My Mother's Texas Food Recipes and How to Cook Like a Texan


L. Cargill, Medical Laboratory Scientist, ASCP. Retired blood banker and laboratorian. Loves to write about a wide range of subjects. Enjoy!

These mouthwatering recipes are easy to make and good for almost any occasion.

These mouthwatering recipes are easy to make and good for almost any occasion.

This article explores the top 10 best Texas dishes based on my mother's recipes. These meals are easy to prepare, but will definitely not disappoint.

My Mother's Best Texas Food Recipes

  1. Chili
  2. Cornbread
  3. Beans
  4. Home fries
  5. Chicken fried steak
  6. Spare ribs
  7. Brisket,
  8. Frito pie
  9. Enchiladas
  10. Pecan pie

Real Texas Chili (Warning—Contains Strong Language)

1. Easy Chili con Carne Recipe

  • Cut up as much beef, pork, or wild game as you think you will need in pieces about the size of a pecan.
  • Put it in a pot, along with some marbled suet (enough so as the meat won't stick to the sides of the pot), and add a good amount of wild onions and garlic.
  • Add seasonings as desired: oregano, salt, chili powder.
  • Stir it from time to time and cook it until the meat is as tender as you think it's going to get.
  • A crock pot works just fine for this dish. Use your crock pot according to its directions. I recommend low and slow.

Texas Has a State Dish!

The Texas legislature officially proclaimed chili the official state food of Texas "in recognition of the fact that the only real 'bowl of red' is that prepared by Texans. 1977

There are some interesting facts about Texas Chili. Mostly the fact that real Texans would never, ever put beans in their chili! It's ok to make a pot of chili and in another pot, make some beans. But they are served separately.

Kidney beans are never to be used in chili or on the side! Kidney beans are outlawed for Texas chili! In fact, I think Kidney beans are some kind of northern plot to eliminate the Pinto bean which is the correct bean to use at all times in Texas cooking.

Jesse James had a favorite chili parlor and refused to rob a bank in McKinney, Texas because he wouldn't be able to eat there again. It is rumored that a famous celebrity said on his deathbed:

I wish I had time for one more bowl of chili.

— Kit Carson

2. Cornbread

I learned how to make cornbread when I was a child and I know my mother's recipe by heart:

The Choctaw (Native American Tribe) invented a heartier variation on regular cornbread called Crackling Bread. Sometimes my mother would make this kind and sometimes we just had regular cornbread which we ate almost every night of the week.

Cornbread goes well with chili and it goes especially well with a big bowl of Pinto Beans with some home fries on the side. I grew up on the poor side and we ate beans and cornbread often. Now I miss it terribly because nutritionists will tell you that this good filling home cooked food is bad for you. I have a theory that they're wrong. When I ate most of my meals home cooked in my Texas youth I had no problem with my weight. Now that I try to eat healthy foods, I've found quite a few pounds over the years that stubbornly won't come off. Maybe I should go back to eating like I did when I was young.

If you want to make the "Indian" Crackling Bread, just use the recipe to the right for regular cornbread and add some well done pork skins before baking. You can use commercial pork rinds, but they tend to be softer than home fried skins.

Adding fresh corn is also an option and will really lend authenticity to this recipe. Just get some fresh corn on the cob and scrape off the kernels until you have a cupful or so and add them to the mix. The recipe is very versatile and can be made the day before even. But it is best when fresh out of the oven and mixed with juicy beans and/or slathered with real butter (never eat fresh corn bread with margarine!) and eaten hot!

My grandpa used to eat left over cornbread mixed with a glass of buttermilk for dessert! He loved the stuff. Hey, he was never overweight! That does it, I'm going back to eating cornbread, chili and beans again.

Cast Iron Method for Making Corn Bread—Use Any Recipe

My Mother's Recipe for Corn Bread

Melt enough bacon fat in the iron skillet to keep the cornbread from sticking and to flavor the crust. Place the skillet in the 425 degree F. oven to heat the whole skillet while mixing the batter.

