Since 2005, the Big Tex Choice Awards contest has solidified the State Fair of Texas as the top Fair for great food creations. Each year, State Fair concessionaires fry up tasty and unique foods for a chance to become a finalist in the annual Big Tex Choice Awards competition. Everything from Fried Beer to Fried Peaches and Cream has made the cut to become a part of the exclusive club of fried food creations at the State Fair of Texas. Best of all, YOU get to enjoy the winning creations at this year’s Fair! Read all the way through the post to see the finalists in the 2023 Big Tex Choice Awards competition and the best of the best fair food that will be featured at the State Fair of Texas in Fair Park this year! From this group of 10 will come three winners: one each in the Sweet and Savory categories, and a third that wins Most Creative — but you'll have to wait until August 27 for the winners to be named!
1. savory finalist 1: Deep Fried Cheesy crab Tater Bites
This delicious dish starts with a blend of minced crab meat, shredded potato, cheese, and spices that are formed into tater bites. The bites are formed and battered, and when they're done, they're bathing in this delicious cheesy Cajun sauce. As it all comes together, crawfish are added to enhance the flavor experience. These delicious golden tater bites are ladled with rich, silky, cheesy crawfish sauce on top, making sure each bite is topped with Cajun gold.
sweet finalist 1: Biscoff delight
Underneath a decadent layer of Belgian chocolate lies a mouth-watering slice of New York cheesecake. Each bite reveals the symphony of an outer layer adorned with crushed Biscoff® cookies, which really pack a delightful crunch of their own. Then, a drizzle of Lotus Biscoff® spread goes on top, giving your slice a caramelized touch. Finally, the crowning glory is a perfectly placed Biscoff® cookie that entices you to embrace pure indulgence.
savory finalist 2: Deep Fried Pho
Deep Fired Pho is handcrafted, rolled up, and deep-fried Texas style! With every bite, you get a harmonious and succulent mouthful of noodles, slices of beef, fresh herbs, bean sprouts, and a taste of aromatic pho broth that has been slowly simmered for hours. To tie this experience together, it is served with a side of pho broth for dipping, lime, jalapeños, cilantro, hoisin sauce, and sriracha for a spicy, fiery kick!
sweet finalist 2: Bourbon Banana Caramel Sopapillas
These hot and delicious traditional sopapillas are topped with vanilla-caramel-infused bananas, sweet bourbon syrup, crushed candied pecans, sweetened mascarpone cheese, crumbled Nilla Wafers and dusted with powdered sugar.
savory finalist 3: loaded fries pizza
Two fair food staples come together in beautiful, greasy harmony in this entry: loaded fries and a slice of pizza loaded down with toppings. On this slice, you'll get a pile of yummy, crunchy, salted French fries, a smothering blanket of cheddar cheese and a ton of crunchy chopped bacon.
sweet finalist 3: fried cherry pie in the sky
It wouldn't be the State Fair of Texas without a fried pie, and this luscious dessert is topped with a butter almond shortbread crumble, giving you all the taste of your favorite cherry cobbler and tangy cherry pie in one bite! It's all presented with the iconic pairing of Blue Bell® vanilla ice cream drizzled with cherry preserves, clouds of whipped cream, and garnished with sugared dark sweet cherries! This divine dessert is cherries from heaven!
Savory finalist 4: Ox'Cellent Soul roll
Savory beef oxtails are slowly simmered for hours until rendered tender, juicy, and full of flavor. Then, tasty chunks of potatoes are added to savory smoked gouda and mozzarella paired with rich butter, celery, bell peppers, and sweet onions. The hearty beef mixture is rolled into a light and flaky, crispy spring roll, and then deep fried. It's served with piping hot, crispy, and tender southern hush puppies and garlic chili sauce.
sweet finalist 4: sweet encanto
A Sweet Encanto is the ultimate sweet delight, sure to satisfy even the sweetest of sweet teeth. A round waffle is lightly sweetened with caramel dulce de leche that is then swirled perfectly on a wafer. A specialty cream with slices of strawberry, kiwi, peach and shredded coconut is added. Then it's all topped with raspberry jam and drizzled with sweetened condensed milk. Take advantage of this amazing opportunity to indulge in the best flavors of Latin America!
Savory Finalist 5: Turkey Ribs!
Take the best part of turkey you never knew you loved, gently fry it, and serve it with stuffing seasoned fries, homemade giblet gravy, and a secret salsa recipe — and you get this fried turkey rib delicacy! You can also order it Texas Style, with BBQ sauce fries, jalapeños, and pickles! You’ll crave it come the holidays, but you’ll only get it during the great State Fair of Texas!
sweet finalist 5: Trail-Ade
If the Texas heat is bringing you down, Trail-Ade is the perfect remedy! This delightful blend of summer fruits, crisp cucumbers, and fresh mint blended with homemade lemonade is the ideal elixir to restore you. Trail-Ade is a fruity, refreshing, nonalcoholic cocktail served in a souvenir cowboy boot cup to be enjoyed anywhere: after a trail ride, in a saloon, and especially while strolling through the State Fair of Texas fairgrounds.