Naturally Nutritious Food Festival

Peaches & Cream by Regina Kraus

Peaches & Cream by Regina Kraus

2018 Winners

Judges Choice Winner:

Bierocks Recipe by Kiera Snodgrass. 

Grand Prize Winner:

Peaches & Cream by Regina Kraus

Annual Cooking Contest

Now in it’s 29th year, the Naturally Nutritious Food Festival is an annual cooking contest with a variety of categories for adults and children. Join us at this year’s event on Wednesday, August 1 during the Free Fair at the Douglas County Fairgrounds in Building 21. Contest entries will be accepted between 6 p.m. and 7 p.m. and must be accompanied by a recipe. Judging begins at 7 p.m.

A Grand Champion and the Bob Lewis Memorial Judges’ Choice Award winner will each be honored with a $50 cash prize. First, second and third place in all categories will be awarded a ribbon and a $15, $10 or $5 co-op gift card. Free sampling of the entries will follow the announcement of the winners.

For official contest rules, visit Additional questions can be directed to Nancy O’Connor at The Merc Co+op at 785-843-8544.

Open Categories

  • 1 - Fresh Salsa (no home-canned salsas, please)
  • 2 - Kansas Cuisine (any recipe using four or more ingredients grown or raised in Kansas*)
  • 3 - International Cuisine
  • 4 - Main Dish featuring Local Meat 
  • 5 - Meatless Main Dish
  • 6 - Healthy Dessert made with Fresh Fruit

*Please indicate on your submitted recipe card which ingredients meet the requirements of the category. 

Young Chef Categories+

  • 7 - Healthy Snack featuring Fresh Fruit
  • 8 - Healthy Snack featuring Fresh Vegetables

+These classes are for chefs ages 12 and under. Children are welcome to enter open categories as well.

Special Rules

Open Class Superintendent: Nancy O'Connor

  1.  Read General Rules.
  2. Enter exhibits in Meeting Hall. Refer to the schedule of events for entry date and times. Judging at 7:00 p.m.
  3. An individual may enter one exhibit per class.
  4. Each exhibit/recipe can be entered in only one category.
  5. All entries must be accompanied by a recipe. If recipe is from a cookbook, include source.
  6. Entries will be judged on the following: adherence to category, creativity of ingredients, taste, appearance, and emphasis on natural ingredients.
  7. No premiums are awarded in the Naturally Nutritious Food Festival.

Chef's Challenge

On Thursday, August 2, be sure to visit our friends at the Dreher 4-H Building for the annual Chefs Challenge, sponsored by K-State Research and Extension. Starting at 7:00 p.m., watch, sample and learn as local chefs compete to win using ingredients from local producers.