The 10 Most American Foods Of All Time

American foods

AUTHOR: Jaimee Marshall

Every country has its own special tastes and quirks, and the United States is no different.

A food lover's group says that these dishes are thought to be the most American foods - meaning they either started in the U.S. or have strong ties to America. Do you agree?

1. Peanut Butter and Jelly

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The top comment came from a user who shared an anecdote about a recent shopping trip. They had encountered a friendly German man eager for advice on cultivating the best peanut butter and jelly sandwich (PB&J).

The poor guy was off to a rough start -- from selecting artisan bread fresh from the bakery section to needing clarification on the proper selection of ingredients. Thankfully, this American steered him in the right direction. They suggested he grab authentically unimpressive white bread and use brands of peanut butter that ooze with oil instead of that natural dry stuff.

The American went through all the necessary PB&J lore, discussing the merits of Welch's grape jelly vs. strawberry jam, primarily up to personal preference (though the correct answer would be grape jelly). Another user replied that they should have told him Jif is the only appropriate peanut butter choice, and I'm bound to agree!

2. Buffalo Wings

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You can smother hot or chicken wings with an unending list of sauces, but the most ubiquitous among them in the States is undoubtedly buffalo sauce.

Did you know this is less common in other countries? Their name did come from their origin in Buffalo, New York, as one user informed the original poster that Buffalo is the place that put the wing movement into motion.

Another commenter insisted you dip your buffalo wings in blue cheese, another uniquely American condiment, which makes it a double whammy of American gastronomic tastes. I recently discovered that buffalo sauce was an American fascination when my Australian boyfriend asked me what it was.

Even worse, when I made a few meals using the sauce, he expressed his disdain at the "abomination." Are we just culturally programmed to think buffalo sauce is good? Maybe you can only appreciate it in the cultural context of Superbowl parties.

3. Fluffernutters

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Ah, the one-and-only fluffernutter, the dessert version of a PB&J that consists of peanut butter and marshmallow fluff sandwiched between two slices of white bread. Let's start with the name, which one user admits is incredibly fun to say.

Another warned that knock-off brands of marshmallow fluff could affect the taste of your fluffernutter. They suggested using the one from the actual brand named "Marshmallow Fluff."

East coasters were delighted to claim fluffernutters as their own, as they originated in New England, Massachusetts. They even have their own National Fluffernutter Day. A Boston local suggested going to their local Marshmallow Fluff Festival if they acquire the taste for fluffernutters.

4. S'mores

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A world traveler claimed that no one outside America knows what a S'more is. They suggested it doesn't have the same name recognition or adoption as other American offerings like burgers.

However, in response, someone insisted they're pretty popular in Canada, so it's more accurate to consider S'mores a North American treat. Plus, a European contested the claim that people from other countries don't recognize the fun campfire snack.

Europeans from Belgium, Denmark, and the U.K. insisted they regularly enjoyed S'mores. But, of course, it could be less common there because it's always raining. It is a campfire snack, after all.

Plus, if you look at the components of a S'more, it's traditionally Hershey's chocolate and marshmallows roasted over a fire to a gooey consistency smushed between two graham crackers. So at least two of the three main ingredients are uniquely American.

5. Hot Dogs & Burgers

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These are two foods, but as Forest Gump would say, "they go together like peas and carrots." Hot dogs and burgers are American staples during grilling season in the summer.

One American was surprised that burgers and hot dogs weren't at the top of everyone's list since they're considered iconically American foods. Where else can you go to the beach surrounded by hot dog stands?

Many commented that "cheeseburgers" were particular to America though many other countries have embraced them. Some people observed that many American foods are regional, like New York pizza or New England clam chowder, but hot dogs and burgers are two of the few foods you can characterize as a nationwide craze.

6. Dessert Pies

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You know the saying, "as American as apple pie," Americans sure are partial to their pies. I clarify that we're talking about sweet pies because some countries immediately think of meat pies when hearing "pie."

One of the most frequent answers was about various pie flavors: apple, pumpkin, peach cobbler, blueberry, pecan, etc. You get the idea; Americans love to eat pie for special occasions and holidays, and there's no shortage of flavors.

Apple and pumpkin pie are the dead-ringer flavors of America. We have an entire holiday centered around the pumpkin pie, and there's almost no occasion where an apple pie would be out of place. However, one argued that apple pie originated in England.

Nevertheless, everyone else agreed that just because it was introduced to America and didn't originate there doesn't make it any less of an American institution. Many foods considered iconic representations of a particular culture were heavily influenced or introduced to them by other countries and cultures.

7. BBQ

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BBQ is one that many Americans insisted should be number one because there's nothing quite like the BBQ wars in America. You'll encounter many BBQ puritans who insist their barbecuing technique is the only authentic BBQ.

Many barbecuing enthusiasts insist you smoke the meats for genuine BBQ flavor instead of grilling them. That separates American BBQ from the sort you would see in other countries.

This observation from one user was particularly astute as they compared BBQ to jazz music, clarifying that while it's uniquely American, you're free to put your spin on it. Other users echoed this sentiment, observing regional differences in BBQ throughout the country. Some places referenced as having distinct BBQ styles are Tennessee, Texas, Missouri, and the Carolinas.

8. Soul Food

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Soul food, or southern food, is an ethnic cuisine traditionally prepared and eaten by African Americans. One person listed soul food as a whole, while countless others commented about everyday examples of soul food like fried chicken, peach cobbler, cornbread, grits, chitlins, biscuits and gravy, mac and cheese, collared greens, and black-eyed peas.

These are undoubtedly uniquely American foods, but they're also uniquely Southern. Therefore, you would be less likely to find these foods with the same prominence in other regions of the U.S.

9. Chocolate Chip Cookies

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This one surprised me, but tons of cookie-eaters insisted the beloved chocolate chip cookie is native to America. I had no idea! A Dutch person shared they have something that is a whole lot like chocolate chip cookies, and they're merely called "American cookies."

How weird! Likewise, an American exchange student shared their experience going to Germany in the '90s, where they brought homemade chocolate chip cookies.

The Germans couldn't believe American food could be that good. As one user informed me, these cookies were born out of Massachusetts at the Toll House. A lot of popular American foods came out of Massachusetts.

10. Cajun

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Finally, cajun food is the official cuisine of Louisiana. With 2.4k upvotes, many agreed that Cajun food, while particular to Louisiana, is one of America's most famous food cuisines.

Fellow Cajun lovers shared their favorite foods, from jambalaya and gumbo to étouffée and crawfish boils. Cajun food has strong French influences. When French-speaking Arcadians had to flee Nova Scotia, they wound up in Southwest Louisiana, and that's how Cajun food came to be.

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