Find nutritious football snacks and healthy, low-carb tailgate foods. (We promise they are nutritious, delicious, and cheered by all!)
Read on for favorite healthy tailgate recipes and ideas to get the party started!
Healthy Tailgate Food & Snack Ideas
From a healthier way to eat buffalo wings to a simple slow cooker chili dip, do not miss out on these tailgating recipes for football season!
1. Mini Bell Pepper Nachos
Avoid soggy chips and unwanted carbs with the mini pepper nachos. They might be mini, but oh are they packed with flavor and nutrients!
Making them is easy, too! Here's how to do it:
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. Cut mini bell peppers in halves and arrange them on a baking sheet.
3. Brown and add taco meat, including ground beef and chicken, to the pepper halves, cut side up. For a vegetarian option, use a bean variety for plant-based protein.
4. Sprinkle a layer of shredded cheese then bake for about 8 minutes, or until cheese has melted.
5. Top with favorite taco toppings, including diced tomatoes, jalapeños, and lettuce.
2. Crispy Parmesan Chickpeas
Rather than feeding into the temptation of chips, prepare these crispy chickpeas! Not only are they easy-to-make, but are a guilt-free, crunchy snack loaded with fiber and healthy fat. Feel free to tweak seasonings to accommodate favorite flavors as well.
• 1, 15-ounce can chickpeas, unsalted
• 1 tablespoon olive oil
• ½ teaspoon garlic powder
• ½ teaspoon onion powder
• ½ teaspoon dried oregano
• 1 tablespoon grated Parmesan
• Salt and pepper to taste
1. Preheat oven to 350°F and spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.
2. Drain and rinse chickpeas then pat dry with a kitchen towel or paper towels.
3. Add dried chickpeas to a bowl with olive oil, garlic and onion powders, oregano, salt, and pepper. Toss to coat.
4. Spread coated chickpeas in a single layer on the baking sheet.
5. Bake for 30 minutes then shake the pan enough for the chickpeas to flip. Return back to the oven for another 20 to 30 minutes, or until chickpeas are crunchy.
6. Remove from oven and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Allow to cool for at least an hour then enjoy.
Swapping out avocado with edamame, this edamole recipe is rich in protein and flavor.
Serve with raw vegetables of choice or warm pita bread slices for a healthy tailgate snack.
4. Black Bean Chili Dip
A slow cooker is a convenient and portable way to bring health to the tailgate party! And there is no doubt this black bean chili dip does just that!
• 1, 15-ounce can black beans
• 4 ounces light cream cheese
• 1 cup part-skim shredded cheddar cheese
• ¼ cup of salsa
• 1 taco packet
1. Rinse, drain, and lightly mash the black beans.
2. Add beans to crockpot, along with the cream cheese, cheddar cheese, salsa, and taco packet.
3. Turn crockpot to low and stir in an hour. Stir to combine and continue to heat until the cheese is fully melted.
4. Set to warm and top with optional green onion and jalapeño.
5. Greek Yogurt Dip & Veggies
Ranch and veggies are a great taste pairing and common fixture of most football parties. But store-bought ranch bottles are unfortunately often loaded with hydrogenated oil, salt, sugar, and other unwanted preservatives.
Ditch the fat and sugar-laden ranch dressing bottle and prepare a protein-packed alternative. Simply mix plain Greek yogurt and a dry ranch packet.
Pair with fresh veggies, including broccoli, cauliflower, carrot sticks, cucumber, and pepper slices.
6. Herb Beef Sirloin Skewers
These grilled skewers are flavor-packed with fresh herbs and lemon juice with the fresh flavors of parsley, rosemary, and thyme to make the beef delicious!
And with 29 grams of protein per serving, it will keep you and fellow tailgaters feeling fuller longer!
7. Buffalo Cauliflower Bites
Buffalo chicken wings often flood tailgate parties but tend to be laden in excess fat and calories. These buffalo cauliflower bites, though, are a perfect way to sneak in veggies while satisfying that craving!
• 1 head cauliflower, cut into small florets
• ⅔ cup favorite hot sauce, such as Frank's RedHot
• 1 tablespoon olive oil
• 1 tablespoon garlic powder
• Salt and pepper to taste
1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
2. Add cauliflower florets to a large bowl and set aside.
3. In a small mixing bowl, whisk hot sauce with olive oil, garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Pour the sauce over the cauliflower and toss to coat.
4. Spread sauced cauliflower on a lined baking sheet. Bake for about 30 minutes or until the cauliflower is tender and browned.
5. Serve with celery and the ranch Greek yogurt dip.
8. Stuffed Mushroom Sliders
If watching carbs on keto, wanting a low net carb option, or simply craving a delicious burger recipe, these sliders are right for you!
Rather than using a white hamburger bun, say hello to mushroom caps. Simply clean and scrape out the gills and stems of the mushroom. Then, drizzle with olive oil and a little salt and pepper. Place on grill with a small hamburger patty and assemble once cooked.
Go for a classic hamburger with mustard and pickles. Or, get creative with an Asian burger featuring crushed red pepper, grated carrot and cabbage, and a drizzle of soy sauce.
Also, feel free to swap the mushroom caps with lettuce leaves or thinly sliced sweet potatoes.
9. Jalapeño Popper Pinwheels
Pinwheels are a perfect on-the-go picnic finger food, being highly convenient and adaptable to personal preferences. Just do not pass up these jalapeño popper pinwheels!
The steps to make are also simple! Start by smearing light cream cheese on a whole grain tortilla, making sure to cover to the edges. Sprinkle on diced jalapeños, crispy bacon bits, and shredded cheddar cheese. Roll up tightly and cut into bite-sized pieces.
Not keen on spice from the jalapeños? Give these variations a try:
• PB & J: peanut butter and sugar-free jelly
• Fiesta: shredded chicken, cream cheese, salsa, cheddar cheese, diced tomatoes
• Pizza: tomato sauce, pepperoni, olives, green peppers
• Club: ham, turkey, bacon bits, lettuce, tomato, light mayo
10. Banana Split Skewers
Score the ultimate touchdown with a healthy game day dessert! Besides, banana split skewers are the perfect Super Bowl win without the mess of melting ice cream.
To make, thread pineapple chunks and banana and strawberry slices onto skewers. Before enjoying, add a light drizzle of chocolate sauce and chopped peanuts as desired.