Whether it means adding more traditional or new fun foods to your tailgating menu, or simply setting a goal to no longer sit on the sidelines watching, but instead, enjoy the experience of tailgating first-hand, we’ve got lots of great ideas to help you step up your tailgating game.
It’s All about the Four F’s (well, five if you include football J)
Let’s start with tips for the tailgating newbies. Whether it’s watching football at an NFL stadium, at your local high school, or from your couch, to be a terrific tailgater, it’s helpful to understand the history behind tailgating’s traditions. As you’ll learn from this great piece by GatorTailgating, whether its true origin lies with groups meeting up to watch soldiers battle or football players tackle, tailgating’s tradition stems from the gathering of good friends and family around great food to cheer on favorite teams.
And, while tailgating likely earned its name from people serving food out of the back of some type of wagon, we think as long as you’ve got the four f’s covered – good friends, family, and food, and a favorite team or favorite artist/performer to rout and holler for – you’ve got yourself a tailgate party. Whether it’s indoors or outdoors, prior to a game or performance – or during one, who doesn’t love a great excuse to be with friends and family for what’s sure to be a lively, fun, and possibly nail-biting, get-together?
You’ve Got to Have Heart
We couldn’t resist stealing the song chorus from the sports-related musical, “Damn Yankees”, for our header to get our point across about the type of food that tailgating guests look forward to and adore – hearty food. We mean food that’s particularly filling and often spicy – you know the type of food we all crave in cooler weather…home-made food that feeds both the heart and soul, while tasting like it was made with lots of love!
Our list of favorite tailgating foods could go on and on, but MVP awards go to:
- Hot and cold dips and chips, and other finger food
- Chili – turkey, beef, and chicken
- Potato salad – traditional, German, or in any other form!
- Chicken wings, skewers, and quesadillas
- Pasta, meatballs, and meatloaf
- Brownies and chocolate chip cookies
But, you know best what will warm your guests’ hearts and bellies, so don’t be afraid to add your and their favorite home-made treats to our list!
Now, on to tips for both rookie and veteran tailgaters. While we’re leaving the friends, family, and favorite team or performer up to you, we’ve been collecting lots of great ideas over the last couple of months to help you change up – in a very positive way – your tailgating game. Check out our Touchdown Tailgating Pinterest board for recipe and decorating ideas as well as our recipes for the yummy, comfort, rib-sticking type of food tailgating guests love.
We’ll also be posting photos of lots of mouth-watering tailgate and other fall-flavor recipes on Instagram, so be sure to follow us and do share photos of your game-changing tailgates with us there or on Twitter (#gamechangingtailgating).