Counties with the highest rate of food insecure children in Texas

Written by:
April 29, 2022
Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia Commons

Counties with the highest rate of food insecure children in Texas

Food insecurity is a widespread problem in the United States, with people experiencing food insecurity in every single county in the nation. The nonprofit Feeding America describes food insecurity as “a lack of consistent access to enough food for every person in a household to live an active, healthy life.”

Food insecurity hits children particularly hard. The USDA estimates that more than 5.3 million children lived in food-insecure households in 2019. The COVID-19 pandemic put further strain on households already experiencing food hardship, with Feeding America estimating that 13 million children may experience food insecurity in 2021—that’s one in six children. Not having consistent access to enough food can affect cognitive abilities, overall health, moods, and attention spans—not to mention the psychological effects of living with scarcity.

Stacker compiled a list of counties in Texas with the highest rate of food insecure children using data from Feeding America. Counties are ranked by highest percent of children with food insecurity as of 2019.

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#50. Henderson County

- Child food insecurity rate: 25.1%
--- Number of food insecure children: 4,390
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 78.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 22.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 17.0%
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Renelibrary // Wikimedia Commons

#49. Camp County

- Child food insecurity rate: 25.2%
--- Number of food insecure children: 850
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 66.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 34.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 16.2%
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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#48. Bandera County

- Child food insecurity rate: 25.2%
--- Number of food insecure children: 960
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 64.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 36.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 16.0%
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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#47. Matagorda County

- Child food insecurity rate: 25.2%
--- Number of food insecure children: 2,400
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 75.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 25.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 16.7%
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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#46. Wood County

- Child food insecurity rate: 25.3%
--- Number of food insecure children: 2,180
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 75.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 26.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 16.9%

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Aualliso // Wikimedia Commons

#45. Throckmorton County

- Child food insecurity rate: 25.5%
--- Number of food insecure children: 60
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 73.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 27.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.7%
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Aualliso // Wikimedia Commons

#44. Hamilton County

- Child food insecurity rate: 25.5%
--- Number of food insecure children: 440
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 73.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 27.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 17.1%
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Michael Barera // Wikimedia Commons

#43. Red River County

- Child food insecurity rate: 25.6%
--- Number of food insecure children: 630
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 70.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 30.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.3%
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#42. Cameron County

- Child food insecurity rate: 25.7%
--- Number of food insecure children: 33,380
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 87.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 13.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 17.5%
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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#41. Duval County

- Child food insecurity rate: 26.0%
--- Number of food insecure children: 760
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 94.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 6.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 17.2%

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Library of Congress

#40. Dawson County

- Child food insecurity rate: 26.0%
--- Number of food insecure children: 860
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 78.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 23.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.5%
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Adavyd // Wikimedia Commons

#39. Lamar County

- Child food insecurity rate: 26.1%
--- Number of food insecure children: 3,080
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 74.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 26.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.1%
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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#38. Nacogdoches County

- Child food insecurity rate: 26.1%
--- Number of food insecure children: 3,950
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 70.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 30.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.8%
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JERRYE & ROY KLOTZ M.D. // Wikimedia Commons

#37. Maverick County

- Child food insecurity rate: 26.4%
--- Number of food insecure children: 4,830
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 87.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 13.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.0%
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Distrito Medico Monterrey // Flickr

#36. Hidalgo County

- Child food insecurity rate: 26.4%
--- Number of food insecure children: 74,290
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 87.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 13.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.0%

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#35. Wilbarger County

- Child food insecurity rate: 26.5%
--- Number of food insecure children: 760
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 79.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 21.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 19.0%
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Renelibrary // Wikimedia Commons

#34. Leon County

- Child food insecurity rate: 26.5%
--- Number of food insecure children: 1,030
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 84.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 16.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 17.8%
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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#33. Aransas County

- Child food insecurity rate: 26.5%
--- Number of food insecure children: 1,220
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 81.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 19.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.2%
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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#32. Tyler County

- Child food insecurity rate: 26.6%
--- Number of food insecure children: 1,110
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 57.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 43.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.4%
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Liveon001 // Wikimedia Commons

#31. Hall County

- Child food insecurity rate: 26.7%
--- Number of food insecure children: 180
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 100.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 0.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 19.2%

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#30. Limestone County

- Child food insecurity rate: 26.7%
--- Number of food insecure children: 1,410
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 75.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 25.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 16.6%
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#29. Jefferson County

- Child food insecurity rate: 26.8%
--- Number of food insecure children: 16,350
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 58.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 42.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 16.6%
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Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia Commons

#28. Kimble County

- Child food insecurity rate: 27.2%
--- Number of food insecure children: 250
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 81.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 19.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.7%
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Michael Barera // Wikimedia Commons

