10 Famous Michigan Food: Dishes Michigan Is Known For

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The mitten state is known for many things, but one of the best things on offer is the unique foods in Michigan! From Detroit-style pizza and pasties to cherry pies and coney dogs, the Michigan food scene features plenty of truly delicious eats. This is an exploration of the delectable delights that make up Michigan’s culinary culture!

What’s Special About Michigan Food

One of the exciting features of Michigan’s food scene is its emphasis on using fresh, locally sourced ingredients, from Traverse City cherries to artisanal cheeses from the Upper Peninsula. The state’s proximity to the Great Lakes also means that seafood and freshwater fish play a role in many Michigan dishes.

Michigan also features an interesting craft beer culture, which has exploded in recent years with hundreds of breweries and brewpubs offering innovative and delicious beers.

Whether you’re a foodie or just looking for a tasty bite to eat, here are some of the famous foods in Michigan to try when you are visiting the state!

Most Famous Michigan Food

Detroit-Style Pizza

Detroit-style pizza has been around for over 70 years and has become one of the iconic comfort foods in Michigan. 

This pizza is made in a rectangular shape with a thick, crispy crust that’s almost like a Sicilian-style pizza. But what sets it apart is the cheese – it’s layered on the bottom of the dough, creating a caramelized, crispy edge

The pizza sauce is then placed on top of the cheese, rather than below it as most pizzas are made. This gives Detroit-style pizza a unique flavor that you won’t find anywhere else. 

The dish also includes generous amounts of pepperoni, which adds another level of flavor to the classic Italian favorite.

The real magic happens when you bite into that first slice. The crust is crispy on the outside, but soft and pillowy on the inside, with just the right amount of chewiness. The cheese is gooey and delicious, and the sauce ties it all together with a burst of sweet tomato flavor.

Detroit-style pizza was born in the Motor City back in the 1940s, and it’s been a beloved staple of the Michigan food scene ever since. It’s a true testament to the ingenuity and creativity of the people of Detroit, and it’s definitely worth trying if you’re ever in the area!

Popular Foods In Michigan

Wet Burrito

This saucy creation is a staple of Mexican-American cuisine in the Great Lakes State. You can find this cross-cultural dish in various parts of the United States, but it is especially popular in Michigan. 

Visualize a giant tortilla stuffed with your choice of savory meat (typically ground beef), beans, rice, and cheese, all smothered in a delicious tomato-based sauce and topped with lettuce, tomatoes, and sour cream. 

The whole thing is then baked in the oven until it’s piping hot and the cheese is perfectly melted.

This results in an incredibly flavor-packed burrito that will satisfy even the most demanding of taste buds. Plus, it’s filling enough to make for an excellent meal any time of day. 

You can find wet burritos all over Michigan – from fast food restaurants to upscale eateries – so don’t forget to try out this hearty Michigan food when you visit!

Olive Burger

Michigan is home to many different types of burgers, but none are as special as the olive burger. There are many stories to this unique sandwich’s origins, from the Flint Lansing region and even Grand Rapids in the 1960s. Regardless, this is one of the true original foods from Michigan to try.

The key ingredient here is the olives – they’re blended into a paste and spread onto a freshly grilled hamburger patty. 

The classic Olive Burger is made with a juicy beef patty, topped with a generous helping of olive paste. From there, the burger is topped with onion, mustard, pickles, lettuce, tomato, and mayonnaise. Some even add a slice of cheese to make it extra special!

The combination of tangy olives with all those other fresh ingredients makes for an unbelievable explosion of flavors in your mouth! The crunch of the onions pairs perfectly with the creamy mayo and juicy patty, while the olives provide a salty kick that will keep you coming back for more.

 It’s a perfect option for those who want to try something new and exciting in their burger game.


This is one of the simple yet delicious foods in Michigan; showing that it doesn’t have to be complicated to create a well-loved dish that appeals to the general population.

Chipati uses fresh-baked pita bread that is soft and chewy. It’s stuffed with various fillings to your liking. Some of the common options are seasoned ground beef, lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, sour cream and other toppings. 

The result is a yummy and filling meal that satisfies your hunger and your taste buds. It’s easy to see why this tasty snack has become so popular – the simple flavors of all the various ingredients combine to create something that’s just satisfying. 

Plus, it can be easily customized with your favorite toppings for an even more fulfilling experience. This is also a convenient food that you can bring around easily. Consider packing one as you go around exploring the famous landmarks in Michigan.

The dish is believed to originate from Pizza Bob in Ann Harbor during the 1970s. It comes as no surprise that this is one of the best places to try this food of Michigan.

Snack Foods Of Michigan

Coney Dog

This is perhaps one of the most well-known foods from Michigan. It is not only popular in the state but across the US.

Coney Dog consists of a beef hotdog served with chili and onions on top, making for a savory and slightly spicy flavor. You can also add mustard and other toppings according to your preference. 

The dish was said to have been invented by two Greek immigrants, William and Constantine Antoniou in Detroit in the early 1900s. They put their own twist on the classic hot dog by adding chili and onions, and the Coney dog was born

The brothers opened up their first restaurant named ‘American Coney Island’. It didn’t take long for this tasty snack to become a hit among locals and visitors alike! 

Today, there are countless variations of the Coney dog throughout Michigan, with each region and restaurant putting its own spin on this classic dish.

Whether you’re at a baseball game, a family picnic, or a late-night diner run, the Coney dog is a must-try when visiting Michigan. It’s the perfect blend of comfort food and unique flavor. 

Many say that it is an experience that cannot be missed when visiting the state. 