In a bowl stir together the dry ingredients:

  • a cup of flour
  • a cup of yellow cornmeal
  • 2 to 4 Tablespoons of sugar to taste
  • 4 teaspoons of baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon of salt

Make a well in the center of the mixed dry ingredients and add:

  • two eggs
  • a cup of milk or buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup of oil or bacon fat (for best flavor)
  • a can of creamed or fresh corn if desired
  • some chopped green chilies if desired

Stir until mixed well. Pour into the preheated skillet. You should hear a sizzle. Bake the cornbread for 20 to 25 minutes until brown and a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Dried Pinto beans make a wonderful Texas soup with salt pork and onions and garlic cooked up in a crock pot.

Dried Pinto beans make a wonderful Texas soup with salt pork and onions and garlic cooked up in a crock pot.

3. Pinto Beans (The Best Thing to Eat With Cornbread)

Even before the invention of crock pots, my mom made a pot of beans nearly every day. They simmered on the stove and smelled wonderful.

We used to sit at the table in the morning with our breakfast and sort out the beans. They had rocks in the bags! We had to make sure no rocks made it to the colander where we put the dried beans to be washed. We would sometimes have quite a little pile of rocks to throw out after the sorting. Mom said the farm workers would put the rocks in the bags because it was easier than sorting them while picking and they got paid by the weight so a few rocks just increased their meager wages.

After the beans were washed, maybe two to four cupfuls of the spotted dried beans, she put them in the pot to soak. This soaking was sometimes done overnight, but mom had a trick up her sleeve. Bring the beans and enough water to cover the beans to a boil, then turn the heat off and let the beans soak for a couple of hours. Rinse and drain the beans Cook with fresh water. This method worked just fine.

After the soak, pour off the water (and hopefully the gas causing ingredient of beans in general), then cover the beans with fresh water and bring to a slow boil. Add some salt pork which flavors the beans. Add a bit of salt and pepper. Add a whole chopped up onion. Texas onions are very flavorful and my mom said I used to eat them like most people eat apples - raw. She said I would rather eat a whole onion than candy! I must have been a very confused child. I also wondered if Pinto beans came from Pinto horses.

Add garlic too, fresh pressed. We like a lot of garlic. Some people add sugar to their beans. This was supposed to reduce the gas causing ingredient, but I think they just liked the sugar. My mom did not use sugar in her pots. Simmer the beans all day or at least for four hours. Check and stir as needed. More water may be needed if the beans start soaking up all of the water. These steps are no longer needed so much if you use a crock pot. You set it and forget it.

When the juice turns brown and thickens a bit, and the beans are soft and smelling good, they're done! Serve in a bowl with fresh cornbread and home fries on the side.

Another Way to Make Home Fries

4. Home Fries

If Texans ever needed another recipe for bacon drippings and onions, that recipe has to be home fries.

My sister taught me how to peel potatoes at a very early age, probably because she got tired of that chore long before I grew up enough to be able to use a knife without cutting my fingers off. We had home fries often. They were a favorite of my Irish dad. I guess there is a potato craving in their genetic code.

Here's how we did it. First find a child capable of using a potato peeler or a small paring knife to peel three or four or ten Idaho potatoes. You can use Texas potatoes, but the Idahoans seem to grow the best taters around. After peeling them, an expert potato cutter must slice the washed potatoes into "fries". I think food processors are used now that cut beautiful squared up fries, but irregular pieces work great too. For variety, you can use slices instead of the typical sticks, but I like the regular cut the best.

Heat the bacon drippings up in the cast iron skillet. You have to have two of these - one to make the cornbread in and one to do frying duty. Use bacon grease generously as the more you use, the better the flavor. When the bacon grease is hot, add the rinsed and dried potatoes. Add a whole chopped up onion too. Stir everything around and add salt and pepper. Keep a close eye on the taters and stir them around until they are done. You will end up with crusty potatoes and onions that will rock your world.

Chicken Fried Steak and Cream Gravy

5. Chicken Fried Steak and Cream Gravy

Once you have had a real honest to goodness Texas style Chicken Fried Steak, you will never be able to eat those frozen breaded things they call food again.