#27. Delta County

- Child food insecurity rate: 27.4%
--- Number of food insecure children: 340
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 61.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 39.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.1%
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Renelibrary // Wikimedia Commons

#26. Cass County

- Child food insecurity rate: 27.4%
--- Number of food insecure children: 1,860
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 68.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 32.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 17.5%

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Wrbalusek // Wikimedia Commons

#25. Jasper County

- Child food insecurity rate: 27.7%
--- Number of food insecure children: 2,370
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 64.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 36.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 17.9%
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Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia Commons

#24. Zapata County

- Child food insecurity rate: 28.0%
--- Number of food insecure children: 1,340
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 82.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 19.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 19.4%
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Renelibrary // Wikimedia Commons

#23. Swisher County

- Child food insecurity rate: 28.4%
--- Number of food insecure children: 530
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 74.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 26.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 17.8%
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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#22. Morris County

- Child food insecurity rate: 28.6%
--- Number of food insecure children: 810
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 63.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 37.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.0%
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Jim Evans // Wikimedia Commons

#21. Polk County

- Child food insecurity rate: 28.6%
--- Number of food insecure children: 2,840
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 74.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 26.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.4%

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Renelibrary // Wikimedia Commons

#20. Houston County

- Child food insecurity rate: 28.8%
--- Number of food insecure children: 1,290
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 68.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 32.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 17.9%
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Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia Commons

#19. Shelby County

- Child food insecurity rate: 28.8%
--- Number of food insecure children: 1,910
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 68.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 32.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 17.9%
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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#18. Hudspeth County

- Child food insecurity rate: 29.0%
--- Number of food insecure children: 310
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 89.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 11.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 17.3%
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Jpo tx113 // Wikimedia Commons

#17. Trinity County

- Child food insecurity rate: 29.1%
--- Number of food insecure children: 870
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 72.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 28.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.8%
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Matthew T Rader // Wikimedia Commons

#16. Willacy County

- Child food insecurity rate: 29.3%
--- Number of food insecure children: 1,520
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 99.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 1.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.8%

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Renelibrary // Wikimedia Commons

#15. Marion County

- Child food insecurity rate: 29.9%
--- Number of food insecure children: 540
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 68.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 33.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.2%
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Aualliso // Wikimedia Commons

#14. Kinney County

- Child food insecurity rate: 30.1%
--- Number of food insecure children: 140
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 96.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 4.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 17.9%
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Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia Commons

#13. Dimmit County

- Child food insecurity rate: 30.1%
--- Number of food insecure children: 920
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 74.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 26.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 20.1%
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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Falls County

- Child food insecurity rate: 30.4%
--- Number of food insecure children: 1,120
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 58.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 42.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 19.1%
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Renelibrary // Wikimedia Commons

#11. San Augustine County

- Child food insecurity rate: 30.7%
--- Number of food insecure children: 500
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 60.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 40.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 21.0%

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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#10. Newton County

- Child food insecurity rate: 30.9%
--- Number of food insecure children: 870
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 62.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 38.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 19.9%
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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#9. Real County

- Child food insecurity rate: 31.4%
--- Number of food insecure children: 280
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 65.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 35.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 20.7%
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Carol M. Highsmith // Wikimedia Commons

#8. Starr County

- Child food insecurity rate: 31.6%
--- Number of food insecure children: 6,680
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 91.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 9.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 21.1%
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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Jim Hogg County

- Child food insecurity rate: 31.8%
--- Number of food insecure children: 530
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 78.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 22.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 18.5%
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Larry D. Moore // Wikimedia Commons

#6. Sabine County

- Child food insecurity rate: 33.0%
--- Number of food insecure children: 650
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 80.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 20.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 20.6%

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#5. Brooks County

- Child food insecurity rate: 33.3%
--- Number of food insecure children: 630
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 80.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 20.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 22.0%
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Aualliso // Wikimedia Commons

#4. Cottle County

- Child food insecurity rate: 34.5%
--- Number of food insecure children: 180
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 87.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 13.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 23.1%
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Travis K. Witt // Wikimedia Commons

#3. Culberson County

- Child food insecurity rate: 34.6%
--- Number of food insecure children: 220
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 82.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 18.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 19.0%
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Talshiarr // Wikimedia Commons

#2. Presidio County

- Child food insecurity rate: 34.7%
--- Number of food insecure children: 630
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 87.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 13.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 24.2%
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Billy Hathorn // Wikimedia Commons

#1. Zavala County

- Child food insecurity rate: 37.3%
--- Number of food insecure children: 1,330
- Percentage of children in households with income below 185% FPL: 97.0%
- Percentage of children in households with income above 185% FPL: 4.0%
- Overall food insecurity rate: 21.5%

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