Top 5 Influences on Regional Cooking in the United States

The Creole brought us Jambalaya, but don't mistake it for Cajun cooking. See more pictures of comfort foods.

Aside from ingredients and techniques native to indigenous North Americans, all cuisine in the United States originated somewhere else. Immigrants from all over the world settled here and flooded the country with foods, methods of preparation and recipes native to their home country. The culmination of all of these influences has made up the collective American cuisine. But most dishes that seem uniquely "American" have their roots in far-off lands. The fact that humans tend to settle and congregate with their own nationalities concentrated culinary influences to defined geographical areas. What we ended up with is a delicious mix of cuisines as varied as the immigrants who came to the states, recipes in tow. We'll look at five of these regional influences on the following pages.