It’s an essential part of Michigan’s culinary culture.

Better Made Potato Chips  

This snack is a true Michigan favorite since 1930. Better Made chips are made from fresh potatoes that are thinly sliced, fried until golden brown, then lightly salted. The result? A delicious snack that’s munch-able and addicting! 

The chips come in many different flavors, such as Honey BBQ, Sour Cream & Onion, Salt & Vinegar, and the classic original. Each one packs a punch of flavor that gives you that satisfying crunch with every bite. 

What makes it even better is that Better Made Snack Foods uses mainly local Michigan potatoes, while drawing from other states only in the low agricultural seasons. It’s no woner why so many Michiganders love munching on these chips – they’re a delicious snack!

Whether you’re snacking on them at home or packing them for a road trip, Better Made Potato Chips are a must-try for any foodie. You can also easily order them online.


Pasty is a traditional cornish food that has been embraced by the state of Michigan. Originally a favorite among miners in the Upper Peninsula, this meat pie is filled with seasoned diced meat, potatoes, onions, and sometimes even rutabaga, all wrapped in a flaky crust.

This savory snack is an easy-to-eat finger food. It’s perfect for any occasion – whether you’re looking for something to munch on while watching the game or packing it for a picnic in one of Michigan’s many beautiful parks. 

This iconic food from Michigan has a long history with the state. It was brought to the Upper Peninsula during the 1800s by immigrant miners from Cornwall that worked there at the time. The pasty has evolved over time and become a part of Michigan culture ever since! 

There are plenty of places to get your hands on one, each with their unique spin on this classic dish. Regardless of how you take it, it’s a delicious and filling treat that you won’t want to miss out on!

Desserts And Sweet Foods From Michigan

Traverse City Cherries

These sweet treats are the pride of the state and are some of the sweetest, juiciest, and most delicious cherries you’ll ever taste.

It’s no surprise that Traverse City, located in the northern part of the state, has become known as “The Cherry Capital of the World”. The region has the perfect climate and soil for growing these plump and tasty fruits in abundance.

These cherries are so delicious and juicy because they are hand-picked during their peak ripeness from local orchards in the area. The tart variety is used for baking pies and cobblers, while the sweet variety can be enjoyed by munching on them straight out of hand! 

Home cooks in Michigan make jam with these luscious fruits and use them to decorate cakes and other desserts. One popular way to enjoy them is in a cherry pie, which is a favorite dessert in Michigan. 

Traverse City cherries have also made their way into savory dishes like cherry-glazed pork chops or cherry-infused BBQ sauce.

Every year in July, the National Cherry Festival is held in Traverse City, featuring cherry pit spitting contests, cherry-themed art, and of course, delicious cherry treats. One of the fun facts about Michigan is its various themed events and festivals. 

So, whether you’re a Michigan native or just passing through, be sure to indulge in the sweetness of Traverse City cherries!

Cider And Doughnuts

Nothing says fall in Michigan like a delicious cider and doughnut combo. It’s one of the state’s most beloved food traditions, especially when enjoyed outside at orchards and cider mills scattered throughout the mitten-shaped state.

Michigan is known for its apple orchards, and many of them offer delicious, fresh-pressed cider and homemade doughnuts. The aroma of cinnamon and sugar wafting from the cider mill is simply irresistible.

The doughnuts are freshly made from local ingredients, using age-old recipes passed down through generations. They range from classic glazed to jelly-filled, apple cider-infused, fritter-style, and more! And they taste even better when served with a mug of hot apple cider – also made locally with organic apples.

This time-honored treat is perfect for any season but it truly shines during autumn months in Michigan. Cider mill owners often offer seasonal promotions that include hayrides, corn mazes, apple picking, and other family-friendly activities. 

It’s a tradition for many Michiganders to take a scenic drive to their favorite cider mill and indulge in this heavenly pairing. It is a must-try for anyone visiting the mitten state. So, if you’re looking for some warming comfort food and sweet treats with an autumnal twist, you can’t go wrong with cider and doughnuts! 

Iconic Drinks From Michigan


One of the most beloved soft drinks in Michigan is Vernors ginger soda. Ever since its invention in Detroit in the 1800s, this unique beverage has become a staple of the mitten state and a symbol of Michiganders’ pride. 

Vernors is made with real ginger root and is carbonated and flavored to perfection. It has a distinctively spicy flavor that sets it apart from other sodas. Some say it’s got a hint of vanilla, others say it’s got a little bit of a kick to it

This iconic drink can be enjoyed on its own or used as an ingredient for creative recipes like shakes, cocktails, and marinades. You will commonly see it at barbecues, picnics, and family gatherings.

It is often said that Vernors was invented to help ease stomachaches. Today, many still swear by it as an effective cure for digestive issues! But even if you don’t need an upset-stomach remedy, it’s still worth trying this one-of-a-kind drink.

Discovering Delicious Michigan Food

Michigan cuisine is truly something special, and it’s so much more than just cherries and cider. From fulfilling pasties to delicious Coney Dogs, there are endless delicious foods in Michigan that can be munched on straight out of hand!

Whether you’re a Michigander looking for comfort food or someone visiting from out of state who wants to try some unique dishes, you won’t be disappointed by all that this mitten-shaped state has to offer. Be sure to explore the culinary delights of Michigan!



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Welcome To NomadsUnveiled
This is Rax. For over a decade, I have traveled to over 60 countries - from a budget backpacker to a business traveler, expat and then a digital nomad. You can find insights and perspectives from myself and other world travelers that will inspire your journey of discovery.


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