Fried, grilled, baked or slow-cooked, game day dishes come in all flavors and textures so everyone comes out a winner. Try these classic ideas and new spins to take your home-gate to the next level.
- Chicken Wings – Bone-in or boneless, skin on or skin off, buffalo or barbecue-glazed, chicken wings are chef’s choice for a handheld party pleaser. With nearly endless ways to prepare them, they’re a game day staple for parties of all sizes.
- Pizzas – While delivery (or carryout) from a local restaurant is likely to be more common, creating a homemade pizza is as simple as rolling out dough, layering sauce and cheese then finishing with personalized toppings. If you’re in charge of a smaller, more manageable group, you can even try personal-sized pies for maximum customization.
- Barbecue – Ribs, pulled pork, brisket and slow-smoked barbecue of all varieties may take more preparation but almost always ends with a happy fan base. Keep in mind that you’ll need to plan further in advance for longer cook times, but larger cuts of meat like pork shoulder help feed larger groups.
- Veggie Trays – Not every game day dish has to include heavy foods or sticky fingers. An assortment of carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, peppers and more paired with ranch or blue cheese dressings makes for a more nutritious appetizer ahead of the main course.
- Dips – If you’re looking for help from attendees, look no further than chips and dips for ways guests can lend a hand. Because they’re usually simple to make and easily portable, your fellow fans can bring along any combination of their choosing from buffalo chicken dip and tortilla chips to crackers and hummus.
- Sliders and Sandwiches – The combinations are just about endless for sliders with many variations of meats, cheeses, spreads and more. Keep your menu simple by choosing one type of bread, 1-2 meats and 1-2 cheeses to avoid going overboard. Guests can always add their own touches when it’s time to dig in.
- Walking Tacos or Nachos – Another personalized snack, walking tacos are an easy crowd-pleaser – all they take are taco shells and tortillas along with an assortment of your usual toppings: meat, cheese, sour cream, beans, guacamole, black olives, jalapenos and anything else your guests desire. Just line up the ingredients in separate bowls for DIY dining, and for a secondary option, provide tortilla chips to create nachos instead.
Find more game day recipes and ideas at Culinary.net.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images
(Family Features) The big game is almost here: two teams, a room full of fans and a spread of fan-favorite foods to keep everybody going. Whether everyone's at your place or you're heading somewhere else to watch the game, you want to make sure the place is stocked with flavorful snacks that will wow the crowd.
This year, step up your game with clutch recipes loaded with bold flavor and plenty of heat.
One of the most popular party favorites is buffalo chicken dip. It is a must-have because it's creamy, cheesy and loaded with great-tasting buffalo flavor. Serve it up with fresh-cut celery or bell peppers, baby carrots, crackers and pita bread, and you'll add some kick to your sporty celebration. Plus, this recipe provides a way to include those traditional football flavors without the mess of hot wings.
A kick can make or break a game, and the right sauce can make or break your recipe. Not only is Frank's RedHot a game-day staple, it was the key ingredient in the first-ever buffalo wings back in 1964. It's an essential ingredient for any big game food lineup, so make sure you've got plenty on-hand.
Once you've got the dip prepared for kickoff, it's time to turn to something a little more unexpected. Round out your game-day lineup with an amazing flavor combination they won't see coming - something sweet, tangy and savory that brings just the right amount of heat: Sweet Chili Meatballs.
Bite-sized meatballs made with ginger, fresh cilantro, green onions and sweet chili sauce are baked before getting doused in even more sweet chili sauce, making them an irresistibly tasty addition to any game day spread. If the game heads into overtime, no need to worry because these meatballs will stay warm in the slow cooker all game long.
If you're looking for more big game tips and recipes to dazzle the crowd, check out franksredhot.com/recipes.
Buffalo Chicken Dip
- 2 cups shredded cooked chicken
- 1 package cream cheese (8 ounces), softened
- 1/2 cup Frank's RedHot Original Cayenne Pepper Sauce or Buffalo Wings Sauce
- 1/2 cup ranch dressing
- 1/2 cup crumbled bleu cheese or other shredded cheese
- green onions, chopped (optional)
- Heat oven to 350 F.
- In shallow, 1-quart baking dish, combine all ingredients.
- Bake 20 minutes, or until mixture is heated through. Stir.
- Garnish with chopped green onions, if desired. Serve with tortilla chips, crackers and/or vegetables.
Sweet Chili Meatballs
- 1 pound lean ground turkey or ground beef
- 1/3 cup Japanese panko crumbs or bread crumbs
- 1/4 cup cilantro, finely chopped
- 3 green onions, chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, finely minced
- 1 large egg, beaten
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 12 ounces Frank's RedHot Sweet Chili Sauce, divided
- Heat oven to 350 F.
