Friday, August 17, 2012

I keep a list of all of my favorite tailgate food ideas so that when the time comes, it's really easy to figure out what I'm making each week.  I also keep a folder with all of my Pinterest/magazine/blog found recipes that would be perfect for tailgates.  There are so many different ways to make several of these things so I won't share recipes for all of them (ask if you want them though!) but if I love one in particular, I'll link to it.  I hope this helps with your planning this fall!

Breakfast/Brunch  (I'm not frying bacon at 8am in the grass somewhere.  Whatever I bring for an early tailgate is already made, I'm throwing it on the table and being done with it. Not a fan of those early games!)

  • Hashbrown Bake- This is a family recipe that I make all the time.  What makes this great for tailgating is while you bake it at home, it tastes great hot out of the oven as well as room temperature.  It can sit at your tailgate for a while and still tastes great.  You can add onions, mushrooms, swap the ham for sausage- anything you want really. Top with a bunch of hot sauce!
  • Bacon Bloody Mary's- To make it easy, just use store bought mix (Zing Zang is great), Bakon vodka (bacon flavored vodka), hot sauce, Old Bay, rim the glass with bacon salt, garnish with pickled okra.
  • Mimosas
  • Fruit Salad
  • Gorilla Bread
  • Chicken Salad with rolls- I usually just buy a container of chicken salad from Zoe's.  They have great chicken salad and there is no sense in making my own when I've got so many other things to make.

Main Dish/ Meat
  • Crock pot Pulled Pork BBQ (with simple slaw & pickles)- Cook it overnight, shred it up in the morning and keep it warm all day in the crock pot. Easy!
  • Teriyaki Chicken Wings- These take a little bit more thought but would be great for a later game.  You could bake them in a disposable tin pan with a lid so you can toss it.  I'd use little chicken wings instead of drumsticks.
  • Steamed Old Bay Shrimp with Cocktail Sauce- Publix will even steam them with Old Bay for you!
  • Crockpot Chili with Cornbread- Make a chili bar with onions, cheese, sour cream, jalapenos, crackers, cornbread, fritos, etc. Keep it warm all day in the crock pot- perfect for colder weather!

  • Macaroni & Cheese
  • Broccoli Salad
  • Baked Beans
  • Deviled Eggs
  • Sliced Watermelon

Finger Foods
  • Boiled Peanuts- Kept warm in the crock pot. Bring a slotted spoon and Styrofoam cups.
  • Herb Dip & Chips- Another family favorite.  Keep it cool with a little bowl of ice under it.
  • Seven Layer Mexican Dip
  • Bacon Wrapped Smokies
  • Buffalo Chicken Dip- There are so many ways to make this.  Skinny Taste even has one if you want to keep it a little lighter. 
  • Velvetta & Rotel Dip- I feel silly adding this to the list but it's just good.  Everyone likes it and it's simple.  Crowd pleaser.



  1. Ding ding ding! You win a gold star for some awesome dining ideas for a tailgate menu. I will be honest though, the only thing I would think was missing is sweet potato biscuits with country ham. That is a big southern tailgate tradition many of my friends have family love! All it needs is a nice smear of some grainy dijon mustard and it is good to go!

    1. Oh, I agree! These are supposed to be almost "other than the ordinary" suggestions. Everything isn't included- just some suggestions for people wanting to make something a little different.

  2. Wow - great ideas! I'm going to have to try this peanut butter football one - I'm a big salty/sweet gal too!

  3. Publix AND Boiled Peanuts in one post? Seriously, you have me missing the south!!!

  4. Bacon vodka!? How did I not know about this! Who makes it?

    I love Tito's and Zing zang a lot. I also had a good mix called Fat & juicy. And I've heard good,things about Charleston bloody Mary mix!

    Buffalo chicken dip and rotfl dip are two of my easy go tos. I have to try some of your other ideas too.

    1. The brand is actually "Bakon". You can use the locator on their website to find where to buy it:



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