New Jersey was recently named by Saveur as the best food state for 2016. As a native New Jersian, I agree: whether it’s our bagels, diners, burgers, or anything else, we are showing everyone that we are not the armpit of America. Here are 21 reasons why (in case you needed more convincing).

1. Our Burgers

New Jersey

Photo by MaryKate Vigneron

We have the most outrageous burgers in the nation such as the burgernaut from The Committed Pig (a burger between two donuts) which are worth the try next time you visit our beautiful state. There are even three Committed Pig locations in New Jersey: Morristown, Manasquan, and Summit for your dining convenience. You can learn more reasons why The Committed Pig is the Best New Burger Joint here.

2. Our Ice Cream

New Jersey

Photo courtesy of @hellooofood on Instagram

Everyone in New Jersey has their go-to favorite icecream place and down the shore is no different. Want to take a bite of this picture above? Check out Kohr Bros Ice Cream next time you are down the shore in New Jersey. After all, who doesn’t love icecream on a hot summer beach day? Don’t want to buy ice cream in New Jersey? You can make your own without an ice cream maker with this helpful article here.

3. Our Cupcakes

New Jersey

Photo by Kelly McNamara

New Jersey is home to over 16 different winners of the Food Network show Cupcake Wars. This means that in whatever part of New Jersey you are visiting or currently reside in, there is a good chance there will be a Cupcake Wars winner there. If you wanted to conduct your own Cupcake Wars competition, you could visit a few in one trip to New Jersey to find your favorite while also carrying on the legacy of the cancelled show.

4. Carlo’s Bake Shop

New Jersey

Photo courtesy of @photopup on Instagram

This star bakery of the TLC show Cake Boss originated in Hoboken, NJ before spreading around the USA. Trying Carlo’s Bake Shop is a hotspot for tourists because why wouldn’t you take advantage of going to eat a cupcake from the original place? Want to learn more about Buddy’s edible creatures? You can find out here.

4. Our Diners

New Jersey

Photo courtesy of

New Jersey is famous for their diners and having more than any other place in the world. Some even call New Jersey the diner capital of the world. Curious to see if the saying “you are what you eat” is true? Try this quiz What Diner Food Are You to see if we guess correctly.

5. Our Bagels

New Jersey

Photo courtesy of @rbelmont96 on Instagram

There is just something about the Tristate area that makes the bagels ten times better than you will find anywhere else. Jersey natives love their bagels so much that they will either bring bagels from their home state back to college or take their out of state friends to their favorite bagel place when they visit New Jersey. Ever wonder what your bagel order says about you? Wonder no longer with this article.

6. Taylor Ham Egg and Cheese

New Jersey

Photo by Mackenzie Barry

Sure, New York might have bagels too, but unique to New Jersey is the Taylor Ham egg and cheese if you’re from the North (or pork roll egg and cheese if you’re from the south). It doesn’t matter what you call it, it is and always will be a Jersey favorite. Still not sure if Taylor Ham, egg, and cheese is a good combination? Check out what happened when these four people tried their first one here. Want to know how to cope with your soon addiction (if you aren’t already addicted) to Taylor Ham egg and cheese sandwiches? You can learn how to make them here.

7. Our Fries

New Jersey

Photo courtesy of @forkmyface on Instagram

New Jersey is known for their fries and in particular their disco fries. Disco fries are french fries with melted cheese on top which is then covered with chicken gravy. It is truly a unique experience to New Jersey. It is also a hangover cure for most New Jersians. Want more unique fries combinations? Try these Cinnamon Roll Donut Fries.

8. Hoagies

New Jersey

Photo by Casper Kulles

Some states call this picture above a “Grinder” (New England), a “Hero” (New York City), or a “Po’ Boy” (Louisiana). New Jersey natives on the other hand, call the picture above either a Hoagie or a Blimpie.

9. Wawa

New Jersey

Photo by Amanda Shulman

Wawa is not just a gas station – it’s a necessity to New Jersians, providing them with convenience store items, coffee, and hoagies. Just because we do not pump our own gas does not make Wawa any less convenient for us. We can get food inside while waiting for our gas to be filled up (multitasking!). Want to know more reasons why Wawa is the best place on earth?