- Mix ground meat, panko crumbs, cilantro, green onion, ginger, egg, salt and 1/4 cup sweet chili sauce. Form into one-inch meatballs.
- Place meatballs on lightly greased baking sheets.
- Bake 20 minutes, turning once halfway through. Put meatballs in slow cooker on warm.
- With slow cooker on low to keep meatballs warm, pour remaining sweet chili sauce over meatballs. Gently stir to coat.
Source: Frank’s RedHot
(Family Features) Although you may share a passion for a favorite sports team, not everyone has the same taste when it comes to the tailgating menu. Enter these seven dips: from a yogurt turmeric dip to spicy buffalo chicken dip, you’re sure to please nearly every game-day guest.
There won’t be any trash talk when it comes to this dip. It’s the ultimate ooey, gooey, cheesy dish that’s sure to be all the rage at game-day parties and social gatherings.
Games and wings go hand-in-hand, but you can keep hands mess-free with this alternative that combines all the flavors of savory Buffalo chicken wings in a warm, creamy dip.
Think outside the box this season with a dip that is the perfect blend of salty and sweet. Bacon, Georgia peaches, sweet onions and a brown sugar bourbon marinade are complemented by pecans for a nutty, crunchy finish.
Low-fat yogurt and milk blend with golden turmeric and cinnamon for a tangy dip just waiting for crispy dippers like pita chips and veggies.
Move over cheesy, chili dips – the tangy sweetness of orange juice, carrots and honey make for a simple dip you can feel good about devouring.
Warm up with this crowd-pleasing dip made with fresh spinach, artichoke hearts, cream cheese and Parmesan.
Simply mix together a can of black beans, chopped tomatoes and spices like chili powder and cumin for an easy dip to throw together for last-minute guests.
(Family Features) Just like your favorite sports team, hosting a winning big-game party or tailgate takes planning, preparation and teamwork. To make your festivities fun-filled, remember these entertaining tips that are sure to score big with your fans.
Scatter the refreshments. Help direct movement and traffic flow by setting up food stations. Using different rooms or areas helps prevent congestion and encourages guests to mingle. Try placing finger foods and other appetizers in a couple of locations, beverages in another area and desserts in yet another space.
Embrace variety. Take into account taste preferences and dietary needs, and have an assortment of food and drinks available. Offer spicy options along with less seasoned dishes, both indulgent and better-for-you treats, plus an array of beverages for drinkers and non-drinkers alike.
Build your roster. If your party is a potluck, encourage guests to sign up for dishes so you don’t end up with multiple versions of the same thing. Create a discussion group online, or simply ask guests to indicate what they’ll bring along with their RSVP.
Don’t forget the dips. Wings are a tailgating staple, and dips are a great way to complement those zesty flavors or cool the heat, but you may find yourself in a team rivalry when it comes to the preferred dip at the game day bash: ranch or bleu cheese dressing? Both pair well with a range of wing flavors, so these dips are sure to be crowd pleasers. The delicious combination of fresh herb and vegetable flavors make Litehouse Homestyle Ranch a perfect party choice, and Litehouse Chunky Bleu Cheese features fresh buttermilk, homemade mayonnaise and a blend of spices as the backdrop for award-winning artisan blue cheese chunks that will make your fellow sports fans cheer for more.
Expand on tradition. Tailgating is a time-honored tradition, and the food lineup is often based on familiar fare. Along with those fan favorites, don’t be afraid to put some new flavors into play, such as these Sticky Sesame Chicken Wings that add a tangy ethnic flair to traditional wings.
Find more game day recipes at LitehouseFoods.com.
Sticky Sesame Chicken Wings
Yield: 4 servings
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 20 chicken wings
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil
- 1/2 teaspoon Litehouse Instantly Fresh Garlic
- 3 tablespoons water, divided
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- sliced green onions, for garnish
- sesame seeds, for garnish
- celery sticks (optional)
- Litehouse Homestyle Ranch and Chunky Bleu Cheese Dressing
- Heat oven to 400° F.
- In large bag, combine flour and salt. Add chicken wings and shake to coat. Discard any leftover flour.
- Line baking sheet with foil and spray with pan spray of your choice. Place wings in single layer on baking sheet.
- Bake wings 40-45 minutes, turning halfway through.
- In sauce pan over medium heat, combine soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic, 2 tablespoons water and brown sugar. Whisk together remaining water and cornstarch, and pour into sauce. Bring to boil then simmer until thickened.
- When wings are done, toss with sauce, garnish with green onion and sesame seeds, and serve with celery sticks, ranch and bleu cheese dressing.
Source: Litehouse, Inc.