New research has revealed the most popular takeout in each American state with Japanese food being the most popular in 11 states.
The research, conducted by MealDeliveryExperts, analyzed over 18 years of Google Trends data to establish the most Googled takeout in each American state.
Japanese food was the second most popular cuisine with 11 states searching for it more than any other, including California, Texas, Illinois, and Virginia.
The United States searches for ‘Sushi near me’ more than any other country, reaching 436% above the worldwide average, with searches for ‘Sushi delivery’ hitting an all-time high in America in April 2020, according to a news release.
In California for example, searches for ‘Sushi delivery’ rose by 141% in April 2020, with strong interest levels recorded across the state.
Japan has influenced American pop culture, where we see sushi-making being adopted by American chefs, and the emergence of popular Japanese-style restaurants located across the nation, from the high-end Nobu to everyday chains such as Benihana.
The analysis revealed that Chinese food had the highest number of states searching for it the most, with a total of 24 American states, including Georgia, Colorado, Louisiana, and Kentucky.
GrubHub’s order data shows General Tso’s chicken is the most popular Chinese dish in the country, followed by crab rangoon and egg rolls.
America has a history of Chinese immigration beginning in the 19th century, however, Chinese food swept America after President Richard Nixon’s 1972 visit to Beijing was broadcast to home audiences. The Chinese American Restaurant Association reports that there are currently more than 45,000 Chinese restaurants in the United States.
Nine states searched for American food the most, which includes Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, and Massachusetts. Chicken and casual dining restaurants such as Applebee’s were particular favorites in these regions. Searches for ‘Fried chicken near me’ hit their highest in America in July 2021, with the trend looking to continue through 2022.
Seafood was popular in coastal states, New Hampshire, Maryland, New Jersey, South Carolina, and Massachusetts. Maryland in particular has the highest percentage of searches for ‘Seafood delivery’ in the nation. Each coastal state that searched for American takeout most, except South Carolina, has below-average rates of adult obesity. Massachusetts in particular ranks 3rd lowest adult obesity rate in the United States, 23.89% lower than the American average.
Three states searched for Thai cuisine the most. The states which searched for Thai food the most are New York, Florida, and North Carolina. Searches for ‘Thai food near me’ reached all-time highs during 2021 in the aforementioned states, increasing by 432% in North Carolina, 356% in Florida, and 314% in New York.
Thailand is known for creating unique experiences, and its food is no exception. In 2019, Bangkok topped Mastercard’s Global Destination Cities Index for the fourth year in a row, the latest year to be released. There are an estimated 5,342 Thai restaurants in the United States.
Mexican cuisine was searched for most in Arizona, the only state to do so. Google searches for ‘Mexican food near me’ is on track to surpass levels seen during the pandemic, with May 2022 search volumes for this term 13.63% higher than those seen at the highest point in May 2021.
Arizona shares a border with Mexico, and as of the 2020 census, it is reported that almost one-third of all residents living in Arizona identify as Hispanic or Latino. Americans rated nachos as their favorite Mexican dish.
Hawaii’s favorite is fusion cuisine, owing to how incredibly popular the chain restaurant Zippy’s is in the state, which combines American, Japanese, Korean, Chinese, and Hawaiian cuisine. Zippy’s has 22 locations in Hawaii, with 10 in Honolulu alone. Search data reveals that in 2022, searches dropped heavily for the restaurant chain, recording the lowest levels of activity seen since 2016. The drop in search volume is likely due to the 16 restaurant locations that were not able to resume fast food seating until March 2022 due to staffing issues related to the pandemic.
Italian cuisine was searched the most in Kansas, with the Sunflower State searching for ‘Pizza Hut delivery’ more than any other in the nation. Kansas residents also searched for ‘Italian food near me, which exploded in May 2021 to 629% of the average volume. It comes as no surprise, as 15 percent of Americans ranked pizza as their favorite comfort food. According to a recent YouGov poll, garlic bread is the most popular Italian dish with 84% popularity, making it the second most popular dish in the United States.
