If you’ve ever been to a baseball game, you’ve probably sung the sport’s anthem: ‘Buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jacks.’ How very passé. These days, those meager snacks are nearly an embarrassment, as baseball stadiums from coast to coast ramp up their food offerings, providing fans with concessions that reflect the local city. Here is the best ballpark food from eight stadiums that are a veritable home run.
Boston Red Sox: Fenway Park
While many other cities’ baseball teams have moved into sleek new stadiums over the past few decades, Red Sox fans’ beloved Fenway Park, situated right in the middle of bustling Kenmore Square in Boston, is something of a nostalgic monument to the team’s storied history.
Its food offerings, however, are anything but old school. Sure, you can still get a classic hot dog and cotton candy, but you can also get Boston-lager-glazed bacon on a stick. When you’re done with that, there’s dessert on a spear, too: air-fried French toast sticks drizzled with maple syrup.
Pub grub takes a turn for the weird with the Buffalo Chicken Totchos, which consists of tater tots topped with shredded buffalo chicken, blue cheese crumbles and chives. No Boston activity is complete without lobster, and here that comes in the form of a lobster BLT, with seafood sourced from the longstanding Yankee Lobster Company.
Minnesota Twins: Target Field
The Minnesota Twins stadium, Target Field, has perhaps one of the most unique ballpark offerings: the peanut butter and bacon sandwich. Jelly-glazed bacon is layered with peanut butter on sourdough bread and then toasted. One can’t help but wonder what Elvis would make of this one.
On the more familiar front, longtime local institution Kramarczuk’s provides the sausages here. The stadium houses an outpost of Andrew Zimmern’s AZ Canteen, the eatery from Travel Channel’s Bizarre Foods star, and the menu here features temptations like the pork belly sandwich and the Korean-style 'Sloppy Ko', and a fanciful frozen white chocolate mousse.
Minnesota vegans are well served at Herbivorous Butcher, which turns out vegan versions of game-time staples, like Italian sausages and brats.
Chicago White Sox: Guaranteed Rate Stadium
In a city like Chicago, which is known for its Polish neighborhoods, you better believe you’re not gonna get just any ordinary hotdog at the local baseball park.
At the White Sox’s Guaranteed Rate Field, bratwurst and Polish sausages, which are sold at various stands throughout the stadium, are the locally minded alternative. Try the Vienna beef kielbasa sausage paired with onion pierogies atop sauerkraut and homemade mustard sauce and you’ve got yourself a quintessential Chi-Town meal.
If greasy meat isn’t your preference, there are veggie dogs, veggie sandwiches, and Chicago deep dish pizza on offer at stalls throughout the park.
LA Angels: Angel Stadium
What is Los Angeles' staple food? (Aside from raw kale, goji berries, and quinoa salad, that is.) Tacos, of course.
Popular local joint Chronic Tacos has an in-park stand at Angel Stadium, home of the LA Angels, where they dish out their signatures like the carnitas taco.
But LA is one of America’s greatest food towns, so accordingly, there’s no shortage of choice for Angels fans. Vegan burgers are a highlight at Big A Burger, and poke bowls and hummus cups are a few of many health-minded options at the food court at third base. Of course, for traditionalists there are hot dogs, corn dogs, chicken tenders and nachos at stands throughout the stadium.
New York Yankees: Yankee Stadium
Leave it to the Bronx Bombers to knock it out of the park. Good old fashioned milkshakes get a radical upgrade up at Yankee Stadium. Chocolate? Vanilla? Not so fast. Indulge your sweet tooth with a Tres Leches shake, made with vanilla ice cream, tres leches cake, churro and condensed milk and sold in a souvenir cup rimmed with puffed rice.
For something tamer, but only fractionally, there’s the Chocolate All-Star, a chocolate shake made with chocolate chip cookie, fudge brownie, M&Ms and crushed Oreos.
But before any of those indulgences, you’ll probably want dinner. The stadium features offerings from restaurants that will be familiar those who live in New York: Haru Sushi; Bareburger, known for its ethically soured beef; City Winery, which dishes out fancy pub grub; and Mighty Quinn’s, a specialist in naturally raised, slow-smoked meats.
Milwaukee Brewers: Miller Park
Wisconsin pride is in full effect at the Milwaukee Brewers’ Miller Park. It comes in the form of the Wisconsin Ultimate Cheese Fry from Smoke Shack BBQ, a new addition to the dining lineup in 2019. The heaping pile of craft-beer-battered twister fries and fried cheese curds is finished off with cheese sauce and bacon. (Not feeling extreme? Opt for one without the toppings.)
You’ll probably want to counterbalance all those savory flavors with a bit of sweet. That’s when you’ll head to the Pete’s Pops stall, the local popsicle makers known for their creative flavors.
Houston Astros: Minute Made Park
What is a Texas baseball game without Texas barbecue? Not much, it would seem.
At the Houston Astros’ Minute Made Park, the signature Lone Star brisket and BBQ baked potatoes are cooked up by local outfit Texas Smoke. In keeping with Texas’s go-big-or-go-home tradition, how does a hot dog wrapped in Frito crumbs sound? Or stop by Extreme Dogs for foot-long options or Dat Creole, which piles on the New Orleans flavors in its Cajun-style po’boys.
Seattle Mariners: T-Mobile Park
You can practically taste your way through all of Seattle during a nine-inning Mariners stretch at T-Mobile Park. Lots of local notables are represented here, such as local star chef Ethan Stowell, who opened Dynamite Chicken in 2018. The 'Bramling Cross Gastropub’s Original Ballard Recipe,' a carton’s worth of chicken served with a stick of dynamite in its beak.
Also new is Jack’s BBQ, which serves the brisket that’s made it a Seattle favorite over the years. It’s also worth picking up the mildly hot corn dog. But the truly voracious should order the Jack’s Frito pie, a carnivorous delicacy served in a ripped-open bag of chips like a cone. The brisket’s campfire flavors and the Fritos’ salty crunch is a match made in baseball heaven.
Pittsburgh Pirates: PNC Park
Never mind the cholesterol. The Market, a new entrant at the Pittsburgh Pirates’ PNC Park, serves a not-to-be-messed-with quinoa salad heaping with spinach, cucumbers, carrots, hearts of palm, blueberries and sunflower seeds.
But traditionalists, fret not. There’s plenty of good old-timey meat to satisfy. The Pittsburgh Cone, a tribute to the city’s Polish heritage, consists of kielbasa, pierogi, swiss cheese and sauerkraut finished with Russian dressing and served in a waffle cone.
True local fans, though, head right to the Primanti Brothers, the stadium’s outpost of the Pittsburgh institution (est. 1933) that’s famous for its sandwiches that stacks freshly cut meat, veggies and fries.