Indiana's Best Signature Food Items

Not just any old festival food could make the cut for this “Best Of” category. Mark your calendars for next year so you don’t miss out on these tasty treats.

600 lb. Apple Pie

Nappannee Apple Festival
US 6 and SR 19
Nappannee, IN 46550
(574) 773-7812


On top of celebrating Indiana's Bi-Centennial, historic Nappanee community continues its tradition of being one of Indiana's top fall festivals with its 41st annual Apple Fete September, 15-18, 2016. Kicking off one week in advance (Sept 10) is a tractor and truck pull, drawing in competition from the Midwest area. Festival week features IN's largest 7’ apple pie, more apple delights, the Napple Store with everything apple, 190 craft & commercial vendors, 30 food booths, two free entertainment stages, carnival rides, exhibits, contests, demonstrations, scholarship queen pageant, Antique Tractor & Engine Show, Saturday's parade with vintage war plane flyover followed by Wings & Wheel Show and Sunday antique tractor pull. This 7000 population community offers up great Hoosier hospitality as it welcomes over 80,000 people to the three and a half day event. There will be plenty of your favorite apple favorites: apple pie, apple fritters, apple dumplings, apple turnovers, apple fry pies, apple bread, applesauce, apple cider and apple butter to devour during the festival or take home to enjoy later. Experience a truly unique hometown festival that leaves you marking your calendar for a return trip to the following year's gala.

Buried Beef

Parke County Covered Bridge Festival
401 E. Ohio Street
Rockville, IN 47872
(765) 569-5226


The real lure of the festival isn't so much the covered bridges, but rather a far more strange culinary specialty known as buried beef. That's right, beef cooked underground! Marinating in its own juices, this succulent dish is a must-try. As one of Indiana's largest festivals, this one spreads throughout Parke County, concentrated in the hamlets which house some of the areas 31 covered bridges. Historic sites like the Bridgeton Mill enjoy the festivals other fall activities while vendors selling everything from candles and crafts to caramel apple slices, pumpkin ice cream to paintings and much more make this festival a shopping destination.

Blueberry Ice Cream

Marshall County Blueberry Festival
1660 N. Michigan Street
Plymouth, IN 46563
(888) 936-5020


Blueberry ice cream is a sweet and creamy blueberry treat that's yummy any time of the year. Made exclusively with Indiana blueberries, be sure to sample this delicious treat along with all the others at this annual festival. The Marshall County Blueberry Festival truly has something for everyone: carnival, arts and crafts, parade, horse and tractor pulls, concerts, fireworks, hot air balloons and more.

Chicago Style Popcorn

Valparaiso Popcorn Festival
Downtown Valparaiso
Valparaiso, IN 46383
(219) 464-8332


Nowadays, popcorn comes in a variety of flavors, but Chicago-style popcorn provides the best of both worlds, a little salty sweet goodness. A mixture of cheddar and caramel popcorn, this particular combination is surely the best. But don't take our word for it! Inspired by Orville Redenbacher, who chose Porter County as the place to develop his world-famous popcorn in the 1950's, the Valparaiso Popcorn Festival blends arts, crafts, a popcorn parade, music, games, and of course plenty of delicious popcorn into the region’s most popular event which is held every September.

Apple Butter

Apple Butter Festival
Courthouse square
Spencer, IN 47460
(812) 714-8110


Whether it's slathered on a biscuit or served over pancakes, nothing says fall like the sweet spicy goodness of apple butter. At the Apple Butter Festival held every September in Spencer, IN, you can stock up on a variety of homemade apple butters made right here in Indiana, take in a parade, witness the carnage of a demolition derby, and much more.

Hand Dipped Caramel Apples

Johnny Appleseed Festival
1500 E. Coliseum Blvd.
Ft Wayne, IN 46805
(260) 427-6003


Voted #1 Festival! This 2 day event boasts an authentic festival that celebrates the life and times of John Chapman aka Johnny Appleseed. The festival includes food, demonstrations, crafts, antiques, roving entertainemnt, children's area, military reenactment, farmer's market and much more! It's fun for the whole family! FREE admission

Persimmon Pudding

Persimmon Festival
533 West Main Street
Mitchell, IN 47446
(812) 849-4441


Rich and sweet with a hint of cinnamon, persimmon pudding is a delightful, exotic treat for visitors to Mitchell's annual festival. This region of Indiana is known for growing persimmons and this Midwest delicacy has long tempted the palates of Lawrence county locals. Guests will also enjoy tried-and-true staples like midway rides, food booths, queen contest and a grand parade. The Persimmon Festival is staged annually the last full week of September.

9-Foot Apple Pie

Parke County Covered Bridge Festival
US 231 & CR 500
Rockport, IN 47635
(812) 649-4357


When sliced, this 9-foot apple pie--that contains nine bushels of apples from Indiana--serves about 500 people. But the festival includes an assortment of apple treats and other delicious food. Rockport's Mt. Zion Applefest combines the best in Indiana fall festival food, crafts and family-friendly activities in a 2-day event.

Homemade Apple Cider

Heartland Apple Festival
2304 East Main Street
Danville, IN 46122
(317) 745-4876


There is nothing better to quench your thirst in the fall than the delicious taste of fresh pressed apple cider made locally from Indiana apples. Every year at Beasley's Orchard in early October, they host the Heartland Apple Festival, a two-weekend event filled with family fun including live entertainment, hayrides to the pick-your-own pumpkin patch, a kid’s activity zone, 7-acre corn maze, and a marketplace craft area. Be sure to stock up on your apple needs in the store including an assortment of apples from the orchards, fresh apple butter, and delicious caramel apples.

Apple Dumplings

Kendalville Apple Festival
589 Fair Street
Kendalville, IN 46755
(260) 350-1119


At the Kendallville Apple Festival, you must try the homemade apple dumplings made from Indiana Macintosh apples and baked in a golden brown crust and smothered with cinnamon caramel sauce. For over 25 years, the folks in Kendallville have been filling the first weekend of October with food, historical re-enactments, crafts, and rides as they cook up a weekend of family fun.