10. Our Fresh Produce

New Jersey

Photo by Lauren Thiersch

New Jersey isn’t called The Garden State for no reason. New Jersey’s most well known produce items are sweet corn, blueberries, and tomatoes. You may have seen some Jersey Fresh logos around stating that we are truly the Garden State with the freshest produce. You can learn the “pros” of produce here.

11. Saltwater Taffy

New Jersey

Photo by Lauren Thiersch

Saltwater taffy originated down the shore in Atlantic City along the boardwalks which makes stopping for this snack on your next trip a summer must. Again, why would you not go to the city where a food originated if you had the chance because nothing beats the original food. Check out one of the favorites, Shriver’s Salt Water Taffy here. A fan of salted desserts? Try making sea salt cookie bark here.

12. Our Pizza

New Jersey

Photo Courtesy of @star_tavern on Instagram

New Jersey pizza, also known as tomato pie, is a highlight in the tristate area. We guess there really might be something in the water around here to make this amazing pizza dough. Hungry for more ‘za? You can check out how many different ways there are to eat pizza and see if your technique is on the list here.

13. Italian Hot Dogs

New Jersey

Photo courtesy of @charliesitalianhotdogs on Instagram

New Jersey has both the traditional and unique spins on the hot dog with this food which consists of a hot dog on an Italian roll with onions, bell peppers, and potatoes on top. Want to try another spin on the traditional hot dog? Try this pizza and hot dog combination here.

14. Jersey Mikes

New Jersey

Photo Courtesy of @jerseymikes on Instagram

Jersey Mike’s is the New Jersey originated version of Subway and I may be a little biased because I am from the area but I would choose Jersey Mikes over Subway every time.

15. Surf Taco

New Jersey

Photo by Megan Peterson

Surf Taco is the perfect and convenient snack that you can grab after your day down the shore in Jersey. See why Surf Taco is considered the true king of the beach.

16. Many Different Cuisine Options

New Jersey

Photo by Megan Peterson

New Jersey may be known for their dough-based items like bagels, pizzas, and pastas but they are also known to have many other cuisine options.

17. Campbell’s Soup Originated Here

New Jersey

Photo courtesy of @campbells on Instagram

You know that catchy soup jingle that you always see on television that gets stuck in your head or the muse for Andy Warhol’s painting of soup cans? Well, the star of both the jingle and the paintings originated here in Camden, New Jersey. So next time you’re sick and you pick up a can of Campbell’s soup, you can thank New Jersey. Don’t want canned soup? You can make your own tomato soup with this recipe.

18. M&M’s Originated in New Jersey

New Jersey

Photo by Morgan Weinstein

In 1941 this candy originated in Newark, New Jersey as a candy for the soldiers at war to eat that would keep its form and not melt before it was time for them to eat it. M&M’s have since become more popular adding different flavors to the mix and even personalization’s. Still the original M&M’s originated here in our great state of New Jersey. Check out the definitive ranking of M&M’s here.

19. Anthony Bourdain is from New Jersey

New Jersey

Photo Courtesy of @anthonybourdain on Instagram

You know, that famous chef who was on that Food Network show called The Taste or his many cookbooks that he has had published? Or maybe you are aware of his new market opening in 2017? Yeah, he’s a pretty big deal and guess what; He grew up in Leonia, New Jersey. Want to learn more about his new market opening? Check out this article on all you need to know to get ready for its opening day in 2017.

20. Our Sloppy Joes

New Jersey

Photo Courtesy of Yelp

For every other state in America, a sloppy joe usually means that a sandwich with ground beef, ketchup, onions, and other seasonings on a hamburger bun. However, in New Jersey our Sloppy Joes are unique, with no ground beef in sight. The New Jersey edition of a Sloppy Joe consists of double-decker rye bread with usually more than one type of deli meat, Swiss cheese, coleslaw, and Russian dressing. The types of deli meats include, but are not limited to, turkey, pastrami, roast beef, and ham.

21. 24 Places in NJ Were on Triple D

New Jersey

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There are 24 restaurants in New Jersey that have been featured on Guy Fieri’s Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives. You can check out what these restaurants are called and where to find them here on a map of Guy Fieri’s Flavortown. You can also check out Guy’s picks for the NYC area here.