- When the entire family smuggles the grandfather's dead body out of the hospital.
- "Where's your grandpa right now?" "In the trunk of our car!"
- "Fuck a lot of women, Dwayne. Not just one woman. A lot of women."
- When the family realizes they left Olive at the gas station.
- The bus gets pulled over by a trooper:
Richard: Oh god, everyone just pretend to be normal!
- The broken horn.
- The climax of the film when Olive performs her burlesque routine
- Whilst most of the judges and audience are all staring on in horror Miss America seems to be enjoying herself just fine.
- When they crash through the barrier in front of the hotel while the judge of the beauty pageant watches. Her facial expression is priceless.
- "Have I mentioned that I am the preeminent Proust scholar in the US?"
- Kirby, a staffer at the pageant takes pity on the family and registers Olive despite them being a few minutes late.
Sheryl: Really, you don't know what this means.Kirby: Please, it's only five minutes. (under his breath) ...and I'm not working for these people next year. These people are crazy.
- "YEEEEAH, ALL RIIIIIIGHT!!!"
- Right after the family parks the car in the Little Miss Sunshine parking lot, Frank immediately jumps out of the car and runs at his fastest towards the entrance of the building to sign Olive up for the pageant.
- Dwayne goes backstage to look for his sister:
Pageant Worker: Are you authorized to be backstage?Dwayne: No. (To Pageant Girl) Hey, where are the dressing rooms?Pageant Girl: Are you allowed to be here?Dwayne: Just tell me where the dressing rooms are!
- Right after the doctor solemnly tells the family the grandfather is dead, and calls "LINDAAA"!
- When the family stops at a gas station and Grandpa asks Frank to buy him some porn, "something really nasty" and buy himself a "fag rag". Toward the end of the film, we see what he got; two fairly standard porn magazines, and a gay-oriented one called "Buns & Ammo."
- In a phone message from Sheryl's sister Cindy:
Cindy: Sheryl, it's Cindy. Remember when Olive was here last month? She was runner-up in the regional Little Miss Sunshine? They just called right now and said the girl who won had to forfeit her crown. I don't know why, something about diet pills.