Take me out to the ballgame. Take me out with the crowd. Buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jack…
“Take Me Out to the Ball Game“—the unofficial anthem of baseball in North America—was penned in 1908. The song, which is still proudly belted out in unison at stadiums to this day, might need to be updated to accommodate some of the sport’s more recent culinary offerings.
Hot dogs, peanuts, pretzels, and Cracker Jack seem to be a thing of the past. Now, Major League Baseball (MLB) and Minor League Baseball (MiLB) teams and stadiums offer so much more—lobster rolls, churro dogs, crab grilled cheese, and toasted grasshoppers.
Many of these foods were on display for sampling at the inaugural MLB FoodFest in New York City from April 21-22. Here is a look at some of the more unique menu items.
Normally fans and players are swatting away pesky insects at baseball games, not eating them. The Seattle Mariners introduced their toasted grasshoppers, specifically chapulines from Oaxaca, Mexico, in 2017. These little guys are toasted and coated with a chili lime seasoning, so they’re crunchy with a little kick. Eating bugs can also be good for you.
How much is it? An order costs $4 at Safeco Field.
A pulled pork sandwich is too boring, so the Pittsburgh Pirates dolled it up with a few additions, namely cheese and potato pierogis. These sandwiches, introduced for the 2018 season, also feature crispy fried onions all doused in BBQ sauce on a bun.
How much is it? An order costs $9 at PNC Park.
While the Dodger Dog might be the food item most associated with the Los Angeles Dodgers, the club has also hit a home run with its take on grilled corn (elote). The Cheeto-Lote, which debuted in 2017 as a mid-season specialty item and returned for the playoffs, is a full-time menu item this season. The corn is covered in chipotle mayo, parmesan, Tajín, and Flamin’ Hot Cheetos.
How much is it? An order costs $9 at Dodger Stadium.
The Miami Marlins introduced this menu item for the 2018 season. Plantains are wrapped and topped with bacon, guava marmalade, queso blanco, and cilantro for a sweet and salty treat. It’s Miami’s take on the traditional corn dog.
How much is it? An order costs $6.50 at Marlins Park.
Think of the Atlanta Braves’ pig pickin’ as a taco salad. Introduced in 2017, this tortilla shell is stuffed with smoked pork in Coke BBQ sauce, curly fries, mac ‘n cheese, coleslaw, and roasted corn pico de gallo all with fried pork rinds on the side.
How much is it? An order costs $15 at SunTrust Park.
A fusion of breakfast and lunch. Introduced in 2017 by the Texas Rangers, the chicken and donut sliders are fried chicken sandwiches served between glazed donuts paired with buffalo ranch and honey. The sandwich is served with waffle fries.
How much is it? An order costs $13.50 at Globe Life Park in Arlington.
The Dodgers weren’t the only ones to incorporate Cheetos into a menu item. The Cleveland Indians introduced the Flamethrower for the 2018 season. This sandwich is an amalgam of flavors as it pairs a pulled pork burger with bacon jam, green apple coleslaw, and Flamin’ Hot Cheetos.
How much is it? An order costs $13.50 at Progressive Field.
Most people have had ice cream in a waffle cone, but what about dinner? The Houston Astros debuted this menu item in 2015 which pits popcorn chicken and mashed potatoes topped with honey mustard all inside a waffle cone.
How much is it? An order costs $9.50 at Minute Maid Park.
The churro dog has had a few makeovers since it was first introduced by the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2015. The current version features a churro topped with frozen yogurt, chocolate sauce, caramel, and whipped cream inside of a chocolate iced donut.
How much is it? An order costs $8.50 at Chase Field.
NOTE: Servings at MLB FoodFest were smaller than what is offered for sale at ballparks.