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A tailgate party is a perfect time to celebrate and enjoy great food with friends and family while supporting your favorite sports team.
With foods like chips, hot dogs, cupcakes and fried chicken dominating tailgate menus, it can be hard to find nutritious options on match day.
While there’s nothing wrong with enjoying these foods once in a while, some people may want to bring a more nutritious option to the party.
Fortunately, there are plenty of options for delicious and healthy tailgate-friendly food that is sure to find the right spot and keep you and your friends fueled during the big game.
This article lists 15 healthy tailgate food options.
If you’re going to a big tailgate party, you’ll want to bring a dish that can feed a crowd, such as the following dishes.
1. White chicken chili
Chili is a staple at tailgates, especially during colder weather.
While most chilies are tomato based, this is: white chicken chili Well Plated by Erin recipe is made with chicken stock. It contains nutritious ingredients such as white beans, chicken breast and garlic.
Since chicken breasts are an excellent source of protein and beans contain both protein and fiber, this dish will keep you and your friends full all game long.
The website allows you to double or even triple the recipe, which is useful when cooking for a large group.
2. Stuffed pepper dish
Casseroles are a fan favorite. Plus, they’re sturdy enough to satisfy a hungry crowd.
This one stuffed pepper casserole of Eating Bird Food is packed with healthy ingredients like brown rice, ground turkey, spinach, diced tomatoes, bell peppers and cheese.
It’s easy to make and you only need one jar. You can also make it in a CrockPot if you prefer.
3. Mediterranean chickpea and farro salad
Give your tailgate salad a boost with this crowd puller Mediterranean chickpea and farro salad Hummusapien recipe.
Unlike typical competition day pasta salads, this hearty dish is made with farro, a whole grain that’s a good source of fiber and minerals like iron and potassium (3†
Bursting with flavors of olives, onion, parsley and feta, it is rich in vegetable protein thanks to the chickpeas. You can double or triple the recipe depending on how many people you want to serve.
4. Grilled skewers
Skewers, also known as kabobs, are a perfect choice for a tailgate party. They are versatile, easy to make and are sure to please a crowd with different taste preferences.
If a grill is available at your tailgate party, you can cook them in bulk at home and grill them when you’re ready to eat.
Try these delicious skewer combinations for your next tailgate party:
With a tailgate, finger foods are a must. People like to have the opportunity to grab a quick bite while they are socializing. And because finger foods are usually small, they are often easy to make in large quantities.
Here are a few snacks that make perfect tailgate noshes.
5. Stuffed Eggs
Deviled eggs have it all. They’re savory, creamy, packed with protein, and oh-so-satisfying.
This one deviled egg recipe uses Greek yogurt in place of mayo, adding more protein and a tangy twist to the recipe without altering its signature creamy texture.
The addition of mustard and paprika gives the dish a strong flavor, making it stand out among other tailgate food options.
7. Meatballs with buffalo chicken
This one Buffalo chicken meatballs of the Real Food Dieticians makes a tasty dinner, lunch or tailgate finger food.
To make them easier to handle at the tailgate, just make them smaller and stick a few toothpicks or skewers in them.
Not only are they delicious, but they’re also packed with veggies like diced carrots, onions, and celery. In other words, you can be sure to get a decent serving of veggies, even on race day.
They are also gluten-free and paleo, making them a suitable option for those following these diets.
8. Salad Pinwheels
Salads can be hard to eat while chatting at a tailgate party.
Conveniently, you can reduce your salad into bite-sized portions by making pinwheels.
Simply fill wraps with salad ingredients of your choice, roll up, slice and secure with a toothpick to hold together.
9. Turkey Sandwich Kabobs
The irresistible combination of turkey, cheese, pickles and crunchy vegetables make this turkey sandwich kabobs of the Reluctant Entertainer an ideal choice for a tailgate party.
You can make them in large quantities. Feel free to change the types of vegetables or omit the cheese to accommodate different taste preferences or dietary restrictions.
10. Stuffed Mushrooms
Stuffed mushrooms are a satisfying, vegetarian-friendly dish that can work well at tailgate parties.
The mushrooms are a great option for game day appetizers because they are bite-sized and can be made with just a few simple ingredients.
Try these healthy and tasty recipes for tailgate-friendly stuffed mushrooms at your next tailgate party:
If you’ve been tasked with making dessert for a tailgate party but want to make something more nutritious, you’re in luck!
There are plenty of delicious, healthy desserts and sweet snacks that are party-friendly on the tailgate.
11. Grain Free Sweet Potato Avocado Brownie Bites
This bite-sized grain free sweet potato avocado brownie bites of the Real Food Dietitians are sure to satisfy a hungry tailgating crowd.
Because they’re made with sweet potato, avocado, eggs, coconut flour, and walnuts, they’re much higher in fiber, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals compared to traditional brownie bites. They also contain significantly less sugar †4† 5†
The website allows you to double or triple the recipe as you prepare for a larger audience.
12. Homemade Twix Bars
If you think it’s difficult to recreate Twix bars at home, think again.
This one homemade Twix bar Bakerita’s recipe calls for just a handful of ingredients like almond butter, dates, coconut flour, coconut oil, and maple syrup. Plus, it only takes 30 minutes to make.
The result is a crunchy, chocolatey, chewy bar that is paleo and vegan.
Compared to traditional Twix bars, these bars are also much lower in sugar (6†
13. Ice Creams
If you’re looking for a tailgate-friendly dessert that will help revelers beat the heat, try making a batch of popsicles.
Ice pops are ideal for tailgates in warmer weather and can be made with or without alcohol for everyone to enjoy.
All you need are popsicle molds and a few simple ingredients.
Here are some delicious boozy and non-boozy low sugar ice pop and ice bar recipes:
To keep your popsicles frozen, bring them to your tailgate party in a cooler with plenty of ice or ice packs.
14. Lemon bars
Lemon bars are always a hit at parties. They have a tangy, yet sweet flavor and a rich, sunny color that stands out next to everyday desserts like cupcakes and donuts.
Minimalist Bakeries Creamy vegan lemon bar recipe contains less sugar and more fiber than traditional lemon bars – but tastes just as good.
Made with nutritious ingredients like cashews, almonds and oats, they are sure to satisfy your sweet tooth.
You can serve them full size or cut them into smaller pieces for bite-sized tailgate-friendly treats.
15. Fruit and Cheese Boards
For a smaller tailgate gathering, try making a fruit and cheese board.
Fruit and cheese boards can be put together according to your wishes. For example, make it sweeter with dessert dips and chocolate or savory with cheeses and salty combinations.
You can also try to make individually fruit and cheese cups if you’re feeding a wider audience.
Here are a few ideas for fruit and cheese board combinations that will please both sweet and salt-loving taste buds:
And try adding these fun, nutritious sweet dips to your plates:
Tailgate menus don’t have to be about hot dogs and burgers! Show your friends and family your culinary skills by preparing a dish that is both tasty and nutritious.
The meals and snacks on this list are balanced sources of fiber, protein, and fat. In addition, the suggested sweet treats contain less sugar and more nutrients compared to most traditional tailgate desserts.
But rest assured, the dishes will not disappoint when it comes to taste.
Try one or more of the above recipes the next time you’re invited to a tailgate party.