Food & Drink

8 Iconic Midwestern Dishes You Can Ship Anywhere

You could use some comfort food right now.

Between forced social distancing, travel shut-downs, and restaurant closures, anxiety-ridden Americans across the country are in dire need of all the comfort they can get -- especially when that comfort comes in the form of favorite childhood foods. Luckily for Midwestern transplants, the internet is rife with ways to get a little slice of Minnesota (and Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Nebraska, and Kansas) nice delivered to you wherever you happen to lay your head. From deep-dish pizza and barbecue to sugar cream pie, these online purveyors will have you eating your feelings in no time.

Deep dish pizzas from Lou Malnati's

Made in Chicago, IL
Whether you consider Chicago-style deep dish actual pizza or not, we can all agree that whatever it is, it’s darn delicious. And Lou Malnati’s, a Windy City institution since 1971, serves up some of the world’s finest. From the irresistibly buttery crust and deluge of zesty tomato sauce to gobs upon gobs of creamy mozzarella cheese and the joint’s famous full sheet of housemade sausage, each layer is more indulgent than the last. Bring the party home with this oven-ready two pie delivery, made from scratch, baked to perfection, and flash frozen for ultimate freshness.
Cost: $65.99 + free shipping

Original Runza sandwiches from Runza

Made in Lincoln, NE
What’s a Runza sandwich? Only Nebraska’s most important culinary contribution since frozen TV dinners (thanks again for that, Swanson). The beloved Lincoln-based fast-food pioneer has been stuffing their secret recipe seasoned ground beef, tender cabbage, and onions into pillowy house-baked bread rolls since 1949, delighting generations of Cornhuskers with custom additions like cheese, bacon,  mushrooms, beans, and even a vegetarian option. Now you can order up your very own dirty dozen, prepared to your liking and shipped right to your door via Runza’s website.
Cost: $120 including shipping

Hoosier Sugar Cream Pie from Nick's Kitchen

Made in Huntington, IN
Hoosier hearts everywhere skip a beat at the mere mention of this sweeter-than-sweet hometown staple. For those far from home, there’s nothing more comforting than a slice of buttery goodness from Nick’s Kitchen. The century-old Huntington diner has managed to turn the official state pie into an art form, striking a keen balance between creamy, elegantly spiced vanilla custard and toothsome caramelized sugar for a flavor explosion guaranteed to have you lining up for sweet, sweet seconds. And while this one comes packed and ready to share with six to eight of your nearest and dearest, you should probably keep it all for yourself in the name of safe social distancing -- it’s only right.
Cost: $49 + free shipping

Ribs and burnt ends from Joe’s Kansas City Bar-B-Que

Made in Kansas City, KS
Few cuisines are more doggedly regional than barbecue and in Kansas City, barbecue means one thing: burnt ends. More specifically, burnt ends from Joe’s, the little gas station food stand that launched a local empire. Thankfully, the good folks minding the pit at Joe’s are more than happy to ship the succulent, pristinely charred beef chunks (plus pork ribs, signature sauce, and a whole mess of other tasty treats) to ‘cue-craving meatheads all over the country. From Cowtown to your town, with love.
Cost: $73.99 + shipping

Wild-caught walleye filets from Red Lake Nation Fishery

Made in Redby, MN
When it comes to clean eating, the Midwest doesn’t always have the best track record. But Minnesotans know full well that comfort doesn’t have to mean gut-busting. Take these rich, flaky Walleye filets, naturally loaded with magnesium, potassium, and Vitamin B12. These wild-caught Red Lake Nation swimmers are plucked fresh from the Land of 10000 Lakes, flash frozen, and destined for home-cooked, heart-healthy greatness. Crack open a Grain Belt and fire up the grill, dinner is served.
Cost: $69.95 - $74.95 + shipping

Brown Bag Apple Pie from The Elegant Farmer

Made in Mukwonago, WI
The Elegant Farmer’s Brown Bag Apple Pie is nothing short of a Wisconsin tradition. Tempting as they are, the pie’s mound of plump juicy apples is merely a vehicle for the real star of the show: the crust, a sublime combination of crispy crunch and golden brown, melt-in-your-mouth lusciousness thanks to the small town bakery’s curious practice of cooking their pies inside paper bags. And wouldn’t you know it, that world famous pastry holds up just fine in the mail.
Cost: $49.95 + free shipping

Chili and spaghetti dinner from Skyline Chili 

Made in Cincinnati, OH
Velvety, cinnamon-laced beef chili kicked up with a super secret spice blend? Check. Hearty durum wheat spaghetti crafted by an age-old Italian pasta maker? Yep. Uncured beef hot dogs and spicy brown mustard from Dorothy Lane Markets? Got it. A massive hunk of cheese from the world’s longest-operating Cheddar producers? Oh yeah.
Cost: $79 + free shipping

Original barrel-aged ginger soda from Vernors

Made in Detroit, MI
For a quick and budget-friendly fix, jonesing Detroiters can deck out their quarantine stockpiles with a case or two of this Michigan original from the ever-venerable Vernors. The bright green cans of peppery pop have been soothing tummies, invigorating palates, and even inspiring high-end cocktails since its inception in 1866 and nationwide shipping now allows the hallowed company to take the show on the road. Newcomers beware: Spicier than the competition and twice as refreshing, this ain’t your Granny’s ginger ale (unless, of course, your Granny is from Detroit).
Cost: $13.25 + shipping

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Meredith Heil is a contributor for Thrillist.