Fan-Favorite Game-Day Dishes
Our Test Kitchen took cues from the pros to bring pit-barbecue flavor to the backyard. It's a no-brainer on game day.
Our directions for these juicy baby back ribs are for a two-burner gas grill. If you have a three-burner grill, light both sides, and leave the center portion off.
- Recipe: Sweet-Hot Baby Back Ribs
Slice tops from hearty round dinner rolls, and then let guests hollow out centers and spoon Super Quick Chili into them. Keep the chili warm in a slow cooker during the game.
- Recipe: Super Quick Chili
This cheese dip is made heartier by the addition of chopped cooked chicken. Chopped chipotle peppers, jalapeños, and chili powder add even more heat. Prepare up to a day ahead; cover and chill in an airtight container, and bake just before serving.
- Recipe: Colby-Pepper Jack Cheese Dip
Here's a universal Southern favorite. No matter what team your root for, you'll find this thirst quencher gracing just about every table.
- Recipe: Southern Sweet Tea
For easy entertaining, this dish can be assembled up to a day ahead. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator, and then bake just before serving.
- Recipe: Baked Spinach-and-Artichoke Dip
These spicy fried chicken nuggets are great dipped in honey mustard or blue cheese dressing.
- Recipe: Fried Chicken Bites
Make the filling ahead of time to meet your party preparation timeline. Serve with homemade chili sauce over a bed of fresh lettuce.
- Recipe: Shanghai Spring Rolls
A Lowcountry classic is transformed into a crispy, satisfying fritter.
- Recipe: Hoppin' John Hush Puppies
It's Southern tradition to have a little hot sauce with your turnip greens, so be sure to offer guests several brands to choose from on the side.
- Recipe: Warm Turnip Green Dip
- Recipe: Sweet-and-Sour Meatballs
Turn canned chickpeas or black-eyed peas into a unique and affordable party snack. Simply toss them in olive oil with a few seasonings and roast until crisp. The key is to bake the beans as long as possible without letting them burn. This will dry them out, making them extra-crunchy like nuts. Enjoy by the handful or sprinkle over a salad.
- Recipe: Chili-Roasted Black-Eyed Peas
Make this spicy Mexican dip your go-to dip for tailgate parties. Just layer cream cheese, black bean dip and shredded cheese and top with your choice of onions, olives, and tomatoes.
- Recipe: Layered Spicy Black Bean Dip
For the ultimate Southern-style warm dip, combine chopped greens, corn, and bacon and serve with pork skins, sweet potato chips and hot sauce.
- Recipe: Bacon-and-Greens Salsa
These are the perfect party snack. They're especially easy to make and travel well. If you like your cheese straws less spicy, reduce the amount of red pepper.
- Recipe: Cheese Straws
If chocolate chip cookies are your favorite, whip up a batch of these all-time favorite cookies. They're the best of the best.
Go chocolate! Your tailgaters will be cheering for you when you serve up these decadent delights.
- Recipe: So Good Brownies
Layering pudding in half-pint jars gives you room to garnish and screw on the lids so you can place them in your cooler for easy transport.
- Recipe: Peanut Butter-Banana Pudding
Perfect as a bowl-game party bite, you can also serve this recipe in slider buns with your favorite sandwich toppings.
- Recipe: Slow-Cooker Beef Nachos
Rev up your slow cooker the night before. On game day, tote it to the game, plug it in, and let your crowd build their own sandwiches.
For a cool, crunchy slider topping, toss thinly sliced celery and fresh parsley leaves with a splash of Champagne vinegar and drizzle of olive oil. Season with table salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.
Recipe: Buffalo Chicken Meatball Sliders
Our Test Kitchen couldn't get enough of these new sloppy joes enlivened with a splash of cola, which gives the ground beef a sweet boost that plays well off the filling's spices. Try these with traditional or split-top hot dog buns or hoagie rolls. Garnish with your favorite coleslaw for crunch and color.
- Recipe: Sloppy Cola Joe Dogs
Make this Texas Friday-night-football favorite your Tuesday supper.
- Recipe: Salsa Verde Corn Chip Pie