One of the best things about going to the State Fair of Texas is sampling the many types of delicious food. And yes, much of it is deep-fried.
But food vendors have realized that not everyone can deal with the high fat, high carbs and high calories of traditional fair food. In parallel, fairgoers who don't consume gluten had been expressing increasing concern that they couldn't find gluten-free food at the fair. The result? There's now a growing list of healthy gluten-free foods throughout the Texas State Fair.
What Is Gluten?
Some people avoid gluten completely because they have celiac disease, a chronic hereditary intestinal disorder in which an inability to absorb gluten triggers an immune response that damages the intestines. Others avoid it because they feel better when they do. Still, others don't eat it because they mistakenly believe this will help them lose weight. Whatever their reason, for them gluten is a danger zone.
So what are glutens? They're a protein composite found in foods processed from wheat, barley, and rye. Gluten gives elasticity to dough, helping it to rise and to keep its shape, and it sometimes gives the product a chewy texture.
Food at the Texas State Fair
- Smoked Turkey Legs: Located throughout the fairgrounds, but check before purchasing whether the vendor uses seasonings or glaze that contain gluten. The smoked turkey leg of the most popular dishes!
- Sausage on a Stick: Sold by Newport Concessions, which has 10 locations at various locations on the grounds.
- Roasted Corn: One at concession #M-27 on the main Midway, and another at concession #C-3 in the Gate Way area.
- Jack's French Fries: Four locations in Cotton Bowl Plaza. The vendor promises there's no cross-contamination when cooking the spuds.
- Tornado Taters: One location on Nimitz Drive; a second on Fun Way Street on the Midway.
- Pokey’Os Cookies & Cream: Gluten-Free Blue Bell ice cream; several flavors.
- Ranchero Fajitas: Fruit cup.
- Lermas Gorditas: Fruit cup; available at Cotton Bowl Plaza.
- Homestyle Foods: Fresh-squeezed lemonade; at the front gate and in the Food Court).
- Family Fun Foods: Fresh-squeezed lemonade; several locations throughout the grounds.
- Katie’s Café: Fresh-squeezed lemonade; on Fun Way Street on the Midway.
- Cotton Candy: Jim B. Conatser; nine locations at various locations on the grounds.
- Popcorn: Sold through several vendors.
- Frozen Bananas and Chocolate-Covered Frozen Bananas: Near Big Tex.
- Homemade Rootbeer: Two locations: One on Fun Way Street on the Midway, a second on International Boulevard.
- Cassie’s Frozen Yogurt: One on Fun Way Street on the Midway.
- Chocolate Frozen Yogurt
- Vanilla Frozen Yogurt
- Strawberry Lemonade Sorbet
- Koolade Pickles
- Iced-Tea Pickles
- Shaved Ice
Food Stands Inside the Coca-Cola Food Court
- Hast Texas Nachos: Nachos.
- Pedro’s Tamales: Tamales are gluten-free.
- It’s All Greek to Me: Greek salads; check the content of the dressing.
- A Taste of New Orleans: Red beans and rice; dirty rice.
- Oak Farms Dairy: Milk and other beverages.
- Twisted Tators
Food trucks visited the State Fair of Texas for the first time in 2012 in the form of a Mega Truck. Good Karma Kitchen and SlushWorks (frozen drinks) food trucks usually set up shop inside the Food & Fiber Pavilion.