It takes a couple of hours to prepare the very best Chicken Fried Steak dinner! But it's some real fine vittles. Start with the steak. Round steak is what my mom used. It was a big piece of meat that would be cut up to make four or five steaks.

First, bring the steak to room temp. Then you will either need a very sturdy unbreakable plate or a heavy meat mallet. Before we got our mallet, mom would use the edge of a plate to pound the meat to tenderize it. After we got the meat mallet, we had many more dinners of Chicken Fried Steak, so I recommend the mallet.

Pound the steak until it is tenderized. Turn it over and do the other side. This will also spread out the meat and make it bigger. Cut the steak into meal sized pieces. You should be able to feed at least four people from one steak.

Dredge the pieces, one at a time, into a pan of flour plus salt, pepper, garlic powder and any other seasonings you like. Then dip the meat into an egg and milk mixture. Then back into the flour mixture. After the second coating of flour, put the meat into a frying skillet with about an inch and a half of hot oil. Brown on both sides and place on paper towels to drain. Fry only one or two pieces at a time.

After making the steaks, pour off the hot grease from the pan leaving about two or three tablespoons in the pan. Add an equal amount of flour. Mix the flour and oil together and pour in two or three cups of milk. Stir and cook until thick. Serve the gravy over the Chicken Fried Steaks!

6. Barbecue Spare Ribs!

I always wondered how a pig could "spare" his ribs, but I was always glad that he could! This is the very easy way to make barbecue ribs, not out on the grill as most Texans prefer, but in the oven! You will swear that these are the best ribs you ever ate.

I use a 13 X 9 X 3 inch oven safe pan. Fill the pan with pork spare ribs. Salt and pepper (coarse ground pepper) the ribs to your taste. I use very little salt and a lot of black pepper. Turn the ribs over and do the other side. The side with the most fat should be on the up side when you get ready to cook them. But that's not essential.

Now add enough water to the pan to bring the water level up about halfway. Tightly cover the pan with heavy duty aluminum foil. Place the ribs in a moderate oven (350 degrees F.) and bake for two hours. This will steam the ribs to the falling off the bone stage.

Remove the foil and carefully pour off the liquid. Now pour on your favorite barbecue sauce and spread it over the ribs. My favorite sauce is Stubb's Barbecue Sauce. Return the ribs to the oven for another 30 minutes or until the sauce starts to thicken and dry out a bit. That's it! Serve with some potato salad, bread and beans on the side.

Texas Style Brisket Recipe

7. Brisket

Barbecue brisket is definitely cooked on the grill or smoked in a smoker. There is no other way to cook it. You can smoke a brisket on Sunday and eat great sandwiches all week long.

I love a good brisket, but I am not particularly good at cooking the darn things. They're big, heavy and require a lot of patience which I do not possess.

  1. Find a nice sized brisket.
  2. Cover it with a black pepper, salt, and garlic powder rub.
  3. Put it in your smoker and cook at 225°F. for one hour and 15 minutes times the number of pounds your brisket weighs. Example: a 5 pound brisket needs to smoke for 6 hours and 15 minutes. Turn half way through this cook.
  4. When brisket is pliable and looks done, wrap in foil or heavy butcher paper.
  5. Smoke for a couple more hours or so.
  6. Remove and allow to set for 30 minutes to an hour before slicing and serving.

Game Day Chili—Walking Taco—Frito Pie Recipe

8. Frito® Pie

I think the only place in the world you can get real Frito® Pie is in Texas! Maybe you don't even know what it is! You could be living in Cincinnati, for instance, and think you have some real chili. But you don't and you know you don't. Why do you even try?

Frito® Pie uses real Texas Chili! None of that wimpy liquid tasteless dishwater you guys in Ohio call "chili". Just thinking about that stuff makes me want to cuss.

To make real Frito® Pie with real Texas Chili you need:

  • A bag of Fritos®
  • A cupful of Texas Chili on top of them (see recipe at the top of this page)
  • A handful of chopped Vidalia Onions on top of that
  • A handful of sharp cheddar cheese, grated on top of that
  • A big spoon!

