If you live in the upper Midwest, Labor Day marks the unofficial last day of summer. And if you live in the state of Minnesota today also means it’s the last day of the state fair.

While the Minnesota State Fair has all the rides, games, and carnies that you would expect to see at any major fair, my wife and I are drawn each year to sample all the new food (often served on a stick) that vendors have concocted over the past year. This year our goal was to try new foods that we don’t typically eat at the fair. Fortunately, 2013 did not disappoint in terms of creative concession food. Unfortunately, that means I did get to eat my traditional foot-long corn dog.

When you go to the Minnesota State Fair, you’ve got to have a plan. My This year my wife plotted out the vendors we would would hit up using the 2013 fair app. The app allows you to see all the different vendors locations, the food served at each stand, and also shows your location on the fair’s map, which is very helpful. I don’t know how we ever managed to find our way around before this existed.

On To The Food…

French Meadow BakeryThe most anticipated food we tried this year has to be the doughssant from the French Meadow Bakery. The doughssant was described to me as a croissant, shaped like a donut, and deep fried with a touch of sugar sprinkled across the top. I was also informed by a friend that these are very big in New York City right now.

I have to admit the doughssant was worthy of the hype. The thing I liked about it is that it wasn’t too sweet. It was soft, tasty, and the French Meadow Bakery wasn’t afraid to let the dough take center stage. I could eat this food consistently for breakfast paired with a cup of coffee.


Another new entree (new to us anyway) we tried this year were fried pickles from the appropriately named Fried Pickles concession stand. This was another popular vendor that served up some unique fried pickle options such as Cajun-style and chocolate dipped pickles. My wife and I opted for the original that came with a side of ranch. This was one of our favorite samplings of the day.

friend pickles

Fried Pickles

Quebec Style PoutineMaybe it’s because my mom is Canadian, but I love poutine. There are a few different vendors that offer this culturally significant Canadian food, but my personal favorite comes from Duke’s Quebec Style Poutine with the big moose and maple leaf. You can trust any stand that uses a moose as their official spokesperson.

In case you’re unfamiliar with this ethnic food, poutine is french fries, covered in brown gravy and cheese kurds. Yum.


Some other foods tested, included the Monti-Cristo on a stick, french fries, pulled turkey sandwich, fresh lemonade, root beer float, and of course a bucket of Sweet Martha’s Cookies chocolate chip cookies.

Pulled Turkey Sandwich

Pulled Turkey Sandwich

Monti-Christo on Stick

Monti-Christo on Stick

Sweet Marthas Cookies

Sweet Marthas Cookies

All in all, 2013 was another terrific Minnesota get together for trying new foods along with our long-time favorites. Looking forward to eating the new concession food vendors come up with next year.

Want to start your own food business?

Hey! 👋I’m Brett Lindenberg, the founder of Food Truck Empire.

We interview successful founders and share the stories behind their food trucks, restaurants, food and beverage brands. By sharing these stories, I want to help others get started.

If you liked this story, sign up for our newsletter that includes our food business startup kit and most popular interviews sent straight to your inbox.

Know someone interesting that should be interviewed on the website? Tell us about them here.