Exploring the Unique Cuisine of St. Louis, Missouri

Louis is a city with a unique culinary culture that combines the flavors of different immigrant groups with the comfort food of the Midwest. From the sticky buttercake to the slingers, the city has a variety of dishes that are specific to it. Toasted ravioli, Provel cheese pizza, Paul sandwiches, and Gerber sandwiches are some of the most popular dishes in St. Louis.

Pork steaks and Ted Drewes Frozen Custard are also popular in the city. Louis' foods include the sticky buttercake, the slingers, and the Provel cheese pizza. St. Louis' cuisine is the culinary culture of Greater St.

Louis, which comprises and surrounds the independent city of St. Louis and includes parts of the U. S. The city grew rapidly in the 19th century and became the fourth largest city in the United States in 1904, when it hosted the Louisiana Shopping Expo and the Summer Olympics.

The sticky buttercake is a type of cake invented in St. Louis that is served as breakfast, pastries, and dessert. It is believed to have been created by accident by a baker in the 1930s who made a mistake with his measurements while baking a traditional cake.


are another dish that originated in St.

It is said to have been invented by a truck driver in the 1970s who asked for “chili eggs” at a restaurant. The dish consists of eggs, chili, hash browns, and cheese served over toast or biscuits.

Provel cheese pizza

is a variant of pizza that includes Provel cheese, a mix of Cheddar, Swiss, and Provolone cheeses plus preservatives, flavorings, and liquid smoke. It was invented for pizza in the 1940s by Hoffman Dairy of Wisconsin and Tony Costa, a local company in St.

Ed Imo bought Costa's Grocery and gave it exclusive rights to sell Provel cheese.

Paul sandwiches

are another popular dish in St. They consist of Foo Young egg burgers (made with mung bean sprouts and chopped white onion) served with slices of dill pickles, white onion, mayonnaise, and lettuce between two slices of white bread. The sandwich was invented by Steven Yuen in the 1940s for his restaurant Park Chop Suey.

Gerber sandwiches

are hot open-faced sandwiches consisting of half a section of Italian or French bread spread with garlic butter and topped with ham and Provel cheese, seasoned with a pinch of paprika and then toasted.

Pork steaks

, while not originally from St. Louis, have become popular in the city since they were first announced in the Boston Globe in 1901. They are part of Boston pork shoulder or butt and are usually served grilled or barbecued.

Toasted ravioli

, while not actually toasted but fried, are an ode to St.

Louis' vibrant Italian heritage as well as its affinity for fried American comfort food. They are usually filled with ground beef but can also be filled with other ingredients such as cheese with pepper or buffalo chicken.

Ted Drewes Frozen Custard

, while not unique to St. Louis, is very popular in the city due to its local company Ted Drewes Frozen Custard which has been around for 90 years. The custard was first made by Ted Drewes Sr., who began making it in 1929 while spending winter in Florida.

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