Close to Tex-Mex Enchilidas

9. Enchiladas and State Fair Corn Dogs

I really had two choices here that I couldn't decide on. Tex-Mex food is really good, and homemade enchiladas are an excellent choice for the ninth best Texas food. But it's a terribly complicated recipe and unless you watch someone do it right, you'll never learn. So that is why I have added the video. It's pretty close to Tex-Mex enchiladas, but I noticed he is using flour tortillas. I learned to make enchiladas with corn tortillas, but I guess it's up to whoever is doing the cooking.

The Other Contestant for Number Nine...

Corn dogs! They were invented at the State Fair of Texas held in Dallas every year. It's also a favorite of Texas kids everywhere and even quite a few grown ups. I had to include them. Texas is famous for State Fair fried foods and this is one of the easiest fried things to prepare. But save yourself the trouble and go ahead and buy the frozen ones and bake them in the oven. Just as tasty and less mess.

Southern Pecan Pie! Homemade Pecan Pie Recipe

10. Pecan Pie!

I hear cute little cup cakes may be on their way out as a fad food and that pies are going to be the next big thing in bakery treats! Well, you don't have to go far to find the very best pie ever invented, the Texas Pecan Pie!

It's the most calories you can pack into a spoonful, but you only live once so you might as well eat the best!

Start With the Dough

  • 2 cups of all purpose flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup of corn oil

Mix the flour and salt together, then add the oil and mix until you have Lima bean sized lumps.

  • Add exactly 5 tablespoons of cold tap water

Mix the dough until it is consistent. Divide it in half and roll out the crust and place in the pie pan. Flute the crust edges by pinching the dough around one of your fingers as you go around the pie tin. Freeze the left over dough or make two pies.

Now Make the Filling

Mix together:

  • 1/2 cup of melted butter (use real butter, not margarine)
  • 1 cup of brown sugar
  • 1 cup of light or dark corn syrup
  • 3 lightly beaten eggs
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla (use the good expensive kind)
  • 1 and 1/3 cup of chopped Texas pecans

Put the pie tin on the oven shelf, then pour in the mixture. Bake at 425 degrees F. for 10 minutes, then turn down the heat to 350 degrees F. and bake for another 40 to 45 minutes. If the crust browns too quickly and looks like it might burn, cover the edges with foil. Remove from the oven and allow to cool at room temperature for an hour at least. May be refrigerated if it lasts that long!.

This pie is perfect for holidays and with proper packing, may even be shipped as a gift. It's a sturdy pie that will stay fresh if shrink wrapped and sealed.

Some people like to add a little rum or bourbon instead of vanilla. Other people like to add 3 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate to the mix for chocolate pecan pie. Well, whatever floats your boat!


The Pecan is the State Tree of Texas!


Author: State Symbols, USA.org; Sunday, October 14, 2018; Texas State Dish | Chili; State Symbols USA | Official State and National Symbols, Emblems, Icons; Place and publisher: © State Symbols USA; URL

© 2011 Lela

Which is your favorite Texas Food?

john faulkner on September 12, 2017:

I love Chicken Fried Steak, Chili and Pinto Beans. Now were talking !

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on April 28, 2016:

Thank you, MBP! I was raised on cornbread and still love it. But it isn't health food. Oh well, we just do the best we can. Good food is something to enjoy, not stress out over!

Granville Bennet from Portland Oregon on April 28, 2016:

I was a professional chef for 15 years and got so tired of the bullcrap trendy food revolution and snotty culinary school graduates that I had to get out. This is REAL food, simple and without pretention and presented as it should be,: great, basic recipes, easy to prepare and without any stupid and complicated flourishes that just screw things up. BRAVO

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on March 02, 2016:

Cool! A Texas pecan pie in the UK! I love it.

Kimberley Clarke from England on March 02, 2016:

Oh. Pecan pie! I've only ever had a supermarket version from the UK supermarket ASDA (Wal Mart's UK cousin!). It is so, so good. But I bet a home made one will be far better! Thank you for this. I am going to give it a go!

