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17 American Cities To Avoid if You Are a Foodie

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If you love food, picking the right place to explore can make all the difference. America is full of amazing culinary destinations, but not every spot will satisfy a food lover.

We’ve put together a list of 17 American cities that might not live up to your expectations if great food is what you’re after.

If you’re a foodie, skip these cities or use this as a guide for finding the best places to eat in these locations.

1. Lubbock, Texas

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Lubbock, Texas, might be famous for its rich musical heritage and being the birthplace of rock ‘n’ roll legend Buddy Holly, but it’s not the first place you’d think of for top-notch food.

While it has its fair share of dining spots, it doesn’t stand out as a foodie destination. If you’re all about discovering exciting flavors and unique dishes, Lubbock may not meet your expectations.

It’s a great place for music lovers, but maybe not so much for those chasing the next great meal.

2. Bakersfield, California

Bakersfield California MSN
Image credit: LittleT889 – CC BY-SA 4.0/Wiki Commons.

In the heart of California, there’s a city known more for its oil fields and agriculture than its culinary scene. Bakersfield does have restaurants, but it’s not the place you’d go for a food adventure.

It’s got a quiet charm and is great for those who love the outdoors, but if you’re looking to be wowed by creative dishes or international cuisines, you might find it a bit lacking.

This city might not hit the mark for food enthusiasts seeking a vibrant dining experience.

3. Springfield, Illinois

Springfield, Illinois
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This city is where President Abraham Lincoln once lived, making it rich in history and a place many people like to visit. It has some nice eating spots, but you might find it plain if you love trying new and exciting foods.

The food scene here isn’t the main attraction – it’s more for those interested in museums and historical sites. You should look elsewhere if you’re looking for unique dining experiences.

4. Sioux Falls, South Dakota

Sturgis South Dakota Annual Motor Bike Rally MSN
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South Dakota is famous for its stunning natural landscapes and Mount Rushmore, but its largest city, Sioux Falls, isn’t known for its food. While it may have some delicious local cuisine options, it’s not exactly a foodie destination.

It’s more of a place to enjoy the great outdoors and take in the beauty of nature. You can still find tasty meals here, but you might want to keep looking if you’re seeking various culinary adventures.

5. Fargo, North Dakota

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Up north, there’s a place known for its friendly people and cold winters. It has some restaurants but is not a hotspot for food lovers.

You’ll usually find standard dishes without too much that’s out of the ordinary.

It’s a friendly city with a small-town feel, great for those who love a slower pace of life. But if your main joy is tasting different and exciting foods, this might not be the place for you.

6. Pueblo, Colorado

pueblo colorado
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In Colorado, there’s a town known for its steel mills and beautiful nature spots. It has places to eat but doesn’t stand out for its food scene.

You’ll find some good spots here and there, but if you’re looking for exciting culinary adventures, this might not be your best bet.

It’s more of a place for outdoor lovers who enjoy hiking and exploring – for those seeking a variety of delicious eats, you might want to keep looking.

7. Montgomery, Alabama

Montgomery, Alabama
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Who doesn’t love Alabama’s southern charm? It’s a state filled with rich history and delicious comfort food – however, the capital city of Montgomery may not be the best place for foodies.

While it has some tasty dishes like fried chicken and BBQ, it’s not known for its diverse culinary scene. But if you want to immerse yourself in Southern culture and hospitality, this is the city you are looking for!

8. Jackson, Mississippi

Jackson Mississippi aerial view MSN
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Even though Mississippi is known for its Southern cuisine, the capital city of Jackson may not be the top destination for food lovers.

While you can certainly find some delicious soul food and BBQ here, the options may be limited compared to other major cities in the state.

That said, if you’re a fan of classic Southern cooking and friendly locals, this is still a great place to visit. Just don’t expect a huge variety of food options like you would find in bigger cities.

9. Cedar Rapids, Iowa

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Next, we have Cedar Rapids, a charming city in Iowa known for its arts and culture scene. However, when it comes to food, you may not find as many options here as in larger cities.

While there are some delicious local dishes, such as Maid-Rites (a type of loose meat sandwich) and corn on the cob, the overall culinary scene may not be very diverse.

