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Photo: Moving.com

Arizona is a bit of a melting pot when it comes to what our traditional cuisine looks like. Traditionally, Arizona’s cuisine was heavily influenced by its Indigenous and early Mexican settlers. Once Americans began migrating in from the South and the Midwest, those cuisines have also been added to the mix, as well as foods from other immigrants over the decades until now.

That is why it can be difficult to determine just what Arizonans consider food favorites; a favorite food can depend on the region you grew up in, how long you have lived here, and your family’s background.

1. Cheese Crisp

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Photo: What'sGabyCooking.com

Think of the cheese crisp as an open-faced quesadilla. It all starts with a flour tortilla stretched out on a pizza pan, brushed with butter and then toasted in the oven for a few minutes. Once it's lightly crisped and starting to curl at the edges, the tortilla gets layered with cheese (and sometimes green chiles), then goes back into the oven to melt the cheese. It's cut into slices—again, like a pizza—and served. Macayo's Mexican Restaurant in Phoenix gets credit for perfecting and popularizing the cheese crisp during the restaurant's 70-year (and counting) run. - As expressed in Visitarizona.

2. Fry Bread

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Photo: 10Best.com

Fry bread dates back to 1864 when the Navajo people from Arizona were forced to make the "Long Walk," a 300-mile deportation to a reservation in New Mexico. Using their limited supplies, the Navajo combined flour, water, salt and baking powder and then fried the dough in lard.

Today, the dish has since been adapted by other tribes, and the fluffy bread is usually topped with beans, meat, cheese, lettuce, tomatoes and sour cream, or it's used as the shell for taco fixings. Stop at the Hopi Cultural Center to taste some of the state's best fry bread as you explore the Hopi Arts Trail. - As writen in Visitarizona.

Why Does Bread in the US Taste So Sweet and Unhealthy?

3. Margaritas

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I used to work in restaurants and restaurant bars so I can tell you that margaritas, especially in summer, are a popular choice. Frozen, on the rocks, or straight up, everyone has their own preference. - According to Onlyinyourstate.

4. Menudo

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Photo: Miblogestublog.com

Unless you make it at home whenever you want, you will probably only find this soup available on the weekends (or even just Sundays) in restaurants. Why? One of the main ingredients is tripe (beef stomach), which is tough unless cooked down, and the soup takes hours to cook. It's also known as a hangover cure, so I assume most people will want to enjoy a bowl of this after a fun Saturday.

5. Navajo Tacos

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Photo: Medium.com

There are two camps here: those who call this the Indian taco and those who call it the Navajo taco. Everyone I know calls them Navajo tacos so you can consider that the correct version.

6. Sonoran Hotdogs

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Photo: Sunsetmagazine.com

Believed to have originated in the 1940s, this street food from Sonora, Mexico, puts a south-of-the-border twist on its American counterpart. Instead of a traditional bun, a split-top roll called a bolillo cradles the hot dog, which is wrapped in bacon and piled high with pinto beans, onions, tomatoes, mayonnaise and other condiments.

Sample an authentic Sonoran hot dog at El Guero Canelo, a James Beard 2018 America's Classics winner for its exceptional rendition. - As given in Visitarizona.

7. Sun Tea

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Photo: Pinterest.com

My mom used to make sun tea pretty often when I was growing up but I think the drink has gotten a bad rap lately for the possibility of growing bacteria. If you're worried, you can essentially get the same flavors through a cold brewed iced tea. Prepare it the same way but leave the container in the fridge overnight.

8. Tamales

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Photo: AllaboutArizonanews.com

While of Mesaamerican decadent, the maize based delicacies are wrapped in a corn husk and filled with a variation of ingredients, from meats to veggies—tamales are an Arizona staple. They are a starchy comfort food, and you’ll find the most delicious and unique variations at the Tucson Tamale Company, like Vegan Green Chili, or Chocolate Cherry! (You have to top dessert tamales with vanilla ice cream!, according to Tripstodiscover.

9. Best Burritto

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Photo: Fillyourplate.com
Maybe the most famous food in Arizona is Burritto. Peek into the kitchen at Los Dos Molinos, a Phoenix institution for more than 20 years, and you’ll find the owner or one of her daughters and just one helper preparing Tex-Mex classics from scratch, to order. Burritos here come filled with beef, chicken, or chili, but opt for the carne adovada: a red pork stew that’s a Southwest specialty. Few places do it better than Los Dos Molinos, and when wrapped up in a flour tortilla with some melted cheese, there are few foods more comforting. However, heed the warning given by the little red chile pepper next to it on the menu: It’s spicy, according to Thedailymeal.
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