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on August 04, 2015:

Well, poetryman - that just leaves more Texas food for the real Texans to enjoy! The open carry thing passed and even I, being a "real" Texan think it was a real bad idea. I don't go to movies or restaurants anymore.

poetryman6969 on August 04, 2015:

Don't tell anyone, but I like beans in my chili. I left Texas in a big hurry. Before they passed open carry. Just in case.

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on April 15, 2015:

Oh peach! You can't drive down the street here in Texas without passing 10 Mexican food places! And as I have lived in Mexico, I have actually eaten REAL Mexican food! Ok, it's mostly beans, rice, tortillas, chilis and roasted meat. But they do use a lot of spices.

I'll bet your country's food is just as good, it just tastes really familiar to you.

peachy from Home Sweet Home on April 15, 2015:

i have never had any mexican or texas food because our country doesn't cater these exotic food. Wish I could taste some

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on September 08, 2014:

Conty - think flour enchiladas are so bad that I cannot eat them, nice or not.

Conty on September 08, 2014:

I like this post, it's funny. :) Definitely don't put flour tortilla in enchiladas, that is a no-no. I had a friend who made some with flour, and it was pretty yucky, but because I'm so nice, (lol), I ate them anyways.

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on August 06, 2014:

Well Howdy Bobbi! I hope you enjoy the chili. It's best in the middle of winter, though.

Barbara Purvis Hunter from Florida on August 06, 2014:


What a hub---I am so hungry that I think I will move to Texas or go grocery shopping. I love to cook also---and I love making Mexican Corn Bread to serve it with my chili.

I think I will try your chili recipe next week--it sounds so delicious.

I will be back to read some more of your hubs.

Bobbi Purvis

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on February 19, 2014:

Well, I've had them all....but never been to Texas....so maybe I haven't had them all. :) I do love hot chili....need to fix me some soon. Thanks for the recommendations; now I'm hungry. Damn!

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on January 11, 2014:

Well,I'll tell you GetitScene, there aren't too many skinny folk in Texas theses days!

Dale Anderson from The High Seas on January 11, 2014:

Never been to Texas but these recipes sure do want to make me go!

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on January 04, 2014:

misslong12- please enjoy them! And save me a bite!

Michele Kelsey from Edmond, Oklahoma on January 04, 2014:

These are awesome recipes. Plus, we have gobs of pinto beans we need to cook! I don't personally cook much, but my fiancée is an excellent cook and loves spicy, Southern recipes like these. I will print this page out for him so that he can use these recipes! He will love them and I will certainly enjoy eating them, so thank you very much for sharing - my tummy thanks you in advance! lol. ~Michele

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on October 21, 2013:

Well, beans are good for you and chili would certainly make the beans taste better. I like to mix them sometimes, but I always cook the chili separate from the beans.

Casey Johnson from Sanger, Texas on October 21, 2013:

Great hub!!! I love it! You know it's funny, I live in Texas, and have been here most of my life, but I prefer my chili with beans...In fact, I'll be publishing my chili recipe in a couple days, but it isn't Texas chili. Anyways, great hub, and keep up the work.

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on August 19, 2013:

I should probably do a hub about road kill recipes, eh? I'll eat some enchiladas and think about it.

Drive By Quipper from Wrong Side of Town on August 19, 2013:

Thanks for making me hungry! Now I want some armadillo stew and you got no recipe. What's up with that? I guess enchiladas are a toss up, though. Gotta go make some up!

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on August 19, 2013:

Black beans are ok, I usually use pinto beans. I dislike kidney beans in anything. They have a tough outer shell that I do not like.

I also serve beans on the side, not directly in the chili. It's a Texas thing.

Michele Travis from U.S.A. Ohio on August 19, 2013:

This is a very good hub. We have a pretty large garden this year and I canned tomatoes. After that I made chili and canned the chili.

Your pecan pie looks great, I am going to try to make that next.

By the way, when I made the chili, I used black beans. The kidney beans looked to big.

Anyway, voted up!

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on August 16, 2013:

Sweet tea is forbidden to me now. I've learned to like it without sugar or sweetener. It's not bad.

Never could drink anything with lemon in it, even lemonade. I use lime instead. I just cringe whenever I see someone squeezing a lemon. It's an old story that I don't talk about, but it has to do with eating raw lemons, singing and revenge.

