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Deep Fried Froot Loops & Tamale Doughnuts Are Among This Year’s State Fair Finalists

Courtesy State Fair of Texas
Amy McCarthy is a reporter at, focusing on pop culture, policy and labor, and only the weirdest online trends.

With the start of the State Fair of Texas just a few short weeks away, the deep-fried finalists for this year’s Big Tex Choice Awards have officially been announced.

This year, the over-the-top fair offerings were whittled down from nearly 50 original contenders to ten finalists. Dishes will be judged in three categories — best taste for both sweet and savory dishes, and a “most creative” winner. The finalists range from the decadent (Deep Fried Froot Loops) to the bizarre (Deep Fried Chicken Noodle Soup on a Stick).

Check out the full list of contenders below:

Deep Fried Chicken Noodle Soup on a Stick

Somehow, Sherry & Chris Howard have packed all the flavor of a bowl of chicken noodle soup into a bite-sized ball. Each soup skewer will come with its own “savory broth sauce” and a side of crackers.

Gulf Coast Fish Bowl

Inspired by the classic Hurricane, this drink is described as a “drinkable aquarium.” Nerds candy serve as the gravel, and a boozy blue punch is the real star of the show. A slice of pineapple serves as the “lid” to this bowl, and Swedish fish help complete the illusion.

Fat Smooth

Imagine a hybrid of cream puffs and beignets and you’ve got the Fat Smooth. Created by Tami Nevins-Mayes, each Fat Smooth stick will feature three mini Belgian cream puffs dipped in beignet batter before being deep-fried and drizzled with chocolate-caramel sauce.

Fernie’s Fried Texas Sheet Cake

A take on Texas’ favorite chocolate cake, this dessert begins as a slice of chocolate brownie cake that is then crusted in ground Cocoa Puffs, panko, and cinnamon sugar. The brownie is fried, then doused in Dr. Pepper icing, chopped pecans, and a carved strawberry that’s intended to “mimic a Lady Bird Johnson rose.”

Deep Fried Froot Loops

The State Fair of Texas

To create a nostalgic sugar bomb, Gracie & Milton Whitley will mix sweetened Froot Loops into whipped marshmallow fluff, dip it in batter, and deep-fry to perfection. A drizzle of glaze and powdered sugar gilds the lily.

Pinot Noir Popcorn

Sweet and salty kettle corn comes dusted with a powder made from Pinot Noir burgundy wine. That boozy flavor is paired with cheese, because obviously.

Funnel Cake Bacon Queso Burger (pictured above)

Classic fair-style funnel cakes serve as the buns for this over-the-top burger, doused in queso and piled high with bacon, followed by a dusting of powdered sugar.

Surfin’ Turfin’ Tator Boat

Steak and lobster marry inside this cheese-topped baked potato that’s stuffed with plenty of melted butter. No telling how many tickets this one is going to cost, because it’s garnished with an empress-cut lobster claw.

Texas Fajita Fries

Instead of potatoes, marinated strips of beef serve as the “fries” in this Texas-inspired concoction. The strips are served inside a cone made of bread, and served on top of “Texas toothpicks,” or a mix of fried jalapenos and onions and with a scoop of sour cream guacamole hot sauce.

Tamale Doughnut

Two of the world’s most perfect foods are fused here, but the Tamale Doughnut is totally savory. The doughnut is made with slow-cooked carnitas and masa made from scratch, then formed into a ring and deep-fried until crispy on the outside.

Dying to try these ridiculous creations? The Fair will serve up a first taste of each dish at the 13th Annual Big Tex Choice Awards, held on August 27 at 2 p.m. at Fair Park. Tickets are $100.