Commenting on the study, a spokesperson from MealDeliveryExperts said: “This data offers an insight into which ethnic cuisines influence the food trends and eating habits of each state the most. The pandemic created a boom in search interest across the globe, with worldwide searches for ‘food delivery’ reaching all-time highs in April 2020. Chinese cuisine was the most searched for in the United States, the most popular search among 24 states. However, the most populous states preferred American, Thai, or Japanese cuisine, rather than Chinese food. It is clear that Asian food has won America’s heart, with Asian cuisines being the most popular search in 39 states.”
|State||Most searched cuisine||Notes|
|Alabama||Chinese||Searches for ‘Chinese food delivery’ skyrocketed by 243% before the pandemic.|
|Alaska||Chinese||‘Chinese food delivery near me’ searches went up by 691% in November 2021 with high search volumes in the Anchorage region.|
|Arizona||Mexican||Google searches for ‘Mexican food near me’ is on track to surpass levels seen during the pandemic, with May 2022 search volumes for this term 13.63% higher than those seen at the highest point in May 2021.|
|Arkansas||Chinese||‘Chinese food delivery’ increased by 182% in February 2020, with the highest search volumes coming from the Little Rock-Pine Bluff area.|
|California||Japanese||Searches for ‘sushi delivery’ rose by 141% in April 2020, with strong interest levels recorded across the state.|
|Colorado||Chinese||Searches for ‘Chinese near me’ rose by 352% in December 2021, with the Colorado Springs-Pueblo area recording the highest search levels.|
|Connecticut||Chinese||‘Chinese delivery’ searches skyrocketed by 264% in November 2017. Searches are now 4x greater than five years ago.|
|Delaware||Chinese||‘Chinese food near me’ has seen a large increase over time, with searches increasing by 390% in February 2022.|
|Florida||Thai||Floridians searched for ‘Thai food delivery’ the most in February 2020, increasing by 212%. ‘Thai food near me’ climbed by 353% in February 2022, with the strongest interest in Tampa, St. Petersburg, Panama City, and Pensacola.|
|Georgia||Chinese||‘Chinese near me’ searches reached their highest in December 2021, with Google search data recording a 256% increase. Savannah had the highest search interest in the area.|
|Hawaii||Fusion||Search data reveals that in 2022, searches dropped heavily for the restaurant chain, recording the lowest levels of activity seen since 2016. The drop in search volume is likely due to the 16 restaurant locations that were not able to resume fast food seating until March 2022 due to staffing issues related to the pandemic.|
|Idaho||Chinese||‘Chinese food near me’ has climbed 551% over the study, reaching the highest search levels in April 2021. The search was particularly strong in the Boise region.|
|Illinois||Japanese||‘Sushi delivery’ searches reached a high in April 2020, going up by 144%. Search volumes were the highest in Chicago.|
|Indiana||Japanese||‘Sushi delivery near me’ rose by 692% in April 2020, with Indianapolis showing the highest search interest in the state.|
|Iowa||American||In September 2021, ‘fried chicken near me’ searches shot up by 627%. Des Moines and Ames areas showed the highest levels of search interest.|
|Kansas||Italian||Searches for ‘Italian food near me’ exploded in May 2021 to 629% of the average volume.|
|Kentucky||Chinese||Searches for ‘Chinese delivery’ were at their highest in Dec 2017, which saw an increase of 194%. There has recently been a decline in delivery searches, with the reopening of indoor restaurant dining.|
|Louisiana||Chinese||Search volume for ‘Chinese food near me’ is at its highest point to date, with May 2022 seeing a record 455% increase.|
|Maine||Chinese||Searches for ‘Chinese delivery near me’ were their highest in December 2021 with a 511% increase. The Portland-Auburn region showed particularly strong levels of search interest.|
|Maryland||American||‘Seafood delivery’ searches exploded in May 2020, increasing by 678%, with Salisbury showing the highest levels of search interest.|
|Massachusetts||American||Searches for ‘seafood delivery near me’ went up by 750% in July 2021, with Providence and New Bedford recording the highest levels of search interest.|
|Michigan||American||May 2020 saw searches for ‘Applebees takeout’ explode by 1,306%. ‘Subway delivery’ searches also shot up by 482% in June 2020. Search volumes were the highest in Detroit.|
