Every state in America can be defined by its unique food culture. In Wyoming, the case is no different. Even though Wyoming is often singled out for its history of cowboys, there’s a lot more to the Equality State than meets the eye. After reading this article, you’ll think of Wyoming not just as the home state of Devil’s Tower, but as a geographic hub of dinner tables worth writing home about!
Rack of Lamb
Livestock run rampant on the farmlands of Wyoming, so it’s no wonder they’re so known for steak. But did you know that lamb is another popular choice? Many restaurants in the state are highly regarded for their preparation of rack of lamb, which is usually sourced from local farmers and ranchers. Aspen House in the historical town of Rawlins, for instance, is drizzled with a signature demi-glace sauce and served with a side of garlic mashed potatoes.
Fun fact: the official state fish of Wyoming is the Cutthroat Trout. It was first named as such more than 30 years ago, all the way back in 1987. But even though some time has passed since the indigenous fish received the honor, it certainly hasn’t left the minds — or mouths — of state residents and tourists. The river fish is a delicious catch no matter how you cook it. Sometimes simplicity is better: a basic lemon butter herb sauce should tip the scales in your favor.
Whether it’s made from elk, bison, beef, or pork, Wyoming foodies sure do love their chili. Although this simmered dish is traditionally prepared in southwestern cultures with little except meat, Wyoming chefs spice it up by creating variations of white chili, characterized by a cream and white pepper base. This spoonable delicacy is further balanced by the addition of several kinds of beans, from pinto to kidney to garbanzo!
Just as Maine is known for its blueberry preserves, so too is Wyoming applauded for its take on chokecherries preserved in a jar. Also called bitter-berries, these tart crimson fruits make a mean jam that can enhance flavor wherever there’s room to spread it. Popular vessels for chokecherry jam include buckwheat pancakes, cornbread, and tender breaded pork loin.
Rocky Mountain Oysters
Contrary to popular opinion, Rocky Mountain oysters aren’t exclusively served in the heart of Colorado. In fact, the dish is often alternatively referred to as “cowboy oysters.” If you’re not familiar with this delicacy, you might be surprised to learn that the “oysters” are actually deep-fried bull testicles. Much like calamari or fried shrimp, these savory little nuggets are frequently served with cocktail sauce and lemon.
Despite its reputation, there’s a bit more to the Wyoming cultural scene than cowboys and ghost towns. For as much history as the state holds, there’s an equally impressive smorgasbord of diverse cuisine.
To get a taste of what makes Wyoming so great, visit Aspen House Restaurant in Rawlins. Housed in a historical building more than a century old, this locally-owned and operated establishment has already made a name for itself as one of the state’s most customer-friendly steakhouses. Although they specialize in a variety of beefy entrees, their diverse menu truly offers something for everyone, just like the wild opportunity of Wyoming itself.