12 Outrageous Minor League Ballpark Bites Slideshow
May 23, 2013
12. Country Bob’s Chicken Sandwich
The Gateway Grizzlies’ secret sauce, for its popular chicken sandwich isn't so secret — it's Country Bob’s apple chipotle sauce from Centralia, Ill. Add the all-purpose sauce, bacon, and melted provolone cheese to a hearty chicken breast and wash down the heat with a cold beer.
11. The Triple Play
The Renos Aces throw down with the Triple Play sandwich, which was invented in 2009 to celebrate the opening of Aces Ballpark, but has remained a favorite of fans each year. The triple-decker is made with grilled slices of Pullman bread paired with pulled pork and brisket and a heaping portion of coleslaw. The colossal sandwich is topped with a stack of barbecue meatballs, pickles, and cherry peppers and held together with skewers. Since you’re already in line, order the carnitas tacos, too.
9. Red & White Hots
This is as local of a ballpark concoction as you can get. The Rochester Red Wings’ Frontier Field serves up a combo of red and white hot dogs from Zweigle’s, the only hot dog brand served at the stadium since the ‘20s. The white hot, a cheaper alternative to the red hot, was invented in the ‘20s by Germans in Rochester, N.Y. This spin on the classic is made of uncured and unsmoked pork, beef, and veal mixed with mustard and other spices. Because it’s uncured, the hot dog retains a white appearance. Top off local red and white hots as you like and enjoy with a side of fried pickles.
8. BBQ Nachos
Year after year the Memphis Redbirds’ AutoZone Park ranks as the nation’s only ballpark where hot dogs are not the top-selling food item. That’s because the Redbirds’ Rendezvous barbecue nachos have become a local tradition. Load salty corn tortilla chips with Rendezvous pulled pork, oozing spicy cheese sauce, and sliced jalapeños and you’ve got one happy Redbirds fan. You’ll need a Malibu rum cocktail to kill the heat.
7. The Peanut Butter and Pepper Jelly Jalapeño Bacon Burger
Head over to The Joe to catch a Charleston RiverDog game and a serious, free-reign approach to the burger. The Joe has attracted culinary celebrities like Rachael Ray and Adam Richman with its sensational and oversized Homewrecker (daring eaters can add up to 20 toppings to this 1-pound all-beef "build-your-own" hot dog). But this season the RiverDogs have taken it to the umpteenth degree with their new peanut butter and pepper jelly jalapeño bacon burger. What a mouthful, literally. Cool down with a Firefly Moonshine margarita or try the other new kid on the block, beer shakes, available in Palmetto Espresso Porter Chocolate, Guinness Caramel, and Sweetwater 420 Strawberry flavors.
6. Philly Cheesesteak Nachos
The popularity of the Gateway Grizzlies’ Best Burger is challenged by the team’s sensational Philly cheesesteak nachos, a far cry from the ordinary stale chips dipped in neon yellow Cheese Whiz. These nachos are made with crisp tortilla chips loaded with slow-cooked shredded chicken, Monterey Jack sauce, and grilled green and red peppers and onions.
5. Baseball’s Best Burger
In southern Illinois, fans flock to see the Gateway Grizzlies’ games, but the food is half the fun at this ballpark’s creative concession stands. The Grizzlies opt for a sweet and savory combo with GCS Ballpark’s "Baseball’s Best Burger" (also called "The Luther Burger" after crooner and yo-yo dieter Luther Vandross). Their juicy quarter-pound hamburger, topped with two slices of bacon and sharp Cheddar, is stuffed between a split Krispy Kreme Original Glazed grilled donut. The burger has been featured on Travel Channel’s Man v. Food along with the Grizzlies’ Philly cheesesteak nachos.
4. The Funnel Dog
This is the slightly tamer older sister to the Twinkie Dog. At Arvest Ballpark’s Cider Shack BBQ Pit, a juicy hot dog is battered and fried with funnel cake and coated with powdered sugar. It’s the Northwest Arkansas Naturals’ perfect marriage between two ballpark staple snacks, and at $3.50 a pop, it’s an affordable splurge. Who says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks?
3. The Fifth Third Burger
The Western Michigan Whitecaps fans bask in indulgence with their $20, 4,889-calorie, 4-pound specialty burger. It features five burgers (each weighs in at one third of a pound), topped with chili, cheese, chips, salsa, lettuce, and sour cream, all wedged between a giant sesame seed bun. While you’re there, you might as well order a side of the fried Mac and Jack Cheese Bites.
The Baco, a taco served inside a bacon shell, will be served this summer at the Whitecaps games at Fifth Third Ballpark in Comstock Park, Mich. Expect taco trucks nationwide (and maybe even Taco Bell?) to catch up with this idea soon, because, really, who doesn't love bacon?
1. Twinkie Dogs
The salty and sweet treat served at the Battle Creek Bombers’ minor league games in Michigan is gaining such attention from the media and fans, it’s clear Twinkies have found a new market. To assemble this insane creation, hot dogs are stuffed inside a Twinkie and topped off with the usual ketchup or mustard. For the ultimate experience, though, fans eat them with whipped cream and rainbow sprinkles with a maraschino cherry on top.