Deep in the heart of Texas is a diverse culinary mix of spicy complex flavors and vibrant foods. When you think of Texas foods usually two cuisines come to mind—Tex-Mex and Barbecue. Collectively the two are a combination of Southern, Mexican, and Western influences that offer unique variations, textures, and awesome deliciousness. The foods within these cuisines are as varied as the cuisines themselves. These Lone Star state favorites are the mainstays of summertime entertaining and eating. At the center of it all is Southern hospitality, friendship, and down-home cooking.
Hosting a Texas barbecue this summer? Even transplants from other states will fire up a smoker and try to master the perfect brisket. But getting the lowdown on how to do it Texas-style may take a collection of tried and true recipes. You can mix it up a bit here but we’ve gathered some mouth-watering classic Texas foods to serve at your next backyard bash. One hundred percent guaranteed to be a hit with all your guests.
Favorite Party Starters
Queso and guacamole go hand-in-hand. As the ultimate party foods these two don’t take a backseat. Texas culture mandates at least one bowl of queso and another one of guacamole at all gatherings. Queso’s zesty flavor, warm temperature, and ultra-cheesy demeanor beckons a table of hungry guests. Only a decade ago this delectable dip reached national status as a stand-alone dish. Today, it also grandstands as a main attraction at Super Bowl parties. But its northern counterpart consisting mainly of a name-brand varietal cheese isn’t the only recipe. Queso connoisseur and Texan Lisa Fain has written a cookbook dedicated to this cheesy condiment. In it she covers its history and dishes up pages of regional recipes. Complement the queso with a perfectly balanced bowl of creamy guacamole. Though it’s not the state food of Texas it should be. The foundation of any good guacamole are avocados. In the book An Avocado a Day author Lara Ferroni discusses the fruit’s nutritional value and offers up over 70 recipes.
The Main Attraction
In Texas it’s not technically a barbecue unless you serve one of the meats in the trilogy--brisket, sausage, or ribs. The low and slow method made famous by barbecue king and Texas native Aaron Franklin holds true. For ridiculously delicious melt-in-your-mouth brisket and ribs it’s pretty much the only method. As smoked barbecue meat fills the air around your home know that the process takes up to 15 hours depending on the size of your brisket. To learn the process check out his book. Self-proclaimed barbecue pitmasters and wannabes can do themselves proud with a good smoker or barbecue grill as an essential.
Five-star Side Dishes
Round out your barbecue with Texas side dish favorites like pinto beans, deviled eggs, skillet cornbread and mac and cheese. Yummy variations for a few of these Texas staples can be found in Magnolia Table: A Collection of Recipes for Gathering. For a twist to deviled eggs author Joanna Gaines of Fixer Upper fame adds bacon strips and spicy jalapeno jam to her recipe. In another recipe Becki’s Mac and Cheese is a dairy-lover’s dream. To peruse other possibilities for seasonal favorites the United Tastes of Texas doesn’t disappoint. Inspired by regional cooking the book delves into the specific regions of Texas cuisine.
End your backyard bash with popular crowd pleasing desserts like a warm fruit cobbler or a Texas sheet cake. When it comes to cobblers peach, cherry, and blackberry are the top choices. Peach, though, comes in at number one. Remember, cobblers don’t make the grade unless they are topped with vanilla ice cream. But if you want to feed a crowd try whipping up an ultra-gooey Texas sheet cake. This Texas-sized dessert has it all including a rich chocolate interior and a chocolate pecan buttermilk icing. Who can resist?
This summer make your outdoor entertaining a breeze with Breed. Shop our cookbook collection for tried and true award-winning Texas recipes to serve at your next get-together. Visit our four Austin area locations for all your outdoor barbecue entertaining necessities. Too busy to stop by. For your convenience shop our online store.