State Fair

No condiment: Pickles are everywhere at the State Fair  

A pickle booth outside
The Perfect Pickle is one of many pickle offerings this year at the Minnesota State Fair.
Courtesy photo

Every year, new foods delight, entertain and baffle attendees of the Great Minnesota Get-Together. This year's entries were no exception, with a trend of pickle-inspired delicacies.

While there is a lot of attention on the humble pickle, at the Minnesota State Fair they are nothing new. Who can forget the 2022 pickle pizza that launched online discussions on whether it was good or terrible.  

One of the more creative uses of the pickle this year is at Hamline Church Dining Hall. The fair mainstay partnered with ice cream seller La Michoacana Rose to develop two State Fair-themed paletas, or Mexican style frozen treats on a stick: mini doughnut and pickle.

A spin on cucumber aqua fresca, with pickle chips frozen inside, the vegetable-forward paleta has a lovely sweet and salty taste. La Michoacana Rose owner Alex Rosario said a lot of trial and error went into creating it.  

“[It] has to be refreshing because an ice cream bar is refreshing,” Rosario explained, highlighting the brine profile. “I'm glad we got it. I think everyone likes it.” 

Richie’s Cheese Curd Tacos has a pickle take on the official new foods list. A pickle, split down the middle, is covered with cheese curds, wrapped in a tortilla with your choice of ranch or a spicy raspberry sauce. Near perfection, although the $14 price may be steep for some.  

The only new drinkable pickle item is Nordic Waffles’ Pickle Lemonade. If you are a fan of martinis or pickle juice and vodka, this is a non-alcoholic win for you.  

Returning fairgoers may also recognize The Perfect Pickle booth by the Grandstand, with its iconic one-eye pickle monster inviting guests in to sample its fried wares. Jen Finger, whose husband is one of the owners of the pickle stand and handles its media interviews, said that fried pickles are more of a southern food item, that has slowly made its way north.  

“Kids love them! The most popular thing with the kids is usually the plain old pickle on a stick,” Finger said. “It's that thing that's always on a sandwich. But it's not just a condiment, it can be so much more.”

MPR News reporter Feven Gerezgiher contributed to this story.  

Volume Button
Now Listening To Livestream
MPR News logo
On Air
MPR News