On Thanksgiving, families across the country gather around tables piled high with holiday dishes, but what those dishes are depends on which part of the country you call home. Turkey and pumpkin pie are staples throughout the nation, but according to new data from General Mills, the rest of the spread varies, state by state.
The result is a map of America showing every state as the recipe its searchers desired. Some states are traditional, while others are, well, “chicken spaghetti.”
First, the traditional.
Connecticut searched for cranberry sauce instructions. Oregon needed help making bread stuffing. Illinois was super classic in its quest for mashed potatoes, and Delaware and Georgia just wanted sweet potato casserole.
South Dakota is represented on the map by a piece of pumpkin pie, the Carolinas are both sweet potato pie and New Mexico and Oklahoma are shown on the map as the pecan pie loving states their search results prove them to be.
When we cross some state lines though, recipe searchers start to stray further away from traditional Thanksgiving fare.
Apparently families in Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia like to tuck into buffalo chicken dip before (or maybe after) the big bird, and Alabama and Tennessee are searching for sausage balls.
On the sweet side, monkey bread (which is apparently something like a caramel coffee cake) is the top recipe for Iowa and Nebraska. Alaska wants cinnamon rolls, and North Dakotans need apple crisp. Florida wants pumpkin flavored cheesecake, while Massachusetts and New York are a little less pumpkin obsessed: They’ll just take the cheesecake, hold the squash.
The most obviously out-of-place Thanksgiving dish belongs to the largest state in the lower 48. A Texas-sized helping of “chicken spaghetti” draws your eye to the lone star state, but Texans aren’t the only ones serving up pasta side dishes on the big day. Mississippians are also into chicken spaghetti, while Californians and Virginians are serving up a (slightly) more traditional side of mac and cheese.
Rounding out some of the most seemingly random Thanksgiving recipes: Arizona and Wisconsin are simply looking for “shrimp”, and chilly Michigan is represented by chili.
The state-by-state recipe analysis is entertaining, but what’s on the table at Thanksgiving isn’t nearly as important as who is around it.
No matter if your family is slicing into a turkey or serving up a big batch of chicken spaghetti, Thanksgiving is about being thankful for family and whatever kind of food that family loves to share.