It all depends on how you're raised. Mothers always carry on their traditions, and it takes a while for Texans to learn new tricks. :-)

TXSasquatch on August 16, 2013:

LOL! Seriously, I've always found these "rules" about food interesting and entertaining. This one about beans and chili is probably the best one, but another that I like pertains to iced tea. I've always preferred it with sugar and lemon, but one Texan I know swears (with way too much vehemence that "true Texas tea" should never have anything in it. WTH?!! I can take it that way and often do, but I just can't see getting worked up over iced tea--or even the state dish!

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on August 16, 2013:

Truth be told, I love chili with or without beans. It's a tasty and moderately healthy dish too. However, pinto beans or black beans are the only ones allowed in mine. Kidney beans ain't right and never will be. I might have to do some target practicing if someone tried to serve me some chili with kidney beans!

TXSasquatch on August 15, 2013:

Confession: I'm a Native Texan, born in Temple and raised in Allen, but my mother was from New Mexico. She almost always put beans in her chili, and I grew up preferring it that way. In fact, despite the Texan "laws" against it, I still prefer chili with beans. I generally use a combination of pintos and kidneys, and I honestly believe that it tastes better with the beans than without. So . . . shoot me! ;-)

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on March 27, 2013:

If you visit Texas, you will have to try all of these taste sensations. Like I would love to know how to cook some Jamaican food. We have 'Jerk Chicken Wings' at some of the fast food places, but I wonder if it really tastes just right. I like it though.

Pecan pie is my very favorite. The pecans get so toasted and crunchy and the filling is yummy.

Yvette Stupart PhD from Jamaica on March 27, 2013:

What a feast! I'm really not familiar with most of the dishes you described, but they seem simply delicious. I think I'd love a piece of the pecan pie!

mts1098 on February 25, 2013:

Texas Chili mmm...I would put home fries right behind the chili but it may be time that I finally visit Texas...cheers

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on February 06, 2013:

Como esta frijole? How you bean?

CarNoobz from USA on February 05, 2013:

LOL YES YES YES!!! Los Pintos es muy bueno...or something like that =P

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on February 05, 2013:

Chili should not have beans. That's all there is to it. However, for the sake of health, beans being so very healthy, I do allow for beans to be added to chili after it has been cooked. Change the name from real Texas chili to something like "Yankee Chili Beans" and you have a whole new dish!

But there is NO FREAKING WAY that I'll ever endorse Kidney beans for anything. Be responsible and use Pintos!

Kidney beans are just wrong on so many levels...

CarNoobz from USA on February 04, 2013:

OH man! It all looks so good. Reminds me of an argument between my Dad and my Uncle Mike years ago at a chili cook off...

"Jim, it's a CHILI cookoff...not a CHILI AND BEANS cookoff!" =)

Voted up and delicious.

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on January 20, 2013:

Oh, I love pan fried okra now! But when I was a kid, I thought it had worms in it because of the white seeds. I wouldn't eat it then even though we had an okra bush right outside the house and my mom would cook it almost every freaking day. Now I wish I had a ton of it!

Terrye Toombs from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map. on January 20, 2013:

You just took me back to my childhood and visiting my country grandma in Duncan, OK! Thank you for some of those awesome recipes. The only thing I didn't see that we used to get a lot of was pan fried okra. :) Voted up and shared.

kerri on December 10, 2012:

I love the resapes thanks

2patricias from Sussex by the Sea on October 18, 2012:

Altogether an intersting hub.

I am adding it to my Recipe Index for HubPages - under chili.

bugzapper on June 06, 2011:

Got to add the hot sauce too - Tabasco will do the trick!

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on May 30, 2011:

So, how was the float trip?

Kelly Umphenour from St. Louis, MO on May 30, 2011:

Yum x 10! I'm looking for the Diablo recipe so I can make them today - glad I found this too - love chili and corn bread:)

Elena@LessIsHealthy on May 10, 2011:

I like it. One vote up.