|Minnesota||Japanese||Searches for ‘Sushi delivery’ were highest in June 2020, rising by 185%. The search was strongest in Minneapolis and St. Paul.|
|Mississippi||Chinese||‘Chinese cuisine’ searches have tripled throughout the study, reaching their highest point in May 2020 when searches climbed by 165%.|
|Missouri||Japanese||‘Sushi delivery near me’ searches increased by 485% in May 2021. Search volumes were particularly strong in Kansas City and St Louis.|
|Montana||Chinese||‘Chinese food delivery’ searches went up by 310% in March 2019.|
|Nebraska||Chinese||‘Chinese delivery near me’ reached a high in January 2020, with a 337% increase. Omaha searched for this the most.|
|Nevada||Chinese||‘Chinese near me’ searches shot up 368% in May 2022 with a particularly strong interest in the Las Vegas area.|
|New Hampshire||American||Searches for ‘Puritan takeout’ increased by 372% in November 2020, with Manchester showing the greatest levels of interest.|
|New Jersey||American||‘Seafood delivery’ and ‘Popeyes delivery’ searches went up by 1,053% and 1,118% in April 2020, respectively.|
|New Mexico||Chinese||‘Chinese food near me’ was searched for most in December 2021, seeing a 518% increase over time.|
|New York||Thai||In New York, searches for ‘Thai food delivery’ went up by 126% in April 2020, with ‘Thai delivery’ searches also rising by 103%. New York City registered the highest levels of search interest.|
|North Carolina||Thai||Searches for ‘Thai delivery’ went up by 280% in February 2020. Searches for ‘Thai food near me’ have tripled since 2016, climbing 424% in July 2021, with strong interest levels across the state.|
|North Dakota||Chinese||‘Chinese food near me’ shot up by 705% with strong interest levels across the state.|
|Ohio||American||‘Applebee’s delivery’, ‘KFC delivery’, and ‘McDonalds delivery’ searches skyrocketed by 801%, 927%, and 399% in the Columbus area in April 2020, respectively. ‘Seafood delivery’ searches were particularly high in Cleveland and Akron, with a reported increase of 863% in April 2020.|
|Oklahoma||Chinese||In March 2022, ‘Chinese food near me’ searches skyrocketed by 443%.|
|Oregon||Chinese||‘Chinese near me searches are at their highest on record in May 2022, going up by 330% with Portland residents searching the most.|
|Pennsylvania||American||Searches for ‘outback steakhouse delivery’ were up by 1,107% in May 2020. ‘KFC delivery’ searches rose by 803% in April 2020, with Wilkes-Barre and Scranton showing the highest levels of search interest.|
|Rhode Island||Chinese||‘Chinese near me’ saw the highest amount of searches in December 2021, increasing by 374% over time.|
|South Carolina||American||Searches for ‘Fried chicken near me’ climbed to their highest in September 2021 with an increase of 486%. ‘Seafood delivery near me’ searches exploded by 998% in June 2020, and searches were particularly strong in Florence and Myrtle Beach.|
|South Dakota||Chinese||‘Chinese food delivery’ hit its highest search volume in May 2019, increasing by 304% with Rapid City showing the highest search interest.|
|Tennessee||Japanese||‘Sushi delivery’ searches reached their highest point in May 2020, rising by 229%. Search interest was strongest in Nashville, followed by Memphis and Knoxville.|
|Texas||Japanese||Texans searched for ‘Sushi delivery’ the most in April 2020, increasing by 138% during this month. Search interest was particularly strong in the Laredo area.|
|Utah||Japanese||‘Sushi near me searches have increased by 406%, with Google data showing the highest levels in February 2022.|
|Vermont||Chinese||Searches for ‘Chinese food near me’ have more than tripled in three years, going up 614% in December 2020.|
|Virginia||Japanese||Virginia residents searched for ‘sushi delivery’ most in May 2020, which saw an uplift of 149%. Norfolk, Portsmouth, and Newport searched the most.|
|Washington||Japanese||In December 2020, searches for ‘sushi delivery near me’ exploded by 505%. Seattle and Tacoma recorded the highest levels of interest.|
|West Virginia||Chinese||Searches for ‘Chinese delivery near me’ exploded by 507% in 2019.|
|Wisconsin||Japanese||‘Sushi delivery near me’ searches increased by 571% in December 2021. Milwaukee showed the strongest search levels.|
|Wyoming||Chinese||Highest search volume for ‘Chinese delivery’ in February 2019, a 334% increase overall.|