But the city still has much to offer, from beautiful parks to art museums and theaters. It’s a great opportunity for foodies to try classic Midwestern comfort food.

10. Amarillo, Texas

Amarillo, Texas
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Texas, the state known for its love of BBQ and Tex-Mex cuisine, may not have much to offer in the city of Amarillo.

While you can still find some tasty dishes like smoked brisket and chili, the options may be limited compared to other major cities such as Austin or Houston.

But don’t let that stop you from visiting this city – with its friendly locals and rich cowboy heritage, Amarillo offers a unique and authentic Texas experience.

11. Fort Wayne, Indiana

Fort Wayne
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Another city with dull food options is Fort Wayne, Indiana. You can do other things like visit historical sites and museums or go hiking, but there may not be much in the way of gastronomic variety.

This area is known for sticking to the staples. However, the city does have a bustling farmers market where you can find locally grown produce and homemade treats.

So, while it may not be a foodie’s dream destination, Fort Wayne still has plenty to offer for those interested in history and outdoor activities.

12. Topeka, Kansas

Topeka, Kansas
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At number 12, we have Topeka, Kansas – another city that may not be known for its culinary scene.

While you can certainly find some tasty BBQ and fried chicken here, the options may be limited compared to other cities.

But what Topeka lacks in food variety, it makes up for in charm and friendly locals. The city has a rich history and plenty of outdoor activities, making it an excellent destination for families and nature lovers.

13. South Bend, Indiana

South Bend, Indiana
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South Bend is famous for being the home of the University of Notre Dame, but it may not be as famous for its food scene.

The local restaurants here don’t offer much, but you can expect good old-fashioned Midwestern comfort food. Think hearty stews, casseroles, and, of course, plenty of potatoes.

But South Bend isn’t just about the food – it also has a thriving arts and culture scene, with museums and galleries showcasing local talent.

14. Huntsville, Alabama

Huntsville, Alabama
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Another city from the South makes our list at number 14 – Huntsville, Alabama.

Known for its aerospace industry and NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville may not be known for its cuisine.

But that doesn’t mean you won’t find some tasty Southern dishes here. The city has a great selection of comfort food, from BBQ to fried catfish, to satisfy your cravings.

Huntsville offers plenty of opportunities for those interested in science and space exploration to explore and learn.

15. Brownsville, Texas

Brownsville, Texas
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Another city from Texas makes our list, on the southern border with Mexico. Despite being a border town, Brownsville may not be as well-known for its food scene as other cities in the state.

You will only find some basic Mexican fare here, which is authentic and delicious.

But the real charm of Brownsville lies in its unique blend of Mexican and American cultures.

From colorful architecture to traditional music and festivals, this city has a vibrant atmosphere that will make you feel like you’re in two countries at once.

16. Wichita, Kansas

Wichita, Kansas
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You’ll be pleasantly surprised if you don’t have too many expectations about food when visiting Wichita, Kansas. You can’t expect too much other than barbeque and steak when you are in the city.

Other than food, there are many things to do in Wichita, like visiting the Sedgwick County Zoo, exploring the Old Cowtown Museum, and enjoying concerts at the INTRUST Bank Arena.

17. Bend, Oregon

Cannon Beach, Oregon
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While Bend may not be as well-known for its food scene as other cities on this list, it is definitely worth a visit for outdoor enthusiasts.

Located in central Oregon, Bend offers easy access to hiking, skiing, and other outdoor activities. You will have a lot of funds around here, and you’ll have a great time here.

If you are craving food, you can visit nearby places, but don’t expect too much variety.

17. Modesto, California

Modesto, California
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And lastly, on our list is Modesto, California. This city may not have the glitz and glamour of other Californian cities like Los Angeles or San Francisco, but it has its own charm.

It does have access to nearby fresh agricultural produce. However, when it comes to food varieties, Modesto may not have as many options as other cities on this list, but it makes up for it with its friendly and welcoming community.

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So there you have it! If you are a food lover, these cities may not be the top destinations on your list. But give them a chance, and you may be pleasantly surprised by the unique experiences and flavors they offer. And even if food isn’t your main priority, these cities still have plenty to offer in terms of culture, history, and outdoor activities.

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