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on April 03, 2011:

Catfish is a staple dish of Texans! How could I forget it? Well, I may have to add that in somewhere. Thanks for noticing!

RosalieTuomey on April 03, 2011:

I love your hub! I am a native Texan....and your recipes make my mouth water. We do love our chili, barbecue and enchiladas.

I have one question though.....where is the catfish?

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on March 17, 2011:


toknowinfo on March 17, 2011:

Thanks for all the great recipes. I can't wait to try them. They sound delicious.

Paula from The Midwest, USA on March 03, 2011:

What a super fun hub! I love Texas from when we lived there a few years. Its a wonderful state. I enjoyed their foods as well, and your blog highlights them wonderfully! Brisket was huge, for get togethers and cornbread, and pecan pie and corn dogs, mmmmm!

suziecat7 from Asheville, NC on February 22, 2011:

Now I'm hungry - great Hub.

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on February 19, 2011:

Hey TS! I think that may have been how frito pie was invented in the first place. I love it.

Truckstop Sally on February 19, 2011:

Delicious hub! At little league and other kid events we even make our Frito pie right in the individula bags -- just cut it open horizontally and heap the chili and cheese right in.

Susan Mills from Indiana on February 18, 2011:

I just gained 5 pounds reading your hub. Yum!

I, too, am glad that pigs don't mind to spare their ribs. You make me laugh.. hahaha. :)

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on February 17, 2011:

If it's still cold where you are, then go ahead and make some chili right away! It will "cure" winter.

mysterylady 89 from Florida on February 17, 2011:

I read this on an empty stomach and ended up feeling starved! I loved the recipes but also loved your personal comments - like what your mother used to do. One of these days I'd like to try Texas Chili.

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on February 15, 2011:

Yea, that Cincinnati stuff just gets my goat. I tried it expecting something like REAL chili and boy was I ever disappointed.

Corn tortillas rule, Fay!

cheapsk8chick on February 15, 2011:

And I had some "Cincinnati Chili" once and they served it over - get this - spaghetti noodles! Nice hub!

Fay Paxton on February 15, 2011:

I'm sure glad I had a nice breakfast. Love this stuff, but I'm with you on the tortillas...use corn.

Thanks for these great recipes.

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on February 15, 2011:

Really good pecan pie cannot be beat. I hope it replaces cup cakes for sure.

Audrey Kirchner from Washington on February 14, 2011:

God dang, Lela - you just hit all the high points with this one....yum - I never had pecan pie until a year or so ago and now I'm in love with it - same goes with ribs and cornbread!! I love your mama's simple recipe too....a cup of....too adorable.

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on February 14, 2011:

If you make it to Austin, I'll cook up some food, Chris.

Christopher Antony Meade from Gillingham Kent. United Kingdom on February 14, 2011:

I think I want to retire to Texas, and eat all that lovely food.

No wonder y'all go round with big hats, and even bigger grins.

It would be impossible to be anything other than ecstatic on that diet.

Oh and I really like the way you wrote it up, with all those snippets of real Texas Life.

Thank you.

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on February 14, 2011:

Om, we have Sonic drive ins (kind of like a Dairy Queen) that sell Frito Pie. It's best in the winter when you need something hearty and delicious!

Om Paramapoonya on February 13, 2011:

Frito Pie! I never heard of that before. I'll have to try it real soon. Bookmarked and voted up! :)

Rod Marsden from Wollongong, NSW, Australia on February 13, 2011:

I would love to have seen these monster shrimp, Austinstar. I have tasted prawns you could lay across both hands. They are called king prawns. They are a treat. Nothing but bread and butter recommended to go with them for a hearty lunch. And maybe a drop of VB (Victoria Bitter).

SJKSJK from delray beach, florida on February 13, 2011:

I live in Texas for 15 years and really miss getting the best food ever. Thanks for the recipes.

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on February 13, 2011:

I know you say prawns are bigger, but we used to get some Gulf shrimp I could barely hold in both hands. Once upon a time Texas shrimp were monsters. Now they are pitiful little things with no taste or meat. The Gulf has been an ecological disaster for many years. The Mississippi river empties into the Gulf and has done the most damage from all the industrial waste coming down that mighty river. Then oil was discovered and doomed us all.

