Pennsylvanians have been eating Primanti Brothers sandwiches - topped with fries and coleslaw - for more than eight decades. The hearty sandwich dates back to the Great Depression and is the perfect sandwich for a busy Pennsylvanian on the go.
6. Chipped chopped ham
Who among us has not eaten a chipped chopped ham (or chipped ham, whichever you prefer) sandwich for lunch at least once in our lives? Put some BBQ on Isaly's chipped chopped ham. Stick it all on a fresh bun and voila! A quick, delicious meal.
Mmm...mmm...haluski. Pennsylvanians sure love their homemade haluski. We make it in our homes and order it in restaurants. Even better? All those church and community festivals that fill the summer calendar usually feature homemade haluski.
It's not a sub - not in PA. No way. Here we call it a hoagie and it makes for one delicious meal. Hoagies feature a host of delicious meats, cheeses, and other condiments sandwiched between a fresh Italian or other bun. You cannot live in PA without having eaten a hoagie at least once.
Nothing quite tastes as good as homemade pierogies. Pennsylvanians may disagree on how to make them - boil then sauté, or simply sauté, for example - but we sure do agree that they are a state favorite. Some shops even sell pierogies - filled with cherries and blueberries - for dessert. It just doesn't get any better than that.
10. Whoopie pies
Who can resist the fluffy cream filling smashed in between two scrumptious chocolate cakes? Some people call them whoopie pies while other use the term gob. Which do you prefer?
11. Creamed chipped beef
Start the day off on the right foot - and with a happy stomach - with creamed chipped beef on toast. That's how the Pennsylvania Dutch do it. And, that's probably why it's such a popular food in PA.
12. Martin’s Potato Chips
Few states, if any, can rival PA when it comes to snacks. PA is, in fact, the Snack Capital of the United States. Maybe even the world. Martin's Potato Chips certainly top the list of favorite snacks. Other favorites include Herr's, Utz, and TastyKakes.
13. Soft pretzels
Let's round out the list of Pennsylvania staples with soft pretzels. Who doesn't love a soft pretzel? PA's the best place to get them, wouldn't you say? In fact, visit Julius Sturgis Pretzel Bakery in Lititz and learn how to twist the famous treat.
What other Pennsylvania staples do you think should be on part two of this list? Share your thoughts below!
Click here to see if you agree with the 10 things every Pennsylvanian secretly loves but would never admit.