Staff writer Britton Peele digs his teeth into a Deep Fried I-35 throughout a taste test of the 10 huge Tex choice Award winners at the State fair of Texas on Friday, Sept. 24, 2021, in Dallas.(Ben Torres / special Contributor)
Finally, we’re earlier at the State fair of Texas in 2021 after ~ a hiatus in 2020. And our an initial stop was for fried food.

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This year fleet the 10 huge Tex selection Awards finalists brought loads that creativity and flavor. Yet it also had an ext disappointing bites than in any type of year we might remember.

It cost $139 to buy and sample every 10 of this foods, and also one point was an extremely clear: Don’t do that. Usage this list together a primer for which foods you should buy and which you deserve to skip.


Note: us did no rank every the new drinks and food at the State Fair; over there are much more than three dozen. This list focuses on the 10 large Tex selection Awards finalists only, which us have called the fried-food “royalty” of the State Fair. Find a perform of 25 other new items here.


Use this map to discover all the huge Tex an option Awards finalists; in-depth locations space not detailed for every dish.

#1: Deep-fried seafood gumbo balls — $25


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Don't skip the Deep-Fried Seafood Gumbo Balls at the State same of Texas in 2021 also though they price $25.

The deep-fried seafood gumbo balls were, unquestionably, the ideal bite we had actually all day. I’d eat these because that dinner and also skip every various other fried option, if I had actually to.

And ns might: in ~ a chuck $25, or 25 coupons, these room the greatest priced that the huge Tex an option Awards finalists, through far. Us didn’t take the lightly.


My taste-testing partner Britton Peele thinks this gumbo balls were better than actual gumbo. “I feel like I’m never ever filled up by a soup. This is all the good parts the a soup — yet filling,” he says. The large Tex an option Awards judges additionally agreed and gave Greg Parish’s gumbo balls a rare two awards this year: ideal taste (savory) and also most creative.

For $25, you get two hefty gumbo balls made v shrimp, chicken, crab, Andouille sausage and rice, a dark roux on top and on the side. To express a small of the detailed Tabasco on every one if you want an ext heat. Or, if you’re yes, really ready, lug Crystal warm Sauce in your bag.

These fried gumbo balls room the most talked-about new fried food in ~ the same this year. And they’re the most complicated bite i have ever eaten at the State fair of Texas.

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Find castle inside, in ~ the Tower building food court; and also outside, throughout from the breed cub birthing barn. Keep in mind that the Tower structure can acquire crowded and also many human being are not masked since they space eating.