We love football season, and here’s why: Even if you don’t love the game, tailgating is so much fun! The food and time with family and friends that come with the tailgating experience make for a fabulous day. Plus, it’s fun to dress in team colors. For those who are die-hard football fans, tailgating is the perfect way to start the day. Here are a few tips and tricks to make entertaining at your tailgate simple and delicious!
When you’re hosting a tailgate, be sure you know how many people you’re expecting and plan accordingly. You’ll need to think about what snacks to have out as you wait for people to arrive and also what main dish you’re going to serve. You also need to know if the parking lot you’ll be in allows for grills – and, if so, which kinds – or if you need to have everything cooked before you leave the house. We like to pack things in crates with lids on them, so your supplies stay organized – paper goods, cups, plastic silverware, portable speaker, trash bags in one container; dry goods like buns, nuts, OMG! Pretzels, and cookies in another.
When you’re planning the menu, keep in mind your guests’ dietary needs. Is anyone a vegetarian? Is anyone gluten free? Have plenty of non-alcoholic drinks on hand in your cooler for the kids and others who are alcohol free.
Ask for Help
It’s ok to ask people who are joining you to bring a dish to the tailgate. We like to assign others the really easy things – extra bags of chips or pretzels, a box of donuts, their drink of choice – to bring since they may have to walk a distance with their supplies to get to the tailgate.
Give it Personality
Make your set up festive with paper goods that sport your team’s logo or colors. We love adding a plastic tablecloth to the tailgate or table to add a little touch of class to the affair. If you really want to impress, bring some fresh flowers in a vase. You can also make a playlist ahead of time for some fun tunes to provide background music for your tailgate.
The best part of tailgating is the food, so be sure to get your fill. We like serving a mix of premade finger foods and dips with something hot and hearty like burgers or hot dogs. A few easy make-and-take pretzeltastic tailgate appetizers are Mango Guacamole with OMG! Sweet Chili Pretzels, 7 Layer Dip, and Deviled Eggs with Lemon Pepper Pretzels.
Whether you tailgate on Saturday for your alma mater or Sunday for the hometown team, we hope these tailgating tips will make your life a little easier and more delicious!