The Food Each State Hates The Most

By Kathy Morris
Sep. 6, 2022
Fact Checked
Cite This Webpage Zippia. "The Food Each State Hates The Most" Sep. 6, 2022,

Most Hated Foods Research Summary

  • The most hated food in the US is Olives, being named the worst by 13 states.

  • Anchovies are also unpopular, with 12 states saying it’s the worst food.

  • There are only 10 foods collectively despised by different states: olives, anchovies, eggplant, beets, turkey bacon, bologna, sushi, well-done steak, carrots and pickles.

  • 62% of all Americans actually like Olives, they’re just particularly hated in some states.

There’s a reason some foods are picked over at work potlucks. Some foods are just…gross.

However, gross is objective. One man’s pickle treasure is another’s carefully picked-off garbage. We set out to find each state’s most hated food.

The results? Some states are just picky, but others are avoiding some pretty yucky stuff.

Other Interesting Findings

  • Two highly rational states (Connecticut and Massachusetts) know that well-done steak is a scourge on humanity.

  • Nobody hates cottage cheese, tuna, liver, tomatoes, or peas the most.

  • Bacon is beloved, but not turkey bacon. 4 states refuse to pretend it tastes the same.

  • Sushi is trendy, but Maine, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and West Virginia don’t want it.

  • West Virginia loves a lot of unpopular foods, including well done steak, bologna, and cottage cheese, to name a few.

How We Figured This Out

We sought out a list of just under 40 controversial foods that make a good chunk of the population go “gross.”

From there, we turned to Google Search Trends to find which of the hate-able foods each state searches the least. The opposite of love isn’t pure hate, it’s indifference– By finding out where people are looking for the least recipes, online food orders, and in general have bottom-level search interest, we could find the food they truly dislike the least.

We avoided using foods that were highly regional, but of dubious tastiness such as “grits.” Too much of the country just doesn’t know what they shouldn’t like.

Hold the pickles…and the olives

Taste is subjective. You might be staring at the map with your jaw dropped, thinking, “Beets are the best!” Good for you. Life is full of Mondays and other unpleasantries.

If Beets make your day better, dig in. However, if you’re making a dish to share, maybe take a moment to realize not everyone shares your adoration.

Otherwise, you risk bringing home an awkwardly full, untouched dish.

Each State’s Most Hated Food

State Hated Food
Alabama Beets
Alaska Turkey bacon
Arizona Beets
Arkansas Anchovies
California Olives
Colorado Turkey bacon
Connecticut Well Done Steak
Delaware Olives
District of Columbia Pickles
Florida Beets
Georgia Olives
Hawaii Pickles
Idaho Anchovies
Illinois Olives
Indiana Olives
Iowa Anchovies
Kansas Anchovies
Kentucky Eggplant
Louisiana Beets
Maine Sushi
Maryland Olives
Massachusetts Well Done Steak
Michigan Anchovies
Minnesota Eggplant
Mississippi Olives
Missouri Anchovies
Montana Carrots
Nebraska Anchovies
Nevada Eggplant
New Hampshire Bologna
New Jersey Olives
New Mexico Olives
New York Olives
North Carolina Anchovies
North Dakota Eggplant
Ohio Anchovies
Oklahoma Anchovies
Oregon Bologna
Pennsylvania Sushi
Rhode Island Turkey bacon
South Carolina Olives
South Dakota Eggplant
Tennessee Olives
Texas Anchovies
Utah Bologna
Vermont Sushi
Virginia Olives
Washington Bologna
West Virginia Sushi
Wisconsin Anchovies
Wyoming Turkey bacon

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Kathy Morris

Kathy is the head of content at Zippia with a knack for engaging audiences. Prior to joining Zippia, Kathy worked at Gateway Blend growing audiences across diverse brands. She graduated from Troy University with a degree in Social Science Education.

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Topics: Study