From warm comforting dumplings to smoky barbecue chicken, foods from Delaware satisfy all tastes and cravings. This oceanside state, sits conveniently in the Mid-Atlantic region, providing plenty of seafood dishes too.
With fantastic beach towns and a number of historic and natural landmarks, there’s a lot to do in this Northeast state. For your next trip to the “Blue Hen State” consider tasting fifteen of these famous foods from Delaware, listed in no particular order:
This is an iconic Delaware comfort food, which gets its name from the unique slippery texture that develops as a result of cooking the dumpling dough in chicken broth. Unlike the typical round stuffed dumplings, slippery dumplings are flat, square, almost noodle-like pieces of dough. They are served with savory chicken gravy, pieces of chicken, and often a vegetable side dish.
Slippery dumplings aren’t the only way chicken is served in Delaware. With chicken being one of the state’s biggest exports, you’ll find it in many of Delaware’s famous foods. Opinions vary on the perfect blend of spices and flavors, but there is no shortage of local restaurants serving up their own version of fried chicken hot and fresh.
If you ever find yourself on a mission to try all the fried chicken varieties offered by different states, add Delaware to the list.
This unique breakfast food may be associated with a few U.S. states (such as the PA Dutch), but the largest scrapple producer in the world calls Delaware home. Classic scrapple is made with a blend of pork meat “scraps,” cornmeal, flour, and spices.
The idea of scraps of meat pressed together into a loaf of sorts might be off-putting to some, but it doesn’t take away from scrapple’s fame and popularity. Enjoy this famous food browned in a pan and served with your favorite breakfast sides.
A staple in Rehoboth Beach, DE, Thrasher’s has been serving up crispy, salty fries for decades on the boardwalk. What makes these fries unique is the addition of vinegar as a key ingredient.
Thrasher’s Fries are known for their simplicity and let the flavors of the few basic ingredients shine through. Once you try these delicious fries served up fresh and hot, you’ll understand why they’re so popular.
Not all of Delaware’s popular foods are of the savory variety. A sweet treat enjoyed by residents and people across the country is its state dessert—peach pie.
Farm fresh peaches are an important part of Delaware’s agricultural history and are enjoyed in all kinds of forms like this flavorful summer classic. The ripe peach filling, flavorful spice blend, and crispy pie crust come together for a beloved classic that is eaten and adored by many.
Similar sandwiches may exist in different states across the U.S., but none of them are quite as iconic as The Bobbie from Delaware. This classic dish is a sandwich on a long bread roll packed with turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, and mayo.
An ingredient combination that is reminiscent of a comforting and delicious Thanksgiving dinner, there’s no mystery as to why the Bobbie is a longtime favorite. Originally created at the sandwich shop Capriotti’s, this hearty classic is known by Delaware residents and foodies nationwide.
Delaware is one of the top watermelon-producing states in the country, so it’s no wonder that all kinds of varieties can be spotted in fruit salads and picnic tables across the state. Delaware’s sandy, well-drained soil along with its high summer temperatures make for the perfect conditions to grow watermelons.
A famed fruit across the country, this sweet treat can be combined with other dishes or enjoyed fresh all on its own. Next time you’re in the mood for a sweet, refreshing fruit, pay a visit to your local market and pick up one of the many kinds of watermelons that exist.
Creamed Chipped Beef
Creamed chipped beef is a hearty comfort food that satisfies foodies across the country. This beloved food can be found in other states, but it’s a very popular dish in Delaware.
The fare is exactly what the name describes – rehydrated pieces of dried beef covered in a creamy white sauce. Creamed chipped beef can be enjoyed as breakfast food on toast or with other satisfying sides.
Though goulash wasn’t invented in Delaware, a local version of this soup is a staple at parties and gatherings. A straightforward stew of pasta, tomato sauce, and ground beef, this filling dish is easy to make.
The simplicity of goulash is one of its best qualities, making it a great way to satisfy dinner guests in Delaware and across the country. Next time you’re looking for a cheap and easy meal to make for a group of people, this classic is sure to do the job.
A cultural icon in the state of Delaware, Grotto Pizza is legendary for a reason. This chain of restaurants originating in Delaware in 1960 is best known for its pizza with an iconic circular swirl of sauce on top of the cheese. There are now locations in three Mid-Atlantic region states, also including Pennsylvania and Maryland.
If the visually appealing swirl isn’t enough to pull you in, the delicious and savory taste of Grotto Pizza will have you coming back for seconds. This terrific twist on a classic will satisfy pizza fans from across the country.
Much like some of its neighboring states, Delaware is famous for blue crabs. This species is commonly found in the tidal areas of the state. It’s delicious seafood that can be enjoyed freshly steamed at a local restaurant (crab house), or prepared in your own kitchen after catching the blue crabs yourself (called crabbing). You’ll need a local fishing license to catch them though.
Classically prepared with a generous layer of Old Bay Seasoning (affiliate link), blue crabs make for a delicious flavorful meal. If you haven’t had the experience of sitting at a table that overlooks the water with a group of friends and a huge pile of steamed crabs, be sure to add it to your itinerary of things to do next summer.
Delaware Hot Dog
There are some conflicting reports as to what exactly makes up a classic Delaware hot dog, but at the top of the list is the iconic Delaware dog at Deerhead Hot Dogs, which is topped with a thick, chili-like bean sauce. Another candidate is the Delaware Destroyer found at Johnnie’s Dog House, which is actually two hot dogs piled high with mac n’ cheese, chili, grilled onions, and hot sauce.
If neither of those options sounds right for you, there is no shortage of hot dog stands serving up their own variation of this beloved food. If you’re a fan of truly filling, satisfying wieners, you’ll find a favorite from Delaware.
Roadside BBQ Chicken
Barbecue is popular in many varieties across the U.S., but Delaware is well known for its own barbecue in the form of roadside stands. Roadside barbecue chicken has been a tradition along the Delaware coast for years.
The roadside setting of these barbecues somehow adds to the whole experience. This smoky, savory BBQ is a unique summertime favorite that is sure to satisfy cravings.
Delaware Bay Oysters
Another classic seafood with a long, local history, Delaware Bay oysters are well known for their delicate flavor and firm meat. The Bay is actually home to two different kinds of oysters, both of which are delicious.
One variety tends to have a briny, sweet, and nutty flavor while the other is known to be milder. Oyster fans from across the country are sure to love these fresh from the bay at summertime seafood markets or expertly prepared at a bayfront restaurant.
Nicola Pizza, a Delaware staple is responsible for creating this iconic take on a Philadelphia classic. The NIC-O-BOLI® is similar to a stromboli. A hearty combination of ground beef, a blend of cheeses, and their signature pizza sauce is rolled in dough and baked in the oven for a delicious savory meal.
Those were some of the most well-known dishes that have a home in this East Coast state. Whether you like savory or sweet, you’re sure to love one of these famous foods. Add Delaware to your travel itinerary.