10 Healthier Tailgating Recipes

10 Healthier Tailgating Recipes

A football game without food is like a beautiful pass without a catch: incomplete! Tailgating season is upon us, and while grilled meats, cheesy dips and other finger foods can hit the spot at a chilly stadium, typical tailgating fare is full of undesirable fats and artificial ingredients. Chowing down until you feel like your stomach was hit with a 300-pound lineman is no way to fuel up, so check out these healthier game-day recipes sure to bring home a win. Clear eyes, full bellies, can’t lose!

RELATED: 8 Healthier Finger Food Recipes

Healthy Tailgating Recipes for Game Day

Buffalo Cauliflower Bites_620

1. Buffalo Cauliflower Bites & Ranch Dip
With the same texture and flavor as chicken wings, these cauliflower bites are a fiber-filled alternative for health-conscious and vegetarian tailgaters. Pair them with raw celery and a cool dip like this dairy-free ranch dipPhoto and recipe: Mckel Hill / Nutrition Stripped

Chocolate strawberries

2. Chocolate-Covered Strawberry Footballs
These festive desserts are healthier than your average baked dessert, so don’t feel guilty about eating two (or three!). All you need is a microwave, berries, chocolate and the willpower to save a few for halftime! Photo and recipe: Jackie / Domestic Fits

Turkey Chili

3. Turkey Chili
A piping hot bowl of chili is a must-have for a chilly tailgate, and this recipe delivers a sweet and spicy combo of flavors that’s sure to please. Lean turkey meat has roughly half the fat of ground beef, meaning you can gobble this up relatively guilt-free! Photo and recipe: Kelly / Eat Yourself Skinny

 Buffalo Hummus

4. Buffalo Hummus
Skip the chips and dip and snack on some spicy hummus and veggies instead! This recipe has the same buffalo wing flavor as hot wings, but none of the unhealthy fats. Just be sure to use a low-sodium buffalo wing sauce to keep salt in check. Photo and recipe: Angie / Eclectic Recipes

RELATED: 12 Healthy Homemade Chips Recipes

 Pizza Bites

5. Mini Cauliflower Pizza Bites
At only 20 calories a pop, these gluten-free pizza bites won’t weigh you down. Use muffin tins to bake egg whites, cauliflower and seasonings together and you’ll have finger-friendly snacks that are easy to pack for game day gatherings.  Photo and recipe: Katie / Dashing Dish

Honey Porter Chicken Skewers 

6. Honey Porter Glazed Chicken Skewers
Spicy and sweet flavors steal the show in this drool-worthy recipe for glazed chicken skewers. Marinate them overnight and grill day-of for best results. (And pair with your favorite brew, of course!) Photo and recipe: Jackie / The Beeroness

Stuffed Sweet Potato

7. Loaded Sweet Potato with Peanut Sauce
Here’s a delicious and easy way to make stuffed potatoes more interesting! As a base, use either fiber-rich russet potatoes or sweet potatoes, which have additional nutrients like beta-carotene and vitamin A. Wrap them in foil for easy transport and don’t forget the special peanut sauce to top those ‘taters off! Photo and recipe: Emily Miller / Life by DailyBurn

Healthier Hot Chocolate

8. Healthier Hot Chocolate
With no added sugar, this recipe puts a healthier spin on a cold weather favorite. Potassium-rich bananas boost the nutritional value of this simple and easy-to-make hot cocoa. Pack it in a thermos or reheat at your tailgate when temperatures start to dip! Photo and recipe: Bonnie / going home to roost

Quinoa Vegan Chili

9. Quinoa Vegetarian Chili Recipe
At just 350 calories per serving, this chili recipe is a lighter way to warm up and stave off hunger if meat is off the table for you. Garnish with avocado for healthy fat and don’t forget to bring along some cornbread. Photo and recipe: Emily Miller / Life by DailyBurn 

Black Bean Hummus

10. Zesty Black Bean Hummus
Can’t quit when it comes to chips and dip? Thanks to black beans, cottage cheese and almond butter, this hummus delivers a whopping 16 grams of protein per serving. It’s so zesty you’ll want to devour all the celery in sight! Photo and recipe: Perry Santanachote / Life by DailyBurn 

Originally posted January 2014. Updated October 2015. 

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