Rod Marsden from Wollongong, NSW, Australia on February 12, 2011:

I, too, wish the oil spill had never happened. It was criminal carelessness. The warning signs were there before it happened.

In Australia we don't have shrimp. We have prawns instead. Prawns are similar to shrimp but are really a different sea creature. Prawns tend to be bigger.

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on February 12, 2011:

Hi Rod! We do have steak houses and there is some good Texas beef to choose from, but generic "steak" isn't a true Texas dish. Maybe it's just too common and served in every state of the Union.

I did give the Chicken Fried Steak a special place on the list!

I debated about using the Gulf of Mexico shrimp and fish, but the big oil spill has ruined all of the oyster beds, I wouldn't eat Gulf fish or shrimp anymore and even the crab isn't worth the risk. My brother had a shrimp boat once and we ate literally tons of shrimp over the years, but now I'm afraid of the mercury and oil and toxic clean up stuff. It's a giant crap fest for Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi and Florida now. Tar balls wash up daily and as near as I can tell, the Gulf is just some big oil pumping station now. I hate it.

Rod Marsden from Wollongong, NSW, Australia on February 12, 2011:

Texas I have always associated with the cattle industry and the same to some extent with Mexico. In another part of the South in the USA they talk about grits. I have no idea what this is only it seems to be a common food.

Rod Marsden from Wollongong, NSW, Australia on February 12, 2011:

Austinstar, I am surprised steak isn't anywhere to be seen. There are steak houses in Oz claiming to be Mexican. Yes, they do have chili but I reckon its the steaks that draw people in. I guess plenty of beef used in chili and that's fair enough.

I don't know if NSW, Australia has an official dish. If it did have one it would probably be fish and chips.

What I remember most about growing up food-wise was my mom's leg of lamb roasts served with baked potato cut just right so the tops were crispy and the beans and carrots to add a bit more color and flavor. There was gravy or mint sauce. Lovely. This was a winter treat.

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on February 12, 2011:

Hi drbj! I'm on vacation this week and after a short, but important trip to the beach, I may actually cook. Book your flight for Thursday for the best chance of getting some beans, home fries and cornbread!

drbj and sherry from south Florida on February 12, 2011:

This is your best food recipe hub, yet, Lela, I love cornbread, ribs and pecan pie so you have made my day. Next time you cook those delectables, listen to that knocking at your door. That's me.

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on February 12, 2011:

I was born and raised in Houston so I know what you are talking about, Merlin. Weird how I don't miss Houston that much. I guess because Austin is so nice and feels like home now. I do miss the pine trees though. Whenever I go back to Houston they are the first thing I notice. That and the food, of course!

Merlin Fraser from Cotswold Hills on February 12, 2011:

If you knew the happy memories this Hub brings back, I spent 25 years in the Oil Industry and Houston was almost a second home.

I have good friends in Austin, the father of one used to make a 3 Alarm chilli brunch at their home was always a delight with great jugs of bloody Mary's or a cool box full of Long necks...

Not to forget Mamma Pecan pie and homemade ice cream..

Lela (author) from Somewhere near the heart of Texas on February 12, 2011:

My cornbread is so yummy. I sometimes wish I still had to cook for a family. Bob cooks for me now and he is a yankee and doesn't know how to cook Texan at all, so I suffer just like diogenes there in England.

So close, yet so far away. Although in the winter, I will get up off my butt and cook some chili.

lightning john from Florida on February 12, 2011:

Austinstar, I really like the way you put this together, very good! I have also wondered about the name of Pinto beans. I want to try that cornbread recipe. I will let you know how it goes. Cheers! And thanks again!


diogenes from UK and Mexico on February 12, 2011:

No fair, AS: I am just contemplating baked beans on toast for breakfast on a damp Saturday morning in SE England. And those pictures! You are a sadist for sure. I realize how much chile is part of the psyche in the US and fights have begun over whose chili is best. I lived in Mexico for many years and they don't really make it Texas style down there. We do good beans here, though, with the old ham hock...Great hub...Bob

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