When you think of favorite holiday foods, what comes to mind? Whether it’s glazed ham, hot cider, or gingerbread cookies, we all have our preferences when we come home for the holidays. General Mills has proven that holiday food favorites are just as much a geographic preference as they are a personal one with a Holiday Plates by State map. General Mills researchers crunched data on recipe searches on Bettycrocker.com and Pillsbury.com to find the preferred seasonal food choices of every state.
Some states chose more generic favorites, like Michigan, whose top search was sugar cookies, or Illinois, which loved hot chocolate. Maryland, unsurprisingly, went for crab cakes, while Louisiana preferred shrimp appetizers. The most popular food overall was peanut butter cookies, the preferred holiday specialty of three states.
But there were some more ethnic or regional cuisines. California’s top regional search was caldo de res, a Mexican beef soup flavored with lime and cilantro. Hawaii serves up guacamole (admittedly, not the first appetizer that comes to mind when one thinks of Christmas dishes — or of Hawaii), while South Carolina prefers breakfast casserole. This typically Southern dish is layered with eggs, bread, cheese, and either ham or sausage. Coloradoans searched most for ensalada de manzana, also known as apple salad (a sweet, chilled salad traditionally served in Mexico on Christmas Day).
The full map is below: